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Tuesday, 25 September 2018

Top 20 small business ideas in Rwanda

small business ideas in Rwanda
Are you looking for small business ideas in Rwanda to invest in? But don't know the best one to choose from? Then you don't need to read further because on this post I will be sharing with you some lucrative small business ideas in Rwanda to tap into in other for you to start a profitable venture as an entrepreneur and investor.

Rwanda is a country located in East Africa and one of the smallest countries on the African mainland and also recognized as the Singapore of Africa.

But they are some certain things you need to know about starting a business in Rwanda, such as the benefits and challenges you would face when starting your small business in Rwanda

Benefits of doing business in Rwanda

1. Rwanda was listed on Forbes list as the 7th best country in Africa to start a business.

2. Ever since Rwanda's economy suffered heavily on genocide during the year 1994 with widespread loss of life, failure to maintain infrastructure, looting and neglect in the importation of cash crops. Which has caused a large drop in GDP, the economy has strengthened ever since then with an increase in GDP estimated to be $2,090 in 2017 compared with $416 in 1994.

3. Rwanda is listed among the top three nations in African for ease of doing business followed by Mauritius and South Africa.

4. Business registration in Rwanda is very easy because it takes around 3- 5 days business working days to successfully get your business registered.

5. Running your business in Rwanda would be at low risk, reasons because Rwanda has one of the lowest crime and corruption rates on the continent.

6. They are a huge demand for major products in the local market of Rwanda. So any unique business idea you wish to bring in Rwanda will thrive a lot and make you profit as far as the business is solving people's problem.

7. Rwanda has a good and fast internet service across cities like Kigali, Gitarama, Butare and the rest of them. In addition to this Rwandan's government has decided to make internet available across the country.

8. The road networks in Rwanda are very neat and well kept most especially in the city of Kigali. The most amazing part is that Rwanda's capital has little traffic which will enable business owners who situate his or her business in Kigali to reach their various offices faster.

9. Rwanda has a fast growing economy and has been identified by World Bank in the year 2015 as one of the fastest world's growing economies alongside with Ivory Coast, Ethiopia and the Democratic Republic Of Congo.

Challenges to encounter when doing your business in Rwanda

1. Shortage of skilled labor including lawyers, accountants, technicians, and other skilled professions.

2. Relatively poor infrastructure-Rwanda is a landlocked country and transportation costs of import and exports are among the highest in the world.

3. Doing business in Rwanda, you will have access to limited finance with high rate of interest and very limited capital markets

4. Even with easy business registration, implementation can be less smooth due to the delays in government payments for goods and services delivered, due to changes in Memorandum Of Understanding and additional tax investment.

5. Foreign investors can face difficult and hard times when it comes to obtaining a work visa or its renewal due to the fact that the Rwandan government demonstrated the interest of hiring its country local investors over foreigners.

6. Most of the local and foreign investors have also made it clear that the inconsistent application of tax payment and import duties as a major significant challenge to doing business in Rwanda

Now that you have known the pros and cons of starting a business in Rwanda, so be ready to adapt very fast.

Here's the list of top 20 small business ideas in Rwanda

1.Transport Business

Major cities in Rwanda are mostly busy due to the day to day running of various business activities and career jobs so the need of getting people to their desired destinations would be very important. So an entrepreneur can fill the gap in the transportation industry in Rwanda by providing transport services through various means such as taxi/cab services and minibus. This business will likely to generate you income on a daily basis provided you are in a strategic location.

2.Real estate business

They are fewer houses in some of the cities in Rwanda, which is not yet enough for Rwandans because they need more housing units in their beloved country. An entrepreneur or investor can choose to start a venture in the real estate sector in Rwanda such as the building of apartments, property management and construction of office space because they are a huge demand for it in the real estate industry. Mainly you should target the middle-class families when building apartments and office spaces. This is one of the good and fast moving small business ideas in Rwanda any interested entrepreneur or investor can venture into.

3. Internet&computer service

With the current fast growth of Rwanda's economy, an interested entrepreneur can start an enterprise on the internet and computer service. If you have the experience when it comes to the use of the internet and computer, you can set up a business of own in Rwanda by providing internet services such as a cyber cafe, online registrations, and internet skill acquisition programs (Web design, graphic design and Search engine optimization)

The new changes in technology has gotten people to know the essence of having the basic knowledge of the user computer, you can decide to run this business alongside with internet service because they work hand to hand. some of the needful training to give to those who are not computer oriented are computer training(Most especially the use of Microsoft Word and PowerPoint).

4. Coffee plantation business

Coffee plantation is another thriving and lucrative business any entrepreneur can start in Rwanda. Reports have shown that 400,000 Rwandans make their living alone from coffee plantation. This is a huge gap for investors to fill in by going into Coffee plantation through the use of advanced technology. The coffee products can be exported to other neighboring countries.

5. Tourism business

The tourism sector in Rwanda has been noted to be the major key players in towards their country's economic growth, Hence, tourists from different part of the world would love to see the beautiful nature in Rwanda by paying a visit to the major mountain gorillas, the Volcanoes National Park in which mountain gorillas can safely be visited and tourists pay high for permits. An investor or entrepreneur can have a second thought about this business if you know more about the tourism industry. Also get a local partner to show you more areas to explore in the tourism business opportunity in Rwanda. Tourism is among the profitable and thriving small business ideas in Rwanda an entrepreneur can look into. The major area you should look into is the local tour service. Good marketing is a better approach to use when starting this business.

6. Online marketing 

With so many businesses being emerged in Rwanda, it's also a good idea for entrepreneurs to go into online marketing services by offering it to small and big business firms. Some business owners are now beginning to embrace the idea of promoting their products and services online, which they have set a specific amount of budget for online marketing alone. You can make a good and stable income if you can prove your expertise by providing quality online marketing services for various businesses in Rwanda so as to enable them to get more clients and increase their sales.

7.Home Appliances business

Home appliances business is a profitable small business opportunity to start in Rwanda. As they will be many people moving into a new residential area, they will need their apartments to be well furnished either by purchasing home appliances such as Television sets, DVDs, Home Theater, Fans(both ceiling and standing fans), Air conditioners, stabilizer and other home appliances needed in a home. To get started in this venture, you need a good business plan, become an agreed distributor of electronics brands such as LG, Sony, and Panasonic and lastly, you need a strategic business location that would enable you to bring in customers to purchase your products.

8. Mobile phone startups

Starting a mobile phone business is another fast moving business to set up in Rwanda. You can start by selling quality mobile phones, and phone accessories. You can partner with brands that offer quality mobile phones, brands such as Apple, Infinix, Samsung, and Tecno are phone manufacturers where you can purchase their products and sell them to the local markets and make your own profit.

9. Start a business related to energy&power

Power is one of the most important components of infrastructure crucial for the economic growth and welfare of the nation. An entrepreneur can take advantage of this industry by starting a business in the energy and power sector, you just need to identify the aspects where Rwanda is lacking behind in terms of energy and power generation. Some of the highly profitable energy business ideas are solar panel sales and installation, inverters and ups sales, sales of quality and durable generator and so much more.

10.Agricultural business

Rwanda's economy is based mostly on subsistence farming by local farmers using simple farming tools. The agriculture sector in Rwanda constituted an estimated 32.5% in the country's GDP in 2014. An entrepreneur can take advantage of this industry by going into the farming business using simple techniques such as planting crops with a small plot of land and steep slopes. Some of the agricultural produce you can focus on and supplying them to the local markets for consumption are a plantation of beans, potatoes, cassava, maize, green banana, wheat, and sweet potatoes. You can also export your agricultural products to other near-by countries or rather sell them to the local markets.

11.Mobile Phone repair service

Mobile phone repair is a good lucrative and thriving small business opportunity in Rwanda to give a second thought, inasmuch as they are many mobile phone users. To start this business you need to acquire the skill from an existing and experienced phone repairer, you need to pay for this service so as to be rendered but trust me you will make more than the money you invested in getting yourself trained in phone repair skills once you kick start this business and attract customers. To increase your income in this business, you need to invest in phone repair tools and find a good business location. A busy area would be much better based on my own perspective.

12. Manufacturing business

The manufacturing business is a goldmine when it comes to small business ideas in Rwanda because they are only a few manufacturing industries situated in the country. This is a huge gap for entrepreneurs and investors who are into the manufacturing industry to fill in by manufacturing fast-moving commodities like perfume, body cream, bathroom soaps, detergent, toothpaste, chemical, cooking utensils, and supply them to local markets

13. Fashion business

An entrepreneur can set up a fashion business and promote the culture of the Rwandans by selling native and popular fabrics, locally made shoes, and handbags. This will be a lucrative business if you know more behind fashion business and also as an entrepreneur you can also try to bring in a stylish way of making Rwanda fabrics and selling them to Rwanda markets.

14. Telecommunications

Telecommunications is another thriving business to start in Rwanda because people need to be informed and able to communicate with one another. No matter how bad or hard the economy of a country is, telecommunications will never die out. The telecommunications industry is kind of capital intensive but on the hand, If you have enough business funds to kick start and you know more about this industry, then you should venture into it provided that you are keen about the business. Some of the telecommunications small business opportunities to look into are telecom providing service, bulk SMS business, setting up a television or radio stations.

15. Banking and Finance services

Many businesses are increasing rapidly in Rwanda but as for some entrepreneur they will want to make sure their business is being managed well without having the issue of mismanagement of business funds, they would rather require the service of a financial advisor, tax consultancy, and commercial banks for the purpose of saving money after the day to day business transactions. You see, this is a good move for an entrepreneur to join the banking and finance industry despite that they are already existing banking and finance services in Rwanda, you must be adaptive and also learn how to compete these are the traits any entrepreneur should have.

16. Mining

The mining sector is noted to be one of the major key contributors to Rwanda's economy. A good business to start, but it involves a huge amount of capital and dedicated labor force. Some of the minerals to mine in Rwanda and make a profit in return are tantalum, wolframite, gold, coltan, and cassiterite, which is used in the manufacturing industries to make communication and electronics such as DVD players. A good approach to this business would be better. You can mine some of the mineral resources and supply them to manufacturing industries.

17. Foreign cuisine restaurant

As Rwanda welcomes a lot of visitors and tour around the world from different races and also different taste for various foods, an entrepreneur who is a good cook can make use of this lucrative small business idea in Rwanda by preparing common eaten English foods like Italian fries, sandwich, and some other English foods.

18. Hotel business

Fast growing economy country like Rwanda and also an attractive center for tourists, setting up a hotel business is another lucrative venture because people who do pay a visit to Rwanda for the purpose of either business, site viewing of attractive centers and for pleasure can use a hotel service for their stay in Rwanda till their desired time for departure.

19. High-end spare parts business

Spare parts business is a highly profitable small business idea in Rwanda to engage in,   inasmuch as they are many car users in Rwanda.  You can get quality car spare parts from trusted countries like the U.S.A, Japan, and Germany. All you need to do is buy the right car spare parts of different manufacturers such as Toyota, Honda, Range Rovers, Lexus,  Mercedes, and so on made in the year 2000 upwards. This business needs a proper approach and learning more from those car spare parts business owners.

20. Apps development

Applications development is making significant progress towards tech product consumption and Rwanda government is very supportive in using new technology. An entrepreneur who is into tech can go into the applications development or probably hire an app developer if you don't have the knowledge when it comes to apps development, tell him or her your app-related business idea and the motive behind it. Some of the highly profitable apps development startups to look into are a tours&travel app,  health app, an educational app, a security app, all in one social media app, and many others.


They you have it Top 20 small business ideas in Rwanda. If they are another business idea you have in mind to start in Rwanda but it's not listed here, go on and build that profitable and lucrative venture of yours that you think can solve people's problem. My best advice for you is to do what is right, follow the right channel, meet the right people, be hardworking, dedicated and committed to building up your business in Rwanda. Wish you all the best and don't forget to share your business story with us when you have finally made it in building a successful venture in Rwanda so as to inspire others.


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