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How to Start a Movie Shop in Kenya

Daisy Neema
Daisy Neema Business Ideas

Movie shops are among the most profitable businesses to start in Kenya. Kenyans are busy people and during their free time, they want to relax and unwind. Most prefer to entertain themselves by watching movies and television series. It is expensive to access the latest movies and series. You must pay a premium subscription for your decoder. Kenyans opt to buy movies from movie shops. If you are thinking of joining this niche, this is what you need to know to get started.

Also read: How to start an M-Pesa business in Kenya

Choose a Location for Your Movie Shop

The success of your movie shop will depend on the business location you choose. You need to set up your shop in an area that is easily accessible to your target customers. Some of the best locations are near bus stations, close to residential areas, town centers, near a college or campus, and in shopping centers.

Get a Business Premise

After identifying a strategic location for your movie shop business, the next step is to rent a shop or a store. When renting a shop, you need to keep in mind that rental costs tend to be high in developed and busy areas. The space of your movie shop will also determine the rental prices.

Get the Necessary Licenses

You will need to get the necessary licenses before you can legally operate a movie shop. Movie shop operators will need the following licenses and permits for compliance.

1. Trade License

The county government issues a trade license and the costs vary from county to county. The fee may range between Ksh 3,000 and Ksh 15,000.

2. A Public Performance License

All movie shop operators will need to get a Public Performance License from the Music Copyright Society of Kenya, which will cost an average of Ksh 4,000 per year. The license covers the selling of series, movies, and playing of music.

3. A Film/Video Regulatory License

A film/video regulatory license is issued by the Kenya Film and Classification Board (KFCB) and will cost between Ksh 3,000 to Ksh 10,000 per year.

Read more: Licences ad permits you need to operate a business in Kenya

Basic Equipment Needed to Start a Movie Shop

You will need various equipment to run a successful movie shop, including a fast computer and a fast internet connection. This will enable you to download and copy movies faster. Additionally, you will also need a duplicator to help you copy multiple disks at the same time.

You will also need blank DVDs where you can copy movies. A rim of 50 discs can cost between Ksh. 400 and Ksh. 500. Other equipment includes a LED T.V, woofers, furniture (a table, chairs, or benches), movie posters, and envelopes for packing movies.

How to Get Movies

Once you are ready to start your business, you need to figure out where you will get the movies. There are two options;

1. Buy movies from online distributors

There are online movie distributors whom you will have to pay through PayPal or Skrill to get movies. One movie will cost between Ksh. 800- Ks.1500. Upon payment, the distributor gives you a link that you will use to download the movie.

C.Ds on dispaly

2. Buy from friends and make duplicates.

It is the easiest and cheapest way to get movies. When someone else buys the movie, you buy it from them at Ksh. 50 and make duplicates. This method will help you create and sell as many copies as you want.

Cost of Starting a Movie Shop in Kenya

One of the most important questions to ask yourself when starting a movie shop is how much you will need to get started. The costs include equipment costs, rental costs, costs to obtain licenses, and maintenance costs. Starting a movie shop will need approximately between Ksh 50,000- Ksh 100,000.

  • Rental costs               Ksh 25, 000
  • Computer Desktop    Ksh 20 000
  • MSK License               Ksh 4000
  • Business Permit          Ksh 7000
  • KFCB License              Ksh 5000
  • External hard disk       Ksh 10,000
  • CD burning software  Ksh 5,000
  • Miscellaneous             Ksh 5,000

Other equipment and items you need to start a movie shop include a woofer, felt pens, movie posters and envelopes for packaging CDs.

Is a Movie Shop Business Profitable? 

Yes. With a suitable business location with high on foot traffic and near residential areas and institutions, you can earn between Ksh 2,000 to Ksh 3,000 in a day. A movie shop business can earn you a profit of about Ksh 30,000 in a month. 


Movie shops are highly profitable, but you will still need to go the extra mile to keep your customers. You need to promote your business and let people know that you are selling movies. Essential things to consider include excellent customer services, a excellent marketing strategies, and good managerial skills.

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