How To Get Investors For Your Business In Nigeria: Securing investment is a very necessary step for entrepreneurs in Nigeria looking to grow their businesses or start-ups.
Whether you’re a startup founder or an established business owner, getting the right investors can provide the necessary capital, expertise, and networks to move your business to new levels.
Attracting investors in Nigeria can be a Herculean task, but with the right strategy and approach, you can magnet the capital you need to take your business to the next level.
In this article, we will explore amazingly effective hacks to help you swim the murky waters of business funding in Nigeria and win over prospective investors.
From crafting an enthralling business plan to leveraging local networks and embracing innovative funding platforms, we will examine proven strategies that can significantly increase your chances of attracting investors who share your vision and are eager to contribute to Nigeria’s dynamic business landscape.
You definitely will agree that you cannot attract what you do not know so I bet you will love the answer to the question below!
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Who Is An Investor: Aptly put, an investor is that one person you long for when you have gotten to the end of your “financial self” and your business still needs funding. There are various kinds of investors.
Merriam-Webster defines an investor as “one who commits (money) in order to earn a financial return” “a person who makes investments in order to make a profit” or “a person who puts money into something (such as a business) in order to earn more money.”
However, you will appreciate these three better as they directly concern your quest for investors!
What Are The 3 Types Of Investors?
1. Venture Capitalists: These are investors who provide capital/finance for startups and early-stage companies with high growth potential.
Beyond funding, they also provide industry connections and mentorship. They often seek equity investment in businesses with high growth probabilities.
2. Private Equity Investors: The big boys! This class of investors invests in established companies with the aim of acquiring some level of ownership.
They provide funding for business expansion, restructuring, or buyouts.
3. Angel Investors: These ones are God-sent creatures! This class of Investors are high net-worth individuals and are similar to venture capitalists in that they provide funding to start-ups and businesses in their early stages of development.
This type of investor is hard to come by. One of the reasons for this is because of the previous bad experience with investing in ideation start-ups.
Some Start-up founders after receiving funding from investment end up using it for a luxurious lifestyle.
As a result Investors now prioritize investing in growing start-ups in order to safeguard their investment.
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However, they differ from venture capitalists in a number of respects.
An angel investor usually serves as the first investor who provides the seed capital to get the business off the ground as opposed to venture capitalists who invest in businesses at later stages of development.
An angel investor almost always invests personal funds against venture capitalists who manage funds raised from partners.
Venture capitalists usually employ stricter investment criteria such as perfect scalable business models, high growth potentials, and very significant investment returns with favorable exit strategies such as IPOs and Acquisitions.
On the flip side, an angel investor is an angel through and through.
An angel investor may invest for personal reasons or to make a social impact. Their investment criteria are oftentimes more flexible.
If you want to know how to pitch to an angel Investor, I recommend you watch the video below.
Now you know who an investor is. How can you get investors for your business in Nigeria?
10 Proven Ways On How To Get Investors For Your Business In Nigeria 2024
1. Build A Compelling Business Plan:
Writing a good business plan undisputedly plays a major role in attracting investors to your business.
A well-crafted plan not only conveys your vision and goals but also demonstrates the viability and potential profitability of your business.
To glue your prospective investor to your business plan, it should contain certain key elements.
Executive Summary which provides a succinct overview of your business concept, highlighting its unique selling proposition, market potential, and competitive advantage.
It should be short and engaging enough to grab the attention of prospective investors and encourage them to read on.
Company description that clearly articulates your business’s core values, purpose, etc.
Market analysis should contain the findings from thorough research on your target market, industry trends, and competitors.
Product or Service Offering describes your product or service in detail, highlighting its features, benefits, and any novelty or technological innovations.
- Marketing and Sales Strategy
- Management Team
- Financial Projections
Funding Requirements which should clearly state the amount of funding you are seeking and how you intend to use it.
Risk Assessment which will identify and address potential risks and challenges that your business may face.
Without an iota of doubt, a compelling business plan can significantly increase your chances of attracting investors and securing the funding you need to turn your vision into a successful reality so remember to tailor your business plan to the specific needs and preferences of your target investors.
Keep the plan concise, well-organized, and visually appealing.
2. Broaden Your Network:
No offense, but the fact that you are reading this could imply that you don’t have a prospective investor in your network at the moment.
So what are you waiting for? Take steps to broaden your network. The following steps will definitely go a long way in widening your network to include potential investors.
Join startup networks and communities. Incubator and Accelerator communities provide opportunities to connect with angel investors who are actively seeking investment opportunities.
Both incubator and accelerator communities play a crucial role in supporting startup ventures with funding and expert guidance.
Notable incubator and accelerator communities in Nigeria include Co-Creation Hub(CCHub), LeadPath Nigeria, etc.
Attend start-up events. Start-up events such as the Africa Start-Up Festival (ASF), startup conferences, and pitch competitions provide you with an opportunity to meet with prospective investors.
Some of these events happen around you steadily! Keep track of the events by monitoring the online space.
Some events include The Lagos Angel Network (LAN), Dealday, Nigerian Economic Summit, etc.
Utilize online platforms. Take advantage of Nigerian-based online platforms that connect you with investors.
Platforms like Ventures Platform and Ingressive Capital allow you to showcase your startup, connect you with interested investors, and potentially secure the funds you need.
Unarguably, A broad network is one of the fastest ways to get an investor for your business in Nigeria.
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3. Leverage Government Initiatives:
Taking advantage of some government initiatives is the third way to get investors for your business in Nigeria.
Exploit government Initiatives designed to further entrepreneurship and attract investors.
Programs like the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Program (TEEP), and Bank Of Industry (BOI) grants Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) can provide funding opportunities and support your business.
Sometimes these opportunities come up as a one-off project by a particular government. In order to harness these sorts of opportunities, you need to be abreast with government trends in this regard.
4. Create An Incredibly Persuasive Elevator Pitch:
Are you looking to win an angel investor? Then you need a seriously compelling elevator pitch as an ally!
An elevator pitch is a brief and compelling summary of an idea, product, service, or business that can be delivered within the duration of an elevator ride, typically lasting 30 seconds to 2 minutes.
A sound elevator pitch should contain a catchy introduction, problem statement and solution, value proposition, market strategy, competitive advantage, and most importantly a call to action.
You should use an elevator pitch to captivate the attention of your prospective investor and secure a later meeting with such an angel.
5. Develop A Minimum Viable Product (MVP):
A minimum viable product (MVP) is a version of a product that has the minimum set of features required to meet the needs of early customers and gather feedback for further development.
A Scenario of Developing A Minimum Viable Product: If you intend to produce a new kind of snack, developing an MVP may involve producing some amounts of the said snack and marketing it whilst receiving feedback on the samples.
An MVP serves as a tangible proof of concept, reduces risk, facilitates user feedback, and validates your business model.
These factors collectively enhance your ability to attract investors who are interested in funding and supporting your venture.
6. Showcase Sound Market Traction:
Closely related to developing a Minimum Viable Product is showcasing good market traction.
Market traction refers to the level of acceptance a product or service has gained in the market.
It involves the progress a product is making in procuring and retaining customers, generating revenue, and gaining market popularity.
Having good market traction is very necessary for a business especially startups because it shows that there is demand for the product or service.
Work hard to acquire customers, enter into strategic partnerships, and strive to generate revenue amongst market penetrating schemes.
These efforts show a potential investor that there is good demand and a hungry market for your business. Now tell me an investor who wouldn’t love this!
7. Leave The Door Attractively Open!:
Yes, you heard right! Most venture capitalists are often hesitant to invest in businesses without clear exit strategies.
Venture capitalists by nature adopt strict investment criteria and always spell out clear japa strategies primarily because they invested with the expectation of a significant return on their investment.
Venture capitalist firms often invest with the primary aim of getting your business big enough so it is bought by a larger corporation or goes public.
Some juicy exit strategies are Initial Public Offers (IPOs), Management Buy-Outs, Acquisitions, Secondary sales, etc.
You should bear this in mind when seeking venture capitalists in the event your business dreams don’t align with their goals.
8. Build A Strong Team:
Investors invest in persons just as they invest in business. This is particularly true of Angel investors.
Venture capitalists often work with professionals who get involved in the businesses they have invested in.
To this effect, they may not be entirely meticulous about the team that runs the business.
However, Angel investors are not this thorough in their involvement. This doesn’t mean Angel investors don’t have immersive involvement.
As a matter of fact, having an angel investor on board means you will have to let go of some level of control.
However, their involvement may not be as thorough as venture capitalists. The implication is they place heavy emphasis on teams.
Build teams with professionals and individuals who complement each other and have good track records.
This will serve as a motivation for a potential angel investor.
Crowdfunding is a relatively new way of attracting investors.
Crowdfunding platforms allow private individuals to contribute certain amounts of money to support your business.
Crowdfunding platforms are usually online platforms run by individuals or companies with the aim of attracting new investors.
You may decide to go for any type of crowdfunding:
3 Main Types OF Crowdfunding In Nigeria
1. Reward-based Crowdfunding: This is a win-win type of crowdfunding where investors are allowed to contribute relatively small amounts of money to invest in a business that does not require heavy capital in exchange for some kind of reward from the Startup.
So if you need funds to produce car batteries and opt for this system of crowdfunding, investors will invest with the hope of getting a reward (such as the said batteries).
This is fair because you can obviously give the batteries at the cost price without breaking a sweat and the investors would be getting a great deal! You can check out Kickstarter Nigeria, Quickraiz!
2. Peer-to-Peer crowdfunding: Here the peer-to-peer facility matches investors with startups who need funds.
The investor invests in the startup after going through the credit score. They receive their cash monthly with interest.
As a result, they do not own any of the businesses they contribute to.
You can compare it to getting a bank loan and an investor saving up his money in a bank with hopes of good interest.
The primary distinction is that you will be paying lesser amounts of interest as opposed to the cutthroat interest rates banks charge.
The investor on the other hand would be getting higher interest rates than the typical interest rates he would have gotten on a savings account.
Naija-Fund, Fundanenterprise.org, and Donate-ng are good examples of peer-to-peer crowdfunding platforms in Nigeria.
3. Equity Crowdfunding: This is the go-to crowdfunding system if you need large capital.
The investor invests large amounts of money in return for some level of ownership in the business.
The original investment is not typically paid back, however, they will receive a share of the profits if the business goes well.
The downside is if the business doesn’t, then they would be up for some serious heartbreak!
Although equity crowdfunding is not very common in Nigeria yet, there are notable equity crowdfunding platforms you may choose from such as Chaka, and Farmcrowdy.
You should note that although the crowdfunding system has been recognized by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), there are yet no official regulations guiding this system of investment.
However, the good news is that the SEC is currently working towards creating regulatory measures in this regard!
You can learn how to crowd-fund like a pro by watching the video below
10. Engage Family And Friends Wisely!
Due to the dicey nature of getting into business with a relative or a friend, it is often advised to never mix business with pleasure or family!
Agreeably, events may go awry very quickly and without warning when you do business with a family member or a friend.
However, you can get good funding for your business if you engage them wisely.
Engaging Family and Friends is also one of the important ways to get investors for your business in Nigeria.
The benefit here is that you don’t need to go through the rigorous processes and requirements involved in getting funds from “outsiders“.
Just like any “outsider” your family will receive returns on their investment if the business goes well.
It is necessary to keep this in mind whilst working hard on your business.
In addition to this, pitch your business to them as persuasively as you would to any “outsider“.
You are trying to make them part ways with their money. Show them it is worth it!
Sourcing investors can be difficult, but finding the right one is even more difficult! Do you need a venture capitalist? An angel investor? A crowdfunding investor? Or do you even need an investor at all? These are very important questions to decide.
These questions are very important, And they require sincere answers.
The truth is that some start-up founders don’t really need investors in the early stage of business.
A lot of investors out there, give founders rigid conditions for giving them funds and that is definitely not a good one for a start-up.
There are practical cases where this rigid condition limits the expansion of a particular start-up in the long run.
Other than investors, your customers are your greatest source of funds if you can utilize them well.
However, if you know that you truly need these investors in your start-up, it is advisable you have something tangible to offer so that you can negotiate with them and not just accept any offer thrown to you from them.
Beyond the funding, look out for how the potential investor can influence your business through their expertise and network.
You should also ascertain the level of involvement you can tolerate before seeking an investor.
Understand these needs and carefully tailor your search for an investor so you don’t shed tears in the future and that future usually comes too fast!