Everything You Need To Start A Wholesale Business In Kenya

Wholesale Business In Kenya

If you are interested in starting a business in Kenya, the wholesale business is a great one to start with. Not only is it vast and covers a wide range of products but it also comes with a huge amount of profit since it is usually operated on a large scale.

A wholesale business is any business that involves the sale of goods in bulk to retailers, institutional businesses, commercial businesses, industrial businesses to other wholesalers as the case might be.

There is no specific product that is known which is not sold in a wholesale business.

One characteristic of the business is that whatever goods are being resold are usually gotten directly from the source or manufacturer and are sold in large quantities.

So if you are interested in starting a wholesale business in Kenya then you need to read this article where we have provided well-detailed information on everything about the business.

Is Wholesale Shop Profitable In Kenya?

Opening a wholesale shop is very profitable, and there are many reasons why opening a wholesale shop in Kenya can be a profitable business.

One is the large and growing market with more than 50 million people.

And the other reason is because of the rapid economic growth which is highering demand for a wide range of goods/products.

Meanwhile, as a wholesaler, you can make a lot of profit while distributing the products to the retailers. That is to say that, there is a high profit potential in this business.

What Are The Wholesale Business Ideas In Kenya?

The wholesale business ideas in Kenya are:

1. Grocery Wholesale Business: This is the type of wholesale business in Kenya that involves selling groceries at a wholesale standard and price.

2. Wine And Spirits Wholesale Business: You can also start a wine and spirits business that sells at a wholesale price and supplies to retailers.

3. Egg Wholesale And Distribution Business: Egg wholesale business involves purchasing eggs in bulk directly from the farm (egg producers) and then supplying them to the egg retailers/consumers.

4. The Sale Of Gas Cylinder: Another type of wholesale business idea is the “sale of gas cylinders” as a wholesaler. You purchase them in large quantities or import them, then you supply them to retailers/markets.

5. Cosmetics Wholesale Business: As a cosmetics wholesaler, you stock your shop with beauty and care products in bulk, and serve as a store for retailers to patronize you.

6. Perfume Wholesale Business: This is the trending business in Kenya now. You buy perfumes in large quantities and distribute them to retailers. Meanwhile, the fastest perfume to sell as a wholesaler is the “oil perfume”.

7. Diaper Wholesale Business: Diaper wholesale business involves buying diapers in larger quantities from the manufacturing company and selling them to retailers at a wholesale price. As a diaper wholesaler, you should be able to identify the fastest-selling brands and customers’ preferences before engaging in this business.

8. Electronics Wholesaling Business: Another profitable wholesale business idea in Kenya is the sale of electronics. You can open an electronics shop that sells electronics items at a wholesale price.

9. Honey Wholesale Business: You buy a 25 litre of honey, and distribute them in smaller units to retailers at a wholesale price.

10. Clothing Wholesale Business: Clothing wholesale helps manufacturers to reach a broader market. As a clothing wholesaler, you buy the clothing items in large quantities and then supply them to the retailers and boutique owners.

What Are The Challenges Of Starting A Wholesale Business In Kenya?

When it comes to starting a wholesale business in Kenya some challenges may occur and that’s why you need to be prepared and know how to avoid them.

One of the major challenges of the wholesale business in Kenya is counterfeit products. If you are opening a wholesale business you need to be able to distinguish between original products and fake.

Another challenge is the high level of competition. Of course, there are several wholesalers here in Kenya and they have already built trust between their customers. So starting as a newbie may be challenging unless you have an effective strategy to stand out.

And lastly, not meeting up with the demands of your customers. This has to do with having insufficient inventory, and it can make your customers start looking out for other wholesalers that will supply enough products to them when they need them.

How Much Does It Cost To Start A Wholesale Business In Kenya?

The cost of starting a wholesale business in Kenya depends on the type of wholesale business you want to start and the bulk of the product you will purchase.

Nonetheless, on average most of the wholesale businesses in Kenya can start with Ksh 500,000, while some cost up to Ksh 2 million.

How Do I Start A Wholesale Business In Kenya?

If you want to become a wholesaler in Kenya, here are the steps you need to follow:

1. Choose A Niche: Choosing a niche comes by first identifying a niche market that has the fastest moving products. This will help you know the type of product to sell and the right customers for it.

2. Do A Market Research: The best way to do market research is to talk to other successful wholesalers to know how they are running their business successfully.

And base on the niche you have chosen, you have to understand the market prices. More so, once you have researched the market and understand the customer’s preferences, you have to develop an effective marketing strategy to promote your products to your target markets (retailers for the product).

3. Develop A Business Plan: Another important step to take when starting a wholesale business in Kenya is to develop a business plan. With a good business plan, it will put all your goals, objectives, and strategies into writing.

It serves as a guide to becoming a successful wholesaler in Kenya.

4. Get A Good Location: You will need to find a location for your wholesale business. It is in your wholesale shop that retailers come to purchase the goods they want. That’s why it is very important to locate your wholesale store in a visible and accessible area where your target customers can locate you easily.

5. Find A Reliable Supplier: Once you have gotten a good location and after you have furnished your store/warehouse, the next step is to find a reliable supplier of the goods you will be selling.

Meanwhile, you have to apply to become their wholesaler by visiting their office/company. And then making an agreed decision and arrangement on how they will be supplying you at a good rate.

6. Hire Staff: Hiring staff is very important in a wholesale business. This is because you will need a helping hand that will make your business run effectively.

At least, you will need a bookkeeper to record all the day-to-day transactions.


The opportunities in the wholesale business are rewarding and worth investing in. Though, it requires a lot of capital the profit potentials are top-notch.

To sum it up, you can start the wholesale business in Kenya by finding the right supplier that supplies at a cheaper price and then you start selling to retailers at a bit higher price. That’s how the wholesale business works.

And don’t forget that you can create your products and also supply them to retailers.

Lastly, have a clear understanding of the product that sells fast and how you can serve the customers (retailers) well.

Ambassador Victor Chidera
Ambassador Victor ChideraAmbassador Victor Chidera is a business consultant, writer and a blogger. He provides lots of professional and expert advice to small businesses, entrepreneurs and organizations. He has many years of experience in business, teaching field, and research work. And his aim is to provide business articles that matters to you both nationally and internationally.
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