Business Opportunity in the Nigerian Power Sector: A Case Study of How to Identify a Great Business Opportunity
In this article I want to share with you an Interview I had a couple of days ago with a young Nigerian businessman whose ability to spot a great business opportunity in the Nigerian power sector has brought him not only wealth but fame.
Firstly, let me tell you a bit about Nigeria just in case you donâ€™t know what Nigeria is or who Nigerians are. Nigeria is a country in Africa with a population of about 150 million people, which makes it the most populous country in Africa.
Nigeria is very rich in petroleum, ranking as the fifth largest exporter of crude oil in the world. Apart from petroleum, Nigeria is also well endowed with mineral and human resources. Nigerians are well known to be achievers in business and other endeavours that they are into. By all standard Nigeria is a rich country.
However, Nigeria have not had it good with her leaders since her independence in 1960, and this is evident in the poor state of the nationâ€™s infrastructure, which include power or electricity.
Talking about Nigeriaâ€™s poor infrastructure, this is where the business opportunity lies. In Nigeria, electricity supply is epileptic. Most industries therefore run on power generators most of the time, causing them to spend a lot of money on fuelling and maintaining their generators. This cost is quite a burden on businesses in Nigeria and has been attributed to have caused a number of businesses, especially small scale businesses to fold up.
While the problem persists and biting hard on businesses, everyone seems to be waiting for the government to solve the problem, but no solution can be seen coming from the government, at least not in the immediate future.
But Paul Oluwabanjo, the young Nigerian businessman and CEO of Webpower International, who I interviewed, saw a great business opportunity here. He realized that great business opportunities come about when people have problem. And if you can help them to solve the problem then you are in good business and stand to make good money and be wealthy. Considering the millions of people in Nigeria who will be glad to have electricity 24hrs of the day non stop, he knew he would have been in great business if he could provide just that.
Then he birthed a business idea three years ago. The idea was to research solar power generation, find out how it works and see if it would be convenient, as well as meet the need of 24hr a day steady electricity supply. After having this knowledge he would then make a business of it by teaching people how it is done so that they too can install it for themselves and/or help others to do same for a fee.
Nigeria been in the tropics have abundant sunshine daily. The northern part has about 7 hrs of intense sun light while the southern part has from 4 to 6. Therefore, solar energy seems to be well suited for the country and Paul was sure this would turn out to be a great business opportunity for him to exploit in Nigeria.
His quest to know how to generate electricity from the sun and then make a business of it was spared of challenges. He was forced to suspend it at a point when he was unable to get some vital equipment for the generation of solar electricity in Nigeria, such as solar panel, charge controller, and deep cycle battery.
But when he realized after sometime that electricity supply in Nigeria was degenerating, which made the business opportunity for getting the solution bigger, he picked up his research again, found the equipment he needed and succeeded in his goal of generating solar power.
Today, Paul is teaching hundreds of people weekly how to install solar electricity generating system and his business is making tonnes of money weekly. But he is just scratching the surface of his potential income as not many Nigerians are aware yet of solar power as alternative to electricity from the government owned electricity company, the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN.
Paul (extreme right on tie) and his team members with their solar panels
Emerging business opportunity for Nigerian entrepreneurs: as the awareness of solar energy generation and use increases in a couple of months or years from now, there will be a high demand for such necessary equipment as charge controller, deep cycle battery, solar panel and inverter. Importers or businesses that will manufacture these items will make big money.
Also, another big business opportunity in Nigeria in the near future from the power sector is service businesses that will help millions of Nigerians to install solar energy generating system in their homes, offices and industries.
If you are interested in tapping into this business opportunity in Nigeria, you can visit Webpower
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