How to Start Export Business in Nigeria/Africa – The Profitable Approach

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Do you want to expand your brand or business from Nigeria to other international countries and make more sales of your Nigerian exportable products or you wish or want to learn how to start export business in Nigeria as a pathway to create wealth or more wealth for yourself?, you don’t have to break the bank in doing any import export business. In fact, creating wealth through export business isn’t as hard as many people paint it to be.

Wanting to start exportation business in Nigeria is a very wise and good decision and a profitable way to create wealth through a business niche that is almost ignored by countless Nigerians. I know there are about a million articles or guides on the internet about how to start import export business no doubt but with my authoritative field experience, I can categorically tell you what most of these articles failed to open your eyes into.

Truth is, export business is very lucrative and it’s no surprise that with the right kind of knowledge, funds and practice, one can easily build wealth through it but achieving this level of success is never an overnight thing as promised by most seminars and online tutorials.

How to Start Export Business in Nigeria/Africa

how to start export business in Nigeria

What is Export Business in a nutshell??

Export business refers to the process of sending goods produced in one country (exporting country) or services to another country (importing country). E.g. a Nigerian farmer exporting Palm oil to a country like Australia. In this process, the seller of such services or goods is referred to as an exporter while the foreign buyer is known as an importer.

I believe you cannot get any simpler definition of export business ( Just kidding); although this is simple enough.

Before you excitedly jump on board with your own export business in Nigeria/Africa, there are a few things you might want to look at before getting started. These are various essential things you need to find out before you get your first international order.

Exporters are generally classified into two types. We have direct exporters and indirect or middle-men exporters.

Direct exporters: A direct exporter is a company or person who exports goods outside his/her country by dealing directly with the importers of the target country.

In this type of export transaction, the exporter is responsible for all the agreed terms and conditions in the export transaction such as product sourcing, inspection exercise, custom duties, shipping, goods declaration and others.

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Indirect Exporters or Middlemen: These set of individuals are in the export business value chain, unlike direct exporters, they don’t fully get involved in all export transaction. They basically connect buyers to the exporters or source for the products themselves or through another middleman.

Their job fetches them millions but that is usually always at the end of every successful export transaction only (should the business go south, they do not get paid and might even incur debt).

Pick your area of interest and do some research and study of their exporting tasks and style. You certainly don’t want to completely go into business without having a solid training about it.

But before you select a category of interest, ask yourself questions like this:

  • What products are they exporting?
  • What are their best selling products?
  • How do they interact with foreign buyers?
  • Are you export ready?
  • Your profits in the next 5 – 6yeras?

And this is how to do that exactly.


Why Export Business in Nigeria?

There exist a million reasons why you should start any profitable agribusiness, but when it comes to export business; the reason is very clear and really simple. Some of the reasons are:

  • For individuals, to make money and create wealth.
  • For brands and companies, to build more great networks, build brands, expand business horizon, get foreign buyers and make more sales.
  • To strengthen the country’s economy by exporting the products to overseas


Benefits of Export Business in Nigeria/Africa

Either you are starting out as a direct or indirect exporter; export business has a lot of benefits apart from the fact that you can use it to create wealth. And we’re going to list some of the great features of export business right here.

New & Untapped Markets for Brands and Individuals: – With export business, brands and individuals are presented an opportunity to expand their businesses into untapped markets and in the process make more sales. A well planned export business will reveal to you the untapped markets and most especially, where your products are highly in demand.

Boost and Increases Sales: Exportation business helps in boosting your product market reach by reaching out to more targeted buyers and therefore, increasing your sales and also, ability to cash out in foreign currencies.

Higher Business Growth: There will always be an increasing increase of buyers overseas looking to try out new products, new foods, or new streams of income etc. and this serves as an opportunity to grow your business beyond the normal local market competitions.

Company which sells product overseas have an higher chance to win more markets and more higher paying clients than those that sell only in local markets.

Increases Your Profits and Create Wealth: 90% of people that are coming into export business want to make huge profits by selling the available local products abroad.

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I can tell you, with experience, this is 100% achievable. With high paying clients, you can be rest assured that, making more sales equals more profits for you.

Lo, if you’ve heard people buying foodstuff for instance at 10x the amount you can get it right here in our local markets, believe it because that is one of the magic powers of export business.

Most of the locally available products in Nigeria are very scarce abroad and of course, highly demanded so exporting those products can earn you more money.

Export Business Challenges in Nigeria

In other words, we can refer to these as, constraints of export business in Nigeria. Like every other profitable businesses, exportation business is faced with some challenges which if not cleared, could pose as a threat to achieving the goal of the business could be hampered and these are the reasons why some that ran into export business without proper plan and training soon quit the business. Additionally, they wasted money and efforts.

Below are the most common problems experienced by exporters of a business:

  • Lack of adequate capital. Exportation business in Nigeria is a capital intensive one. However, you can download our complete manual on how to get investors to fund your business and as well as how to get loan without collateral in Nigeria.
  • Locating importers from the countries you wish to export your goods to.
  • Stress and roadblocks of acquiring exportation license in Nigeria.
  • Modes of receiving payments from clients.
  • Port fees and
  • Shipping medium and arrangements.


No to worry, as I am going to break the jaws of the above limitations by explaining to you how to easily set up a successful export business in Nigeria in  a couple of minutes.

Just grab a cup of coffee and read on.

Practical Steps How to Start Export Business in Nigeria 

how to start export business in Nigeria

Now that we’ve; looked at the most important aspects of export business and it’s necessary needed details before jumping over the fence, let us look at real practical steps to starting export business in Nigeria.

Get Trained: There’s no better way to attempt disaster in the exportation business than to jump into the train without a solid first-hand practical training from experts who are already into the business.

Please note that this type of  business is not a business of gambling, you must have all the essential education and updated information about what you’re about to invest your money and time into.

With a perfect training, you will have possessed quality information about getting buyers, understanding the basic terms, product sourcing and strategies and so on.

The entire points are very vital to the success of your export business and you can full training from us here.

Make A Decision On What To Export: Nigeria has about 8,400 exportable products and they are classified into five (5) major groups; make it your duty to sit and take a decision on what to export.

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Research your decided products properly and discover the untapped market niches where your products are highly needed. Products like water melon, cashew nuts, charcoal, ginger, sesame seed, Cray fish, foodstuffs, cocoa powder, cocoa, Shea nuts and butter, fishes like catfish and so on are example of list of good products to start from.

Get License and Other Important Documents: Export business is a business that requires documentations and some of these documents will require one or more government agencies to sign them before any export transaction can take place.

Nigeria government requested that you have at least eight (8) important documents before you can be considered a trusted and registered exporter. These documents are not difficult to obtain as there are standby agents waiting willing to assist you.

Export Business in Nigeria Requirements

The first requirement is to have a limited liability business name, registered and approved by Corporate Affairs Commission (C.A.C).

You must obtain export license form and certificate from Nigerian Export Promotion Councils (N.E.P.C) – See their website for details.

Make sure to obtain all the required documents from the target importing country where necessary.

You will need an office address (your home address is ok for this purpose while you testing the waters)

You will also need an online presence(like a website or blog; we can help you create one if you need) where most of the buyers will come and patronize your business.

Also, remember exportation business is a brokerage business that is  profitable if done well. I recommend follwing steps highlighted in this guide if truly you want to succeed in it. Also bear in mind that like any other business, it has its own risk too, but not too large that you cannot bear, with a mentor and proper guidance you are sure to cross over to this other side of business.

Finally, have it in mind that every business requires persistence, determination, strategy and above all proper planning.

Remember, nothing works for you without you taking an action!

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See you again in our next post. Additionally, we’re here to provide a solution to every of  your export business in Nigeria challenges and the only you can help us is to comment your issues below.



  1. kelvin February 27, 2018
    • Martins February 28, 2018

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