Best 25 Small Business Ideas in Ethiopia

If you have decided to start with your business idea in Ethiopia, you have taken the right decision. This is because the economy of Ethiopia has shown impressive growth from 2000 onwards.

The expanding economy of Ethiopia has opened up opportunities in various sectors like agriculture, food processing, IT, and the service sector. Therefore you have ample scope to succeed in building a successful business in Ethiopia.

Several new reforms have been implemented to encourage new business ideas in Ethiopia. Hence you can grow your business in this country and earn profits.

The infrastructure of Ethiopia has also improved to a great extent in the last decade. That is why it will be easier for you to develop and grow your business here.

25 Business Ideas & Opportunities in Ethiopia

1. Rice Farming

Rice farming is a profitable business idea for you because rice production is low in Ethiopia. Along with that, a lot of emphases is being given to rice farming. Hence rice farming in a large plot can be profitable for you. However, you need to have an idea of farming and the yield per acre of paddy.

2. Start a Small Manufacturing Business in Ethiopia

There is a wide scope for small-scale manufacturing businesses to prosper in Ethiopia. As a matter of fact, there is a big number of successful business owners in Ethiopia are in the manufacturing industry.

The main industries in the country are food processing, beverages, textiles, leather, garments, chemicals, and construction materials. If you have the required capital, one must consider launching a small-scale manufacturing unit. And try to tap the export market as the existing manufacturing enterprises have not been able to capitalize as yet.

3. Start a Food Processing Business in Ethiopia

Food processing is another profitable business idea for you in Ethiopia because it is an important sector in the business map of Ethiopia. Several food items are processed. You can choose anyone or several of them. In this case, you must have a basic knowledge of food processing along with the marketing network for selling them. The crops or items for processing are coffee, potato, maize, sesame, dairy, etc.

Flour Mill is also a good business to start here in this part of the world. Ethiopia is rich in wheat and maize production. That is why a flour mill is a sustainable business idea for you. It will give you a good profit and you will be able to recover your investment soon.

4. Open a Poultry Farm

You can start your poultry farm business in Ethiopia as it has a good demand as well as growth potential. Keep in mind that you have to supervise the entire process to run the farm smoothly. You can sell eggs as well as meat from your poultry farm and get a good income.

5. Start a Bakery

The bakery business has become very popular in Ethiopia. If you know about baking, you can start your bakery shop at a good location. Maintain a good standard of your products highlighting the local favorites. Try to be innovative and serve fusion items along with diet-friendly items which have good demand. Word of mouth publicity is significant for the growth of your bakery business.

6. Fast Food Joint

Starting a fast food joint is a good business idea in Ethiopia. Burgers, drumsticks and other fast food are very popular here. Hence you can start a fast food joint and earn a good profit.  Serving good quality food will ensure more customers coming to your fast food shop.

7. Advertising Agency

The growing economy of Ethiopia has a good demand for advertising agencies. Hence starting an advertising agency is a good business idea for you. In this business, you have to prepare advertisements for your clients suitable for print, audio as well as audio-visual media. Along with that, you have to chalk out different campaign programs for business enterprises.

8. Computer and Smartphone Repair

The widespread digitization along with the use of smartphones has created a good demand for computer and smartphone repair services. You can start the business of computer and smartphone repair services if you are technically skilled. This business needs very little money to start and you can start from your home. Add computer servicing to repair services for getting more business.

9. Internet Providing Service

Providing fast and hassle-free internet service is a profitable business idea in Ethiopia because Ethiopians browse the internet frequently. You may start this business by providing internet connections to different offices as well as a residential area. Invest in high-speed internet and add the troubleshooting service to serve your customers better.

10. Cyber Café

There is a good prospect of cyber café business in Ethiopia considering their need as well as addiction to the internet. Start a cyber café at a good location where you will get a lot of clients. Furthermore, add the services like printing, scanning, and copying for value addition and more income.

11. Tutoring

Tutoring is a highly sought-after business area in Ethiopia. You can take up this business idea and teach students of different grades starting from school to college level and higher. Along with that, you can also provide music, dance, or painting lessons to students. Take classes in your home or online according to your convenience and the students’ demand.

12. Start a Consultancy Business in Ehiopia

Ethiopia has a big market for a consultancy business. You can avail of this opportunity and grow your consultancy business. There are various areas of consultancy and you can choose any one of them. The areas include business consultancy, financial consultancy, and educational consultancy, etc.

Choose the area according to your expertise and experience. Staff training and orientation is also a part of the consultancy business that yields good income.

13. Start a Beauty Salon Business in Ethiopia

The salon is an all-time profitable business idea in any place, especially in Ethiopia. Start your salon at a good location. Hire good beauticians and use herbal and organic products which have good demand. Decorate your salon well so that it is convenient as well as comfortable for the customers. Furthermore, if you can make it a unisex salon, you will be able to earn more from your salon business.

14. Event Management

The growing economy of Ethiopia has a good demand for event management services. You can start your event management services wherein you will manage different corporate as well as social events.

Event management will demand careful attention of you into every minute detail of an event starting from the venue, guest list to décor, and food served. A few successful assignments will fetch you more clients. The charges of the event management business are quite high.

15. Cleaning Services

With the growth of the business sector in Ethiopia, the demand for cleaning services has grown very fast. You can start your cleaning service business idea with a few people to start with. The offices, banks, and other organizations need the cleaning services regularly. Invest in safe and effective cleaners and offer disinfection as well as sanitization services for good credentials along with value addition.

16. Laundry Services

You can start with the business idea of laundry services as it has a good demand in Ethiopia. If there is space in your home, you can set up the laundry at home. Otherwise, you need to hire a space. Washing machines, drier, etc. are the necessities for the laundry business.  Ironing the washed clothes will give you more income. Set your laundry in a residential area where you will get clients. Use flyers, posters, and banners for the publicity of your laundry service.

17. Solar Panel

The solar panel business idea is gaining popularity in Ethiopia. If you can manufacture solar panels and provide installation and repair services along with that, you can do good business. Your clients will include offices as well as residential buildings and complexes.

18. Freelance Writing

Freelance writing is a great home-based business idea in Ethiopia. Use your creativity and writing skills to do freelance writing business in various areas of creative writing like web content writing, article writing, blog writing, and SEO content writing for different business organizations, NGOs, publications, and web portals. Furthermore, you only need a computer, high-speed internet to start a home-based freelance writing business.

19. Website Designing

Website designing is a rising and prospective business idea in Ethiopia as many business organizations are developing and spreading their business in this country. You can start a website designing business if you know coding as well as have an aesthetic sense. Writing the web content and applying SEO optimization skills will be an added advantage in your website designing business.

20. Vending Machine

Vending machines have become a popular business idea in Ethiopia as people prefer to get various items like newspapers, snacks, drinks, cigarettes through vending machines. You can take advantage of this growing demand and start your vending machine business. Place the vending machines at busy places like shopping malls, supermarkets, theatres and grow your business.

21. Music Recording Studio

Music is a popular and passionate choice of Ethiopians because of its rich heritage in music. However, the recording infrastructure is not so developed here. That is why setting up a music recording studio is a lucrative business idea for you. It requires high investment, but the demand will help you to recover your investments. If you can make music videos along with recording facilities you can earn more profits.

22. Start a Real Estate Business in Ethiopia

The real estate business is looming large in Ethiopia. As a result, you can grow your real estate business idea in several ways. Firstly, you can develop real estate as a contractor. Secondly buy flats or apartments then remodel and furnish it and rent it out.

Thirdly, start your real estate business as an agent where you will coordinate contact between buyers and sellers and get your commission. Whichever niche you choose for your real estate business, your profit margin will be high. Foreigners looking to invest in Ethiopia must consider starting a real estate business.

23. Child Care Center

The child care center is a good business idea in Ethiopia where you have to set up a care center to look after the kids of different age groups in absence of their parents. Find a good cozy place and invest in toys and other entertainment facilities for the kids. If you can start a playschool or nursery school along with your daycare center, it will have more clients apart from building your goodwill.

24. Driving School

More and more Ethiopians are becoming interested to learn driving and get a driver’s license. Therefore opening a driving school will be a good business idea for you. Take special care to hire good trainers who will teach the students of your school effectively to become efficient drivers. Follow the rules needed for your driving school business. Get the permits and licenses necessary for opening a driving school and run it successfully.

25. Brick Making Business in Ethiopia

Since the real estate and construction activities are soaring in Ethiopia, you can consider brick making a good business idea. Set up your brick manufacturing unit with an automatic brick-making machine that makes hollow concrete bricks. Sell these bricks to the numerous construction units and earn good profit.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I get funding for my business in Ethiopia?

There are different funding sources for business ideas in Ethiopia. They include regulated short-term loans, crowdfunding, funding through investors or partners, etc. Apart from that, there are grant opportunities also.

What are the best cities to live in and do business in Ethiopia?

Some of the best cities in Ethiopia are the following:

  • Addis Ababa
  • Bahir Dar
  • Dire Dawa
  • Awassa
  • Adama

Is it wise to start my business in Ethiopia?

Starting your business in Ethiopia is a good as well as a profitable idea. It is one of the fastest-growing economies where business ideas regarding agriculture, manufacturing, IT, and industrial production along with ancillary business ideas are becoming successful and profit-making.

Ethiopia offers you a lot of opportunities to start your business. However, do remember proper planning and dedication are a must to build a successful venture.