June 4, 2023

Starting a business in Nigeria is not an easy thing, but starting a business in Nigeria as a student might be the best thing yet. Nwandu Adaobi shares her experience running a jewelry business whilst being a student.


Tell us who you are and what you do

My name is Nwandu Adaobi Agnes and I own a jewelry store. It was founded in 2019 on 21st September with the name Royalty Jewelry stores. It really is a joint thing as my brother co-owns the business.

How easy is it to import and export your goods?

Importing jewelry at RJS is pretty easy. I have a company in china where I buy jewelry from. They are responsible for shipping the jewelry down to Nigeria. I don’t export yet.

Describe registering your business in Nigeria

Registering my business took me months. It was about four months of going back and forth with name picking, and all that. I kid you not, it was very strenuous because I had to wait for approval on everything. Eventually, it got registered but not with the name I wanted because it was already taken.


How do you get customers?

Most of my customers are on referral, I have never met any of them. I really thank God for friends and family that push my business organically.

Describe the lowest moment in your business

The lowest moment for us was last year. It was Christmas and for some reasons we found it extremely hard to make sales. Imagine poor sales during festive period. It was a lot of money not in our pockets.

Are you a student? How do you juggle school and business without one overpowering the other?

I’m a graduate of Federal University Oye- Ekiti, Ekiti State. When I was in school, I found it quite easy because all I had to do was post when I had free time. Business is something that gave me joy actually, I enjoyed doing it. I also took breaks whenever I get too stressed. It didn’t affect me at all because I understood how to manage time and stress.

What is your reason for pushing through?

To be honest, I would say the money. Even with low sales, the business sells itself. I mean who doesn’t love accessories. But asides that, I want to see RJS grow bigger than Icebox. I want RJS to not just be a brand but a lifestyle. This is my dream.

What advice would you give someone about to start a retail business in Nigeria?

I’d advice that you go register that business and be consistent. Nothing beats consistency. It is the ground level of success.

What is the one value you never compromise on?

I always make sure I deliver quality even though I run at loss. Tarnish goods are not my thing. I always give the best and make sure it’s nothing less than what I post.

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