• Ssemujju Lewis E

How to Register A Business In Nigeria (The complete guide with everything you need to know)

The security of your business is vital. Having your establishment aligned with the laws that govern the mode of operation in any environment gives a unique sense of security. In addition, registration of your business with the right authorities will give you a sense of security and calmness.


Nigeria is one of the technologically advanced nations on the African continent, and owing to that, they have streamlined the process to register your business in Nigeria. Under the Companies and Allied Matters Acts (cama) 2020, Nigeria established the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) to aid entrepreneurs in registering businesses in Nigeria.



To register a business in Nigeria, there are two major factors to be considered. One is to register your business name; the second is to incorporate your business with a limited liability company with corporate affairs. In addition, a registered company enjoys the privilege of being able to access business loans from banks with next to zero hardship.

Related: A Complete Guide To Registering A Business In Uganda


A business name is commonly known in sole proprietorship and companies limited by guarantee owned by shareholders. As the name corresponding to their liability, they are limited to the shares they own in the company. And in addition, it is also possible to turn your business into a Limited Liability Company but on conversation cost.


Additionally, a foreign investor can also participate in any enterprise in Nigeria unless the business's name appears on the negative list. The negative list is a collection of businesses associated with the manufacturing of firearms and other military materials. Foreigner investors can choose to operate alone or in a joint venture with other existing enterprises in Nigeria. However, this has to be done under corporate affairs company with the cooperation of the Nigerian investment promotion commission.


How to register a new business in Nigeria

In Nigeria, you are free to register a company online with CAC through its online platform. Several steps must be considered in regards to getting the desired results; let us take a quick look at these steps;

1: Name reservation

  • This should be the very first step to be careful taken into practice when registering a company with corporate affairs commission; you can reserve the name of your business by applying for it online; however, the online process has steps that must be followed to have a successful; these are steps to follow when you are applying for the name reservation;

  • Create an account and sign up with the corporate affairs commission, and if you already have an account, you can sign up.

  • Go to name reservation.

  • Click on the new name reservation.

  • Fill the necessary column, and you will be asked to be a certain required amount for registration, and when you are done doing what is required of you, you can then wait for feedback from the CAC.

  • If the process becomes a success, then you can print out the approval note for future use.



2: Pre-incorporation

This is a vital step during business registration, and there is a criterion to be followed; let us check it out; the very first step that is required of you here is filling all the necessary CAC forms in registration columns, and the information that might be required of you is;

  • Information about the company

  • Company office address and email address of the company.

  • Names of directors or partners and there should be more than 2 persons with a minimum of 18years.

  • Date of birth, status, director contacts, photocopies of national ids, and percentage of the company's share capital.

  • Names of shareholders at least a minimum of 2 persons.

  • Name of the company secretary

  • Date of birth, status, phone number, email address. National id or passport of secretary.

  • Particulars of alien participants, if any.

  • Names, date of birth, phone numbers, and email address plus national identity card or passport.

  • Memorandum of understanding and article of association.

When you are done filling all the forms in the application, the next step is to meet the effective payment for the necessary registration fees such as CAC fees and stamp duty to the Federal Inland Revenue service fees.

When the payment process is finished, print out the completed application with electronic stamped form CAC and attach it to the memorandum of understanding and Article of Association; check if some columns are filled, date your documents, and sign on them before you start scanning and uploading.

Related: Step By Step Guide On How To Register A Business In Kenya

3: Uploading all completed documents

As you come to the end of business registration, this is the final step that you have to take that is if you are done with name reservation and pre-incorporation, next is that CAC will request you to log in back on your CAC portal create a PDF and upload them all completed, scanned documents, and the required ones could;

  • Approval note for the name reservation

  • Completed registration form CAC1

  • Identification of directors and other partners like shareholders

  • Approval payment for registration

  • Stamp duty certificate

  • Memorandum of understanding and Article of association (these documents should be bound, signed, and dated)

  • Certificate of incorporation


Important to note is that all the above documents should be in PDF format and that they should be uploaded to the CAC. This is because the registrar’s office MIGHT have first to review your documents, and if your application is successful, your registration too will be successful. The issuance of the incorporation certificate will follow this. Then, after 2 days, the applicants can log in to their CAC portal or visit their emails to check if their certificates have been processed. Alternatively, the applicants can still visit the commission with all their original documents to pick up the certificate.



Discovering the beauty of registering a business online in Nigeria

1. Registering a business online helps applicants to have a certificate issued by a government agency

2. Registering a business online creates potential confidence in entrepreneurs because they think they are dealing with recognized organizations.

3. It is effortless to open a corporate account in a company name when registering your company online.

4. Registering a business online helps registrar officers work full-time, increasing their salaries and other benefits for extra hours worked.

5. Registering a business online facilitates you to acquire a visa that helps you travel to different countries for business purposes.

6. Registering your business online gives you credibility and trust that ensures confidence with investors or lenders to deal with your company. In addition, when your company is registered, it becomes easy for your business to access loans from any financial institution compared to informal companies.


To give you a quick highlight on how much you need to register a company in Nigeria.

The corporate affairs commission is the government agency in charge of registering companies and businesses in Nigeria. It charges companies depending on the nature of the company because public institutions company structure fees is not the same as for private sector companies and companies limited by share capital too doesn’t pay the constant amount of registration fees, it depends the amount or worth of share capital members stated in their memorandum of understanding and article of association. Below is the summary of corporate affairs commission registration fees;

  • Name reservation fee of a company in Nigeria is 500N (Naira)

  • Company limited by share capital registration below 1M as share capital, its registration fees are equal to 10,000N for every 1M.

  • A private company whose share capital is more than 1M naira to 500M, the registration fees are 1M naira.

  • Registering a private company whose share capital is more than 500M Naira, the registration fee is 7500 naira for every 1M naira.

  • Registering a public company with a share capital worth 1M naira, the registration will be 20,000naira.

  • Public company with a share capital of more than 1M up to 500M Naira, the registration fees are 10,000 nairas per 1million.

  • Public company with share capital worth more than 500M Naira, its registration fees are 15,000 nairas for every 1M.

  • Company limited share by guarantee; it just has to pay 20,000 naira fee for filing a notice of exemption.

  • Foreign companies’ registration is 30,000 naira for reinstatement of a company’s name.

In conclusion, if you plan to establish or start a company in Nigeria, MonkeyPesa has the registration information you may need for you and what it takes to have a business fully established in Nigeria.


Here is what your startup needs - MonkeyPesa; From conducting market research to writing and executing your business plan, from determining the company name to registration, from business structure to legalities, sign up and follow MonkeyPesa for all your information.

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