Blessed an abundant crude oil, Rivers state is strategic to the Nigerian economy while its capital Port Harcourt is a business hub. But there are other business opportunities in the oil-rich state that anyone with small or huge capital can explore.
Investment Opportunities in Rivers
With all the challenges, there are more than two dozen business ideas you can implement with either huge capital or as little as NGN200,000 for a start.
Oil Servicing Company
Operating an oil servicing company means you (or your team) should have an engineering background. It is advisable to set up an oil servicing company in a place like Port Harcourt.
Ensure that your company is registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) and obtain the necessary licence from the state government
There are a lot of wealthy and well-to-do people in Rivers State. Many well-to-do people, particularly in major towns, don’t mind splashing money on brand new clothes. You should just ensure you sell nice things and you will be fine.
Have you wondered why there are many exotic hotels in different parts of Port Harcourt? One of the reasons is that many expatriates visit the state every week to seek oil business opportunities because of its status as one of the oil-producing states in Nigeria.
No one wants to be kidnapped for ransom by gunmen, as such, ensure your hotel has adequate security that would encourage more people to patronize you.
Palm oil Production
Rivers State is synonymous with oil. Not only that the State is blessed with an abundance of crude oil, but they also have palm oil in abundance. Hence, you can build a business that revolves around palm oil production.
This is one of the businesses that are common among the local people in the state. Good enough, the palm oil business can be operated on a large scale, this way, you can reduce the level of importation of palm oil into Nigeria
A lot of workers in Rivers State are in the oil production sector. Of course, they have to work hard to do their thing. Thus, they don’t joke about relaxation during weekends.
You can start a Cinema business and ensure it is properly equipped. Give your customers value for their money.
A lot of working-class people in Rivers State don’t have time to cook their meals at home. Hence, the food business is usually lucrative.
One of the interesting things about running this type of business is that you can start small and grow with time. Just ensure you make good meals and be ready to activate office and office delivery.
If you plan to do home and office delivery, watch out for the red flags for personal safety.
As stated already, many workers in Rivers State (particularly in places like Port Harcourt) don’t have time for a lot of household stuff (like cleaning their apartments). Hence, you can start a cleaning company that is paid to clean the apartments of people for them.
This is a business that can be recommended due to the nature of the State. It is possible to easily excavate from petroleum products, certain chemical-based products that can be used for different things. It is capital intensive though, and you must be familiar with the terrain.
Selling Fairly Used Products
You can build a business that revolves around selling fairly used products in Rivers State. You can sell items such as shoes, clothes, and so on. This is a sweet business idea which many people haven’t been looking towards, and which you should take advantage of.
While it’s believed that Rivers state is a rich state, it’s a known fact the resources are concentrated in a few hands, as such selling fairly used products will cater for the needs of the average people.
You can launch and run a computer shop too. You will need good money to get good computers (particularly laptops) which you can deal with. This is a lovely business opportunity which you can run in major towns in the State.
You can use a platform like Alibaba to import fairly used laptops in large numbers and sell them at a moderate price. It’s cheaper to buy in large quantities.
There are many supermarkets in the state capital, but you can still start yours. Always give priority to those products people love getting and which it appears they can’t do without.
Running a school is another opportunity to build a strong business in Rivers State. Indeed, there are already many schools in the State. Nevertheless, you don’t know the number of parents who are just looking out for another appropriate school they can enrol their kids.
Before starting this, ensure you look out for the superb things which others around couldn’t offer, and make them your selling point.
You can start small anywhere around a place like Port Harcourt. If you have more money, you can hire more barbers to work for you.
You join hair treatment, set up massaging section with your barbing salon business
Mobile Hairdressing Services
If you are a female, this should be easier for you.
You can decide to start a business that deals with making applications for mobile phones and computers for businesses that are ready to go digital.
You don’t even have to wait till you get clients around Rivers State, because you can always see clients that need applications for their own needs from different places in the world.
Crafts Training Center
You can open a centre where people can pay to learn different forms of skills, like bead making and the rest. You will be surprised at the number of people interested in getting empowered with these skills.
Phone Accessories Sales
This is another lucrative business opportunity you can look into if you are interested in starting a profitable business in Rivers State.
Just ensure you learn the ropes of the business before you jump in. It entails selling phone accessories like cases, batteries, earphones, and so on.
Computer Training Center
You can also build a business around training people in Rivers State on how to use and engage computers. If you are a computer engineer, you will easily attract folks who want to learn how to repair computers too.
It is advisable to open this in a city like Port Harcourt. There are usually events happening in different parts of the state now and then.
Make security a priority
Musical Instruments Store
There are lots of music lovers in Port Harcourt, and you can make money selling musical instruments to them. Furnish your store with different instruments, like piano, guitar, tambourine, and so on.
Before setting up any business, it’s imperative to consider some of the challenges you’re most likely going to face
Cost of living in Rivers
Considering the concentration of oil companies in the state, the cost of living in Rivers State, most especially in Port Harcourt is high.
From rent to services, goods are quite expensive. For instance, the cost of a 2-bedroom flat in Port Harcourt is between NGN600,000 to NGN800,000 per year. This also depends on the location and facilities.
Challenges Of Doing Business In Rivers State
In the ease of business released by the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC), Rivers was ranked 11 by using several criteria including infrastructure and security, transparency and access to Information among others.
Away from the ranking, some challenges the state face cut across all states of the federation. When it comes to electricity for instance, while things are still better in Rivers State compared to other parts of the country, the fact remains that there are still areas in Rivers State with poor electricity.
Hence, a business owner in such places has to spend more money to generate electricity from alternative power sources.
Secondly, many business owners in Rivers State have to deal with cases of insecurity. Due to different reasons, some mischievous individuals made crime a business (thefts, kidnapping, and so on).
Another challenge you may encounter as a business owner is the issue of air pollution in River State which has been a huge issue for years. As stated already, the State is filled with crude oil. And due to this, there are different illegal refineries in different parts of the state, operating with crude tools that caused soot.
What is the most lucrative investment in Rivers State?
Oil and gas, power generation, security business, but they require huge capital and lots of resources like political connection to the authorities.
However, offering services to big firms like executive cleaning, design and guide are some of the small businesses that will fetch you huge returns.
Is Port Harcourt good for business?
There are many investment opportunities in Port Harcourt provided you can face the challenges of incessant air pollution and be ready to invest in personal security.
Can I set up a business with less than NGN500k in Port Harcourt?
Definitely yes. With NGN500K or less, you can start a large scale recharge card distribution business, mini importation business, sales of digital devices that can be imported from foreign eCommerce platforms
How many companies are in Rivers State?
The real number of firms in Rivers State is not known, although some online platforms put the number at below 1,000. Data is a major problem in Nigeria.
- With the above investment opportunities, there are other small business ideas that can be implemented with as little as NGN100k or NGN200K, they are:
- Business development services. For instance, helping companies to register their names on CAC portal. To do this, you must be an accredited CAC agent.
- Retailer of palm oil
- Fruit juice sales, with fruit juice extractor as little as NGN50,00, you can get started
- Barbeque business