I confess to a new found respect for columnists who put in daily articles because this experience is humbling!! This week I’m looking to keep it a little short and I hope that we are still able to share and debate the issues of life, living and work.
Have you ever noticed how business in Nigeria follows certain trends? Almost like fashion there tend to be certain predominant businesses at any given time. Remember business centres? Miracle banks? Clothing boutiques in Ikeja? Exactly. So here is a list of businesses that we think will get their time in the sun in 2008/2009.
BUY TO LET; while this sounds distinctly British in origin and use, the emergence of mortgage facilities in Nigeria with the decent profits to be reaped in redoing homes and putting them on the market will certainly put a new twist on the property business in Nigeria. A definite investment option.
DRIVE THROUGHS; again a very American concept (simply because everyone drives). There will be an emergence of purely takeout restaurants which save costs on interior designs and waiters. They will essentially serve you in your car and the entire process will be faster and possibly cheaper, putting pressure on the traditional ‘sit in’ fast food houses. A definite investment option.
BOUTIQUE HOTELS; Smaller more intimate styled hotels with 8 to 10 rooms. These are a direct result of the pressure on traditional hotels who are often booked to the hilt. The market will also boom because savvy homeowners are discovering the profit margins on converting a home into a small hotel can generate tremendous profits far in excess of annual rent.
SHARES; the market will continue to produce overnight millionaires and doesn’t look to cool anytime soon. The trick as we have now learnt is to buy in the secondary market and trade from there as IPO’s can turn into an investor’s nightmare. Look out for smaller companies who look set to be bought out and always ask the pros.
DELIVERY SERVICES; I recently read about a company in the states that offers ‘dog walkers’. So if you are too tired, lazy or busy to walk your dog; for a small fee they will come to your house, get your dog and walk it! Incredible! While we are still some way from that, there will be a definite increase in services that are purely designed to take the stress of you. From 24 Hour taxi services to companies that offer personal assistant services. There is already a private investigation agency in Lagos (Enquiries and Verifications Nigeria Limited) and a whole plethora of other seemingly foreign services will hit the market.
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QUOTE OF THE WEEK; what lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to lies within us…Samuel Taylor Coleridge