Gone are the days when students were expected to focus only on attaining 5 Ordinary Level passes. Moreover, physical textbooks and traditional face to face teaching methods are fast disappearing. The world is evolving and more technological interventions have changed how things are done in education and other sectors. Because of this, there are many business ideas that can target students. Let us look at these.
The use of computers, tablets and other gadgets as learning tools in schools and colleges has been gathering momentum over the last few years. This has resulted in the development of online resources like e-books and others. In Zimbabwe, there are still a lot of opportunities in this space. Certain learning materials are still only available in traditional hard copy format. These need to be converted into electronic versions. In addition, gadgets like laptops, tablets and smartphones which are a necessary requirement for e-learning appear to be costly for many. As such, an opportunity exists for the manufacture of cheaper options.
Because students go to school or college, they are most likely to need uniforms. Because of this, a school uniform business can be a viable venture. The more schools you can partner with, the better. This is because you need to get the right designs for each school. Instead of selling to individual customers, you can sell direct to schools in bulk. The schools then sell to their students.
Parents are increasingly realising that good school passes are not the only gateway to success. So, those with talented children are better off investing in nurturing those talents. This gives rise to an opportunity for academies which can sharpen those skills. Academies for sports like soccer, rugby, cricket and others quickly come to mind. If you are in a position to establish any of these academies, there is enormous opportunity to turn them into profitable businesses. With proper facilities and expertise, your academy can grow to churn out kids who end up joining elite leagues around the world.
Youth entrepreneurship hubs
Zimbabwe is a highly informalised economy where only a small percentage of people are formally employed. The rest have to sweat it out as entrepreneurs. This means that there is an opportunity to train as many people as possible to become successful entrepreneurs. And, what better way to do this than to catch them young. You can open youth entrepreneurship hubs where youths can be helped in developing their business ideas into organisations with tangible results. You can also help them with funding for their start-ups in exchange for equity. If you do your homework well, some of these start-ups may give you good returns down the line. It must be noted though, that these entrepreneurship hubs need to be able to accommodate students who may be studying for other qualifications elsewhere.
The gaming space is also on the rise worldwide. More and more students enjoy computer and other games like FIFA and the like. In fact, gaming competitions are increasingly becoming popular in the country. Other countries are already far ahead when it comes to gaming. So, the opportunity for business is in two parts. Firstly, you can sell gaming equipment and software. Secondly, you can develop your own games as well. Either way, you stand to make a killing.
Farming is one of Zimbabwe’s largest foreign currency earners. But, the sector is not operating at its full potential at the moment. This is because of a number of factors, one of which is lack of proper training and skills needed in the farming of certain crops. This gap can be plugged if students are taken up and trained at a young age. Even if someone is studying accounting or Information Technology, they may still have an interest in farming. So, a short course during one of their vacations may be ideal. In any case, recent developments show that farming is no longer just a preserve for those in rural areas. Anyone can venture into it, provided they have the know-how and resources.
Trading on the stock exchange
While a student is studying something else, they may be interested in venturing into trading on the stock exchange. This is an area which is still gaining traction in Zimbabwe, hence the great business potential. You can open your own business to train people about trading on the stock exchange. As with all other businesses, the quality of the graduates you produce will determine whether or not you get more clients and are able to grow your business. With enough expertise and results to show for it, such a business can be very lucrative.
We have just touched on some of the businesses that can target students. This list is far from being exhaustive. This means that you can still come up with other opportunities to pursue in this regard.