We will take a look at the most the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria that anyone can start with small capital or big capital. These lucrative business ideas are very profitable. They have the capacity to make anyone successful if well handled. A lot of them are not well explored in Nigeria.
With high rate of unemployment in Nigeria, a lot of people are left without jobs. Living without a means of income is suicidal. But if you are smart, you can start your own business. In no time if you know what you are doing, you will be generating your own income. And even employing others. According to research, the times of economic crisis and financial meltdown are the best periods to start a business.
You do not need to be very rich to start a business. The business ideas we list on this page, can be ventured into with small capital or big capital. It all depends on your capacity.
Here are few validated business ideas you can start.
1. Uber Driver – Driving for Uber
There are many different reasons why people choose to drive with Uber. Some do it for the freedom to drive when and where they like. They’re the boss, and they work for as long or for as little as they want, following a schedule that suits their needs. An average Uber driver earns within 80,000 – 120,000 Naira a week.
Driving for Uber is one of the most lucrative business ideas in Nigeria right now. It does not only give you the opportunity to work when you want (including nights or weekends) but also give you the ability to earn some extra cash while doing so. While some drivers are doing this full-time, some only do it at nights after day job and on weekends.
2. Social Media / Influencer Marketing
Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, Twitter and Facebook – Social Media is the Next Big Thing. These are platforms where Nigerians are making a load of cash just by sharing engaging contents and building a loyal followers list. This is a business idea you also need to venture into if you are crazy about social media.
Build up a following on any of this platform and you could quickly be approached by major brands, gear companies, and other relevant businesses that sell products or services related to the type of content you share. If you have hundreds of thousands of followers, you can easily charge anywhere between 15,000 – 50,000 Naira per post or more—which makes for a very profitable side business idea.
3. Web Design and Development
As a web designer or developer, you’ll build incredibly valuable skills that are in extremely high demand in the Nigeria market. You can get up to speed on building websites in as little as a few weeks by using a free tool like WordPress.
Aside from having the opportunity to work on your own schedule, you can make as much as 50,000 – 250,000 Naira per website project. If you looking to greatly improve your web development skills, Andela is a great place for you to start and acquire the knowledge you need.
4. Graphic Design
While having a formal background in graphic design is absolutely going to be helpful, it’s also relatively easy to learn the foundations of graphic design on your own using tools like Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.
But before you can start earning a living as a graphic designer, you’ll need to build your skills recommend and be creative in all your designs. I recommend showcasing your design skills on platforms such as Instagram and Facebook to earn a good customer base.
A tool that can help you in this field is CANVA
5. Freelance Content Development / Ghost Writer
Do you consider yourself a wordsmith? Setting yourself up as a freelance content development could prove to be a side-hustle or maybe even a full-time job.
Companies in Nigeria such as media agencies, blogs and startups will pay big time for someone who can write a clean copy of contents, whether it’s for advertisements, websites or blogs. Some will even pay you for your editing services. However, consider how much work it takes to make freelancing work your full-time gig.
6. Starting a Blog or Vlog
Think blogging is no longer a viable source of income? Think again. Tens of thousands of bloggers, creating content on topics as diverse as cooking, fashion, gossip, news, travel, film, and lifestyle. Starting a blog/vlog with a particular niche and focus on a particular set of individuals is a lucrative business idea with great potentials.
Your first step is sharpening your writing abilities, understanding what your audience craves and learning how to write a blog post that drives traffic and brings you readers on a regular basis.
7. Digital Marketing Agency
A digital marketing agency is different from your traditional marketing agency in that they are typically focused on results-based marketing in the digital world. Measurable marketing and ROI is the name of the game.
There are lots of average digital marketing agencies in Nigeria right now. Starting your own digital marketing agency does not require much capital all that is needed is the digital skills and experience to drive result for your customers.
8. Drop Shipping
This is a form of business that you can start with a very low capital. What you need is your laptop or smartphone, internet data, and your social media platforms e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat etc. ( which could serve as your online shop)
This is a lucrative business idea that has made millions of naira. The secret of the business is identifying and knowing what the people need at the particular moment and knowing where and how to source for those items (AliExpress is a good place to start drop shipping business in Nigeria).
9. Oil and Gas Business
The simple truth is that Nigeria and to a large extend, the world, still depends on oil and gas. As long as this trend continues, this business will continue to dominate. Oil an gas is definitely king among the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria.
Look at this way, we depend on gas or kerosene to cook. We depend on fuel to move around whether we are using cars, okada or Keke-napep. And because of poor electricity supply we depend on fuel for electricity. All the big and small companies in Nigeria depend on fuel or diesel to operate.
There is too much dependent on oil and gas. And Nigeria is blessed with abundance of it. Anyone who taps into this business will be making huge income.
Here are opportunities in Oil and gas business:
This is one of the most lucrative part of oil and gas business. But you will need a high budget to get into it. Oil and gas distributors brings in refined petroleum product into the country for distribution to different sectors.
With few millions of Naira, you can start a petrol station. There are so many cars in Nigeria that you will never run out of customers. Also, a lot of people depend on petrol station to power their generators.
COOKING GAS BUSINESS
This is an untapped business in Nigeria. A lot of people are so focused on Petrol that they over look cooking gas. Not long ago, I was speaking with a friend who manages a mid-size petroleum company. They are into all petroleum products. He told me they make more money from cooking gas than any other business.
You can supply cooking gas to retailers or you become a retailer and refill gas for end users. Spice it up. This business is very lucrative and it does not cost much to start. You can start small and grow!
A lot of Nigerians still depend on kerosene for various reasons. Even those with cooking gas use kerosene powered stove as back up. This business is very lucrative. More lucrative because not so many people are into it any more.
OIL AND GAS TRANSPORTATION
You can purchase tankers and get into the business of lifting petroleum products. It could be ships. Petroleum products is like any other commodity, they need to be lifted. There is also fleet management opportunities.
These are some of the opportunities in oil and gas business. There are more if you do your research. But one thing is certain, Oil and gas remains one of the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria.
10. Agriculture Business
Apart from being one of the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria, agriculture business is an evergreen business. It never get old and never fade. As long as human exist, agriculture business will continue to strive. This makes it a very important and strategic business.
One thing that makes this business so attractive is that there are lots of loans or financing options available for agriculture entrepreneurs in Nigeria. We have a dedicated Bank of Agriculture operated by the Federal Government through the Ministry of Finance, Central Bank and Ministry of Agriculture.
And as the government is continually looking to diversify from oil, their major focus is on agriculture. More incentives will be triggered for this sector. There is huge profit and growth awaiting for anyone who ventures into Agriculture business.
Here are some opportunities in Agriculture business:
This one involves the rearing of Snakes for commercial purposes. Because of the risky nature and low competition, this business is very lucrative!
Beef meat is very popular in Nigeria. Cow milk is almost as treasured as oil in Nigeria. These factors make cattle farming one of the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria.
PALM OIL BUSINESS
Palm oil is gold. Most of the things yo use from cream to soup and many more are made from palm oil. There are many companies around the world who imports palm oil from Nigeria. This business is very lucrative.
Majority of Nigerians depend on Garri, fufu and other products made from cassava. This business is very lucrative because the products are very much in demand.
Chicken meat, Turkey meat and others are very popular among Nigerians especially during festive seasons. Poultry farming is a very profitable business anyone can start with small capital.
Snail farming is an untapped business in Nigeria. There is so much possibilities and potentials in this business.
11. FOOD BUSINESS
There is no way food business will not be among the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria. This is an evergreen business. People will always eat! No matter how hard or tough the economy is, one thing people can never do without is food.
This is a business that if you run well, can make you rich. It is also very easy to win loyal customers. As long as your food is delicious, people will always come back.
If you can find a good location, acquire the right skills and personnel, you can run a successful food business. This is a business without season. It is in demand every day.
Here are some opportunities in food business:
Nigerians love big brands like Mr. Bigg’s and co. Some of these brands are so popular that people are loyal to a particular brand. You can find a good location in any city, with no competition or minimal competition around, and establish a fast food franchise. Mr Bigg’s is owned by United African Company of Nigeria (UAC), you can apply to them for a franchise opportunity.
Once approved, you can open your own Mr.Bigg’s fast food and make money. If you find a good location with minimal or no competition, you will make so much money. Apart from Mr. Bigg’s, you can open any franchise of your choice.
You can open a local restaurant that appeals to a particular set of food eaters. For example, you can open a “Calabar restaurant” where you serve the world famous Edika-ikong and Affang soup. This will stand you out as people interested in these food will look for you.
You can start an “amala restaurant” where you focus on the delicious amala dish.
When it comes to local restaurant, having a specification can be a turning point.
FOREIGN AND INTERCONTINENTAL RESTAURANT
Foreign and intercontinental food are becoming very popular in Nigeria. The restaurant that serves these kind of meals attract high worth individuals, foreigners and celebrities.
You can open a Chinese Restaurant, Italian restaurant, Indian restaurant and so on. You can learn how to make dishes common in these restaurants or partner with someone who has good understanding of it all.
FOOD SUPPLY BUSINESS
This is a very lucrative business that you can do to make money. I know of a woman who runs this business. She supplies food at conferences, seminars, bank’s AGM and so on.
Food supply business is lucrative. You need a have good cooking skills or employ someone who has. Then build a network of event planners and organizers. Also approach schools, companies and so on. You will be amazed!
Making, decorating, and selling one-of-a-kind cakes and cupcakes for occasions ranging from birthdays to weddings to anniversaries is a great business idea for the hobby baker to pursue, and one that is potentially very profitable.
You can get started on a shoestring budget by baking and decorating right in your own kitchen. An effective marketing idea is to send samples of your cakes to interested parties to make sure they send business your way or showcase pictures of the cakes on Instagram using appropriate hashtags.
SMALL CHOPS FOOD BUSINESS
Starting a small chops food business is a lucrative business idea in Nigeria. Nigerians desire for light meals like small chops has greatly increased in the past years. Aside from big events like weddings, funeral and birthday parties, small chops are also the preferred choice when gathering friends for a get-together, boat cruise and a time on the beach.
The great thing about small chops is that even though there are a lot of people offering this service, there certainly won’t be a shortage of demand. The key to being a successful small chops business owner is creativity and packaging.
12. Real Estate Business
Real Estate business is one of the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria and anywhere in the world. There is no doubt about it. People will always need a roof over there head. As population continue to increase, real estate business will continue to boom. As people move to cities, this business keep booming.
There are many opportunities in real estate business. You can work as an agent. Helping people find properties and apartment for fee or commission. Also helping property sellers and landlords find buyers or tenants for a fee.
You can develop properties in highly sought after environment for sale or for rent. You can also invest in lands and either develop or sell when it appreciates.
13. Furniture Business
Furniture business is deservedly among the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria. The market is huge and demand is high. People will always use furniture. People seat on furniture, sleep on furniture. Kitchen – furniture, sitting room – furniture. Companies need furniture. We are surrounded by furniture. Furniture is an essential commodity.
You can start a carpentry shop where you make well polished furniture for various purposes. Employ skilled carpenters. Supply furniture to show rooms, companies, schools and sell to individuals.
If you are not interested in carpentry shop, you can open a showroom and source for well made furniture from good carpenters around. Display them and sell. The market is huge and the profit margin is high.
14. Hotel Business
Hotel business is very lucrative and cannot be overlooked among the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria. The population of Nigeria is huge and people move from one place to another either for pleasure or business. Hotel provides shelter for them. Also people coming into the country patronize hotels.
To succeed in hotel business, you need to either look for a less competitive environment and start up or offer better or cheaper services in a competitive area. To supplement your income, your hotels should have event hall where people rent for events. A bar and restaurant.
15. Transportation Business
Transportation makes this list of most lucrative businesses in Nigeria and deservedly so. This is one business that you cannot do without. People are always moving. Moving to work, moving to church or mosque, moving to visit, moving from city to city. There is always movement. With over 150 million people in Nigeria on the move, this business is lucrative.
You can start with small capital or big capital. You can drive Uber with your car for extra income. Buy buses, okada or keke-napep. Even planes. The market is huge and very much in demand. People are always moving!
16. Fashion Business
There is no way fashion business will not make it to the list of the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria. Nigerians love party, be it weddings, birthdays, end-of-the-year gatherings. Even during funeral, we still find a way to throw party – burial ceremony! For all these events, there are uniforms.
Fashion business is very much in demand. People will always wear clothes. To go to work, school, even to sleep, people need cloth. The demand is very high.
You can go into fashion designing and make amazing clothes. Your will have large patronize from different quarters. You can also open a boutique and sell imported and locally made fashion items. You can do printing services, print on t-shirts and caps.
17. Dry Cleaning Business
This business is very lucrative in the city. Most busy workers rely on dry cleaners for their laundry needs. Companies and organizations make use of dry cleaning services very often. In this business, you will always have customer if you are in the right location.
18. Pure Water Business
If there is one thing humans can never do without, it is water. Because of the important nature of water, pure water business makes this list of the most lucrative businesses in Nigeria.
There are approximately 180 million people in Nigeria today and all of them drink water! That makes this business very profitable, because you will always have buyers.