13 best business ideas in Kolkata

Charting Success: Your Guide to the 13 Best Business Ideas in Kolkata

best business ideas in Kolkata | StartupYo

What comes to your mind when we say ‘mishti doi’ or ‘Howrah bridge’, Kolkata, isn’t it? Located in Eastern India, Kolkata is a vibrant and bustling metropolis. Kolkata’s diverse architecture, reflecting its colonial past and modern influences, sets it apart from other cities. Every corner of the city has a story, from the majestic Victoria Memorial to the bustling streets of North Kolkata with its old-world charm. But what truly sets Kolkata apart is its people, known for their warmth, hospitality, and love for life.

Business scenario in Kolkata

The city is a hub for various businesses. From traditional markets to modern startups, Kolkata has it all. Walking down the streets, you’ll find countless small businesses selling everything from sweets to handcrafted items. The local markets, like New Market and Gariahat, are a shopper’s paradise. They are filled with the hustle and bustle of people buying and selling goods. On the other hand, Kolkata is also embracing the digital era. Tech-savvy entrepreneurs are setting up their startups in places like Sector V. The IT industry is making its mark, creating job opportunities and economic growth.

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Why Should You Start a Business in Kolkata?

If you plan to start a business, Kolkata could be a great place to do it! Here’s why:

  • Growing Economy: The growing economy of Kolkata provides ample prospects for enterprises to prosper.
  • Lower Costs: Living and conducting business in Kolkata is comparatively cheaper than in other large cities. This means you can invest in your company and extend your budget further.
  • Rich Culture and Heritage: Kolkata is known for its vibrant culture and history. Starting a business here means being part of a city with a unique identity and a rich tapestry of traditions.
  • Strategic Location: Kolkata’s strategic location makes it a hub for trade and commerce. It’s well-connected by road, rail, and air, making it easy to reach customers and suppliers.
  • Supportive Ecosystem: The city has a growing ecosystem of entrepreneurs, investors, and support organizations. Whether you need mentorship, funding, or networking opportunities, Kolkata has resources to help your business succeed.
  • Diverse Market: Kolkata’s diverse population means there’s a market for almost any product or service. Whether in tech, hospitality, or manufacturing, you’ll find customers eager to support your business.

Starting a business is a big decision, but Kolkata’s advantages could make it the perfect place to turn your entrepreneurial dreams into reality! But before you begin your business, what is most important is doing your company registration in KolkataSo, with that, let’s look at the 13 best business ideas in Kolkata.

1.‍Affiliate Marketing Business

Affiliate Marketing Business | StartupYo

In Kolkata, affiliate marketing is an excellent business idea. All you need to do is partner with companies that sell items. Every time someone buys through your recommendation, you earn a commission. The best thing about affiliate marketing is that you don’t have to create or have the product; you have to share what you love and refer to others.

Affiliate marketing is flexible and can be done from the comfort of your home. So, in the City of Joy, consider becoming a matchmaker for products and happy customers through affiliate marketing!

  • Investment : ₹41,000 – ₹90,000.

  • Requirement : Create a Website or Blog, Join Affiliate Programs, Build an Email List, SEO Optimization

  • Profit Margin : ₹50,000 to ₹2,00,000 per month.

2.Fish Dealer Business

Fish Dealer Business | StartupYo

Being in Kolkata and not doing a business related to fish would be a bad idea. So, what can you do there? You can start a business as a fish dealer because Kolkata is famous for its delicious fish dishes, and there’s always a demand for fresh fish.

To start a fish-dealing business, you need to know about different types of fish, how to keep them fresh, and how to negotiate prices with suppliers. This can be a profitable venture if you have a good understanding of fish and its market.

  • Investment : ₹10 lakhs to ₹25 lakhs.

  • Requirement : Transportation, Packaging, Supplier Relationships, Storage Facilities(plastic wrap, ice packs), Fishing Equipment(nets, traps, and other fishing gear),etc.

  • Profit Margin : ₹1 lakh to ₹3 lakh per month.

3.Bengali Sweets Shop Business

Bengali Sweets Shop Business | StartupYo

Running a Bengali Sweets Shop is more than just selling sweets; it’s about sharing a piece of Bengal’s rich culinary heritage with locals and tourists alike. So, if you’ve got a passion for sweets and a taste for entrepreneurship, why not start a business in Bengali sweets? But to do well in this business, you should maintain its quality and variety. Also, maintaining high hygiene standards and using fresh, quality ingredients will earn customers’ trust and loyalty.

With Kolkata’s love for sweets and the rich culture surrounding Bengali cuisine, a Bengali Sweets Shop will surely sweeten the local business scene.

  • Investment : ₹10 lakhs to ₹20 lakhs.

  • Profit Margin : ₹2 lakhs to ₹5 lakhs per month.

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4.Recycling Business

Recycling Business | StartupYo

Starting a Recycling Business can make a real impact in a city as vibrant as Kolkata. Setting up a small recycling center can be a great business idea. Collect recyclables from homes and businesses and then send them to recycling plants. These plants work their magic to transform the materials into new products. Plus, you can earn money while doing good for the planet.

So, if you’re looking for a business that makes a difference, consider recycling here in Kolkata!

  • Investment : ₹15 lakhs to ₹50 lakhs.

  • Requirement : Collection System, Transportation, Sorting and Processing, Partnerships, Sorting and Separation Equipment,etc.

  • Profit Margin : ₹5 lakhs to ₹20 lakhs per month.

5.Saree Business

Saree Business | StartupYo

The saree business can be a lucrative venture in this culturally rich city. Sarees hold immense cultural significance in Kolkata, where festivals and celebrations are a big part of life.  To attract customers, set up a vibrant and welcoming store. You can also explore the online market by creating a user-friendly website. Engage with your audience through social media to showcase your latest saree collections and connect with potential buyers. A saree business can thrive in a city like Kolkata, where traditions and modernity coexist harmoniously. 

  • Investment : ₹1 lakhs to ₹5 lakhs.

  • Requirement : Seasonal Collections, Partnerships with Bridal Shops or Boutiques, Collaborations and Events, Store Setup, Retail Store Equipment(Racks and Shelves, Mannequins, Mirrors, Fitting Rooms,etc.

  • Profit Margin : ₹70,000-₹1 lakh per Month.

6.Online Store Business

Online Store Business | StartupYo

An online store might be a great choice if you’re thinking about starting a business in Kolkata. This business idea is becoming more and more popular in Kolkata since it allows you to connect with clients beyond your local neighborhood. You can sell various goods, from unique local to handcrafted goods.

Setting up an online store is not as complicated as it sounds. There are platforms like Shopify or Etsy that make it easy for you to create your own online space. So, if you’re looking for a business idea in Kolkata, consider having your online store. It’s like having a 24/7 shop that’s accessible to people near and far!

  • Investment : ₹5 lakhs to ₹20 lakhs.

  • Requirement : Select an E-Commerce Platform(Shopify, Etsy, WooCommerce, Amazon), Payment and Shipping, Local Events and Collaborations, etc.

  • Profit Margin : ₹1 lakh to ₹2 lakhs per month.

7.Dropshipping Business

Dropshipping Business | StartupYo

Dropshipping can be a great business in Kolkata because you can sell all sorts of things without worrying about storing them or managing inventory. Additionally, as long as you have an online connection, you can handle your dropshipping business anywhere. Dropshipping allows you to start your own business without a huge upfront investment, whether you want to sell clothing, accessories, electronics, or even handmade items.

  • Investment : ₹1 lakh to ₹10 lakhs.

  • Requirement : Payment Gateway(PayPal , Stripe, WorldPay, PaySimple ) , Order Processing System, Accounting Software(QuickBooks, FreshBooks, Neat, Sage UK, Zoho Books),etc.

  • Profit Margin : ₹60,000-₹90,000/- per month.

8.Restaurant Business

Restaurant Business | StartupYo

Kolkata is known for its rich culture and love for food, and starting a restaurant here can be a fantastic business idea. To succeed in the restaurant business, you need to focus on your unique selling proposition. Whether it’s a cozy ambiance, unique cuisine, or a pocket-friendly menu, make sure you stand out. Also, location matters! Therefore, choose a spot that attracts food lovers and is easily accessible. Marketing is vital, too. That’s why make sure to leverage social media to showcase your mouth-watering dishes and create a buzz. With dedication, creativity, and attention to detail, your restaurant in Kolkata can become the go-to place for food enthusiasts. 

  • Investment : ₹30 lakhs -₹50 lakhs.

  • Profit Margin : ₹INR 2 lakhs- ₹3lakhs per month.

Restaurant Business Courses

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9.Leather processing unit Business

Leather processing unit Business | StartupYo

Setting up a leather processing unit could be lucrative if you’re considering starting a business in Kolkata. Starting a leather processing unit here means tapping into a market that appreciates quality and craftsmanship. Now, you might be wondering how it works. Well, it involves a series of steps – cleaning, tanning, dyeing, and finishing. Every stage influences the finished product’s texture, color, and longevity. By investing in a leather processing unit, you’re not just running a business; you’re adding your touch to the fashion scene in Kolkata. 

  • Investment : ₹2 crores – ₹5 crores.

  • Requirement : Water and Energy Supply, Raw Materials, Equipment(Tanning Drums, Finishing Machines, Dyeing Machines, Quality Testing Equipment, Air Handling Systems),etc.

  • Profit Margin : ₹20lakhs-₹30lakhs.

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10.Textile unit Business

Textile unit Business | StartupYo

Kolkata offers a thriving market for textiles. To start, secure a suitable location and invest in essential machinery. Focus on understanding the local preferences and trends to tailor your products accordingly. Building strong relationships with suppliers for raw materials and creating a skilled workforce are crucial steps. To appeal to the environmentally conscious consumer base, embrace eco-friendly practices. Marketing is also essential in this venture. To reach a broader audience, utilize both online platforms and traditional methods. A textile unit business in Kolkata can be rewarding, tapping into the city’s love for diverse, high-quality textiles. 

  • Investment : ₹20 lakhs – ₹5 crores.

  • Requirement : Raw Materials(yarns, fabrics, dyes), Supplier Relationships, Digital Printing Technology, E-commerce Platforms(Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra, Adidas, Snapdeal), Collaboration with Designers, etc.

  • Profit Margin : ₹5lakhs -₹10 lakhs per month.

11.Event planner Business

Event planner Business | StartupYo

Starting an event planning business makes perfect sense in the city of joy, where celebrations are a big deal. You can be the creative genius behind beautiful decorations, delicious food, and seamless coordination. To enter this business, you need a keen eye for detail, excellent organizational skills, and a knack for turning ideas into reality. 

So, if you’re someone who loves bringing joy to others and thrives in a dynamic environment, consider starting your own event planner business in the heart of Kolkata!

  • Investment : ₹ 5 lakhs – ₹10 lakhs.

  • Requirement : Event Planning Software(Kate Aspen, Minted, Rent the Runway, James Allen, David’s Bridal) , Event Photography and Videography Partnerships, Event Catering and Menu Planning, etc.

  • Profit Margin : ₹1 lakh to ₹1.5lakhs per month.

12.Makeup artist Business

Makeup artist Business | StartupYo

 In the lively city of Kolkata, being a makeup artist is a fantastic business idea gaining popularity. The demand for makeup artists is soaring as everyone wants to look fabulous on special occasions. Starting a makeup artist business doesn’t require a fancy studio; you can even offer services from the comfort of your home. 

Being a makeup artist not only lets you explore your passion but also opens doors to a colorful and exciting career!

  • Investment : ₹50,000 – ₹2,00,000.

  • Profit Margin : ₹30,000 – ₹1,00,000 per month.

Makeup Artist Business Courses

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13.Import/ export business

Import/ export business | StartupYo

Import/export business is when you buy stuff from other countries and sell it in your country, or vice versa. It’s like a big trading game! In Kolkata, this business idea is excellent because you can bring unique items from around the world and sell them to people who might not have seen them. You can also send products made in Kolkata to other countries, spreading the love for your city globally! With an import/export business, you can connect worldwide and help people discover new things while making a profit.

  • Investment : ₹5,00,000 – ₹20,00,000.

  • Profit Margin : ₹70,000- ₹2,00,000 per month.


To conclude, Kolkata offers diverse opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs. From starting a restaurant to starting an online store, there’s a business idea for every niche. The key is to tap into Kolkata’s unique blend of tradition and modernity. But before starting a business, getting your GST registration in Kolkata is crucial. It makes your business legally compliant and simplifies the taxation process. Additionally, it opens doors to government schemes and facilitates seamless business expansion. 


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