How To Register Your Business in Nigeria
Business registration is an essential and important part of becoming an entrepreneur. If you are a serious entrepreneur, you should know that registering your business is an absolute must. You cannot and will not attract investors to trust in your business if you don't have it registered with the appropriate registration body in Nigeria which is CAC (Corporate Affairs Commission).
In the past, it used to be an extremely long and cumbersome process to get your business registered with CAC. But, now, thanks to the availability of the world wide web and online databases, you don't need to pass through so much paperwork or a long process. With just a little bit of money for the fees and access to the internet, you can register your business fast.
Below, we will outline the basic steps you need to follow to get your business registered in Nigeria in 2021. Let's see them below:
- Choose your business name and check if it's available
- Fill the pre-registration form to register the chosen and available name
- Pay the filing fee
- Gather the necessary documents needed for upload
- Finally, upload and submit the original copies of the documents you have gathered.
1. Choosing a business name and checking for availability
There are tools that you can use that are readily available on the internet for generating new and available business names. An example of such a tool is Namelix. Other tools also exist that you can easily find with a quick web search. Your chosen business name has to be related to the business itself. Also, your business name must be unique that is, not used before by anyone in Nigeria. You can think of up to two or three business names to be on the safer side while registering. The additional business names you think of are backup plans you will need while registering to ensure you have one ready in case the first one is already taken.
2. Fill the pre-registration form to register your business name
With the online registration portal of CAC, you can complete your pre-registration form online to register your name. You will also have to reserve a name by paying just 500 Naira. With that fee, they will check if your business name is available and get back to you within the same day if you submit before 5 pm. Name availability checking and reservation fee is 500 Naira. You will need to complete that before you can go on to fill the pre-registration form.
3. Pay your filing fee
Depending on the type of business that you are trying to register, the cost of business name registration can differ. Once you have paid the filing fee, you will be sent a receipt of payment which you should keep. The filing fee can be made directly to the bank or directly from the CAC's web portal.
4. Gather the necessary documents for upload.
The documents required for registration include an Application form, receipt of the Filing fee, proper means of identification of the business owner. These are the three necessary documents you need to gather and upload to the website for processing. The documents should be prepared, scanned and uploaded.
5. Submit the original copies of the documents to CAC
After uploading your documents online to the CAC website, you then need to take the original copies of the documents to the physical office of CAC that is closest to you in Nigeria. In exchange for submitting these original copies, you will be given your certificate of business name registration and certified copies of the uploaded documents.
These five steps listed above are the main steps you will follow while trying to get your business registered. If you are a business owner in Nigeria, getting your business name registered is highly important. It adds to your business credibility as a business owner, allows investors to see that your business or enterprise is legit and allows you to deal internationally. Without registering your business, you can be fined by the appropriate authorities because it is illegal to operate a business in Nigeria without prior registration first. Like we mentioned in the article earlier, depending on the share capital of your business, the costs of business registration will differ greatly. With the minimum cost being 5,000 Naira and the maximum cosy being 20,000 Naira.