Ali is a prominent business mogul who has created employment opportunities for many people in his vast business empire. He’s a serial Entrepreneur and an iron sheets factory, one of his lucrative ventures. In addition to his business ventures, Ali is a business mentor who organizes weekly business coaching sessions for Entrepreneurs. I was fortunate to attend a session where he was coaching about starting a small iron sheets factory. According to Ali, the rapid population increase has presented an opportunity in construction and housing. Iron sheets provide affordable roofing material for houses of any size. There is no doubt that starting an iron sheet factory is bound to expand your business horizon.
Luckily, I pride myself in being the credible source of business information. What better opportunity to share my knowledge than now? Here is how to start a small iron sheet production factory.
You do not have to buy land to start the factory. Leasing land for a renewable period of one or two years is the first option. A 1/8th acre is a beautiful space to begin. Areas like Naivasha, Nakuru, or Athi River are ideal for the factory setup. alternatively, you can rent a built space or a warehouse to start the venture.
Invest in Machinery
Roll-forming machinery is critical in the e manufacturing process. Unfortunately, it is only available in international markets in countries like China and India. The estimated costs of the machinery are between KSH 3,000,000- KSH 4,000,000. It is an all in one machine where iron sheets are formed and cut according to market demand.
Raw material for the manufacturing of the machine is known as iron sheets coil. It comes in different colours, lengths, and gauges. On average, the cost is between KSH 60,000 to KSH 120,000 per roll.
It is a demanding investment that requires one to create a good rapport with suppliers. Apart from relying on international e-commerce websites, you can visit suppliers in countries that manufacture the machinery and raw materials.
Get Licenses and Permits
One should register the business and acquire a KEBS license to certify that the final product meets the required quality. On the other hand, a single business permit obtained from county government offices is crucial once the above information is clear.
Start-up labor should not have more than five people. As a business owner, you must hire trustworthy people to manage the business while you are away. The business owner can do marketing and oversee the daily activities until the factory grows and sustain hiring costs.
It highly depends on your network and ability to convince clients to buy your products. After-sales services such as free transport for large orders can be one of the ways to maintain customers’. If you can manage 100 customers per month, either direct customers or hardware owners, you can make average sales of a 4.5million.
Challenges of the Business
The small iron sheet factory is a not a venture for the faint hearted. It requires huge capital investment and excellent networks. Some of the challenges arising from this venture include:
- High Start-up capital
- Lack of locally available raw materials
- Expensive costs of land leasing in strategic locations
- Finding competent workers is an uphill task.
A small iron sheet factory has the potential to bear phenomenal profits for risk-takers—people who can fight the numerous challenges at the start-up stage. Decide to fight your procrastination or watch others run a similar and successful venture.