How to Register Business Name in Nigeria

Do you want to register a business name in Nigeria? Do you know the requirements and procedures to follow? Are you having a problem finding a name for your business? Or do you think it doesn’t matter whether you register your business or not?

A lot of businesses in Nigeria are operating without a registered name. And many don’t know how to go about business name registration in Nigeria. According to reports, most businesses register only with their local government council. And that’s not a business registration. It’s for duty payment purposes to LGAs only.

However, registering a business applies to both locals and foreign investors coming into Nigeria to do business.

Definition

How do you name your Business? Starting a business requires that you have a name for the business. But finding a suitable name that is also available for registration maybe challenging. Including getting a fitting domain name for it.

However, the body in charge of business registration in Nigeria is the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). And there are stipulated process and timeline for business registrations.

Don’t be among those who are using a business name that is not yet registered? It’s easy and cost-effective to register your business now?

Business Name Ideas

Some startups use the name of the founder for the business. Most successful businesses get their name from the founder’s name. A good example is the Dangote Group. It’s one of the names of the founder, Aliko Dangote.

Also, using names of a popular word like Google. Or a favourite place like Amazon is an excellent choice for a business name. But the challenge with naming a business now includes finding a matching domain name.

You can also coin names for your business. The reality is that finding the right name that you want is not that easy. But below are a few suggestions you can try.

Business Name Generator:

You can use a business name generator to get a name idea. You can try it out on this site. When you type the keyword of the brand name you want, it will generate several close names to that keyword.

Domain Name Generator:

You can also use a domain name generator to find a domain name related to your business name. Although it’s a perfect way to get a new domain name, it may not get you an exact name match. You can conduct a domain name generation here.

Abandoned Business Name:

Another way to find a business name is to search through the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for delisted company names from the stock market. Some of these delisted names are of failed companies. And they may also have been delisted from Corporate Affairs registered name list. You can find some names here.

How it Works

The Nigeria body in charge of all business registration is the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). The duties of the commission are stipulated in section 7 of the companies and allied matters act; of the laws of the federal republic of Nigeria. And they include the following:

To regulate and supervise the formation, incorporation, management and winding up of companies.
To set up and maintain company registries and offices in all the states of the federation.
Arrange and conduct investigations into the affairs of any company for the interests of the shareholders and the public.
And that includes business name registration, incorporated trustees and a wide range of ancillary services.

The corporation also maintains a website where all these functions can be accessed, processed and services paid for as required.

Action Points to Register a Business

To start the registration process for your business name you need to know the cost of the application and necessary fees. Corporate Affairs updates the prices on their website. You can view the list depending on the type of business you want to register. Click here.

Step One: Find a Business Name

You will need to find a  name that has not been registered by another business. The right name should also be available for you to register. It’s not easy now to find simple names to register. But below are the steps to register a business name in Nigeria.

Step Two: Know the Requirements

You have to know the requirements for business registration. CAC has guidelines for the filing of the classes of the business. See the mandatory requirements for each of them below.

Requirements for Sole Proprietor
  • 2 Proposed Names
  • 2 Passport Photo
  • Home and Business Address
  • Phone Number, Email
  • Valid Means of ID
  • Full Name
    See full timeline for business name registration.
Requirements For Company Registration (LTD)
  • Proposed Business Names (2)
  • At least 2 Directors
  • Business Objectives (3)
  • Home and Business Address
  • Phone Number and Email
  • Valid Means Of ID
  • Full Names of the directors
    See full timeline for company registration.

Note that All The Details Should Be For All The Directors. Each director would provide their personal documents to be attached with the application for registration of the business name.

Requirement For Incorporated Trustee Details (LTD)
  • Proposed Business Names (2)
  • At least 2 Trustee
  • Business Objectives (3)
  • Home and Office address
  • Phone number and Email
  • Valid means of ID
  • Full name
  • Details of the secretary
  • The details of the chairman.
  • Passport photo

All the details should be for all the trustees.

Step Three: Confirm Name Availability

The first step in business registration in Nigeria is to conduct a name availability search with CAC. It’s to validate the business name you want to register. You can not register a business without confirming the availing of such a name.

CAC charges just a little fee to help you run the name through its registered business name database. It’s the only confirmed means of verifying a business name availability in Nigeria. And you can make this request through CAC website.

Step Four: Request for Business Registration

You can request for the name you found available to be registered. You can apply for it yourself on the Corporate Affairs website. Or you can get the services of a consultant or corporate lawyer.

There are also legal fees to be paid for a business registration. You can find the prices listed and regularly updated on the CAC website here.

Conclusion

Business name registration applies to all forms of business types. Every business entity needs to register a name with the Corporate Affairs Commission before doing business in Nigeria.

And without consulting with anyone, you can start the process on the CAC website. First by filling for the business name availability. Before requesting for the successful name search to be registered for your business.

The cost of registering a business in Nigeria is the sole function of the Corporate Affairs Commission.

Recommendations

Starting a business in Nigeria requires a name for both local and foreign investors. You should study the Nigerian business environment and understand the right business ideas that work in Nigeria before investing.

You should read this detailed article on starting a business in Nigeria.

About Chinedu David

Chinedu David is a business consultant, marketer and strategist. My services include: conducting business feasibility study, packaging business plan, new and existing product market insertion, design, build and managing hotels and cooking Gas plants anywhere in Nigeria. You can reach me through any of these contacts: Call/Text/WhatsApp: 08139006120, 07087770518 or email: nedu@myblog.com.ng

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