Sale of used household items such beds, mattress, television sets and woofers has become profitable in and around Kikoni streets.
The used products are picked from hostels and Makerere University halls of residence under signed agreements between those selling and those buying them. Chances of an item moving from one student and ending up in the hands of another student are very high.
Ssensa Musa, a well-known dealer in second-hand products says: “The business has catered for me to live in Kampala; I have bought two plots of land in my trading centre in Myanzi, Mityana district.”
He adds that students tend to sell off their products with a depreciating percentage of 30% off the original price when it’s new and roadside venders normally reduce by 10% off the original price of the product according to the bargaining power between the two parties.
He concluded that the business is profitable because it needs little money to start as he began with only 100,000 shillings in 2014 but the competition was less than today because at least every road in Kikoni has second-hand products alongside it. “However, I have managed to out-compete those joining the business by opening up various branches,” he explains.
Nuwabiine Rodgers, a student at Makerere University and resident in Kann Hostel, says “Second-hand products are cheap and good for example a new woofer worth 150,000 shillings can be got at 90,000 shillings.”
He adds that he prefers second-hand products because he saves some money on every item he buys.
Mugamba Dickson a student who lives in Douglas Villa Hostel says he gets new products every semester. “I sell out some products whenever I am ending the semester because I see students complaining of their lost products when they return from holidays so I don’t leave my products behind,” he says.
Kintu Nicolas, who deals in these business says some students in their last semester sell off all products they have at give-away prices and these products earn for him much profits as the market is ready from the community and also fresh students coming in at Makerere.
However, he adds, the business needs connections in hostels and halls of residence.