“The idea to start a business lures many and quite a few fall into the trap of starting a business for steep gains. The simple reason is that not everyone is cut out for the rigours of entrepreneurship.” – Dr.Vinay Bajrangi.
Given the current high rate of unemployment and under-employment in Nigeria, business has become the haven of many. It has proven to be a very attractive means of survival for a large number of Nigerians. Interestingly, not everyone in business ought to be in business. In other words, business isn’t meant for everyone.
Even though Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) collectively account for 50% of the GDP of Nigeria only a few are registered. Most small business owners are doing business for the purpose of eking a living and no more. Some of these businesses are devoid of corporate structure, long term plans and goals. Such businesses are run to meet the immediate needs of the owners only. That is why we say not every business owner is an entrepreneur.
Are You An Entrepreneur? You have been doing business for several years and perhaps now have a robust customer base or clientele. Your trading (business) name is well known, at least, in your area of operations. Your trading name is conspicuously engraved on your letter heads, signage and other official documents. Sales have been on the increase lately.  You are so pleased because your brand is rapidly becoming a house-hold name.  You are now convinced that there is no need to register your business after all. We beg to differ, please. In fact, it is a disservice to your business because your labour of several years can be conveniently and legally appropriated by another.  Your competitor can leverage on your goodwill to start up a duly registered business with your trading name.
An entrepreneur is a visionary leader. He is an initiator, a challenger and a driver. Someone that creates something new: an initiative, a business or a company. Entrepreneurs are more concerned on what they can offer to the world rather than financial returns. They want to pursue their passion and achieve an ultimate goal. In  the words of Sola Dawodu, a business enthusiast, ”the entrepreneurial spirit is the … ability to dream and pursue that dream: to win, lose, and win again and again, without submitting to the pressure of giving up.”
Being Business Smart: Any astute entrepreneur would know that it not smart to run a business without due registration of same. In fact, every entrepreneur should avoid the risk of running an unregistered business.  An experienced entrepreneur understands that you can’t put something on nothing and expects it to stand. In this case, you can’t successfully run a business upon a defective foundation. Simply put, there is little or no future for unregistered businesses.
The essence of this article is not to outline the gains of business registration as we have addressed same in earlier articles. Rather, it is a wakeup call for you to do the needful. We recognise an entrepreneur when we see one and say boldly, you are an entrepreneur. Reading this article is proof. We believe in you and will continue to disseminate the necessary information for your business growth and expansion.
We reiterate that it is not smart to run a business without registration. The Federal Government (FG) and the Business Regulators share this view. This explains why the process of registration has been so simplified that you can do same yourself from the comfort of your office or home within twenty-four (24) hours! As a further ‘Business Incentive Strategy’, the FG, a few days ago, approved a 90-day special window to register businesses at a reduced rate of N5, 000 from the 1st October to 31st December, 2018. This move is aimed at creating a window for MSMEs to formalise their businesses, which will enable them own corporate account with banks, have access to loans, grants and other government interventions.
Conclusion: We are sure you now get the drift of this article. We want you to take advantage of this golden (but inexpensive) opportunity to structure your business properly, hence the emphasis on registration. If you are truly an entrepreneur and believe you are into business for the long run; not as a means of survival, then no more excuses, please. Get your business registered NOW to secure ‘juicy’ contracts and access bank loans, government grants (free business money) etc. You can visit the website of the Corporate Affairs Commission for registration guide.
This article is provided for general information purposes only. It does not constitute advice or an opinion on any specific facts or circumstances. If you have any enquiries about this article or require further information, please contact the writer at eki.durojaiye@lawbrief.org.