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Entrepreneurs on their frustrations and what it takes to do business in Nigeria


It’s obvious there are lots of frustrations in Nigeria right now, and these have affected the workings of the country as a whole.

Some entrepreneurs ENCOMIUM Weekly sought their views on this also confirmed the unpalatable situation.

They also explained how difficult it is running their businesses at the moment…



First, government policies and double taxation make business frustrating. Then, the issues of perennial fuel scarcity and poor electricity supply have worsened the situation in the country. We’re still running our business because we don’t have any option. For instance, the Ikeja Electric is not performing, yet heavy bills come every month. So, the situation is so frustrating at the moment. We hardly meet our targets. However, we believe it’s a matter of time. There’s always light at the end of the tunnel. We’re coping gradually but we reduce our needs in order of preference in a way that customers will get satisfied at all times irrespective of the dwindling business situation across the country



The frustration is in the economy, it is too expensive to handle entrepreneurial business in Nigeria.  It is really frustrating in such an economy where you don’t have regulated prices, fees, etc. Nothing is stable in the Nigerian economy it makes growth very slow, makes your projects suffer, etc.

What it takes to run business in Nigeria is the grace of God, patience and I would have also said focus but even when you are focused, most times the unstable economic situation will defocus you. It is just the grace of God.



My frustrations are many as an entrepreneur in this country called Nigeria. Is it the one I suffer from lack of fuel or epileptic power supply? Or the skyrocketing exchange rate and the battered economy? All these are enough pains for every businessman or woman.

A situation when going to work has become frustrating that you can hardly plan your daily activities. At times you get stuck in traffic and by the time you get home, you are already tired. So, what are we saying? But in every situation, God says we should be thankful to Him. Coping with all these frustrations has even become difficult but with one that has faith, all things are possible. I believe we will survive the tide and the country will get better soon.



There are numerous kinds of frustration for an average entrepreneur in Nigeria today. Chief among them is the instability and unpredictability of forex on one hand, and the many CBN’s draconian policies against importation. No one can really say for sure how much naira would exchange against the dollar the next minute, let alone the next day. And given such circumstances, one can’t properly project or make plans.

Of course, you know the implications of lack of planning. Second, there is a growing apathy on the side of consumers, as the prevalent high exchange rate has led to an increase in the prices of goods and services way beyond the affordability of many. These and many other policies of the government have only frustrated many entrepreneurs. All one can do in the face of all these is to tread cautiously in the face of all the confusion until there is some elements of stability.



The road to business success is filled with challenges and frustrations that most aspiring entrepreneurs never even imagined. With the current economic situation, there have been so much frustration. The prices of goods are unbearable. At times you buy materials at very high prices and yet customers will insist they will pay the price they have been paying before. It is very frustrating and we have no option. We just have to do our job so we can get food to eat. I believe when the country’s economic situation is balanced, things will be fine.



Things are not so good now and everyone is affected. The only challenge for now is the rise in the cost of materials. Most customers do not want to understand this. In the fashion industry, you have to be up to date and that is why I have added to my brand, polo tops and customizing them. I think we are doing good.

We also make ready-made dresses. If not for the change in the situation of things in the country in the past few weeks, Nigeria is a great place to do business.


AFOLABI AHMED KAYODE (Afolabi Express Photos)

The company was established by my dad 40 years ago, but I joined him in 1994. The main challenge we are facing in the photography industry is about quack photographers who charge lower with less value service. When a professional puts in for a job and he is competing with a quack photographer, the client won’t really give more value to what you are about to offer because they think it’s all the same. Meanwhile, the work I will do for N250,000, if given to a quack photographer, he might charge N50,000. But trust me, you can’t compare the quality.

I think Nigeria is a great place to do business because it’s a land of opportunities. The most important thing is for you to get referrals. When I say referrals, it means connection. When you are well connected, you will surely make it.


LATIFAT OYEBANJO (Queen Lateefah Couture)

There is no business without its own challenges, no matter how small. I believe whatever that is worth doing is worth doing well. For me, I won’t say it’s frustration. I will just say it’s one of those things you must undergo as a business owner. An entrepreneur is a risk taker. He is always involved in finances.

Rents nowadays are so high, coupled with tax and some local government charges too. Finance is the main challenge here because they don’t consider how much you make before imposing charges on you.



The frustration is more than what I can imagine. We are facing a lot these days. I will say things are unbearable. It is very hard for me as an entrepreneur to survive because of the challenges the country is experiencing now.

The prices of goods are unbearable. Many of the bags I make are priced at unprofitable prices. I don’t blame them actually. I just have to understand we are all facing this situation. The way out is to keep wishing this country well, because it is only me and you that can actually change this country.



The situation is not encouraging. I am not happy because an entrepreneur will be happy if the public are interested in what you have to offer, with a profitable amount. These days, we work more with less profit. The dull economy is affecting everybody. We just can’t wait for the change that we seek to take shape. We are really suffering. We should just keep hoping things will get better.



It is not easy to be your own boss in Nigeria. A lot of capital, time and power go into managing business and if you are not careful, you will run the business under. Imagine the expenses on your business. Now that things are not easy in this country, we just have to be careful so that the business will not run down.

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