Are you thinking of owning a company or a business in Nigeria? Or do you already have one? Does it have a name? Of course, it should, but is it recognized? The first way to get your company or business name recognized is by getting it registered. Registering a company simply means telling the government that you exist, that your business name is yours and in so doing, you can then be regarded as a legal entity, this gives credibility to your company, enhance its visibility and helps to boost its profile. The process of registration is really simple. This article –“how to register your business with CAC in Nigeria” is written to help you go about it as simple as possible.



The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) of Nigeria is saddled with the responsibility of registering companies in Nigeria. The CAC was established by the Companies and Allied Matters Act, which was promulgated in 1990 to regulate the formation and management of companies in Nigeria. The commission has its corporate headquarters at Abuja (the Federal Capital Territory) with branches in various state capitals of Nigeria like Kano, Lagos, Benin, Owerri, Jos, Enugu, Uyo and many others. The process of registering a business in Nigeria through the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) usually take days, but the commission hopes to reduce the time spent to register a company in Nigeria to 24 hours by December 2018.

Generally, the requirements to register a company in Nigeria will largely depend on the business of type. So how can you register your company with CAC? This article will provide you a step by step guide on his to register your business with CAC in Nigeria.

  1. Choosing a Company Name

Deciding on a name for your business is definitely number one on this list. The process involves choosing a suitable name for your business. Usually, you are required to submit two names so that if one is already in use, the other can be adopted. The names could be rejected if: it already exists, is confusing, or includes prohibited words such as National, Federal, Government, or Holdings. So, to avoid all of these; you should search for the availability of your chosen names. You should visit a CAC office nearest to you and request for name reservation or name availability check. You can also carry out this process online by visiting the CAC official website to download the CAC1.1 for free. If your chosen name is not in use, it will be reserved for you in 90 days within which you are expected to complete your registration.

  1. Preparation of Memorandum and Articles of Association

Depending on the type of company you wish to register; you will be required to prepare a memorandum and article of association. You will need a lawyer for this stage that will be responsible for preparing these documents. The lawyer will request for the names of the first directors who are also the initial subscribers as well as the names of shareholders. All directors or subscribers must be above the age of 18, must not have been convicted of any crime and be of a sound mind. All directors/subscribers will also be required to provide a valid means of identification for inspection by the CAC.

  1. Filling the incorporation form

The next step involved in registering your company with CAC after you must have processed your memorandum and articles of association is; filling a form from CAC which you are supposed to submit on completion along with other documents.

You will need a secretary from this point who can either be a lawyer or an accountant and will be responsible for filling of documents with CAC after the company has been registered.

You should take note of the following when filling forms

(Video) CAC Business Name Registration in Nigeria | The Corporate Affairs Commission Registration Process

  • All directors must fill the Particulars of Director form also known as the Form CAC 7
  • A director will fill the statement of share capital and return of Allotment Form( Form CAC 2)
  • A director and the company secretary will fill the notice of situation/change of registered address form ( CAC 3)
  • An individual or a firm accredited by CAC will fill the Declaration of Compliance with the requirements of CAMA Form, known as the Form CAC 4
  • At least two directors will fill the form appointing a company secretary for the company.

  1. Payment of Stamp Duty and Filling Fee

The stamp duty is usually paid at a designated bank into the account of Federal Inland Revenue Services; and this is done after the purchase of the incorporation forms and filling of same followed by preparation of memorandum and articles of association.

After paying for the stamp duty, you are to proceed to the Stamp Duty Commission where the memorandum and article of association and all other documents of incorporation will be stamped.

You may then proceed to submit all these to CAC which will in turn have your Certificate of Incorporation ready in say 6 – 7 weeks after submission.

List of CAC Business Registration Requirement

Here are some of CAC registration requirement

  • The proposed name of the business
  • The proposed objectives of the business
  • The business memorandum and articles of association
  • Statement of the authorized share capital
  • Form CAC 1, reservation and availability of name
  • The names and addresses of the parties (directors) incorporating the company
  • Two recent passport photographs of each director, including valid means of identification
  • Statutory declaration of compliance by a legal practitioner
  • The name and address of the company secretary
  • The address of the business principal office
  • Fillings with the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) for tax purposes
  • All other documents or fees that may be required by the commission to satisfy any law or condition



Depending on the type of your business, the registration will involve providing most of the above requirement.

How Much Does it Cost to Register your Business in Nigeria?

For the official CAC registration fee, please visit the company CAC’s official website and click on summary of fees and forms on the sidebar menu.

(Video) How to Change Your Business Name To A Company With CAC

Alternatively, you can decide to get your CAC registration done with us within two weeks. Please send all your further enquiries to or call 0815636015 or 08076359735.

Hope you enjoy this article?

Share your thoughts in the comment session.

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We can help you write a detailed, bankable and comprehensive business plan for your business idea.

Call any of our business plan consultants on 08105636015, 08076359735, and 08113205312. Or send a WhatsApp message or email us either at or

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(Video) How some lawyers defraud their clients in the name of business registration in Nigeria- CAC

Dayo Adetiloye
(B.Agric, MBA)
08105636015, 08076359735

Serial Entrepreneur - International Business Planning Consultant - Speaker - Trainer - Author - Blogger - Network Marketing professional.

- 2018 SME Business Trainer and Coaching Advisor at GIZ for SME Loop.
- 2018 YALI RLC Online Cohort 9
- 2017 Fellow, Inspire Africa Train-the-Trainer Entrepreneurship programme sponsored by US Consulate Lagos and the Dickey Center, U.S.A.
- 2016 Fellow, Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme
- 2015 Top 50 Innovative Entrepreneurs, BET5 by Diamond Bank and EDC, PAU.

He is an alumnus of Enterprise Development Centre (EDC) of the Lagos Business School (LBS), Pan-Atlantic University (PAU). Through his training, mentoring, speaking and coaching programmes, he has empowered many young people over the years to start and grow their own business, build wealth, create multiple streams of income and achieve financial independence.

- He is a Certified Trainer in Design Thinking by the U.S Consulate, Lagos and the inspire Africa Entrepreneurship Institute.

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(Video) Q & A about CAC Registration in Nigeria



How much does it cost to register a business name in Nigeria 2022? ›

A business name reservation is 500 naira while the official registration of a business name with CAC is 10, 000 naira. The corporate affairs commission of Nigeria is a federal government agency for business name registration.

How long does it take to register a business name with CAC in Nigeria? ›

Current Procedure for Company Registration in Nigeria

The name search takes about 24 to 48 hours to be completed. If the name is approved, the CAC will issue an Approval Note indicating the name has been reserved for registration for the applicant.

What is difference between business name and company name for CAC? ›

The key difference between a company name and a business name is that a registered business name is the name in which a venture operates under. A company name, however, is a legal entity on its own.

Can a minor register a business name in Nigeria? ›

Even underage people can own a business name, however this requires special permission. If the owner is a minor, the CAC asks for an attestation from a magistrate, legal practitioner, or a police officer of a certain rank.

Can I register CAC myself? ›

Any member of the public can create an account, kindly note you will be a director, trustee or a proprietor/partner during the registration process. Please provide the necessary details.

What are the documents required for CAC registration? ›

Documents Required for Company Registration
  • A notice of the registered address of your business.
  • Memorandum and Articles of Association (MAA)
  • Receipt of payment of your stamp duties.
  • Particulars, list, and consent of the first directors of your company.
  • Statement of compliance by a legal practitioner.
25 Jun 2018

How much is CAC registration 2022? ›

CAC Registration fees 2022. Corporate affairs commission updated price for business name, limited liability and non governmental organisations in 2022. Cac Official filing fee for a business name registration is N10,700, this is the official charge including the fee for remita.

Can I register CAC online by myself? ›

The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) through its online platform has now made the incorporation of a company easier. An individual can now register a company online with CAC, as long such an individual understands the requirements for the incorporation process.

How do I submit my business name to the CAC? ›

Visit this page to check for the availability of your preferred business or company name and reserve it if it's not yet taken. Complete a pre-registration form and upload the relevant registration documents using the Company Registration Portal. Pay the required filing fee. See the schedule of fees here.

Which is better business name or company? ›

In summary, a company name is selected upon incorporation and creates a separate legal entity, distinct form its owners. Whereas a business name is selected when carrying on a business under a name other than the true owners name, no legal entity is created and there is no limitation on liability.

Can 2 company names be the same? ›

Can Two Companies Have the Same Name? Yes, however, certain requirements must be met in order for it to not constitutes trademark infringement and to determine which party is the rightful owner of the name. These requirements include: Are the businesses in the same industry or geographic location?

How do I know if my business name is under CAC? ›

How do I Know if a Business Name is Registered?
  1. Visit CAC's official website.
  2. Click on Public search.
  3. Input the business name and search.
  4. This would give you a list of businesses with the names (if any).
4 Jul 2022

Can you put a business in a child name? ›

A person under the age of 18 cannot legally form a business entity. But as a parent, you can form an LLC for your child's business. This means you will be the organizer, and potentially sole member of the business, and your name will appear in the company's LLC operating agreement.

Can an under 18 set up a business? ›

Can you start your own business if you're under 18? The short answer: yes, you can. You will have extra challenges ahead of you, because until you're 18 you'll have barriers to setting up your own business bank account, getting credit and raising business finance.

At what age can one register for a company? ›

Question: What is the minimum age to register a business? Answer: The minimum age to register a business is 18 years old.

How long does it take CAC to approve company registration? ›

Upon completion of a company registration and approval by the CAC, the company's Certificate of Incorporation will be available to be downloaded online. A company registration can be completed within two to seven working days where there is no unexpected delay or constrains.

How long does it take to reserve a name with CAC? ›

Payment of the applicable fees

Once you have completed all the applicable forms, you will have to pay the applicable fee for registering a business name. The entire process for registering a business name normally takes 1-2 weeks, depending on the workload of the CAC and other factors.

What are the benefits of registering with CAC? ›

  • you can easily obtain a visa and travel to any country for business purposes,
  • it helps your business remain relevant on the record of the corporate affairs commission,
  • it gives your potential customers confidence that they are dealing with a reputable business,
5 Aug 2022

What comes after CAC registration? ›

After your business registration/incorporation, there are still some post-incorporation filings which must be regularly undertaken at the CAC. These include the annual report which you must file annually; changes in your business address or other company information, except the ages of the individuals.

How much does it cost to register a business name in Nigeria? ›

The CAC official filing fee for the registration of business name in Nigeria is N10,000 (Ten Thousand Naira Only).

Does CAC registration expire? ›

A reserved name at the CAC lasts for 60 days. If 60 days has expired, you can start a new process to register the company. Of course, there are no guarantees that the name will still be available. With the new process, a new MEMART will be prepared and new documents filed.

How do I pay my CAC annual return? ›

For Enterprises (Registered Business Names)
  1. Duly completed appropriate Annual Returns form.
  2. The annual return form should be signed by the business proprietors, and/or by a director and secretary of the company.
  3. Submit the completed form for verification and assessment.

How do I register my CAC name for free? ›

CAC Signing up and login

To register, you must provide your personal information, including name, address, date of birth, gender, nationality, email, phone number and username. It fills you in a form that you need to fill out before you can click the sign up button.

How can I register CAC for free? ›

CAC registration form 2021/2022 is available online on the official CAC registration website. More details on how to register your business or company name via the CAC registration portal and other related information regarding the free Corporate Affairs Commission registration are on this page.

How much does it cost to be a CAC accredited agent? ›

Payment of #5,000.00 Please note that only Legal Practitioners, Chartered Secretaries and Chartered Accountants are qualified to register accredited agents.

Is CAC registration free now? ›

How much is CAC Registration 2022? Registration of a private company with a share capital of more than N1m and up to N500m costs N5,000 per 1m share of the company.

What are the requirements for business name registration in Nigeria? ›

How to Register a Business Name in Nigeria: Step-by-Step Guide
  • Choose a business name and check for the availability.
  • Complete your pre-registration form to register a business name.
  • Pay for a filing fee.
  • Prepare your documents for upload.
  • Submit the original copies of your documents.

How do I create a business name? ›

How to Name Your Business
  1. Do a word dump. Start by jotting down all the relevant words to your brand and industry. ...
  2. Use a thesaurus. ...
  3. Use a name generator. ...
  4. Does the name make sense for the business? ...
  5. Does the name convey some meaning? ...
  6. Is the name easy to remember? ...
  7. Is the name easy for people to spell? ...
  8. Does it look appealing?

How does an agent register a business name? ›

The process of company registration with CAC accredited agents
  1. The proposed name for the new company to be registered.
  2. Particulars of a minimum of 1 person to be a member of the company.
  3. Particulars of a minimum of 1 person to be the first director of the company.
  4. Particulars of the proposed address for the new company.

How do I register my business name online? ›

How do I search for a business name?
  1. Log into the eCitizen portal.
  2. Click on the "Office of The Attorney General and Department of Justice"
  3. Click on "Make Application"
  4. Click on the "Name Search- Company/ Business"
  5. Read and understand the instructions provided before applying.
  6. Click on the "Apply Now" button.
19 Oct 2021

How do I choose a logo for my company name? ›

Brand name guidelines
  1. Simple. It may be tempting to give your company a name that is cute or clever—or even a name that is descriptive. ...
  2. Easy to spell. When potential customers are searching for you, having a name that is easy to spell—and pronounce—is key. ...
  3. Clear. ...
  4. Not too literal. ...
  5. Unique. ...
  6. Available.
21 Jun 2022

Should I name my company after myself? ›

Including your own name in your business' brand creates a personal identity that resonates with customers and clients. “I am the person who my clients work with from meeting to wedding day to final delivery of finished products, so it is me who my clients associate my business with the most.

How do I know if my business name is registered? ›

How to check if a business name is taken. Every state has a secretary of state or other state agency that's responsible for business entity filings. In most states, the website of the state business filing agency includes an online entity name check tool.

Can someone have the same business name as me? ›

If a business name is already trademarked, you are prohibited from using it even if the company operates in a different state to yours. Trademark issues can be complex. In trademark infringement cases, courts look at whether consumers would be confused by two businesses that operate in the same industry.

Can you have multiple businesses under one business name? ›

The answer is yes--it is possible and permissible to operate multiple businesses under one LLC. Many entrepreneurs who opt to do this use what is called a "Fictitious Name Statement" or a "DBA" (also known as a "Doing Business As") to operate an additional business under a different name.

How do you know if a business name is trademarked? ›

Before you apply, you should search the USPTO's trademark database (Trademark Electronic Search System, or TESS) to see if any trademark has already been registered or applied for that is: Similar to your trademark.

What is the difference between RC and BN in CAC? ›

The distinction between RC and BN

While BN is an abbreviation for Business Name, RC means Registered Company which is your company registration number recognised by the law.

Can I change my CAC business name? ›

You may wait for the name approval to expire after 60 days or you may proceed with the registration in the reserved name and apply for a change of name after registration.

Is Certificate of Incorporation same as CAC? ›

A certificate of incorporation is a document given by the companies' regulation agency of a country (in Nigeria's case this is the Corporate Affairs Commission – CAC) as evidence of the existence of a company, and it's right to do business.

Can I use my surname as my business name? ›

For a family business, it's not unusual to put the family name as part of, or the entire, brand name. A surname can serve as the trademark, or brand, if it identifies – and distinguishes – the source of the product or service; but it also must not infringe on an existing user's mark.

Can a minor be a CEO? ›

Hence, a minor can never become the Director of a Company until he/she reaches majority. Further, as per law, Minors cannot enter into legally enforceable contracts. Hence, conceptually also, a Minor is disallowed from becoming the Director of a company.

What businesses can kids own? ›

Small Business Ideas for Kids
  • Lemonade Seller. Lemonade stands are certainly popular businesses for kids. ...
  • Inventor. ...
  • Chores Service Operator. ...
  • Kids' Book Author. ...
  • Illustrator. ...
  • Tutoring Service Provider. ...
  • Candy Maker. ...
  • Baker.
12 Nov 2016

Whats the youngest age you can own a business? ›

Forming the business: People under age 18 cannot form legal business entities, and their parents should do so on their behalf. In some states, a child may be able to be a shareholder or serve on the board of directors of the corporation.

Can you start a business with no money? ›

It's absolutely possible to start a business with no money, or at least with so little you'll hardly miss it. If you're ready to apply hard work, ingenuity, and resourcefulness, your business can be up and running in no time. Here are some tips on how to start a business with no money.

Can a 14 year old be a director of a company? ›

A company must have at least one director who is 16 or over and not disqualified from being a director. Directors are legally responsible for running the company and making sure company accounts and reports are properly prepared and filed on time.

How do I register my youth company? ›

Requirements For YOUTH

Business Registration Certificate/ Certificate of Incorporation. CR12 for Limited Company from Registrar of of Companies (system generated soft copy) Partnership Deed for partnership business. Tax compliance certificate.

How do I register my company for the first time? ›

9 steps to starting your own business
  1. Register business name. ...
  2. Choose a legal structure. ...
  3. Write your new business plan. ...
  4. Secure funding and finance. ...
  5. Plan your advertising strategy. ...
  6. Buy your new business insurance. ...
  7. Work out what you need to do for tax. ...
  8. Create a system for keeping business records.
11 Mar 2022

Do small businesses need registration? ›

Service Tax Registration: Service tax registration would be required for any business that provides more than Rs. 9 lakhs of taxable services in a financial year. The business must collect and remit service tax from customers once the annual taxable services revenue exceeds Rs. 10 lakhs.

How do I register a business name in Nigeria 2022? ›

Registration steps for Business Names
  1. Check for availability of the Business Name (click here. ...
  2. Complete pre-registration form – CAC-BNo1 and upload relevant registration documents(Online using Company Registration Portal)
  3. Pay filing fee Check the Fees for our Services here.

How much does it cost to register a company name in Nigeria? ›

The fees for registering a brand new Limited liability company will depend on the share capital of the company,the number of directors and shareholders e.t.c for example a limited liability company with one million Naira shares is registered at the rate of N50K-65K , this will change if the share capital is two million ...

How much does it cost to register a brand name in Nigeria? ›

By and large, the total cost, including the professional fee for registering a trademark, may range between N180,000(about $450) to N200,000(about $500). Another factor that may determine the total cost of trademark registration is whether the trademark is owned by a local or international company or individual.

Does a business name need a tin in Nigeria? ›

It is mandatory to have a TIN before you can open a business account in Nigeria.

Does business name pay tax in Nigeria? ›

In Nigeria, all persons in employment, individuals in business, non-residents who derive income from Nigeria, and companies that operate in Nigeria are mandated to pay tax.

How long does CAC reserve a name? ›

If the CAC approves the name, then it will reserve the name for you for a 60-day period. During this period it is expected that you will complete the registration process for your business name.

How do I register my youth business? ›

Requirements For YOUTH

Business Registration Certificate/ Certificate of Incorporation. CR12 for Limited Company from Registrar of of Companies (system generated soft copy) Partnership Deed for partnership business. Tax compliance certificate.

How do I register a startup name? ›

Steps to Register Your Startup With Startup India
  1. Step 1: Incorporate your Business. ...
  2. Step 2: Register with Startup India. ...
  3. Step 3: Get DPIIT Recognition. ...
  4. Step 4: Recognition Application. ...
  5. Step 5: Documents for Registration. ...
  6. Step 6: Recognition Number. ...
  7. Step 7: Other Areas.
19 Apr 2022

How can I register my business name for free in Nigeria? ›

CAC portal helps you. The process is very easy and straightforward. Start by logging into the official CAC registration website to continue. CAC Business Name Registration has begun through the / registration portal.

What's the difference between registering a company and business name in Nigeria? ›

A company limited by shares is required to have a director(s) and shareholder(s) while a business name is only required to have a sole proprietor or partners (proprietors). A Company limited by shares is a separate legal entity that is distinct from its shareholders and directors.

What are the benefits of registering a business name in Nigeria? ›

When a business in Nigeria is registered, the business owner has a separate legal identity from the business itself. Thus, the business owner gets separate legal protection. Where liability arises from the business, the owner will not be held personally liable or responsible.

Can I register my business name online in Nigeria? ›


An individual can now register a company online with CAC, as long such an individual understands the requirements for the incorporation process. Before incorporation, it is important to check whether the proposed name to be chosen or reserved has been registered by another individual.

Can I register brand name without company? ›

Any individual – Indian National or Foreign National can easily register a trademark in India. There is no requirement for forming a legal entity or business entity to register a trademark.

How do I get my name branded? ›

Key takeaway: To register and trademark your brand name, search the TESS database for similar brand names, fill out the trademark application and submit it to the USPTO for review.

How do I know if a brand name is taken? ›

Before you apply, you should search the USPTO's trademark database (Trademark Electronic Search System, or TESS) to see if any trademark has already been registered or applied for that is: Similar to your trademark. Used on related products or for related services, and. Live.


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