The town began as a farming post in 1930 by a group of white settlers who had arrived in Uasin Gishu in 1908.
It is referred to as an agricultural collecting centre because of its initial function of collecting agricultural Produce from surrounding farms in Uasin Gishu and Trans-Nzoia.
Factors which have contributed to the growth of Eldoret
- Excellent transport connection.Eldoret is accessible by the railway line/road from Mombasa to Kampala. This location makes the town a major collection centre.
- Rich agricultural hinterland. It is located in the heart of one of the richest agricultural hinterlands in Kenya. ( the home of Maize and wheat farming in Kenya)
- Availability of social amenities. Availability of high class hotels, referral hospital, many schools and universities has led to a rapid population influx from the surrounding areas.
- Availability of water from River Sosiani for domestic and industrial use.
- The establishment of service industries such as banking and insurance coupled with excellent transport system.
- Availability of H.E.P led to establishment of industries such as plywood making, manufacturing of soft drinks tanning, hides and skins, textile making and milk processing.
- The high population in the surrounding region provides a source of labour for industries and a ready market for the manufactured products.
- Presence of plenty of land for expansion of the town and industries.
- Some industries were established as part of the government policy decentralizing