In his time as a student at Bartolimo Boys High School, Nahashon Kiplagat’s fascination with entrepreneurship was already evident.
Upon completing his high school education in 2011, Kiplagat embarked on a journey of selling charcoal to sustain himself. With a starting investment of KSh 10,000, sourced from his personal savings, he initiated this venture at his residence in Kabarnet, located within Baringo County.
According to a report by Bizna Kenya, through the sales of charcoal to his local community, Kiplagat managed to accumulate KSh 20,000. This sum was subsequently reinvested to expand his enterprise.
After a span of six months in the charcoal trade, Kiplagat made the strategic decision to purchase two motorcycles. This move proved to be lucrative, yielding him a daily income of KSh 600.
In the year 2012, Kiplagat enrolled at Mt Kenya University with the intention of pursuing a degree in education. It was during his third academic year that an opportunity arose. A business space adjacent to the institution was available for lease at KSh 400,000, a sum that exceeded his available funds by KSh 200,000.
In his quest to bridge the financial gap, Kiplagat endeavored to solicit assistance from both relatives and friends. Regrettably, his attempts were met with disappointment, prompting him to consider alternative measures.
Undeterred by the lack of external support, Kiplagat made the audacious choice to utilize his school fees. His rationale was rooted in the belief that the acquired space could potentially generate substantial returns.
This decision, however, led to a conflict with his elder brother, who was an advocate for focusing solely on academic pursuits. Kiplagat, aware of his entrepreneurial zeal, remained steadfast in his convictions, stating, “I sensed that my family could not fully grasp my passion for business. Despite the advice, I held strong to the belief that the space would prove to be a source of significant prosperity.”
Upon successfully securing the premises, Kiplagat set his sights on establishing a pool business. Recognizing the idle hours that many students experienced after classes, he aimed to provide an engaging and recreational outlet.
The foremost challenge that he encountered was acquiring the necessary startup capital to procure pool tables. To surmount this obstacle, Kiplagat took the initiative to sell his motorcycles for KSh 155,000 and secure a bank loan of KSh 50,000. With these resources, he invested KSh 150,000 in a new pool table and an additional KSh 50,000 in a second-hand one.
Initial earnings from the endeavor were modest, with the first month yielding a mere KSh 20,000. This amount fell short of covering both rent and employee wages. However, Kiplagat’s determination remained unswerving.
Gradually, the business began to flourish. By the second month, each pool table generated an average daily income of KSh 2,000, translating to a monthly sum of KSh 120,000.
As the venture gained momentum, Kiplagat expanded his operations by opening a branch at Komora Centre. This move attracted students from the University of Nairobi and neighboring colleges.
At present, Kiplagat’s entrepreneurial efforts yield a monthly income surpassing KSh 200,000. Additionally, he has extended employment opportunities to several former classmates from Mt Kenya University. Reflecting on his accomplishments, he shared, “I am able to generate a minimum of KSh 240,000 per month from my enterprise. I have provided employment to four individuals, some of whom are alumni of Mt Kenya University.”