HOW TO START A CHARCOAL EXPORTATION BUSINESS IN NIGERIA
Charcoal might be one of the oldest forms of cooking in the country but it’s still pretty much used for several other things. In the past, charcoal was one of the options available for humans to go about basic activities like cooking. They served individuals for many years before other alternatives came in and slowly, the option of using charcoal for cooking became less popular as the need for cleaner sources was advocated for. Charcoal, however, is not only used for cooking as it is also used for a number of other things, one of which is related to the health sector. The charcoal industry is still quite profitable for entrepreneurs who can explore the prospects there.
In Nigeria today, when it comes to business involving other countries, importation is usually the main talking point with many people even getting involved in the business in an even small form. It involves getting things from other countries and then selling in the country for an higher price that will bring in profits. But in the same vein, things can also be sold out to other countries in need of them for a good price. It’s also a really nice and lucrative business and even though importation is popular and widely practiced, this other aspect of buying and selling between countries is also another nice option for individuals looking to start a business and make good amounts form it. The term for the business is exportation and it is also equally as productive as the importation business.
Exportation, simply put, is the sale of particular products to other countries who are in need of them. There are different products that can be used or put in for the exportation business. All that you need to consider is getting a country or a buyer in the other country that needs the product. Charcoal exportation involves the distribution or sale of charcoal from this country to other countries. Charcoal, even though not really used for cooking, is used for several other things in different countries worldwide and the demand for it is quite high there making it a reasonable option to send the product out as a good business option and also to make good amount of income.
There are two ways in which the business can be operated. One is as a direct exporter and the other is as an indirect exporter. The direct charcoal exportation involves selling the products to other countries and dealing directly with the person who wants to buy it. In this case, you’re in direct communication with whoever is interested in buying it in the other country. But as an indirect exporter, you’ll be in talks with someone who will act as a middle man to connect you and the buyer. In this case, you don’t necessarily have to be in contact with the person buying it and your main business is mainly with the middle man. Both have the ways in which they work but they’re equally profitable and fit the main purpose of selling your products to another country where they are needed.
The demand for the product is quite high in some countries and this makes it a good option to export. Some of the major countries where Charcoal is bought are United Kingdom, Greece, China and Spain. And they are used for several reason, some of which include production of gun powder, liquid purification, artistic work, industrial fuel and for use in the medical industry. With a good demand and the above reasons and more for use, it makes the business a really good option and one that individuals can try out. The demand means you’ll be able to get customers willing to buy the product which then translates to a good amount of income.
Starting the business is not something really hard to do though it might really involve quite a lot of things since you’re not just selling to people in the country but people outside the country which takes the business to a different level. Capital will be on the high side especially since you’ll be exporting a large quantity of the product plus the shipping fees that will also come with that. Availability of capital makes the business a bit easy as you’re able to do certain things related to the business easily. You don’t necessarily need any form of special skills to be able to start the business though a training might prove helpful especially for someone with no idea at all in the industry. Educational qualifications might not be neccesary but they are certainly a plus for the business.
In the next sub heads, I’ll be discussing the steps involved in starting a charcoal export business in Nigeria and some of the important things that might prove useful during the course of running the business that will ensure that you’re running the business rightly and you’re also being successful at the business.
No matter what you’ve heard someone saying about a business and how well success is assured or how lucrative it would turn out, always try to do your own research. The research will not cost anything except your time and that time will prove to be well spent when the business starts and the successes starts coming in. It is important to do a thorough investigation about the business since you’re going to be investing your money into it and you’ve never been involved in the business. Some hours of research won’t hurt.
The research is always meant to give you an idea of what to expect and the challenges ahead to be faced. It teaches future entrepreneur how the business works and what success means. It shows the risks involved and the ways to tackle them. It also gives ideas on how to sustain the business and work towards more success. Imagine missing out on any of the mentioned points, it’s more like being less equipped about something especially something you plan to spend money on.
There are experts in the business, of course, so also look to advise from these individuals as they are most likely the best bet for reliable information on the business. Take note of even the smallest things during the research period and pay close attention to how to stay and survive in the business. The research is as important as anything in the business.
2. WRITE A BUSINESS PLAN
A business plan needs no introduction. It is equally as important as some of the other processes or things involved in the business. After a comprehensive and thorough research has been conducted, entrepreneurs must now put all their ideas into paper after, of course, deciding to start the business. The business plan will cover things like the way you plan to operate, the cost of several things, how you plan to market your business, future projections and also contingency plans.
The business plan serves a number of purposes. In cases where individuals might need to get investors or even get a loan, it will prove useful as it will contain all that needs to be known concerning the business. It is also going to serve as a point of reference for the proposed business.
3. CAPITAL AND LOCATION
Capital is always very important and just like every other business, it helps in kick starting some of the plans for the business. According to africabusinessclassroom, local price of charcoal is about #400,000 for 23 metric tons at the average which can fill a 40 ft. shipping container. This kind of size can then be sold for about 800,000 or more after you must’ve also calculated your shipping cost. You’ll need to get a place where you can also store the charcoal before they can be distributed or shipped to customers. The location will also take the cost of that. Documentation and registration is next and you’ll need to get things like license to operate in both the country you’re selling from and also the one where they will be buying from you. Register the business and get all necessary certificates and licenses.
4. MARKETING AND SALE
At this point, the business is ready to be started. You can create a website for the business and you can also get to interact with people from other countries that might be interested through social media. Create social media accounts and advertise through the platforms.