6 Steps Guide: How to Register a Company in Nigeria with the CAC

 Register a Company in Nigeria

Setting up a business in a foreign land can be a daunting process. You are basically moving into a terrain which you know very little about and  there are all the business challenges which you would normally face, and on top of that a lot of potential legal hoops which you would need to jump through in order to be properly set up as a new business.

When it comes to Nigeria, the process is fairly straightforward, and entrepreneurs or investors can set up their businesses or their brands in Nigeria pretty easily. Coming towards the crux of the matter, the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) was established by the Companies and Allied Matters Act, which was promulgated in the year 1990 to regulate the formation and management of companies in Nigeria. The CAC is saddled with the responsibility of registering companies in Nigeria. It is a must for company formation in Nigeria if you want to run a legal business here.

Step-By-Step Process on How to Register Your Company in CAC Nigeria

1. Get a company name

The first step for any individual to start a company is to get its name registered with the authorities. In the case of Nigeria, after choosing a suitable name for your company it should be promptly submitted to the CAC website to check for its availability. Usually, you should submit two names so that if one is taken, the other might be available. A name can be rejected if it already exists, is confusing, or includes prohibited words such as ‘National’, ‘Federal’, ‘Government’ or ‘Holdings’ without special permission. It normally takes up to a week to complete the process of business name registration in Nigeria.

2. Prepare the MOA

This step is best done by a lawyer. He/she is qualified for preparing the Memorandum of Association (MOA) and all the related documents based on the objectives of the company you wish to register. It is the lawyer’s responsibility to request the names of the initial subscribers, directors as well as the shareholders. Each director or subscriber must be above the age of 18, of sound mind, and must not have been convicted of any crime. The directors are required to provide a means of identification for inspection by the CAC.

3. Fill the Pre-Registration Form

After the documents have been duly prepared, you are required to fill a form by the CAC, mentioning all the necessary details, and submit it to the CAC again, together with all the required documents. You can also have a company secretary for your business who can act as a lawyer or an accountant and be completely responsible for filing the documentation with the CAC after the company is registered.

The process of documentation is as follows:

  1. All directors must fill the Particulars of Director form [Form CAC 7]
  2. One director must fill the Statement of Share Capital and Return of Allotment form [Form CAC 2]
  3. One director and the Company Secretary have to fill the Notice of Situation/Change of Registered Address form [Form CAC 3]
  4. An individual or firm accredited by the CAC can fill the Declaration of Compliance with the Requirements of the Company and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) form [Form CAC 4]
  5. At least 2 directors have to fill the form appointing a Company Secretary for the company

4. Pay the Stamp Duty and Filling Fee

After filling the registration form together with the preparation of the MOA, the next stage is the payment of stamp duty done at an arm of the Federal Inland Revenue Services. The stamp duty is usually paid at a designated bank into the account of the Federal Inland Revenue Services. After the payment, the applicant proceeds to the Stamp Duty Commission, where the Memorandum and Articles of Association (MAA) with some of the incorporation forms are stamped.

After this, the filled forms and accompanying stamped documents are submitted to the CAC. The Certificate of Incorporation will likely be returned after about six weeks from the date of submission.

5. Prepare the Scanned Copy of Your Documents

The next step is to prepare the signed scan copy of your pre-registration documents mentioned in step 3. It must be further uploaded online as follows:

  • Form CAC1.1
  • Memorandum and Articles of Association
  • Recognized form of identification for Director(s)/Subscriber(s) and Secretary
  • Evidence of payment to CAC

You can upload all these documents for processing

6. Submit the Original Documents

The final step is to submit all the originals of the documents which were scanned in step 5.

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

Essential Requirements to Register a Company in Nigeria

  • Your company can have 2 to 50 members
  • The members of your company must be at least 18 years old
  • You can’t register a company if any of the members are of unsound mind, disqualified by the CAMA, or bankrupt
  • The minimum limit of share capital required for company registration in Nigeria is NGN 10,000

Cost of Setting a Company in Nigeria


Fees in Naira

Reservation of Name


Registration of private company with share capital of N1million or less


Registration charges for private company

10,000.00 for every N1million or part thereof

Filing of annual returns for private company


Certified true copy of company registration


Certified true copy of other documents

2,000 per document

Also, just as a precautionary measure, make sure to check with the authority for the fee once again as you wouldn’t want your money to be wasted. Registering a company in Nigeria can be a complicated process for a foreigner not aware of the regional corporate laws, but with proper research and support, one can start his/her company in a jiffy. Business Setup Worldwide helps entrepreneurs and firms register their company in Nigeria, taking care of all the formalities and legal procedures involved. If you are planning to start a business in Nigeria, do contact us, even if it’s for a friendly advice!


What is a corporate entity according to the Nigeria law?

When a business is incorporated, it becomes a distinct legal entity with perpetual succession and the ability to bring and receive lawsuits. This is referred to as a corporate entity. The Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) LFN 2004 is the law that governs how to form a corporation in Nigeria.

What are the benefits of company formation in Nigeria?

Separate legal entity
Brand credibility
Legal protection

Can anyone register the company in Nigeria through online?


What is the turnaround time for CAC to approve a business name?

1 to 2 weeks.

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