How To Start Solar Energy Business in Nigeria or Africa: Complete Guide

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How To Start Solar Energy Business in Nigeria or Africa: Complete Guide


How To Start A Lucrative Solar Energy Business In Nigeria Or Africa: The Complete Guide | Image: Pixabay

Solar energy – energy from the sun – is a vast, inexhaustible, and clean resource. It is a clean alternative to electricity from fossil fuels.

Growing economies of the world has necessitated the adoption of solar energy, and many developed and developing nations have joined the list of solar energy consumers at various scales. The global solar tracker market demand was pegged at 25.0 GW in 2018, expanding at a 32.0% CAGR from 2019 to 2025. In 2014, Germany became the forerunner of the renewable energy cause, and in 2015, China became the largest producer and buyer of solar panels. In 2019, solar power provided 3% of global electricity demands, and now, about 11% of the world has begun to rely on solar energy for its electric power. At the moment, Germany, China, Japan, Italy and the United States of America have the largest market for solar energy in the world.

In Nigeria, one of the most significant economic issues is the power supply. Nigeria has the largest economy in sub-Saharan Africa, but cannot achieve rapid growth due to limitations in the power sector. Nigeria currently can produce an estimated 7,000 megawatts (MW) of power. Still, due to weak infrastructure, gas supply problems, and water shortages, only about 4,000 MW reaches the national grid.

Solar energy is a solution to Nigeria’s power issues and why the solar energy business will thrive in Nigeria. Many companies and households rely on power. Since power is insufficient, they have begun to spend heavily on fuel – more expensive and even less sufficient power sources. For this reason, many Nigerians are looking for a long-lasting solution to power issues.

While solar energy has been criticized for being expensive or inefficient, it has proven to be extremely beneficial – not only to the environment but also for the private economy.

Nigeria is situated in Sub-Saharan Africa, a region described by the International Council for Science as having the “world’s best solar resources.” Nigeria has 485.1 million MWh/day of solar energy in natural units, and she enjoys an average of 6.2 hours of daily sunshine, which makes it a lucrative market for potential investors.

The energy sector is a $6 trillion per year business, and over the years, Nigeria has invested more than $20 billion in solar power projects, seeking to boost the capacity of the national grid and reduce reliance on it by building mini-grids in rural areas without mains electricity which means in the nearest future, the country will be one of the largest producers and consumers of solar power.

So, if you are planning to start a solar energy business in Nigeria, you are on a path to becoming a millionaire if executed right and are taking a step in the right direction. However, you should know that starting a solar business in Nigeria is capital-intensive, depending on the scale you wish to operate.

If you’ve decided to set up a solar energy business in Nigeria, here is a step-by-step guide to help you.

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What Is Solar Energy?

In simple terms, solar energy means capturing the energy from the sun and converting it into electricity. Thanks to advancements in technology, it is now possible to harness power from the sun and convert it into electricity to light up our homes, streets, workplaces, businesses, schools, and even our machines. It is sometimes alternatively referred to as solar power.


What Is A Solar Energy Business?

Starting a solar energy business could mean distributing solar products or providing different solar energy services and products. It could also mean becoming a solar panel installer.

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Business Opportunities In Solar Energy Business In Nigeria And Around The World

The solar energy industry is home to a wide variety of career opportunities. The potential for job creation in the solar energy sector is vast. Being Africa’s largest market for renewable energy, Nigeria could take advantage of this opportunity to provide more jobs for its people.

1). Solar Panel Installation:

Solar energy business requires the installation of panels and ‘roofs’. The panels also need to be sealed appropriately to avoid danger, and this requires the services of expert engineers for proper installation.

2). Electrical and Technical Services:

Electrical setup is needed for the solar panels to be installed and functional. This creates employment opportunities for electricians and technicians. They are responsible for connecting solar panels, inverters, and other equipment to a building’s power supply. They install and maintain the electrical and power systems of a home or business.

3). Plumbing Services:

Services of plumbers are also required for the installation of water heating systems. They must be familiar with solar water heater equipment.

4). Site Assessing Services:

Solar energy business also creates room for site surveyors and assessors because their services are required to determine the best type, size, and layout of solar panels and draw up plans for the installation crew. They may consult homeowners or installation companies on residential projects.

5). Delivery And Distribution Services:

Large-scale solar energy businesses need the services of trusted distributors and delivery personnel to convey solar panels and associated accessories to the homes of customers for installation.


Facts And Benefits Of Solar Energy

  • Solar energy has the least negative impact on the environment. It does not create any noise and does not produce any greenhouse gases.
  • It will enable us to use less electricity for the utility supplier. You’ll spend less on your energy bill.
  • Solar energy can be deployed anywhere.
  • It loses less energy during transportation and distribution. Since solar panels are installed on rooftops or yards, no power is lost, increasing solar panels’ efficiency.
  • The solar grid is less vulnerable to blackouts. There are no cases of overload, natural or human-caused disasters.
  • It creates jobs. It boosts the economy and affects the local community positively.
  • Solar energy is cheaper than fossil fuels.
  • Solar energy is the most abundant energy source on earth.
  • Solar power plants can last 40 years or more.
  • Germany, China, Japan, Italy and the United States of America have the largest market for solar energy in the world.

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How To Start A Solar Energy Business in Nigeria: A Step-By-Step Guide

1). Draft A Business Proposal:

Draft your business plan to outline your business’s future objectives and strategies for achieving them. It’ll help you outline the short-term and long-term goals of your business.

2). Get A Business Site:

Getting a business site and an office space is essential, especially if you’re going large-scale. Acquire an office space in a place where the power supply is fair and where people can afford your equipment. Ensure that the site is in a developed and busy area where the dwellers understand the value of solar energy and have a need for it.

3). Pick A Niche:

This is the point where you decide on what aspect of solar energy business you want to focus on. A solar business can operate in the following ways:

  • Selling Solar products to customers: In this field, you will need to partner with companies that manufacture solar energy products. The major components you will be selling are Solar Panels, Inverters, and Batteries.
  • Installing solar energy products: All you need do is team up with sellers of solar energy products. You’ll serve as an installer for their customers. However, it is best to be both an installer and seller.
  • Repairing Solar Equipment: You will render your services to customers whose equipment develops a fault. You will also need to collaborate with manufacturers and sellers.
  • Manufacture solar energy products: This is the most technical and demanding aspect. It requires huge capital, training, and licenses to begin. You will need to register with a relevant solar energy business union to support you during setbacks. Legislations are regulating the solar power business in Nigeria. It would be best if you familiarized yourself with them.

4). Register Your Business:

After ticking all other boxes, register your business with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). It is the approved body for business registration. Registering your business will make customers see it as reliable and credible. You also need to register it with relevant government institutions to avoid business interruption or court action. It has to operate within the legal requirements of the country.

5. Advertise Your Business:

Advertise your business using different mediums. It could be through posters or social media or other mediums available in the locality.

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Challenges of Solar Energy Business In Nigeria
High startup capital

  • Difficulty in operating solar energy equipment
  • Limited use of solar equipment
  • Difficulty in importing quality solar equipment
  • High cost of maintenance
  • Undersupply of solar energy equipment in the global market
  • Poor battery performance
  • Bad weather conditions

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To Sum It Up

With the increasing demand for a fair and efficient power supply, you can never run out of the solar energy business market.

The solar energy business in Nigeria can be a lucrative and profitable venture to start-up, due to its vast market demand and on your ability to build a wide network. If you’re looking for a lucrative business to venture into, the solar energy business in Nigeria is a great option to explore.


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