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Nigeria - Register for a Business Certificate

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  • The actual process to register a business name is usually fairly simple. In most cases a form is provided for you to complete and provide the needed information to the proper government office

Verify the availability of your proposed business name by checking with the Commercial Registry. To do this, you must go to the office of the Commercial Registry in Nigeria and in a few days or weeks the name gets approved.

Then you can
  • Obtain a certificate from an authorized bank Depending on the bank,
  • Submit documents to the Department of Companies and obtain invoice
  • Notarize companys contract
  • Obtain the notification of incorporation
  • Register for taxes
  • Register employees with the National Social security Insurance

For a Larger-sized domestic business.

All you have to do is get to the Corporate affairs in Lagos at the aforementioned address. . .pick a form at the Ground floor UBA for five hundred. go back to 4th floor, get a form, fill the form and submit.

  • you ll be required to come back after two weeks and its better to have a contact there, so you can save your time and make more calls to know when your name search is available and please note that you will be required to pay or collect a name search form as many times as possible i.e if the name you search for is taken,You ll have to get a new form,look for a name which is unique just in the same way you create your on gmail or I.D on yahoo!

When your name search is out and your name is approved, you ll be required to bring some documents depending on what your type of business is, for example if you intend to run a consultancy office, you ll need to demonstrate that you have gone thru an acadamic Institution "territiary", they ll need a copy of this and a copy of that to complete your application for registration:that takes another two weeks or so and your share capital really matters!

Registration is required because: 1. There are local, state and federal regulations requiring one to register and one may be subject to fines and other penalties if one doesnt comply. 2. The internal revenue service (IRS), for example, requires that you identify your business and pay taxes on income earned. 3. You will need a registered business if you intend to obtain bank loans or enter into contract, especially with the government at any level.


Sole proprietorship registration

This is easy and inexpensive to registration and registration usually takes the following easy steps. 1. Choose a name for your business 2. Fill out a Doing Business As (DBA) form with the name of the business and your name, so the commission (government) will know the name of the individual who owns the business. 3. An official of CAC may then conduct a name search to make sure the name you have chosen does not exist already. 4. After your business name has been established, you will fill out a registration form and pay the required fees. 5. You may be asked to take the form to a notary, have it notarized and bring it back to the registration office.

A notary is a person who has been give the authority by the state to witness the signing of documents, you will have to show identification, such as drivers license, international passport or national ID card.

Registering a partnership

This involves steps similar to those of registering a sole proprietorship plus:

Since a partnership is an agreement between the partners, if the partnership involves intellectual property developed by the individual partners (e.g., a trademark or a book), each partner will need to assign (transfer ownership of) the right to the partnership. Registering a limited liability company The Companies and Allied Matters Act, 1990 as amended requires that companies formed under the act be registered with the registered with the Registrars of companies in Abuja and obtain a certificate of incorporation The business owners are expected to complete two distinct forms:

A. Memorandum of Association. This detail

i. The name of the company containing the word limited, E.g. Hyattractions engineering Nig Limited. ii. Registered office of the company in Nigeria iii.The object clause which set out the purpose for which the business is being incorporated iv. Statement as to whether the company is public or private v. That the liability of the members is to be limited. vi. The amount of share capital and the division thereof into share of a fixed amount to members. The nominal capital is the face value of the total number of shares which the company is authorized to issue- e.g. 5,000 divided into 10,000 shares of 50k each.

B. Articles of Association these are rules which guide the internal running of there business. Every company is faced with making its rules, the rules drawn up by the Act will apply where they are not covered in the Articles, e.g., company meetings, the rights of stockholders, the appointment, retirement, and removal, of board members, the powers of directors, and the declaration of dividends, structure. Other requirements include a written consent of the directors to act as such, and a written undertaking by each member to take and pay for his/her qualification share and condition procedure for winding up.

PERMIT, LICENSES, AND CERTIFICATE Once registered, a business will need to research local regulations that may apply to it at the chamber of commerce or other relevant government departments A Permit is an official document that gives you the right to carry on a specific activity, such as selling a product in a place.

A License is an official document that gives you the right to engage in an activity for as long as the document is valid. For instance, a drivers license or a doctors license gives you the right to operate a motor vehicle or practice medicine for a specific period of time. The license expires after the valid period and may be withdrawn for reasons such as bad driving or unethical conduct

A notary draft the statutes and certifies the paid-in capital of a minimum capital of N 100,000. Those entrepreneurs registering with a higher capital, a different percentage will apply depending on the amount. A share capital between N 3 million and N 9 million, the fees are 3% of the share capital.

Publication of the notice of incorporation in three newspapers by the one-stop shop. After publication, entrepreneurs need to pick up the sample of the newspapers since those might be required to open a bank account.

  • Obtain a company seal

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Required Documents[edit]

  • Your identity document like driver's license, passport, etc
  • Proof of physical address and postal address, with contact numbers.
  • Proof of employment

Office Locations & Contacts[edit]


Old Secretariat Area I, Block G & H

P.M.B. 88, Garki, Abuja

Tel: 09-2341689; 2341491


(Opposite Central Bank)

P.M.B. 14, Garki, Abuja

Tel: 09-2340946; 2340324; 2343783; 2343784

2343786; Fax: 09-2340512


Ministry of Finance Complex

Block B,

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All individual above 18 years of age wishing to open up a business in Nigeria are Eligible. For a business to be eligible for a business certificate it should either be small ,medium or large scale employing not less than 50 people and a start-up capital of 10 times the economy's per-capita gross national income


Incorporation fees are
  • NGN 10,000 for company whose nominal share capital does not exceed NGN 1,000,000, and NGN 10,000 for every NGN 1,000,000 thereafter. Incorporation fees for a company whose share capital exceeds N1,000,000.00 is N10,000.00 for the first NGN 1,000,000.00 and N10,000.00 for every additional NGN 1,000,000.00 or any part thereof.
  • NGN 500 incorporation forms.
  • NGN 500 for each additional copy of Memorandum and Articles of Association stamped.
  • NGN 3,000 for certified true copy of memorandum and articles of association.
  • NGN 2,000 for certified true copy of particulars of directors.
  • NGN 2,000 for certified true copy of particulars of shareholders. Moreover, NGN 60,000 is the approximate cost of company incorporation conducted by professionals (lawyers, chartered accountants and chartered secretaries) accredited by CAC.

The payment can be done at the bank desk at CAC.


The document is valid for period of 10 years for foreigners then you renew while for the citizen of Nigeria it is for along time as along as the company remain in Existence.

Documents to Use[edit]

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Sample Documents[edit]

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Processing Time[edit]

To process a business certificate in Nigeria it takes less than 14 days.

Related Videos[edit]

Videos explaining the procedure or to fill the applications. 
Attach videos using the following tag <&video type="website">video ID|width|height<&/video&> from external websites.
Please remove the "&" inside the tags during implementation.
Website = allocine, blip, dailymotion, facebook, gametrailers, googlevideo, html5, metacafe, myspace, revver, 
sevenload, viddler, vimeo, youku, youtube
width = 560, height = 340, Video ID = Can be obtained from the URL of webpage where the video is displayed.
e.g In the following url "" Video ID is "Y0US7oR_t3M". 

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  • Entrepreneurs must reserve a company name at the Costumes Revenue Authority a one-stop shop in Nigeria
  • You should have a certificate from an Authorized Bank branch.
  • The founder must submits the company documents
  • You should pay Fees for company establishment.
  • You must register for taxes

Required Information[edit]

  • You need a certificate from an authorized bank.
  • You need information on documents to the Department of Companies and how to obtain invoice
  • Notarize companys contract information
  • Obtain the notification of incorporation
  • Registration for taxes
  • Registration of employees with the National Social security Insurance

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Need for the Document[edit]

How to register a business name is a question faced by many entrepreneurs wishing to incorporate and register a new firm in Nigeria. The bureaucratic and legal hurdles faced by business Starters in Nigeria will be supported by the this information that examines the procedures, time and cost involved in launching a commercial or industrial firm with up to 50 employees and start-up capital of 10 times the economy's per-capita gross national income.

Information which might help[edit]

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Other uses of the Document/Certificate[edit]

Please explain what are other uses of obtaining this document/certificate.
e.g. Birth Certificate can be used as proof of identity.

External Links[edit]

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