What Experts are Saying about top Business Opportunities to Explore in Nigeria right now
One important lesson 2020 taught us is the need to diversify our income streams instead of relying solely on our salaried jobs. And a good way to do this is by going into various businesses. As you may well know, Nigeria’s unemployment rate rose to 27.1% as at half-year 2020, meaning that millions of Nigerians could not find jobs. What this means, therefore, is that nobody can depend on working multiple jobs in a bid to make more money, as there are not just enough jobs to go round.
However, there are various types of businesses that one can take advantage of. It’s still a brand new year and this is a good time to figure out the most viable business opportunities that are available in Nigeria right now and which ones to take advantage of. That is exactly why we have written this piece, to guide you towards making the right decisions. Now, let’s look at these opportunities together, shall we?
1. E-commerce and logistics
True to earlier predictions, E-commerce has become commonplace. A lot of working class Nigerians are busy and will willingly pay to have their supplies delivered to them. More so, the COVID-19 pandemic and resultant lockdowns in April/May last year played a major role in this regard. According to the CEO of Kwik Delivery, Romain Poirot-Lellig, the pandemic was an accelerator for the industry. And the implication is that there are now more opportunities in that space to be explored.
“Although the COVID-19 has been a human tragedy, it has also presented immense opportunities, especially in the areas of E-commerce and logistics. Between last year and now, very many big companies are now coming to us with digitalization and E-commerce projects that require, of course, efficient delivery services… There will be more growth for E-commerce and logistics as economic actors in Nigeria aim to be more efficient and to focus on their core business,” Poirot-Lellig told this author.
2. Agro Businesses
Food is essential to life, and this is why farmers are always in demand. So, if you are looking for a viable business to do in 2021, consider playing in the agriculture sector. Interestingly, one good thing about playing in this field in 2021 is that you don’t necessarily need to own any farm. Thanks to technology and the emergence of agritech firms in Nigeria, all you need to do is invest in a farmer and earn returns right from the comfort of your home.
However, there is need to be cautious when investing through agritech platforms. As you should know by now, some agritech platforms like H0Corn and Thrive Agric struggled to repay their investors last year, a situation they blamed on the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic. So, it is important to always consider the capacity of these platforms to use your money judiciously whilst returning the promised ROIs. Let the advice of Bill Kenneths, the CEO of Port Harcourt-based Farmsponsor, be your guide:
“They call it agritech, yes. But agriculture is physical. Technology in agriculture is supposed to enable you do the physical things more seamlessly. So, if you are saying you are in agritech but you don’t have any physical and tangible investments, when the rainy day comes it will just hit you so hard.”
3. Fintech/Lending Platforms
A lot of people in Nigeria need quick loans either for consumption purposes or for business. An even though there are now quite a lot of players in this field, there is also still lots of opportunities. Now, one reason you should definitely consider lending is because it is very profitable. The CEO of Sycamore, Babatunde Akin-Moses, was very honest when he told this author: “I will be honest with you, it is a good business, as long as you understand the dynamics. Bearing in mind that the interest rates in Nigeria are quite high, it makes it an interesting business. But it all depends on whether the borrowers refund the money because that is often the challenge a lot of lenders face.”
4. Entertainment Business
Cheta Nwanze, while serving as a key panelist during Nairametrics’ recently held Quarterly Economic Outlook Summit, suggested that businesses that promote people’s emotional wellness would be in high demand in 2021. Such businesses could fall anywhere between a drinking bar, sports viewing centres, public parks, and movie theatres. Businesses like these do well in a ‘depressed economy’, as people seek escape from their realities. Consider investing in such.
5. Online Education Business
Edtech is now in high demand by Nigerian parents and students, thanks to the disruption the pandemic caused last year. And even though companies like uLesson, Edves, etc. have risen to the occasion to meet this demand, there is still enough opportunities in that ecosystem for more players. The truth is that opportunities there are immense, and investors are willing to pump cash. Just recently, uLesson raised $7.5 million in Series A Funding.
There are lots more business opportunities in Nigeria, including opportunities in the healthcare sector and renewable energy sector. Choose whichever one you are interested in and run with it.
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