How to Export and Sell Your Products in Nigeria

How to Export and Sell Your Products in Nigeria

Do you know you can sell your products in Nigeria? Do you know Nigeria is the largest consumer market in Africa with over 198 million people? You can start selling your products in Nigeria using the MyStore structured distribution plan without any cost to you. And considering that Nigeria is a major importer of foreign goods in the world, makes it a suitable market for your product.

MyStore is a Nigeria company that specializes in building distribution markets for local and international products. The company can get your products into the Nigerian market, covering all the 36 states of the country and reaching millions of potential buyers within a limited period of six months.

This kind of distribution partnership has two options. One is the exclusive distribution plan and non-exclusive distribution plan. Both offer you the opportunity to sell your products in Nigeria. However, one has a cost implication, while the other option is absolutely at no cost of marketing to you. The difference between the two is that exclusive is that you don’t pay for the cost of building the marketing Chanel’s. While the non-exclusive requires clients to pay for the cost of building the distribution network.

Introduction

The Nigerian market especially has a complex distribution network that involves distributors, sub-distributors, major retailers and small retailers. Although, the retails can be joined as one in some market. Same with the distributors. Some market may have just sub-distributors or distributors or both, depending on the size and nature of the market.

This kind of market also affect pricing and discounts to the marketers. However, one big advantage of this structured distribution market is the huge cash flow it can generate within a short period of time.

The first six months is the first phase of building this distribution channel for your products in Nigeria. Every product takes a different distribution route to the market. Some products starts doing well from start, while some might take a while to kick in with good sales.

This kind of marketing is good for brand owners or manufacturers who want to penetrate the Nigerian market faster. It takes between six months to less than two years to see huge increase in sales using this method.

Products to Sell in Nigeria

The list of products you can sell to Nigerians are many. There are just few items on the country’s prohibition list. That opens the door for the influx of any product from any part of the world. Nigerian import even from countries. To known to produce anything exportable.

But here are a few categories of items that can be imported into Nigeria.

– Consumer household products
– Electronics and Phones
– Medical supplies and equipments
– Processed foods
– raw materials and finished goods
– building materials and construction equipments
– Farm produce and equipments
– cars, trucks and jets
– shoes and cloths
– accessories and spare parts
– etc…

If you have any concern or your product didn’t fall into any category listed here just contact me for clarification. Use the comment box below.

How it Works

The process of selling your products in Nigeria using this distribution network makes it very easy to penetrate the entire Nigeria market within a short period of time. And depending on the type of product and market size, each state can get up to two distributors or just one. That would give a network of 72 or just 36 major distributors for your product.

The combine import volume can exceed twenty containers monthly depending on the product, market demand and size. It’s the best way to increase import of your product into the Nigerian market. You literally create your market and sales for your product. That way, the demand is there so the distributors have to import your products in Nigeria to satisfy market demand.

There may also be unconventional methods that doesn’t suit your company existing policy. If you have any doubt the best option is to visit Nigeria, meet with Mystore managers and take a tour of some of the major markets and see potentials for your product before you opt in for it.

Exclusive Distribution Plan

1. Mystore becomes your exclusive partner for west Africa
2. Mystore will build exclusive network of distribution partners in every state in nigeria and west Africa
3. Mystore gets exclusive discount on products which it shares with its distribution channel
4. Mystore has exclusive control of the product, brand and sales in west Africa
5. Mystore gets initial product supply of an agreed quantity for market testing and penetration (Proceeds from sales to be paid back to client after deducting discount).
6. Mystore also gets initial branding and promotional materials of an agreed quantity
7. Mystore will provide sales report and market penetration achievements for an agreed period
8. Mystore will achieve an agreed sales quantity within a specified period to justify agreement

Non-Exclusive Distribution Plan

1. Mystore gets initial product supply of an agreed quantity for market testing and penetration (Proceeds from sales to be paid back to client in full).
2. Mystore gets an agreed funding to cover cost of marketing penetration and building sales distribution partners from client for a 2 year renewable period.
3. Mystore also gets initial branding and promotional materials of an agreed quantity
4. Mystore will provide sales report and market penetration achievements for an agreed period
5. Mystore will achieve an agreed sales quantity within a specified period to justify agreement
Mystore becomes your exclusive partner for west Africa
6. Mystore will build exclusive network of distribution partners in every state in Nigeria and west Africa
7. Mystore will also give client access to the list of the distribution channel partners. And client can take over management of the distribution channel from Mystore after 2 years if agreement is not renewed.

Potential Challenges

There may be potential challenges as well that you must consider before you opt-in for this distribution partnership. Your product may require registration with Nigerian regulatory authorities before it can be allowed into the market. And some products may take long before approval due to the nature of Nigerian business environment.

There are also bottleneck with custom clearance. The process of clearing goods at the Nigerian ports is a bit cumbersome. It can take weeks or months to clear goods depending on existing challenges, which may range from government unnecessary oversight functions or officials recklessness or even industrial action.

Also, you can always involve your countries embassy in Nigeria for help and guidance. A meeting can also be arranged between your country’s embassy in Nigeria and Mystore if that would help. Like I said, if you have any doubt just come over to Nigeria and deal with things the right way.

Action Points to Sell Your Products in Nigeria

If you want to take this strategy to sell your products in Nigeria, here is my simple guide on what you should do and how. To build a vast market distribution channel like this can cost more than $100,000. But you can either take then in batches if you opt for the non-exclusive.

That would give you opportunity to see results before investing more money. Although it can also slow down things for you and reduce the time it would normally take to gain substantial market penetration. But if you have doubts, I always suggest you take it slow, one market at a time.

Mystore will help you structure it a way it will also save you cost, because taking markets in bits can increase the cost as well. Since most of the states are neighbours, it makes sense to cover them during the same time. But splitting the states may increase cost of logistics and manpower needed to reach every distributor and retailer in each market.

Step One: Sign MOU with Mystore

The first step would be to sign a memorandum of understanding. It’s required as a foreign company. This would help to set the tone for further discussion, once both parties agreed to do business together and outlines the basis of the contractual relationship.

Also, it can help protect your brand from any negative fall out from the relationship. And it’s important that the client drafts this agreement and let the Nigerian partner assent or make contributions to it. That way the client is well covered even before further talks on the partnership can begin.

Step Two: Start Negotiation for Partnership

Once you have the MOU agreed and signed, then start the negotiation. Involve your country’s embassy in Nigeria if you must. The most important part is to build trust because some products and money may be exchanging hands. So, it’s important to feel safe while doing all that.

In the negotiation focus more on what you would get out of the partnership. Ensure that Mystore provides their market penetration plan. That may involve you paying for market assessment and feasibility report. But it’s worth it to avoid investing in a market that wouldn’t support your product profitably.

Step Three: Visit Nigeria for Potential Market Assessment

I want to encourage you also do this one. Every foreign company coming to Nigeria is advised to visit Nigeria first before investing in the country. The impression about Nigeria makes most investors shy away from the market. But those are mere impression and does reflect on the truth about the country.

But for you to clear your doubts and be bold to invest in a profitable market like Nigeria, I suggest you take this trip. First, consult with your embassy before you embark on the trip. Ask them for suggestion and update them on your movements always. Let your embassy arrange the meetings with Mystore and take your embassy suggestion for hotels or lodging.

Step Four: Sign a Partnership Agreement

But before you come to Nigeria, it should be that you are already prepared to sign the agreement if everything works as you have been told. If you are not sure you want to do the business don’t waste time and money coming to Nigeria, unless you are doing it for your leisure.

The agreement drafts would come from both party. You should have your own agreement and Mystore will also provide their own agreement. Both draft would then be harmonized by both lawyers. It’s the harmonized draft that both parties would sign in Lagos when you arrive. And it should be in the presence of your country’s embassy official.

Step Five: Send the Initial Products and Promotional Materials

Building a market to sell your products in Nigeria would require the initial availability of the product. Mystore would need this initial product to convince distributors and retailers to sign up for it. And it’s not being distributed free.

The distributors would be made to pay for it. But it’s needed to help in the product introduction in the Nigerian market. Also, every distributor would be made to place an order once they are convinced to join the distribution network for your products in Nigeria.

The quantity would be agreed by both party. And it would depend on the market to cover and the anticipated demand volume. However, it’s up to you to decide the quantity that is possible to ship to Nigeria for the initial introduction. After this initial product, distributors would be placing their order paid in full, including and shipping and clearing charges.

Step Six: Start Selling Your Products in Nigeria

This initial products in Nigeria will kickstart your sales as well. It will help Mystore to introduce the product and for distributors to feel the demand surge immediately. It will inspire demand and more sales will start coming.

Also, these markets don’t usually like waiting for products to arrive. They like cash and carry kind of transaction. You will see immediate cash flow from day one of market penetration.

Conclusion

Nigeria is the biggest market in Africa and the largest importer of foreign goods. But due to the market structure and fragmentation, it requires different approach for foreign products to gain market penetration in Nigeria.

To start exporting your products into Nigeria may require more than having an interested importer. Many of them don’t have the knowledge and capacity to penetrate a huge market. That would affect your products in Nigeria. However, you can build this market, create a huge demand for your products in Nigeria and see huge volumes in your export.

The strategy is not new, it’s just the same strategy Mystore use for local market penetration. It’s now being adopted for international brands and manufacturers who are having issues exporting products to Nigeria and profiting from the huge Nigerian market.

About Chinedu David

Chinedu David is a business consultant, trainer, 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. PS: You can reach me through any of these contacts ( For speaking engagements both local and international) : Call/Text/WhatsApp: 08139006120, 07087770518 or email: nedu@myblog.com.ng

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