Stationery and Printing Business Models


So members keep asking me this question ‘ Why do you give investment information for free, why not sell this information? My response is usually that the big picture in giving people investment advice for free is to help our members to make informed investment decisions. To help inspire our members so that they can have many options when it comes to investment. Within the ZBIN Community we often find a lot of members with capital but cluessless on areas to invest in. The Zimbabwe Business Ideas and Network fills the gap in terms of information and provide you with business or investment trends to help you when looking at investment options. We only provide general advice and for more information, you may need to engage us for detailed surveys or look for others to help you.

Stationery and Printing Business Models

1.The old school in terms of selling stationery is that you open a shop and sell books and stationery-The ‘Kingstons shop model’

2. The improvised model is that of selling books and stationey from the streets. Most of the books or stationery being pirated stuff. Lets call this the ‘illegal model’ which is not recommended.

3. The third model involves visiting schools and entering into smart partnership deals. Lets call this one the ‘smart partnership model’

A sekuru of mine has been in the ‘Smart -Partnership Model’ for a while and this has brought him good profits for the past 2 years. He agreed with me to share his model so that it can benefit other enterpreneurs in the different parts of the country.

How does it work?

They visit schools which are located in the urban and rural areas. They first study printers that are used by schools and then brin better models for free!

How do they get profits?

They enter into agreement with schools that they will service and provide cartridges to the schools. The schools after entering into a business partnership–will have to buy cartridges from them only! Any breach of contract will result in litigation and removal of the printer from the school.

Cost of Printers

The smallest printer costs $50 and a cartridge goes for $30. So if they sell 4 cartridges per term this results in $120 monies from cartridges versus $50 for a cartridge. So they usually get their money back plus profits in only one term! Repeat this process for the entire year for one school and the answer should make you smile. Multiply the result by the number of schools and you should have an idea of where some people get money right?Almost similar to silent income as this is a business that is not labour intensive.


The model has come under threats from youngsters importing stationery, cartridges and printers from Mozambique. They are selling brand new cartridges from as low as $15 and are slowly taking over the market and this has forced my sekuru to consider relocation.

Follow Up Articles

We hope to explore the 3 models analysed above and find out the opportunities that can be tapped by our members.






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