How to Start a Catering Business in Nigeria: A restaurant is a place where you pay for your food and eat it. A waiter or waitress will often bring your food to your table. Restaurants have become one of the fastest growing businesses in Nigeria, with over 60% of the population eating out of their homes on a regular basis.
The restaurant industry primarily caters to people who have cooking skills and want to pursue a career in it. So, if you are one of those people and live in Nigeria, consider yourself extremely lucky. The information on how to start a catering business is mentioned below.
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How to Start a Local Catering Business in Nigeria
1. Examine the restaurant market: The first step in starting a restaurant business is to research the local restaurant industry. When it comes to starting a restaurant, this is crucial. It is common for market research for the restaurant industry to take several months.
This will help you avoid costly mistakes. Although the business may seem simple and straightforward to start, there are rules to follow if you want to be successful. And you learn these guidelines by researching the market for this type of business.
2. Register your business: Registering your restaurant is the next step. You should register your restaurant name to help you build your brand and differentiate yourself from the competition.
Business name registration is handled by the Nigerian Corporate Affairs Commission and can be done online. Make the mistake of not registering your restaurant before opening it. Someone else can register it and claim the brand name you worked so hard to create.
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3. Take a comprehensive approach: The business plan you write will guide the growth of your restaurant. Regardless of how much effort you have put into your idea or how many reliable people have assured you of the success of your business, you need to produce a business plan. Your strategy will serve as a roadmap for your business as it grows.
4. Determine who your target customers are: You need customers who will eat in your restaurant. What are their occupations, ages and average incomes? When starting a catering business, you need to answer these questions.
If you know your target customers and niche market well, your restaurant business will thrive. You can seek them out or create and distribute flyers to attract them.
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5. Look for a suitable place: Another step is to choose a suitable site for your restaurant. One of the best locations for a catering business is in a highly populated and easily accessible part of town.
Of course, you should keep in mind that it is best to locate your restaurant near colleges, car parks, and shopping complexes. These are regions where you can expect a lot of different types of people to visit your business.
6. Find out what the tax rate is in your area for your restaurant: Again, you need to determine the restaurant tax rate in your area and determine if you can afford it. In Nigeria, all businesses must pay a variety of taxes, including corporate income tax, school tax, and value added tax. However, in several Nigerian states, restaurants have been subjected to additional levies.
The Lagos State government, for example, levies a 5% sales/consumption tax on services rendered at restaurants within the state. Before you start a fire, you should consult an attorney who knows the tax implications of your business and can assure you that you are not breaking any laws.
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7. Obtain the required Restaurant Sales Permit and License: In order to start a restaurant in Nigeria, you will need to obtain a number of licenses and permissions. In some circumstances you will need to apply for licenses from a local government office, while in others you will need to obtain them from a state government agency.
It is essential to ensure that you have the necessary licenses and permits before starting your catering business in Nigeria. Since the types of licenses and authorizations differ by region, it is essential that you obtain legal assistance from the beginning of the development of your restaurant.
Also, if it is standing and you still want to offer alcoholic beverages, you will need a specific license. If your business operates late at night or perhaps after midnight, you will need to obtain special permission. Getting the right legal help is therefore crucial to getting your restaurant off to a good start in terms of licensing and permits.
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8. Raise funds for your startup: After you’ve done your research and made your decision, you should have a good estimate of the cost of opening a restaurant. Capital is one of the most important criteria for starting a restaurant. As a result, you will need to generate funds for your business.
Your capital letter indicates the size of your business: small, medium or large. Because growth is a constant and steady process, it’s good to start small and grow later as you gain expertise and financial rewards.
9. Create a menu plan: The menu of any restaurant is the most crucial point of contact. Daily specials and a fixed price menu should be available at your establishment. The prices for each meal should be included in your menu list. You can build your menu price list by looking at what other restaurants in your area charge for a plate of food they offer.
As a newcomer to the industry, the price of a new offer plate may be slightly cheaper than what others charge for the identical dinner plate in order to attract new customers. To build credibility and give your restaurant an edge over others, as a chef and a culinary enthusiast, you need to have your own distinctive recipes and a flexible menu at a fair price.
Ask yourself why consumers should continue to eat at your restaurant. If you can answer this question honestly, you are well on your way to creating a successful restaurant. Make plans to receive specialty foods and condiments at regular, inexpensive prices by identifying and connecting with wholesale suppliers. This eases the burden of locating and purchasing seasonal, limited or poorly available food items in the market.
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10. Invest in necessary restaurant equipment: Kitchen utensils, tables, hand and plate washing supplies, desks and chairs, internet cables, power inverter, cooling system, fans, power stations, TV, dstv/local antenna, audio music player and other entertainment equipment are all necessary in any restaurant.
11. Decorate your restaurant: You also need to furnish the restaurant. There are different possibilities, but it all depends on your personal preferences. To add to the stunning atmosphere of your restaurant, Full-stop has used the first flowers in a sturdy and contemporary hand-carved brass ceiling.
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12. Hire competent cooks and servers: Employee Knowledge Servers and employees who are passionate about and appreciate the importance of high customer satisfaction in the restaurant industry will largely decide your ability to retain and attract new customers. Your chefs’ watchwords should be meticulous attention to detail and the use of the freshest seasonal foods and high-quality produce.
13. Build a leadership team and structure it: Build a leadership team and organize it. You ask managers to run the business for you so that you can spend your time on other activities. Organize waiters and waitresses to serve your guests, as well as a financial accountant to provide correct financial information.
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14. Standardize health and safety procedures: Because restaurants are centered around people consuming food, the restaurant industry is extremely sensitive. We must arrange for the restaurant to be monitored and inspected regularly by the local or state government to verify that you comply with all applicable health and safety regulations.
Inspections can cover not only raw and peppery foods, but also refrigeration systems, kitchen equipment and garbage cans.
15. Promote your business: In this job, it is one of your main priorities. Indeed, it doesn’t matter how great a chef you are or how fantastic your offerings are if no one knows about your restaurant. You need to market your restaurant regardless of the type. For exceptional quick service restaurants, use social media.
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In conclusion, the processes to start a catering business in Nigeria are as follows. Consider how lucrative it is and how much it will cost to get started. You can study business at the entry level and progress to become a full-scale business. You will undoubtedly succeed if you follow the steps of starting a business.
Edeh Samuel Chukwuemeka ACMC, is a law student and certified mediator/conciliator in Nigeria. He is also a developer with knowledge in HTML, CSS, JS, PHP and React Native. Samuel is determined to change the legal profession by creating web and mobile applications that will make legal research much easier.