How to start a printing business in South Africa

How to start a printing business in South Africa

Printing is still a big business in South Africa, done right, this can be a very lucrative business. This is a guide on how to start a printing business in South Africa.

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Printing is a very large industry, there is signage printing, t-shirt printing or simply photocopying or faxing. This article will focus on how to offer all these services, this leads to a diversified business with multiple streams of income.

The barriers to entry are not that high on the lower end. That is if we are taking into account only the bare minimum that you need to setup your business. They can be a bit steep on the other end, that’s when you want to create a business that offers all printing services and has a professional front.

A lot of the money is found in t-shirt printing, that’s because most people in the middle class have multi-purpose printers in their homes.

Choose the right location

Location is very important for this type of business, you have to be in the right place, it’s not as important as for a business like a restaurant. But it’s still very important, you have to be in an area that gets a lot of foot traffic, this is usually a town or just outside of town.

You don’t necessarily have to be in the CBD, leasing operating premises can be quite expensive in the CBD. Being in the outskirts of a town will work just fine and you should be prepared to pay upwards of R7 000 per month on rent.

Get operating premises

It’s time to lease operating premises in the location of your choice, make sure that you get the best value for money. Make sure that you breakdown the amount that you will be paying to square metres. Calculate how much you will pay per square metre and lease a building that gives you more value for money.

It’s important to note that you will have to renovate the premises, you might rent a shop that used to be a restaurant or furniture shop. It will take a lot of renovations to make it look more life a printing shop.

Buy equipment

T-shirt printing equipment can cost anywhere between R2 000 and R22 000. You have to make sure that you buy a high-quality heat press. Other equipment can be a multipurpose print, to help print or scan documents for people.

Register your business

Registering your business currently costs R125, this is very affordable and it’s something that you should do as soon as you have identified your location and have a business plan. It might also be beneficial to get a business insurance. This will make your company to present a more professional front.

Market your business

You don’t have to spend much in marketing this business, the business will market itself as long as it is situated in an area that has a lot of foot traffic. What you can do to boost sales is by using billboards or advertising in the local newspaper.

Make sure that your printing business has an online presence, get found on search engines like Google and have some social media pages.


This was a guide on how to start a printing business in South Africa. Do you have any thoughts or questions? Comment below.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Im satisfied with the information that i got and it is also very useful.

    1. Thank you very much 🙂

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