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How to Start a Premium Mobile Food Vending Business in Lagos

Food is a basic necessity that everyone needs to survive. Its indispensable nature makes mobile food vending a lucrative business, especially in Nigeria’s commercial centre, Lagos. The hectic lifestyle in the city also makes people crave fast food.

Though the mobile food business is an age-long method of selling food using carts, it has been upgraded to using trucks or vehicles. This allows you to serve different customers and be flexible with the menus. For instance, you can be a breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner van. All you need to do is know the locations of your target customers and the rush hours. However, before starting your business, you must plan and consider some variables to succeed.

Who are the target customers for your food business in Lagos

Generally, your business is for everyone as everybody eats. However, your customers can be classified into white-collar job holders, students, and self-employed.

White-collar job holders

Your main target is the white-collar workers. Since most of them have to get to work early, they do not bother cooking. They, therefore, rely on vendors that sell foods for their breakfast, brunch and lunch. Some also buy takeaways for dinner.

Students and self-employed

Apart from school children that buy food due to their parents’ work, tertiary students are known for purchasing food. Due to the tight learning schedule of some students, they get their daily food from different vendors for the three square meals.

Self-employed people are not left out. With all the energies invested in their business, they need to refill. They only do this by buying ready-made meals from food vendors.

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How to start your food business in Lagos

Before starting your business, you need to have a business plan containing everything you need to execute the business idea. Here are things to do to ease your way into the business.

Conduct a market research

Like every other business, you need to know about the market before starting. Though a typical business, you need to research to know the area your target customers are and the food popular in the environment. The information will help you make an informed decision on where to sell your food and what to sell.

Start-up capital

Since you have an idea of what to sell, you need to write an estimate of the starting capital and how to source it. This should include unexpected expenses.

Factors such as one-time costs, recurring start-up costs, and unplanned costs must be considered in determining startup capital. Some of the one-time costs are the cost of a food truck, cooperate affairs commission (CAC), truck wrap,  office supplies, marketing/advert, and other fees.

To start, you can use your money or source for capital from family, friends or financial bodies.

Draft your business plan

From your market research, you can decide who your target market is, your value proposition, channels and other variables. There is no need for you to be rigid with yourself with your first draft. A flexible business plan can be modified to suit your business as it unfolds.

Ensure that your short- and long-term goals are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely. This will help you easily measure your business growth.

Get the necessary licenses

Make sure your business is registered with every necessary body to afford any hiccup. So do all diligence when researching the bodies overseeing mobile food vendor business in Nigeria. Apart from licenses, there are rules to abide by in selling foods. This includes street food vending regulations in Lagos, how you will handle, sell, store, thaw, and cook, the size, quantity, and quality of your truck kitchen, the vehicle’s fresh water and wastewater management holding capacity, and proper Hygiene policies.

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