We will give you a guide on how to Open a company in Nigeria
Registering a company is not a hard job as many will believe if you have the know-how.
Registration of all companies is handled by the corporate Affairs commission (CAC) established by the companies and allied matters act 1990 (CAMA) just like NAFDAC is responsible for drugs and EFCC is responsible for financial crimes, the CAC is responsible for registration of all companies.
An organisation empowered by law to handle all issues associated with company registration, business names, and incorporated trustees in Nigeria.
Before you start to even register a company, you have to have an idea of what your company will be called. E.g Dangote Nig Ltd or Coca-Cola Nigeria ltd are just example of names of registered companies to do business in Nigeria.
If you don’t have a name, then you can’t have a company, but because there are over millions and millions of registered companies in Nigeria today, it is extremely difficult to find a name that is not already in existence that is why you must choose 3 names that are unique and the CAC will choose one out of the 3.
Some people have encountered problems and difficulties going through this process because they lack adequate knowledge on the subject be it sole proprietorship or partnership as the case may be.
- Incorporation of companies [public or private companies limited by shares, unlimited companies, company limited by guarantee].
- Registration of business names.
- Registration of incorporated trustees.
- Issuance of certified true copies and extracts of filed documents.
- Registration of share capital increases, mortgages, debentures and charges etc.
- Processing the statutory filings of annual returns, changes in memorandum and articles of association, addresses etc.
- Conducting investigations into the affairs of any company, business names or incorporated trustees.
- Supervising the management and winding-up of companies.
- Enforcing compliance with the CAMA by corporate bodies.
- The commission also offers same day incorporation services under which companies are registered within a day.
- Accreditation of lawyers, chartered accountants, and chartered secretaries who are the direct users of the services of the commission.
How to Register a Limited Liability Company in Nigeria [this is the most common type registered by Entrepreneurs]
- It is advisable that you register your limited liability company through a lawyer. This will save you the legal headaches and help you avoid costly mistakes. So please get a legal adviser.
- The minimum number of shares that can be registered for a limited liability company is one million shares.
- The first step to registering a company is to choose three unique names for your company. An example is XYX Global Ltd or XYZ Nigeria Ltd. Then a name search will be conducted by the CAC and if one of your chosen names is found suitable and unregistered, it will be assigned to you.
- If your name is chosen, you will have up to 60 days to complete the whole registration by filling and filing the forms.
- After the name search, you need to choose your directors. That is after dividing the share ratio among the directors.
- A minimum of two people is required to start a company. The maximum is 50. These people are referred to as directors.
- A minor (someone below the age of 18) can only be a director in a company provided that there are two other adults listed as directors.
- The full names, ages, year of birth and residential addresses of all the directors must be supplied for filling and filing the forms to the CAC.
- A foreigner can also be a director provided that one or more directors reside in Nigeria. But to avoid unnecessary query, it’s advisable that all directors adopt Nigeria addresses.
- You must supply the proposed address of your company’s head office.
- All directors must sign the filled forms and memorandum of association before filing for stamping and verification.
- After stamping and verification has been done by the CAC, you will be issued a certificate of incorporation.
In conclusion, it is advisable you demand a CTC from your lawyer. Now what is a CTC? A CTC (Certified True Copy) is a copy of the memorandum of association that has been verified and stamped as an exact true copy of the M.O.A in CAC’s possession and file.
And most importantly, you must bear in mind that the price for registering a limited liability company is not static. This is due to the ever changing policy of the CAC.
You must note, that the price you pay to incorporate a business depends on the calibre of the law firm you engage or how much your lawyer charges you for the services rendered.
But do not let money weigh you down when you are thinking about how to start a company in Nigeria as so many people have started in little ways and today they are counting in millions.