If you are Starting a new business or trying to grow an already established one, you understand how arduous a task it can be especially because of the mountainous task of generating funds. To keep the business flying and progressing in the expected trajectory one will require a consistent level of funding. The truth is, business has to be really good for it to keep moving, right? But it is also true that funds that seem to be everywhere demand some level of knowledge to access. we have put together 9 ways to keep the engine going while everyone maintains an elated spirit.
This article is for you if:
- Capital is your biggest obstacle at the moment
- You have tried other alternatives and sources of funding and failed
- You are just looking for information on where to get funding for that business
This piece will not cover the innumerable opportunities available for getting funding for your business, it will only highlight a few of the scopes.
Everyone loves the news of free funding. Whether you are looking for a loan, grant or investment in your business idea, this piece is a step in the right direction and guaranteed to get you a knowledge closer to that next external funding for your business. So, let’s get right to it.
Here are a few ways to get funding for your business idea or grow your business –
- 1. Banks
This is as traditional as it gets. Banks do not just exist for cash deposits and withdrawal, they also provide loan services for small businesses to grow and expand. Although, accessing these bank loans may appear exhausting because of the seemingly unbelievable requirements, a little more patience and determination will pay off eventually.
You can visit local banks around you and discuss with the right department for requirements for a loan application. But it is important to realize that it requires a lot of documentation, but achievable if you meet the requirements.
- Micro-finance banks
Micro-finance banks are banks alright but differ in terms of requirements and restrictions. What this means is this; it is much easier to receive funding in terms of loans from a micro-finance bank because they have not as many requirements and have less-weighty restrictions than your conventional banks.
The reason is simple, Micro-finance banks exist solely to help small businesses and start-ups by offering them micro-loans. So, you can receive up to around 16,000 USD (over 5 million naira). They appear to be a better option for accessing loans than conventional banks.
- E-money Lenders
These are professional money lenders slightly different from the traditional banks and microfinance banks. They are arguably the fastest system of accessing small business loans. Their delivery time for loans could be as fast as 24 hours. Requirements are not so strict and often times just demand that you have a good paying job or a high-valued automobile. Their interest rates are also fair, so one need not worry about nerve-racking interest rates. This kind of loan is ideal for small-sized loans needed within a short period of time.
- The Bank of Industry
The importance of the Bank of Industry (BOI) is to provide loans to businesses and organizations that largely use raw materials. Their major objective is to provide jobs for thousands of the unemployed number within Nigeria.
With an operational fund of 250 billion naira, the BOI aims to support small and large scale businesses in Nigeria. So, if you are looking to raise some small seed-fund for your business, you can check the lending criteria on http://www.boi.ng/lendingcriteria/.
- Bank of Agriculture
If you are in the Agricultural industry and are looking for a small loan to start a business or grow an existing one, then The BOA is the right go-to, they are Nigeria’s top-choice agricultural and rural development financial institution. They give agricultural loans to farmers to start, run and grow commercial agricultural products in Nigeria.
This type of loan is ideal for agro-entrepreneurs and farmers who need not approach banks or other financial institutions for loans, they have a stronger chance of accessing loans with the Bank of Agriculture because that’s their purpose of existence in the first place.
- The Tony Elumelu Foundation
If you are an entrepreneur and you think you have what it takes, you can apply to the foundation for a grant for that business of yours. The foundation hands an allocation of 5000 us dollars in a grant to entrepreneurs. The Tony Elumelu Foundation has a mission to seek out and grow 10 000 African entrepreneurs, create a million jobs and 10 billion dollars in revenue across Africa over the next ten years. So you can be sure your vision can be covered.
- U.S African Development Foundation.
For the USADF, it’s much than profit making. They are a body run by the American Government to provide foreign assistance to African communities especially in areas with extreme poverty. Their main objective goes beyond these poor communities but also extends to providing technical assistance and capacity building to small organisations that stem from the grassroots.
If your mission and that of the USADF are somewhat similar in terms of touching and transforming the lives of those within your local community, then you can apply for a grant.
There are actually more opportunities when it comes to loans and grants for your business, and although a lot of entrepreneurs are sceptical about approaching banks and micro-finance banks for loans because of the choking interest rates and the overall requirement for accessing these loans. Yet, many success stories in business owe their story to the leverages these platforms provide. So, do not be limited by the scepticism, but use that as a litmus test to see how well-structured your business is to go to the next level and if it isn’t put up a better structure so you can continue to experience a forward movement.