When people think of business opportunities in Nigeria, Hospitals are usually not the first places they think of. Incidentally, there are many ways to profit from the health care industry in Nigeria, without ever needing a medical degree. In a previous article, I talked about How to start a Pharmacy in Nigeria, which is another of such businesses that does not require any previous medical training. Today I will tell you in a few simple steps, how to start a successful Hospital equipment supply business in Nigeria.
Find your niche market
There is a wide range of equipment used in hospitals to pick from, the little pen-torches and stethoscopes that doctors use, to wheelchairs and crutches for patients, to the complex diagnostic machines like the CAT scanners, MRIs’ and X-ray machines.
Take a few things into consideration when deciding your niche, such as how profitable the business has been for others, how much funding you have, how quickly you can deliver and finally, what product is most profitable for you.
Fund Your Business
Having decided what you’re going to sell, it’s important to determine the startup costs. The amount of capital you will require greatly depends on what you’re selling. A wheelchair can cost anywhere from 30,000 to 100,000 naira or more, depending on the type whereas a stethoscope can cost as little as 5,000 naira.
So, do your research, do your calculations and decide how many units you’re going to start with. Draw up your numbers and find out how much capital you’ll need.
After you find out how much capital you need, then comes raising the money. One thing that is crucial when raising capital to fund your startup is your business plan. You should have a solid business plan if you wish to approach investors and banks. They will want to make sure that they’re investment is in good hands.
The business plan is in fact not important only when approaching investors, it is also a guideline for what you want to achieve. Having a good business plan will give you an advantage in business in both the short and the long run.
Read this to find out more about raising capital for business.
Register your Business
You will have to register your business with the right authorities. The Corporate Affairs Commission is the body you’re required to register businesses with in Nigeria. The process is fairly simple and you can do it yourself. But it is advisable to get the aid of a lawyer to avoid any mistakes.
Acquire a Location for Your Business
Find a facility where you will display your equipment. This is where interested parties can come and take a look at your wares. Finding a good location for your business is very important. You should be close to your target market. This is especially true when you’re expected to deliver the goods to the customer. To ensure prompt delivery of goods, find somewhere close by.
If you sell equipment that patients will buy themselves, then make your business as easy as possible to locate.
The size of your facility will depend on what products you sell. You will have to keep it clean and you might have to regulate the temperature depending on what you’re selling. Doing this will prevent contamination and/or damage to your goods.
Secure a Supply of the Equipment
Find and meet with distributors and manufacturers of the products. You should aim to offer different brands to your customers. You will give them options to pick from but no need for anything too elaborate. Try and aim for the most popular brands for each product. With this in mind, you may have to locate and buy from different manufacturers and distributors.
Market your Business
Before you even open, develop and implement your marketing strategy. The important thing here is for your advertisements to reach your target market, be it doctors, nurses, patients etc. However you do it, make those potential customers aware that you sell what they need.
The Importance of good marketing can not be overstated.
In the end, a good business markets itself. Great customer service and prompt delivery of goods will foster customer satisfaction. Satisfied customers will likely become return customers.
And with these few steps, you have everything you need to start your own supply of hospital equipment.