Own business: production and installation of polycarbonate greenhouses

Growing vegetables in greenhouses on your site has recently become more and more relevant, because you can not only close the need for fresh vegetables for your family, but also arrange their sale, with the proper campaign. Let’s calculate how much it will cost to launch a small production of polycarbonate greenhouses.

Over the past few years, the demand for greenhouses in agriculture has shown rapid growth. The reason for this is the active development of the industry for greenhouse cultivation of fruits and vegetables. Moreover, even the coronavirus pandemic, which knocked down many entrepreneurs, did not greatly affect the greenhouse segment.

Demand for greenhouses is consistently high in various sectors of agriculture. We would single out three main areas. 

  1. APK. The most tasty option in terms of sales volumes is large agro-industrial complexes (AIC). Thanks to the transition to import substitution and the currently existing preferential conditions for lending to agribusiness, many of them are increasing the production of fruits and vegetables even despite the general decline in the country’s economy. Another trend is the supply of fruits and vegetables grown in greenhouses for export. Moreover, the agro-industrial complex sells its products not only in the CIS countries, but even in the Middle East. For example, in the UAE, due to high temperatures, growing vegetables in this region is not economically feasible, and the demand for them is always high there.
  2. Farmers and IP. The second segment where greenhouses can be sold is private farmers and individual entrepreneurs. Many regions, especially in the southern part of Russia, currently allocate special subsidies for the development and support of small businesses, which also contributes to the growth in demand for greenhouses.
  3. Lovers and gardeners. And finally the third segment – amateur. It’s no secret that agricultural products sold in large hypermarkets and markets are not always environmentally friendly. Therefore, many owners of summer cottages have recently also been thinking about growing fruits and vegetables. And so that tasty and natural products are on the table all year round, they buy and order the installation of country greenhouses.

In addition to stable demand, the greenhouse production and installation business is also good for its relative simplicity. At the initial stage, an entrepreneur can master the production and installation of structures on his own – it is enough to purchase the necessary consumables and tools and, as they say, “get your hands on it”. 

And finally, another fat plus of the business for the production and installation of greenhouses is a rather modest investment that will be required at the start. You can start your own business with no more than 100 thousand rubles. Interesting? Then let’s understand the nuances of this direction further.

Classification: what greenhouses are and what is the best way to make money

To begin with, we propose to decide on the type of greenhouses that you will produce. Basically, they are divided into three types according to the type of materials from which they are made:

  • Film greenhouses. Perhaps the only plus of this type of greenhouses is affordable prices. However, such structures are short-lived – the service life of polyethylene structures, as a rule, does not exceed one or two seasons. Also, the film does not withstand heavy loads and cannot withstand the negative effects of ultraviolet rays.
  • Glass greenhouses have good transparency, let in a lot of sunlight and do not emit substances harmful to the crops produced. They are also fireproof – if something happens, such designs will help save the crop and are easy to put out. But it can’t do without minuses here either – glass greenhouses are not only quite fragile and heavy, they also cost customers “a pretty penny” – not every farmer will be ready to spend money on their purchase.
  • Polycarbonate greenhouses. And finally, the third option – it is also the most popular – polycarbonate greenhouses. The advantages of structures made of such material are many – long service life (often farmers operate polycarbonate greenhouses for 18-20 years), protection of crops grown from harmful ultraviolet radiation, resistance to mechanical damage. Polycarbonate greenhouses are not afraid of moisture and allow you to experiment with non-standard appearance of structures due to the plasticity of the material. It is on such greenhouses that both private buyers and large corporate customers stop their choice.

Due to the wide distribution and at the same time the availability of the material, we recommend that novice entrepreneurs set up the production of polycarbonate greenhouses.

There are also three types of greenhouses according to the type of construction:

  • Arched. In appearance, such greenhouses look like a tunnel, thanks to the semicircular arch of the upper part of their design. The existing transverse lintels give the structure rigidity, so arched greenhouses are not afraid of even strong gusty winds.
  • Shed – are usually used if it is important for the buyer that the structure does not take up much space on the land. Many build such greenhouses as an extension to a house or agricultural building (barn). The strength of such structures is given by a frame made of metal pipes.
  • Gable greenhouses have a feature in the form of a roof with a slope angle of 21 degrees. This version of the structure of the upper part allows you to drain water from the roof and does not hold snow in winter.

All 3 options for greenhouses are popular among buyers, so it makes sense to master the construction of structures of all types.

Business registration

To conduct your business officially, you will need to officially register it. The best option for the legal form in the production and installation of greenhouses will be an individual entrepreneur on a “simplified” basis. In this case, the entrepreneur will have two taxation options to choose from: either you will pay 6% of income, or you will give 15% of net profit to the treasury (in some regions of the Russian Federation, the tax rate is lower and amounts to 7% of net profit). You can read more about IP registration here.

Greenhouse production does not require any additional building permits and is not subject to licensing. Code 25.11 of section “C” (manufacturing) is suitable as OKVED for this type of activity. It includes the wording “manufacture of various building structures using metal, as well as products and individual parts.”

Tool for the production of greenhouses – the necessary minimum

In parallel with registration as an individual entrepreneur (by the way, this procedure is short and will take no more than 5 working days), it will be necessary to purchase equipment for the production of greenhouses. Now we will not consider expensive options with the launch of an automated production line for 1-2 million rubles per purchase, but we will focus on the most logical and affordable option at the start of a business, when all procedures are performed manually.

So, you will need the following tool:

  • Manual pipe bending machine. This is perhaps the most optimal version of the machine for the production of greenhouses. Working with them, you yourself set the bending angle, after which you roll the pipe through the rollers, giving it the desired shape. Of the advantages of such a tool is its compact size and relative availability compared to electric and hydraulic machines. When buying, it is quite realistic to meet 20,000 rubles.
  • Cutting pendulum machine for cutting pipes and profiles. You can buy it in any online store of building tools, the average price tag is about 25,000 rubles.
  • Electric jigsaw. It will be needed for cutting polycarbonate and melting the edges at the cut points. To buy this “gadget” you will not need more than 10,000 rubles.
  • Drill driver. With the appointment, we think everything is clear. Since your hands are growing “from the right place” and you have taken up manual production, you most likely already have this tool, but just in case, we will quote the price – about 10,000 rubles.
  • A set of wrenches will take a little more from the budget – about 1500-2000 rubles.
  • Other tools. Finally, you will also need to take a few related auxiliary tools – a tape measure, goniometer, caliper. It will take another 1500 rubles.

The total cost of purchasing a tool for the production of greenhouses will be about 70,000 rubles.

Materials for the production of greenhouses: what you need and how much it will cost

Not every polycarbonate is suitable for the production of greenhouses. The fact is that this material, depending on the structure, is of five types: 2R, 3R, 5R, 3RX and 6RX. The so-called “two” is not very durable and quickly becomes unusable under the influence of the natural environment. Polycarbonates 3RX and 6RX are much more durable, but in turn they do not transmit light well. Therefore, the optimal type of polycarbonate for greenhouses is 3R or 5R.

For the manufacture of a standard greenhouse with an area of ​​​​18 square meters and a height of 2 meters, you will need to purchase:

  • Polycarbonate with an area of ​​20 square meters. At a price of about 300 rubles per “square”, this is 6,000 rubles for all the material needed for the greenhouse.
  • A steel profile with a total length of 120 m is about 8,500 rubles.
  • Self-tapping screws, washers and rubber seals in the amount of about 1500 rubles.
  • 4 sets of fasteners for the profile – about another two thousand rubles.

Total total costs for the purchase of materials necessary for the production of one greenhouse will amount to 18,000 rubles.

Marketing and sales

To sell greenhouses among potential buyers, it is best to use a comprehensive both online and offline promotion. 

  • Online bulletin boards. For sales to private summer residents and small entrepreneurs, bulletin boards such as Avito and Yula are well suited. It is best to use the paid promotion of the services offered by such sites – at a relatively low cost, your ad will always appear at the top of the search results and will not be lost among other similar offers.
  • Social media. Recently, it is good to use social networks as a sales channel. On the page of your business account, it would be useful not only to post photos of completed projects, but also positive feedback from “live” customers – which will increase the level of trust in your company. It is better to plan spending about 15,000 rubles a month on the budget on the network – an account constantly promoted in social media will allow you to consistently generate new leads for your business.
  • Ads near holiday villages. However, you should not get carried away only with online advertising – let’s not forget that most of the potential buyers of greenhouses are still quite conservative. That is why it would be nice to place offline advertising near holiday villages – these can be, for example, banners near busy transport interchanges.
  • Participation in tenders. As for corporate sales to large businesses like the agro-industrial complex, it would be useful to regularly monitor the tender trading platforms of the nearest agricultural complexes. Not always in large agro-industrial complex all procurement issues are resolved by “connections” – many modern companies conduct transparent tenders for the purchase of greenhouses, in which you can participate and quite realistically win tenders for large deliveries. 

It is likely that at first an entrepreneur who is engaged in the production and installation of greenhouses will simply not have free time to engage in sales management, so outsourcing sales seems to be a logical solution in this case. Now there are quite a few companies with remote call centers with which you can conclude sales contracts and pay a certain percentage of sales. In this case, all care with sales to corporate customers can be removed from oneself and paid to professional managers for the result. As the business grows, it will be possible to think about hiring your own “salesperson” in the state.


At first, most entrepreneurs from the greenhouse industry are directly involved in the construction and erection of structures themselves. In this case, it will be enough to get by with one or two auxiliary workers.

As the number of orders grows, it will be possible to increase the number of personnel involved by creating several teams, each of which will take care of its own orders. As a rule, construction workers are paid by the piece rate, depending on the amount of work performed. Ancillary workers are paid an average of 1,000-1,500 rubles per day, foremen who have already “knocked their hand” in their business, up to 3,000 rubles per shift.

Premises and logistics

Many aspiring entrepreneurs organize their business in the yard of their own home. If there is no territory suitable for the production of greenhouses, it will be necessary to take care of resolving the issue of finding a suitable premises. 

Any small hangar or warehouse in an industrial zone is suitable for production – yes, you will have to pay a certain amount for rent (from 5,000 to 20,000 rubles on average), but you can not depend on weather conditions when working. Also, the room is useful for storing tools and materials – it will be cheaper to immediately purchase a large batch of polycarbonate from wholesalers and then store it at home.

To solve the issue of transportation, a small-tonnage truck like a GAZelle is best suited – there will be something to buy materials and deliver structures ready for assembly to end customers. For unpretentious buyers who do not want to invest a lot of money in a vehicle at first, an old device within 150,000 rubles is suitable.

Financial indicators

The cost of selling a standard greenhouse with an area of ​​18 square meters at retail will be about 28,000 – 30,000 rubles. Thus, earnings on one design is about 10,000 – 12,000 rubles. However, let’s first calculate how much you need to invest in the business at the start.

  • The cost of purchasing the necessary tool: 70,000 rubles;
  • Material purchase costs: 18,000 rubles.

Thus, a business for the production and installation of greenhouses can be started with even less than a hundred thousand rubles: the required minimum at the start is only 88,000 rubles!

However, let’s get straight to the point. This option is suitable if you already have a place to build a structure, you are ready to do all the work yourself with your own hands and you have a ready-made client to buy a greenhouse.

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