Private equity key source of capital for SMEs in emerging economies

Venture capital and private equity are important sources of capital for small and growing businesses in emerging economies. On today's programme we examine the development of this important industry in Nigeria - Africa's largest economy



Central to the growth of Nigeria's stock market is the activities of venture capital and private equity firms that provide much needed capital and mentoring to SMEs and even large companies. Wole Famurewa examines the role of venture capital and private equity firms in the growth of Nigeria's capital market

FG to make Nigerians buy made-in-Nigeria products

The Federal Government says it intends to make Nigerians look inwards by buying products, especially vehicles made in the country. The Minister of Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu, said this when he featured on the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Forum in Abuja. Onu explained that it was the only way to make Nigeria a producer country and to encourage local manufacturers to produce and grow the economy. “We already have made in Nigeria car. “We want to champion the idea of Nigerians looking inward and thinking Nigeria promoting made in Nigeria products to encourage our own local manufacturers. “It is very important. That is the only way that we can ever become a producer nation. “We cannot continue to be a consumer nation alone; it wouldn't help us. “We must help our own local producers. “We must all start thinking of how we can do so. “It shouldn't be only the automobiles; it should be on all products. “ The minister assured Nigerians that the government would ensure that vehicle manufacturers in the country maintained the minimum standard obtainable anywhere in the world. Onu, however, said the time for the proposed launching of a made-in-Nigeria satellite, earlier planned for 2018, might be extended due to logistic issues. According to him, space science and technology is a huge asset that a country such as Nigeria should take advantage of. “Space science and technology has direct impact on agriculture, environment, and health. “Satellite can help you in education regarding distance learning; also in defence. “If you have the right satellite to monitor what is happening in areas where there is insurgency, you can now go exactly there and get what you want. “It is very important to our economy; we just have to ensure that we are not excluded from that,“ he saidEXTRACTED FROM THE GUARDIAN.


Transportation is a viable sector.  People, goods, commodities, services always move for one place to another. This business has made some people well established and financially sufficient. Here are 5 ways in which an aspiring entrepreneur can come into the business.
BUS SERVICES: the use of buses has been the main means of populace transportation in many major cities. Buses are also the easiest and affordable means of inter and intra state movement. Many people have made so much from being a bus driver and a bus owner.

MEDICAL SERVICES: there is always need for the use of ambulance and other medical transport service. It could be the need to transport patients, bodies, body organs, blood, pharmaceutical services etc. getting the right way of coming into this sector might be the only hindrance between you and your source of income.
BOAT SERVICES: the use of boats and yatch as a means of transportation is also viable, especially in riverine areas where the major means of transportation is via water. Knowing how to give a boat ride or the luxurious yatch ride is another way to make money in transport.

AIRPLANE SERVICES: people travel all over the world for different reasons and purposes. The use of an aircraft is the most sufficient means of covering long distance in a good time. Investors can decide to come into the airline business, market their service and make lots of money out of it.
SHIPPING SERVICES: most imported and exported goods are transport through the use of ships. Shipping services just like the other means of transport is very important and cannot be overlooked. Large and heavy commodities are mostly transported on the ship. Gases and crude oil, air plane parts, vehicles are some of the items that are transported on the ship. It is safer and mostly efficient for these types of goods. Investors can come into transportation by starting a shipping line. It is capital intensive but also viable.

Transport business is profitable and viable when invested into rightly.


Doing it once and not getting it right doesn’t make you a failure while starting up and getting it right doesn’t make you perfect. The right ideas and initiatives of existing entrepreneurs would go a long way in helping you and making it easier for you to get it right the first time. Many achievers today would have had it lot easier if they had gotten some tips and watch words from people ahead. The right mentoring, the right pieces to pick and read and the right approach to starting up can make you what you want to be.

NEVER ASSUME YOU KNOW: never get tired of asking questions, don’t assume you know enough to handle things yourself. A little extra question, don’t be bothered about how you might be perceived. Gather information and ask everything you think you should know. This will go a long way in getting you acquainted with what you are getting into.
GET EDUCATED: so many people believe that they can skip basic education and still make it big in life. Ofcourse, this is very possible but getting the basic background education you need would only make your start up process easier. Every form of knowledge or education is important and worth having.

APPRECIATE YOURSELF: many people beat themselves up too hard, they never think they have done well enough. So they keep pushing themselves too hard till they break down. Appreciate yourself, be grateful for small wins. See failure as opportunity to try again in a different way.
MENTORSHIP: when starting up, every advice is valuable, every experience will help you. Talk to people in your life of business or career. Look up to them to mentor you and advice you. Learn from their mistakes and make a better life out of it.

TAKE TIME OUT: no matter what your routine is or how much you want to get things done, take time out to rest and get inspiration. Don’t the soaked into a routine everyday of the year. Its not how much of a hardwork but more of smart work.

Business Morning: Looking At Nigeria's Industrialization Revolution Plan PT2

Business Morning: Looking At Nigeria's Industrialization Revolution Plan PT1

Nigeria needs basic infrastructure if it must achieve its industrial revolution plan.

This is according to the General Managing Director, Nagodo Industries, Mr. Maneesh Garg. One of the companies named by World Economic Forum (WEF) as a global growth company,

Mr. Gard who was speaking on Channels Television's business programme, Business Morning says its tough to industrialise a nation without infrastructure.

He however says Nigerian government is making steady progress towards changing things.

He also believes that safety and security is key for any business thrive.

Coconut oil and a beautiful you


Looks like your grandmother was right after all, and all those years you resented her rubbing local coconut oil into your face and hair were not wasted years. It's now been proven, and universally so, that coconut oil is the 21st century's answer to health and glowing beauty

Remove Eye Makeup Coconut oil is a gentle and effective eye makeup remover. Apply with a cotton pad and wipe gently until all traces of makeup are gone. Research also shows that coconut oil improves dermatitis and other skin disorders at least as well as mineral oil and other conventional moisturizers. In a study of children with eczema, 47% of those treated with coconut oil had major improvements Heal Ragged Cuticles Coconut oil can be used to improve your cuticles, including hangnails. Simply apply a small amount of coconut oil to your cuticles and massage for a few moments. Do this several times a week for the best results. Natural Deodorant Sweat itself has no smell. However, the bacteria living on your skin can produce undesirable odors.

Coconut oil's strong antibacterial properties make it a great natural deodorant that contains no chemicals. Combat Candida Candida albicans is the fungus responsible for yeast infections, which commonly occur in warm, moist areas of the body such as the mouth or vagina. Test-tube studies suggest that coconut oil may help fight candida infections Researchers found coconut oil to be as effective as fluconazole, the antifungal medication typically prescribed for candida infections .

Generally, virgin coconut oil has strong antibacterial properties that can help treat infections.
One study found that it helped stop the growth of the intestinal bacteria Clostridium difficile, commonly known as "C. diff," which causes severe diarrhea. It also appears to fight several other bacteria and yeasts - an effect generally attributed to lauric acid, the main fatty acid in coconut oil Boost your Metabolism Coconut oil contains medium-chain triglycerides. These are fatty acids that are quickly absorbed and can increase the amount of calories you burn. Controlled studies have shown that MCTs can significantly boost your metabolic rate, at least temporarily One study found that, on average, 15-30 grams of MCTs increased calorie expenditure by around 120 calories over a 24-hour period .



Motivation is the fuel necessary to achieve our goals. They gear you up and give you reasons to press further. When you have the right motivation, your goals look different and easier to accomplish. Lack of motivation makes the mission look unattainable. If you want to stay motivated, you need to find the right ways to keep the process of achieving the necessary progress worthwhile.                                                                                                                      Four ways to stay motivated daily.
Staying focus: many people get consumed in the thoughts and ideas of the past that they forget to live the moment. Some others are too worried about the future that they fail to realise the present is superior to the future. Staying focus and being present at every point in time is necessary if you are going to achieve your full capacity. The past is irrelevant except when learning from its mistakes. The present is crucial and it is the main function for the outcome of tomorrow. Entrepreneurs need to develop a habit of staying in the present and making the most out of it. Your strength is the confidence that fuel you competence. Discover your passion and niche and let it gear you to success.

Setting goals: your goals are your biggest motivators. It’s hard to stay on an idea if you do cannot envision your outcome. There is need for an endgame. This will give you a reason to wake up every morning, reason to be better at whatever you do and they give you a purpose. When setting your goals, dream big. Perceive beyond the achievable. Make your dreams so big, they would scare you. When working towards achieving your goals, act small but smart. Take it a step at a time and set smaller achievable goals from time to time. Sit back daily and think of the right directions to take.
Reflections: take a step back occasionally, recount your success. Appreciate your achievements and let your failures motivate you to do better. Monitor your improvement and have check if your gradual steps and efforts are yielding something concrete. Stay positive and give yourself reasons to strive further. Stay positive and appreciate every inch of advancement you have achieved.

Consistent effort: no matter how motivated or downcast you are, your consistent effort is the only rewarding factor. The need to work hard and give it all you have is the price that has to be paid. When you feel very motivated, push yourself hard. When you feel quite unmotivated,  push yourself even harder. Force yourself to work and keep yourself engaged in the process.
Staying motivated, setting achievable goals and finding a balance is the easy ways successful entrepreneurs have tapped to make their lives worth emulation.


It takes quite an amount of hardwork to build a functioning website or online store. This hardwork is likely to bring you a good amount of traffic but converting this traffic to revenue generating customers might be your major challenge. Getting customers on your platform isn’t enough if you cant get them to pay for a product or service you would be rendering. Here are simple ways to convert your website traffic to paying customers to boom your business.
EASY ACCESS AND SIMPLICITY: make your site simple and easy to access, it is more efficient to set your site up in such a way that purchasing your products would be easy and straightforward. Also, consider making multiple payment options available for potential customers. This would easily reduce limitation and shortage of means to make money. Make your content concise, make navigation on your site easy and straightforward.

VISUALS: this is the next tip of converting an ordinary curious mind or onlooker to a valid customer. Showing video clips and display of how a product or service is going to add specific values to an onlooker or just a curious mind is another strategic approach to making a real sale. Attempting a video that displays how a product can add value to a buyer’s life is a strategic approach that can never run out of play. Its an effortless way of getting more customers through the same approach.
FREE PRODUCTS: everyone has a weakness for something free. Giving your traffic opportunity to valuable products for a period of time before monetising it is another good approach to get them to pay for your products. Offering bonus products relating to a specific content would make it easier to attract a customer and give them the opportunity to know that your monetise products are of value.
These marketing tips are important if your curious visitors are going to eventually become revenue generating customers.

Deregulation Of The Downstream Sector With Wale Tinubu

The view of the chairman of OANDO on the deregulation of the downstream sector.

FG to develop 500,000 hectares of irrigable land – Minister

The Federal Government on Friday said it would develop 500,000 hectares of irrigable land as part of renewed effort to boost food production in the country. The Minister of Water Resources, Alhaji Sulaiman Adamu disclosed this at the Special Town Hall Meeting held on Friday in Kano.

NAN reports that the meeting was organised by the Federal Government as part of activities to celebrate the one year anniversary of President Muhammadu Buhari. He said that the Federal Government found it necessary to give priority attention to agricultural sector in order to provide jobs to the teeming. "We have five River Basins in the country, so we plan to use the irrigation sites to boost food production in the state and the country," he said. He said that the Federal Government would partner with investors with a view to achieving the desired result. He said that over 50 millions

Nigerians lacked potable water and assured that the Federal Government was doing everything possible to change the ugly trend by ensuring that Nigerians have access to safe drinking water by 2030. "The ministry has designed a 10 year working plan which will go along way in addressing the inadequate access to portable water," he said. He further disclosed that the government was working to end open defecation in the country by 2025.

The Minister of State for Trade and Investment, Hajiya Aisha Abubakar said that the Federal Government would support small and medium enterprises with loan facility to enhance their businesses. She said the decision was in line with the government's effort to provide job opportunities to the people. She noted that supporting SMEs with its multiplier effect had huge number of people earning their livelihood in the sector. The minister said that the support would be given with the assistance of the Bank of Industry.

In his remarks, the Minister of State for Solid Minerals, Bawa Bwari said that the country has a large deposit of different solid minerals. He, however, lamented that the previous administrations had ignored the sector and concentrated on the oil section. "But with commitment and seriousness of the present administration, the Buhari administration will invite foreign investors to harness them," he said.




Some habits win people over for you and make your life processes easier. So many people have cultivated and won people over just because of the right verbal response and the good attitudes they have. You don’t have to be born with the perfect instinct to get things right, as a matter of fact, you could inculcate some habits into your life if you are working towards having a good interpersonal relationship with your contact and developing good interaction skills.  Here are some habits that can improve your interaction skills.
POLITENESS: being polite is a trait that passes someone across as diligent and heart-warming. Words like sorry and please passes you off as a charismatic person. Being arrogant is a success killer and help chaser.

APPRECIATIVE: appreciating every little bit and favour is a common trait for people that are easily favoured.  Saying thank you to a messenger or a gateman are attributes which should be emulated.
COMPLIMENTS: charismatic people pass compliments, they appreciate other people and encourage people that are even substandard to them.

INFORMATIVE: carrying people along and sharing vital information is an attribute that drives progress. Information hoarders for their own benefits are not considered likeable or worth emulating.
HELPFUL: the society has affected the judgement of people on helping others. Being supportive and helpful is a necessary trait and habit people who are looking to be successful should emulate.

TEAM MATES: charismatic people understand the concept of being a team mate. They are always ready to work together with others and carry people along.

CONFIDENCE: successful people always possess confidence. They are bold and know how to face challenges without passing across too strong or too boastful.
LISTENERS: charismatic and intelligent people are listeners. They are willing to give a part of their time to listen to other people’s problems, opinions and ideas.

RESPONSIBILITY: successful people know how to take responsibility for their actions and how to stay responsible to their task.
OPTIMISM: successful people hardly ever stay negative. They see the positivity in life and encourage people to stay positive.

These are habits you should imbibe in your daily attitudes. They help you improve yourself and make interactions easier for you.


As an entrepreneur, your success process cannot be complete till you can be a role model to aspiring business owners. In your business ideas and plans, you need to inculcate habits that will make you different and creative. These are the attributes potential entrepreneur will identify in you and emulate in their own ways to. Being a good business owner demands you to be a good teacher and a positive influence on people that are looking up to you in some ways. Tips on being a good role model:
CLARITY: being clear and direct in your ways makes you a good teacher. Knowing how to pass a message across in the best and simplest ways possible is very crucial if you are going to have an impact on the people you mentor. Don’t make little seem so big and don’t exaggerate processes thereby making them seem unachievable.

MAKE IT REAL: for anyone trying to be a good teacher, its easier by going through the process with your team. Don’t do more of theory and less of practical approach. Experience the process with your team and give them the opportunity to do it themselves.

TEAM WORK: as an entrepreneur and a teacher, you have to understand and inculcate the habit of team work. Know make very team member feel important and part of the process. Make every contribution important and worthy.
TEACH WHAT YOU KNOW: your most important lessons are within you. Teach your experience and you ideas. Don’t go overboard or try to impress then end up saying things you cannot defend.

ENCOURAGEMENT: put effort into appreciating little efforts and encouraging people. Don’t convey the message of dominance or superiority. Treat your team as equals and always be ready to learn a thing or two from them too.


A visual representation of how charcoal is being made.

Nigeria: Big economy, big problems

Discussing the issues affecting Nigeria's economy and possible ways out.

Labour assures of realistic minimum wage

THE Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, faction led by Joe Ajaero, has said labour will not sign any agreement on a new minimum wage that will not be implementable. Ajaero, who said this at an interactive session with journalists in Lagos, insisted that the ability to pay the proposed new wage was the purpose of any minimum wage agreement, saying "no labour leader will sign an agreement that cannot be realistic." According to him, since his faction proposed N90, 000 while the Ayuba Wabba-led group demanded for N56, 000, government had the prerogative to come out with its own position, stressing: "If the government comes out with its position, we, the labour movement can crosscheck and counter it, if necessary, before the agreement is signed." The factional president contended that the N90.000 minimum wage his faction proposed was based on the economic index and that during negotiation, all issues including ability to pay and security of employment would be looked into. Ajaero said there would be a sub-committee that would look into an increase in wages for the manufacturing sector, to enable it to be able to cater for the welfare of employees in the sector. According to him, "From what has happened (fuel price hike), we can see that N56, 000 is not realistic. If we are talking about a certain percentage of inflation given all other indices, now it has worsened and has sky rocketed. But N90, 000 is still realistic if we take other factors into consideration. ”If the exchange rate remains the same, and its effect is only on fuel and maybe people selling garri will change. But if it increases you will discover that the N90, 000 minimum wages will be messed up, so we are just taking N90,000 in isolation."



It is no longer news that Nigeria has a lot of resources, good soil for the growing of diverse farm produce and good climate which are favourable for agricultural practises. Many of these resources are either untapped or underutilised. Cashew nut is one of the produce which can be found in high quantity in Nigeria and which is demanded in many countries all over the world. Cashew nut is therefore a good export product which can be used to generate good revenue and which can make business owner millionaires in a considerable time. Cashew is known worldwide and different parts of it are useful for various purposes. Making cashew farmers, processors, exporters have great potentials to make good money if they do the business well.
Currently, cashew nut enjoys good patronage in the world. Countries like India and Vietnam import cashew in high quantity and use them for the production of other products. An important factor that comes with the marketing of cashew nut is its quality. Buyers are likely to pay for produce based on its quality, as an investor or exporter this must be put into consideration when sourcing for your goods. Going into cashew business can be quite capital intensive especially as an exporter. There is definitely need for trainings and research for a new business owner. You need to read extensively and seek for mentorship so as to avoid mistakes when packaging and exporting. Knowing how much is required for each exportable produce size and the right places to source for the type of nuts with good market value is also important. Also, finding out other ways in which you as a business aspirer can come into the business with innovations and trying to fill existing gaps in the business line and other alternative businesses to consider. Many business owners have made millions from export and many of them have made this money from sourcing and exporting cashew nut. You can be a part of this train of people that are succeeding.


Innovation is the key to survival and thriving. Creativity is the way to stay on top of your game and keep your clients interested. It is the sole responsibility of an entrepreneur to capitalise on innovative ideas that will capture the minds of potential clients.
Here are five potential ways to promote innovative and creative ideas for the success of a business venture.

ENCOURAGING IDEAS: many organisations run tight schedules. Same sequence of engagements daily, weekly and yearly. This is less likely to spring forth creativity and innovation in your team. There is need for freedom and diverse engagements that can inspire new ideas and give more innovative insights. Organisations can be free and encourage individual methodologies and ideas. Rigid laws and methods hardly spring forth creativity continuously.
ENCOURAGE RISK TAKING: encouraging your team to take more risk and not staying comfortable is beneficial to enhancing creativity. Constant punishment for mistakes is likely to be a discouraging factor and this is an instrument to mediocrity. Innovative people are risk takers, they don’t have to always look over their shoulders for a scolding boss.

SUPPORTIVE OF IDEAS: improving creativity amounts to supporting your team or workers ideas. Not putting them down or considering their ideas lame. They give room for people to prove themselves and make the best out of their ideas and methods.

ASSET SUPPORT: making available all necessary assets needed to make the work process easier and successful is a crucial way to encourage creativity and inspirations. This makes the work process easy to achieve for workers or team without unnecessary stress or distractions.
ACCESS TO CLIENTS: it should be ensured that every fraction of an organisation work hand in hand to for the same business advancement goals. Creative teams should be granted enough access and freedom to interact with clients and initiate inspiring innovations directed towards encouraging organisation goals. Restrictions in organisations can be a limiting factor to improving creativity and innovation.
No business can survive the test of time without staying creative and innovative. Entrepreneurs and business leaders are mostly required to implement flexible methods that would enhance efficiency in their workers.

Outlook on the growth of venture capital & private equity in Nigeria

On this edition of Eye on Nigeria's Capital market, we continue our look at the growth of venture capital and private equity in Nigeria and look at how Nigeria's entrepreneurs are finding the capital to exploit interesting business opportunities in Africa's largest economy.


How you can make money from your website

For a website to make money, it needs to sell something. Right? Well, yes and no. Your website can sell a product or service, and it can also sell the opportunity for another business to connect with the visitors who browse it.
Just like a billboard on a busy road, your website is in a prime position to reach passers-by. In this case, it could be used by businesses to showcase their brands.
Think about how news sites make money. The more traffic they have, the more ads they get, and the more money they make. It is not just media organisations or major brands that take advantage of this business model. Many small business owners and hobbyists are capitalising on the opportunity.
Anyone with a website can start making money by signing up on Google’s AdSense, which places text or image ads on a site and then pays the site’s owner each time someone clicks on the ads. These Ads are matched to each site’s content, so that browsers who are already interested in topics related to the product or service can be reached.
Everyday Nigerians who have signed up websites to pursue hobbies or share their passions with others are now finding new unexpected new career path through AdSense. I recently heard of a lady who started her website to share news and ideas about craft projects. In a short period of time, she found that her posts were shared by many others, who were interested in her posts and could not just ignore them.
Her husband suggested that she should consider signing up for Google’s AdSense of making money from her site’s loyal audience. While she never intended to generate revenue from her site, she now makes $500 per week from AdSense to support her regular incomes.
Every time someone clicks on one of the ads on her website, she makes money. The more people visit the site, the higher more clicks the ads get. That translates to more money for her.
Other business-savvy entrepreneurs have built their entire businesses on this model. Peter Fiasco, a 30-year-old Melbourne entrepreneur who quit his paid job to pursue a personal business, unveiled a global employment classified site called from his lounge room. Traffic to Peter’s website boomed in the wake of the Global Financial Crisis. Now, attracts some 10,000 unique visitors each day. One year after first opening his site to AdSense, Peter is getting an annual turnover in the realm of $1m.
As a website owner, this means you don’t have to worry about visitors being shown irrelevant ads. If your website is all about pet-care then AdSense or any other online advertising service you choose will place an ad for pet accommodation services.
Likewise, if your website focuses on healthy eating recipes, then an ad for personal training would be appropriate to show someone who is searching your site for helpful tips to lose weight. The ad is targeted to the content which the user is already reading, so it is unobtrusive, informative and relevant.
Website owners still have control over the type of ads which appear. This is particularly useful to make sure that Ads work with your site’s aesthetics. The types of restrictions you can place on advs include being able to choose text ads or image ads or both, the colours of the ads, the design template and even the position of the ads on your website. In addition to ensuring the ads suit your site design, experimenting with changes in the colours and placement of ads can drastically impact the revenue which the ads generate.
The beauty is that the better your website is, the more money you’re likely to make. Advertisers tend to pay more to advertise on sites with lots of ‘eyeballs’ and to capture the attention of a niche audience which is highly-engaged in a particular topic.
Think about your own browsing behaviour. If you don’t bookmark your favourite sites, you’ll most certainly visit the same ones regularly; whether it’s your local tv guide or a weather forecasting service. This kind of loyalty and engagement with a particular area of interest means that website owners with highly-focused content also have a strong proposition for advertisers.
So whether you’re a serious business or a hobbyist who wouldn’t mind making some extra money on the side, online advertising services are clever ways of connecting your website’s audience with interested advertisers.


Zooming into Nigeria's real estate sector

'Housing for all' is something Nigerian politicians have touted for decades. However, according to the World Bank, Nigeria's housing unit deficit has risen to a staggering 17 million units. On Eye on Nigeria's Capital Markets this month, we focus on Nigeria's real estate sector, examine the latest initiatives designed to tackle the problem and highlight the role of the capital market in the process.



It is not enough to aim at being successful because you need to feed yourself or have everything have always wanted. Success itself is a responsibility. It proves a point to you, that something you did was right. No one is an island of knowledge, you cannot do it all on your own. It is understandable if you have had help along the way. Kudos to everyone that supported your dreams, believed in you and helped mentor you. It is your responsibility to give back also, help impact in aspiring entrepreneurs. People who are coming up and who are at the point where you used to be. Be truthful and sincere with your mentorship and advice. Going in the right way in your business will also inspire the younger generation to follow suit.
Being able to achieve a level of success isn’t as great an achievement as the responsibility of keeping up that standard. So many people now look up to you. It could be your colleagues, your workers even random people around you. You cannot afford to disappoint them. The continuous success of your brand is your responsibility. Your business is counting on you.
Certain level of success empowers you enough to be able to give back. The value of your wealth is not determined by how much money you have but how much you can impact and make peoples life better. Creation of job, empowerments, philanthropy, charity etc are some of the responsibilities that comes with success. Giving back is important. Making a positive impact is a responsibility that comes with being successful. Most of these acts are often associated with being a multimillionaire but in the true sense, giving back should be considered from the ground level. Employing one person, empowering someone are acts that can change the future of a whole generation.

If these thoughts and aspirations comes along with the zeal to be successful and accomplished, the world would know a positive change and be a better place in no time.


When you are considering a life transformation and you want to take the next step in improving yourself and doing your own thing, there are some questions you should ask yourself and there are some necessary answers you should be able to give convincingly before going ahead to start your own venture. There is need for assurance that you are capable of doing whatever you are planning towards and doing it rightly. Here are some questions you should evaluate and stay convinced about before quitting your job.
CAN YOU SURVIVE FAILURE: many business owners and successful people have failed at several attempts before getting it right. You need to ask yourself if you can survive if you fail. You might even succeed at your first attempt and not make enough profit like you proposed. Can you live with that? That is one question you should have a yes to before starting out.

CAN I DO IT ALL ALONE: most successful business owners started as a sole proprietor, with no one to support or encourage them. You have to be certain you do not need anyone to encourage you before you can do what you have to do.
CAN I MULTI TASK: as a new business starter, you likely cannot afford an assistant or accountant to carry out different roles for you. You need to be sure you can do different things at the same time and multi task if possible so that your business can have all it takes to make it a success.

ARE YOU A GOAL SETTER: you need to channel the risk taking and the goal getter side of you. Your business is most likely to stay at the same point if you are not ready to take the necessary steps and opportunities needed to make you a success.
CAN I BE A GOOD ROLE MODEL: you also need to identify how efficient you can be at identifying people that can work with you efficiently and people that can compliment your business.  Know if you can be a good role model and teacher to people aspiring to take the bold step towards achieving their goals too.

These are the questions every potential entrepreneur should ask themselves before setting up a business.


Hair styling business is one of the most lucrative businesses to invest in, not only in Nigeria but even in the whole world. In previous times, women were the only gender associated with the styling of hair business but recently, men have invaded the business as well. So many innovations and improvements have been encountered in this line of business. This business hardly runs out of service as women often patronize hairstylist and are always willing to spend as much as they can afford to look good.

Hairstyling can be started from almost anywhere as long as the environment is neat and conducive, the creation of awareness for what you do also brings in more people to the salon.

Steps involved in running a standard hair salon.

TRAINING AND EXPERIENCE: anyone can venture into the hairstyling business and earn a good living from it. It is however important to undergo adequate training and have good work exposure before starting up a business of your own. Take time to learn what the business demands and acquire customer relations and managerial skills necessary to establish on your own.
LOCATION: choose the busy and noticeable environment to establish in. Avoid locating around too many competitors. Make your outlet attractive and well designed to suit your type of business.

CAPITAL INVESTMENT: the modern day hairstyling business requires some capital for establishing even on a medium scale. Capital is needed for getting an outlet and acquiring equipment needed for running the business. Equipment necessary for the day to day running of this business includes: dryers, hair straightners, magazines, alternative power source and so on.
OTHER ALTERNATIVE INCOME SOURCES: there are other alternative income sources that can easily be tapped into by a hair stylist. The selling of hair products like hair relaxers, shampoos, conditioners, hair creams, weavons and attachments is a way of utilizing the work space and generating more profit.

ADVERTISEMENT: Showcasing your work on the tv, internets etc could also help improve your patronage and take you to the next level in your business.

Interview on African Voices CNN: Folorunso Alakija

Exclusive interview with one of the most successful women in Nigeria. Her story, challenges and how she became successful.

Nigerian women who beat all odds to succeed in business

Nigerian women have proven their grit in the areas of business and governance. Nigeria is home to female entrepreneurs such as Folorunsho Alakija, who according to Forbes is one of the richest women on earth, with an estimated net worth of $1.7 billion. The women featured on this show have overcome the numerous challenges faced by small and medium enterprises in Nigeria, from the lack of access to funding to the power outages. CNBC Africa's Didi Akinyelure sits down with some of Nigeria's most influential business women.



Workers under the aegis of Federation of Informal Workers Organisation of Nigeria (FIWON) recently drew attention to the deplorable conditions of their employment and the penchant of many employers for bringing in foreign workers to their detriment. The workers, who are mostly casual employees, communicated their grievance via a statement issued on December 22 by the FIWON General Secretary, Mr. Gbenga Komolafe.

The problems of casual workers in Nigeria are well known to the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) and the government. The surprise, however, is that nothing has been done to adequately address their plight over the years. This situation is probably on account of the serious employment crisis that has left many Nigerians without jobs, and the employed ones at the mercy of unconscionable employers.
Those familiar with the deplorable conditions under which these categories of workers are engaged over the years and government's seeming acquiescence cannot but be worried. The conditions under which many of these workers are engaged are generally degrading. They call to question government's planning ability and its commitment to the citizens' welfare.
Komolafe specifically referred to Section 3 (2) of the Nigerian Labour Act which provides that "... exclusive consideration is given to Nigerian indigenous service companies which demonstrate ownership of equipment, Nigerian personnel and capacity to execute such work on land and swamp."

Sections 37, 38 and 39 of the same Act require operators in the country to subscribe to a programme that promotes the training and progressive empowerment of locals in jobs that foreigners hold but which they can do.
Whereas the 1972 indigenization policy has ample provisions for local content, it is mostly observed in the breach. The drive for all kinds of foreign investments in a challenged economy like ours has seen government drop its guard on its own policy. It has allowed foreign companies in the country to run riot on Nigerians by treating their Nigerian workers like trash in the effort to cut corners, subjecting them to long working hours with little pay, and oftentimes with no entitlements such as leave, bonuses, medical care and retirement or long service benefits. They also deny qualified Nigerians of jobs that they can do, preferring to bring in less qualified persons from their own countries.

These foreign concerns subvert the local content provisions in our laws in collaboration with the agencies charged with the responsibility of enforcing them. The federal government, Immigrations and the police are guilty of this offence.
In practice, apart from filling their allotted quotas, these foreign businesses are allowed to bring in unskilled labour from their countries and elsewhere, leaving Nigerians who are eminently qualified to fill such positions in the lurch. Komolafe, in particular, listed "certified welders, construction workers such as tilers, Plaster of Paris technicians, masons and carpenters" as most affected.
The excuse that skilled labour is hard to find in the country in a worn out one. For example, some of these foreign businesses are known to hire their nationals as gate keepers and errand boys. What special skills do those categories of work require that Nigerians do not have?

The 1972 Indigenization Policy provides that Nigerians be trained to take over, as much as possible, jobs that foreigners do. In many other foreign countries, especially oil producing countries like ours, this local content policy is strictly enforced by all the responsible agencies of government. But in Nigeria, this appears not to be the case.
Our citizens are invariably denied jobs that they can do and the few who find employment in these foreign companies suffer indignities. The tragedy is that most of these infractions happen with our government looking the other way.

We do not deny that there may be areas where our citizens fall short on the skilled labour count, but what all concerned stakeholders should do is to ensure that the gap is bridged. We, therefore, call for more synergy between the industries and our tertiary institutions with a view to articulating and addressing the specific needs of industries in an increasingly globally competitive world.
Our law enforcement agencies, too, should be awake to their responsibility in this regard. They should strictly enforce the allotted quotas for expatriate staff in the various businesses that operate in our country and where there are violations, those culpable should be punished. In fact, with our soaring unemployment figures, maybe this is the appropriate time to review such quotas with a view to progressively reducing them to accommodate more Nigerians.

To achieve this, agencies saddled with the responsibility of enforcing these quotas must put pro-active measures in place to curtail this threat to our national interest. For example, the Immigrations should carefully examine the curriculum vitae of expatriates who seek clearance to work here to ensure that they qualify on all counts, before they are given residency and work permits. This way, the illegal influx of aliens into the country can be controlled.
These agencies, too, must look inwards with a view to identifying bad eggs in their midst with a view to rooting them out. The simple reason the local content provisions are badly applied today is not because those who should enforce them do not know what to do. It is because of other interests which relegate the long term health and overall development of the country to the background. Most of these foreign companies which violate their expatriate quotas have our big men who are only concerned with protecting their selfish and personal interests on their boards. The enforcement agencies which allow them to breach the allotted quotas would rather accept bribes than insist on the law. The government should stop all these unpatriotic acts forthwith if we are to stop this flagrant disregard of our laws and the unwholesome maltreatment of casual workers in the country.



Many entrepreneurs set out for business with the aim of succeeding and making an impact. This often do not happen as many businesses fail even within the first year of set up. There are some basic requirements and components which business owners forget to put in place before starting up their own business. These requirements are the basic factors and are the determinant of how successful a business venture is likely to be.  The stronger the initiation of these factors are, the more likely the assurance of the success of the venture.
The requirements for business include:

PROBLEMS: a real business needs a problem it’s going to be providing a solution to. A need it’s going to be solving and a way it’s going to bring value to intended customer’s lives. If you run a business people can do without, you are likely to fail. Discovering a need, making a more suitable option available for people is a good approach to getting money out of their pockets. This mostly comes with experience, researches and familiarity with a sector you are establishing in. Many people sit back and think of ideas, innovations, this will likely get you excited and think you are ready for business but in the real sense, solving a need or problem is what is going to earn you money.
EXPERIENCE: no matter how good your ideas and innovations are, if you do not have the right experience in a field of work and you have never worked practically by the strategies needed in the business, you are most likely to fail. Having the right skills, the right experience and being fully acquainted with how to do it right is the only guarantee to success for a business.

RESOURCES: money is power when a business is involved. The only way to make your business process achievable, acquire necessary equipment and get your business running easily is by having the necessary resources needed to put your business in shape. Resources are not limited to funds in the real sense. Knowing the easy ways to do things, the right means of doing them and even the free ways of getting them done are parts of the useful resources needed to make a venture a success.

CLIENTS: the need for customers cannot be over emphasised, they are the back bone of the business. It is quite impossible to see a business flourish if they don’t have the right customers to patronise them. Selling your business and selling right is the best way to keep your business alive.
For a business to succeed, these four requirements must be in place.

Impact of Nigeria's power sector reforms

This month on Economic Lifelines Nigeria, we take a look at Nigeria's ongoing power sector reforms and its impact on the growth of Africa's largest economy

Youths massively embrace BOI’s N10bn YES programme

Opportunities for youths to have access to loans and start their own businesses. This is a motive towards encouraging SMEs and industrialization.

Nigeria, US partner on solid mineral development

In line with the Federal Government's plan to develop the solid minerals sector, the United States Geological Survey and its Nigerian counterpart, would, next week, commence strategic engagements aimed at working out suitable technical partnership between the two countries.
The United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr James Enstwistle, disclosed details of the engagement between the two countries geological survey agencies during a meeting with the Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr Kayode Fayemi, in Abuja, yesterday.

Enstwistle explained that the two geological survey agencies would work on data collection with a view to determining the quantity of Nigeria's mineral deposit.

"The US geological Survey next week will partner with the Nigerian Agency to begin to see what kind of technical cooperation that might be possible, particularly in the areas which involve figuring out exactly what Nigeria has on ground, what quality and we want to see what is possible in that regard," said Enstwistle.
Fayemi at the meeting which was also attended by the Minister of State in the ministry, Hon Abubakar Bwari, had earlier hinted on the planned technical cooperation in geological data to improve the Nigerian solid minerals sector.

According to the Minister some of the issues confronting the Nigerian mining sector include the quality of the data available to determine the size of what the country has and how the country can use bankable data for potentials investors.
The Federal Government, according to the Minister, had approached the US to assist the country in this area in order to determine the quality and quantity of the various minerals available considering the wealth of experience of the US Geological Survey in that field.

He said the experience of the American institution will help Nigeria to improve on what it has in terms of its huge minerals deposit.
The Minister also stated that Nigeria is focusing on how to improve on industrial minerals beyond exporting raw materials.

"Another area of cooperation will be in the improvement of monitoring" the minister said, adding that there is need for the regulatory authorities to have effective monitoring mechanisms to effectively monitor what is available and how they are being exported as revealed by the NEITI report.
Fayemi who hailed the US government's readiness to partner with Nigeria , said the country is also partnering with institutions like the World Bank and other governments with vast experience in mining to help the country achieve President Muhammadu Buhari's aspiration in the diversification of the economy through the solid minerals sector.



Everyone needs a little extra cash, this is why a regular paying job is never enough for anyone. For great and hardworking people, side business is one of the best ways to make some extra cash while you are still employed. So either you have a 9-5 job or you have a business of your own running before, here are 10 other business options you can consider.

TALENT: modelling, acting, singing, dancing are some of the ways people are highly talented but which they never really pay attention to. Consider using your talent for business in a legitimately creative way. There are so many opportunities for people how are willing to use their talents productively to make money.
RESUME WRITING: people make unbelievable amount by writing good resumes for other people. This is a type of business you can consider for side cash without it even affecting your regular job. Having the right network and getting customers is the right approach to consider for this business.

PART TIME DELIVERY: there are some companies that run shifts and who hire delivery personnel. Pizza deliveries, ice cream deliveries are some of the well known part time delivery jobs. Doing this along your regular job might be a way to break even.
BABYSITTING: your off or free time could also be considered for babysitting and making a little extra cash. You could make this a regular business for weekends or occasionally depending how much you are needed and how well it pays.

CLEANING SERVICES: this is another work you can do on the side and make some good money from. Many houses and offices hire regular reliable cleaners to make their environment clean. This type of side business hardly affects their regular day to day job and they pay good enough.
Side jobs give opportunities for alternative income source. It helps many people break even and have a little extra cash to solve their needs. Consider these business options today and you might be thankful you did


Maize is the most popular cereal crops in world. Million tonnes are harvested worldwide yearly and Nigeria is one of the countries that produces maize in high quantity yearly. Maize which is also known as corn is used for human consumption, feeding of livestock and also as fuel. Corn has been proven to be one of the most adaptable crops, it is viable in tropics and north temperate zones. Maize is the main cereal grain and considered the third staple food after rice and wheat. Its main constituent is carbohydrate but it is also high in vitamins and minerals. The high population and the wide acceptability of maize have made its processing a viable business for entrepreneurs. Maize are of different species and they can be processed into different consumable products depending on its intend use.
Below are some of the beneficial and marketable products from maize which can be focused on to generate income for farmers.

Maize flaking grits: These are the prime products from a full degerming system consisting of the largest pieces of broken maize endosperm free of husk and germ. They are used for the production of corn flakes and could also be used for direct cooking.
Maize Grits: they are fine milled maize with different granular size and fat content. They are useful for cooking, brewing etc. They are the equivalent of semolina from wheat.

Maize flour: finely milled maize with low fat. This is useful as a thickening agent and also useful in the production of confectioneries.
Maize bran: this is the outer layer of the maize which can be used in animal feed.

Maize germ: this is the part of the maize which is rich in oil. It can be processed for oil extraction.
Maize germ meal: sometimes, the germ and bran are mixed together for cooking.

Dried maize: used in the production of popcorn. It can also be fermented, milled into paste and used in cooking local dishes.
Baker’s cone: this is a finely granular product of maize, useful as dusting flour, cooking and snacks.

Maize is a crop that is easy to cultivate and which doesn’t take more than 5 months to mature. It has so many derivable products which can be useful in commercial quantity in food production. A business that involves corn as a raw material is profitable to consider.

Agriculture & Nigeria's Development

With the fall in oil prices, Nigeria’s need to diversify has become even more apparent and at the top of the list of new areas to diversify to is agriculture.
Ada Osakwe joins Opuiyo Oforiokuma to look at the possibilities in Agriculture. Ada is more than qualified to speak on this subject, she was the Senior Investment Adviser to former Nigerian Minister of Agriculture, Akinwunmi Adesina. She’s been listed on Forbes as ‘The 20 Youngest Power Women In Africa 2014’. Today she’s the CEO, Agrolay, a private investment firm dedicated to growing the agriculture and food sectors in Africa.

BOI grants Nigerian Solid Minerals Sector N24.6bn loan.

The Bank of Industry on Wednesday put its total loan portfolio in the solid minerals sector of the economy at N24.6 billion. The Managing Director, BoI, Mr Rasheed Olaoluwa, said this in Abuja at the opening session of the bank’s one day Solid Mineral Sensitisation Forum tagged “ investment opportunities in the solid minerals sector’’.


Is setting up a business one of your priorities this year? Is your salary not enough to cater for your family responsibilities and you are looking for an additional means of income? Have you been unemployed for a while and looking for business ideas that are lucrative? Are you approaching retirement age and have not decided on a business that will generate steady streams of income for you?

If your responses to these questions are yes, then you can consider investing in a bakery with a minimum of N150, 000.

A report on the prospects of bakery by Euromonitor notes that there is projected growth in retail sales of baked goods, expected to be strong at an annual rate of three per cent.

According to the report, the increasing population, the rising disposable incomes and the growing desire for convenience and variety among Nigerian consumers are factors that will drive the growth.

As a result, it suggests that new products, improvements in distribution, price promotions and other marketing activities will also help to sustain robust demand for baked goods.

Moreover, sales of packaged and industrial products are expected to grow faster than those of unpackaged/artisanal products in all major baked goods categories over the forecast period, the report observes.

In order to achieve your dreams of owning a low-cost bakery, here are some useful guidelines to follow.

Get trained
Basically, bread making does not require any form of qualification but requisite knowledge and skills in baking a variety of bread are needed.

The Managing Director, Flygapp Bakery School, Mr. Olumide Sanda, says that it is possible to start a bakery from home and make enough money for a bread shop.

He says, "The starting point is knowledge. You need to know how to bake varieties of bread. The business of bread making is still open for new entrants as there are more opportunities to be explored in bread business. So many have doubted the possibilities of starting a bakery with one hundred thousand or a little more at home, some have gone further to analyse it and concluded that this system is not workable.

"There are different types of bread that can be made at home so you have several options to choose from. Recipes like sweet wheat bread, chelsea buns, coconut, fruit bread, sardine bread, croissant and others are good recipes for a small scale bread business."
Learn the processes

Explaining the baking process he says, "The process of bread making has become simpler and easier depending on the recipe you have. The normal bread process is that after scaling and putting the ingredients together you will knead with your hand or spiral mixer, after which you will shape to the required sizes and put into pans."

"You will then give about one hour or less to rise depending on the size of the bread while you pre-heat your oven to 200 degrees and then you bake between 16 and 30 minutes depending on the type of bread recipe as well as the size of the bread. A good bread should have a workable recipe. This process can be usable and sustainable even when you have large quantity of bread to produce.

Purchase bakery equipment

Most bakers start small from the confines of their homes. Sanda says that some basic equipment are required for start-ups.

The N150, 000 capital for a home-based bakery will exclude mixing machines, as such Sanda says the process of mixing the dough can be done manually because a spiral mixer will cost an additional N150, 000.

He lists a gas-fired oven which cost N70, 000; an electronic and manual weighing scale of N10,000 coupled with baking pans and trays valued at N15, 000, as some of the indispensable equipment a baker can start with.

In addition, to the above, he says two stainless bowls costing N4000; a bakers table for kneading dough valued at N6500; a N2000 rolling pin and bread shelves costing N5000 are to be purchased.

"I am not saying you cannot start big but you can start small and gradually grow and possibly attract financing for expansion," he adds.
Get ingredients for the first set of loaves

Presently, Sanda says a bag of good quality flour cost N6500; while a bag of sugar that will be adequate for the production of about 10 bags of flour cost N8500.

He adds that baking fat to make six bags of flour depending on the recipe sells for N6000 while N100 salt to produce one bag of flour and packaging material costing N10, 000 are also required.
Market your products yourself

Marketing a new business or product can be time consuming, and costly for an entrepreneur that is working with a small budget.

As such, experts advise that every business owner should learn how to market their products and services to save cost. But as the business expands, the marketing aspect can be outsourced to professionals.
Sanda says, "Remember every marketing must be handled with a lot of creativity, this means you need to develop sales strategies for yourself. In conclusion, please note that as in all businesses you need passion, discipline and a strong determination to make good profits in bakery/bread business and grow especially when you are starting small."