The laundry and dry cleaning business is one of the highly in-demand businesses in Nigeria. It involves washing, starching and ironing different kinds of clothing materials, for a fee.
Overview of laundry and dry cleaning business in Nigeria
The laundry business is one of the common businesses engaged in by individuals in Nigeria. And this is due to the stressful and busy lives led by most people, in which they are always occupied with work, projects and many other things.
Hence, they do not have the time to spare to take care of their laundry, and this makes them seek the services of a laundry or dry cleaning business, to wash, dry, and iron their clothes, for a fee as charged by the laundry person. And the amount charged by a dry cleaning or laundry business would depend on the number of clothes and the kind of clothes to be laundered.
Now, a laundry business can be started with little start-up capital. All you may need when starting is to get soap, water and the pressing iron you use in your home, in the laundry business.
The laundry and dry cleaning business is a lucrative business, as it helps to take the stress of washing clothes off people who can afford to pay and are willing to pay for it. Now, there are key reasons why you should consider starting a dry cleaning business.
To start with, it is easy to start up with little or no capital. It is also a kind of business that you can operate from your home if you don’t have the means to rent a workspace yet.
Also, you can make it a side hustle that you earn from, asides from your main source of income. And as an unemployed person, your laundry business can be started and grown into a full-time job, which would pay you handsomely.
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Requirements needed to start a laundry and dry cleaning business?
In starting your laundry and dry cleaning business, the following materials are required to kickstart the business:
- Washing basins: Washing basins are very important in the laundry and dry cleaning business, as they are used for soaking and washing the clothes to be laundered. They are very useful when washing by hand if there is no washing machine. You can buy washing basins and buckets of different sizes, and while some would be used to wash, some can be used to store water, to aid the working process.
- Detergents and bar soaps: It is advisable to use detergent and bar soaps with good fragrance when washing clients’ clothes. Also, clothes that should be washed with detergent should be separated from those to be washed with bar soaps. This is to help preserve the quality of the cloth and avoid bleaching and damage.
- Washing machine: A washing machine can also be purchased to make the work faster and to ease the burden of the work on you. You can get a good washing machine at good and not too exorbitant prices.
- Pressing iron: This is one of the very important things to buy. A good pressing iron that can be used for different clothes is much preferable for your laundry business.
- Ironing table: An ironing table is also needed to aid the ironing of clothes when they are ready to be ironed.
- Clothes Hangers: Clothes hangers are also needed to keep clothes, before packing them for delivery. Clothes hangers keep the cloth from getting squeezed and rumpled, after being ironed before being packed in nylons for delivery.
- Nylon and tags: Nylon and tags are also important, to pack clients’ clothes. Tags help you identify who owns a particular cloth, while the nylon is used to pack the cloth for delivery.
- Starch: Some customers also love starch being applied to some of their clothes, to enhance their look.
- Shelves: Shelves are also needed to keep already washed and ironed clothes before they are delivered to their owners. A shelf is also useful in keeping things, such as pressing iron, bar soap, detergents, etc.
- Source of water supply: A steady supply of water is very important in the laundry and dry cleaning business. Water is a key aspect of the dry cleaning business that cannot be done without. If there is no free source of water supply around e.g a well, you can buy water at the nearest tap. However, this would increase the amount you charge for your services.
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How profitable is the laundry business in Nigeria?
A laundry business is a very profitable business which one can earn well in, depending on your location, how much you charge, how frequent you are patronised, and some other factors.
In calculating the profitability of the laundry business in Nigeria, an estimate can be made to determine how much can be earned in the business in a period, say, one month.
For example, if you charge #400 to wash and iron a dress, and you wash 20 dresses in a day, you would have earned about #8,000 per day. Then if you charge #1200 for washing suits, and you wash 12 suits in a day, you would have earned #14,400. Adding #14,400 with #8,000, you would have earned 22,400 in a single day.
Multiply that by 7 days in a week, and you would have earned #156,800 in a week. For a month, you would earn more than 600,000. You can also decide to take weekends off, and you would still earn a lot, from working only on weekdays.
Your profitability in the laundry business can also increase if you are in high-income areas, where you have customers who earn more. And so, you can decide to charge more to increase profits. However, renting a workspace in those kinds of areas would also mean that your rental fee would be more, than in low-income neighbourhoods.
How much does it cost to start a laundry and dry cleaning business?
The amount required to set up a laundry and dry cleaning business differ, based on the size of the business you are thinking of; whether large-scale or small-scale.
To start a small scale laundry and dry cleaning business, which could be operated from your home and in which you might not be using a washing machine yet, it could cost you about #50,000 to kick start with buying the many things needed to make the business work.
However, for a large-scale laundry and dry cleaning business, where you would be renting a workspace, buying a washing machine and other equipment, it would cost you more, probably up to #250,000.
How to start a laundry and dry cleaning business In Nigeria
Get a suitable location:
In starting a laundry and dry cleaning business in Nigeria, the first step to take is to get a good location, where you can work from. This is very important, to attract the kind of people who require your services.
You should target busy areas where many people pass from time to time, creating exposure for your business. You should also target residential areas where people can easily bring their clothes from, to be washed in your shop.
Your location plays a pivotal role in your laundry and dry cleaning business because it determines the kind of individuals that would patronize you and invariably, it determines how much you can charge before you expand to other clients outside your location.
Register your business:
After getting a suitable location for your business, you should register your business with CAC, which is the body responsible for registering businesses in Nigeria. This is important to make your business legally recognized by the government and other relevant bodies.
However, registering your business can be done when you are ready, as you don’t need to put pressure on yourself to do it immediately if the money is not available for it yet.
Buy the needed equipment:
In starting a dry cleaning and laundry business, you need some equipment and things to get you started. And even if you can’t afford the big equipment when you first start, you must purchase the basic ones that you need to start with
Some of these basic things are washing basins, soap, pressing iron, clothes hangers, etc.
Market your business:
After getting the necessary things needed to grow the business, you can then start marketing and advertising your business to people who may require your services.
This could be through telling people face-to-face, using online marketing strategies, etc.
Laundry and dry cleaning business plan in Nigeria
Every business needs a business plan and the laundry and dry cleaning business is not exempted. The following are the elements to be included in the business plan for your laundry and dry cleaning business:
- Executive Summary:
The executive summary is the segment of the business plan which gives a summary of every other thing in the business plan.
It is an important part of the business plan, and it could be the last thing to be written since it gives an executive summary of all other details.
- Company Description:
The next segment is the company description which contains information about the laundry business, the kind of business it is; whether a sole proprietorship or partnership, how the business would be managed, etc.
The company description is very important as it helps one understand how the business would be run.
This contains information about the staff that would be working in the laundry business. Now, at the start of the business, you could be the only one on the team. However, as time goes on, you may need to employ extra hands to join you in working, to make things easier and faster.
So, in this segment the names and roles of each team member are stated, to help everyone understand their roles in the business.
- SWOT Analysis:
SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.
Strengths have to do with analyzing the areas where you are already doing well in your business so that you can improve on them, to make the business better. It also has to do with checking areas where you have more advantage over your competitors, to use it more, to get a better edge.
Weaknesses refer to areas where you need to work on, to be better. It could also refer to areas where your competitors are doing better than you, that you need to check and improve on.
Opportunities refer to new aspects of the laundry business that you can expand your business to. For example, an area of opportunity could be including services that have to do with washing rugs and other household materials.
While threats refer to things that could pose a problem to your business. It refers to areas of the business where you may be facing one problem or the other.
- Market Analysis:
Market Analysis has to do with carrying out research and surveys on the market, to determine the kind of laundry services that your target audience needs, how to attract and retain customers, where to find customers to advertise to them, etc.
Market analysis also involves examining how to enter the laundry business market, the demography of people that require your services, the size of the market, etc.
- Financial Analysis:
The financial analysis focuses on the financial aspect of the business. It deals with issues such as how capital would be raised, pricing for services, how staff members would be paid, the amount for rent, etc.
- Marketing Strategies:
Every business regardless of its kind needs to be marketed, to spread the word about the business to the ears of its target audience.
Marketing strategies in your laundry business include tactics on how to make the business known. Here, word of mouth, other customers’ testimonials, etc. would be required for your marketing strategies to attract others to your business.
- Competitive Analysis:
As a laundry business owner, you surely have other competitors who started before you. Hence, you need to analyze and learn from them, to do better in your laundry and dry cleaning business.
Competitive Analysis also involves analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors, to take advantage of their weak points and learn from their strengths.
This is the final part of your laundry and dry cleaning business plan, which includes additional information that was not written in the main body of the business plan.
It could include some documents, graphs, charts, etc. which give more information about the business.