Entrepreneurial Stories

Michael Kiwo Founder of Pollucare cleaners strives to keep Mombasa clean

Michael Kiwo Founder of Pollucare cleaners strives to keep Mombasa clean

Pollucare Cleaners provides access to a clean and healthy environment by offering innovative solid waste management solutions. Their services include proper garbage collection and disposal for families and businesses living in urban center in Mombasa, Kenya.

So how did its founder, Michael, start all this?

“I was born and raised in Mombasa. I have witnessed an increased number of health cases caused by poor garbage disposal in the region. This tends to get worse during the rainy season where we have the garbage blocking the drainage system and therefore exposing the residents to  diseases such as malaria and even cholera.”

Michael quit his job in freight and forwarding industry to bring a long-lasting solution to his town. In 2017, he started Pollucare Cleaners which offers door-to-door garbage collection services to help the county government of Mombasa to effectively deal with the menace. He collects the garbage while the government  provides them with transportation of the waste to Mwakirunge dumpsite.

Starting out, Michael used his savings as capital but along the way he realized it was not enough.

I had to turn to my family for financial support. Once I had some profit I used to plough it back to the business since it was young and not self-sustaining. It’s over one year since Pollucare Cleaners was born and I can say it is now profitable. We started with only five clients and now we have over 40 houses that we are offering our services to. In a day we are handling over 500kgs of waste in Ganjoni and Liwatoni areas.”

As new entrants in the industry, they faced stiff competition from existing businesses which were experienced and had built their brand. Pollucare Cleaners had to stick to their vision of providing quality services that are reliable and affordable to the local mwananchi. Unlike other businesses that are just into collecting and disposing, Pollucare Cleaners offer more than that.

“We provide our clients with free bins and we give them solutions like on how to handle different types of waste. Our charges are customized so that everyone enjoys a clean and healthy environment. We also partner with waste recycles like Takaz organization and Garb tech so that out of waste useful products like building materials and charcoal are manufactured and consumed locally at an affordable price.”

Michael Kiwo

Michael Kiwo

When it comes to marketing, Pollucare Cleaners base it on digital marketing. They have a website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn pages. They also do door-to-door marketing, attending a lot of networking events, as well as advertising in magazines and sharing fliers. Despite the variety in their marketing channels, most of their clients are derived from social media and referrals.

When asked how entrepreneurship has impacted his life Michael has only positive things to say.

“First of all, I am impacting the community around me in a positive way doing what I love and I have employed two youths. I was part of Governors startup challenge which was organised by Youth Empowerment Programme Initiative (YEPI) an organization in Mombasa which trains social entrepreneurs on how to start and run a business profitably. Apart from that, I have become a role model to many as I mentor young people who want to come into the industry and those who want to start their businesses.”

The founder of Pollucare Cleaners attributes his success to God and his family who have supported him in every move in his venture. Then to Youth Empowerment Programme Initiative (YEPI) team where he learnt businesses skills.

As a parting shot Michael urges follow entrepreneurs to always think positive. “Challenges in business never end. They are our daily bread so one should always be willing to solve one and expect another one very soon. Never give up no matter what because today will be hard tomorrow it will be harder but the day after tomorrow you will win.”

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About Kuza Biashara

About Kuza Biashara

Starting a business is a leap of faith even in the best of circumstances. We at Kuza Biashara are focussed to encourage these daring small business owners who have the potential to innovate and change the world by contributing to the nation’s economy and livelihood.