Step-By-Step Guide On How To Start A Pharmacy/Drug Store In Nigeria

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Pharmacy or retail drug store business is one of the most lucrative health-related businesses on can engage in.
People get sick regularly and in most cases, visit the pharmacies for their medications whether as prescribed by the doctor or self-medications. One reason the pharmacies owned by individuals is rapidly booming is because of the state of the government-owned pharmacies.
Many community hospitals are in poor states and lack the basic amenities. The doctors prescribe drugs for the patients who visit the retail drug stores for them.

This article will be showing you the different types of pharmaceutical stores in Nigeria and how to start a lucrative  pharmaceutical store business in Nigeria.

Types Of Pharmaceutical Stores In Nigeria

There are two types of drug store in Nigeria and they are:

• Hospital pharmacies

This is found in the clinics and hospitals. They are usually stocked up with different drugs and are owned by the hospitals' managements. They are there to cater for the immediate needs of hospitals' patients.
When the hospital pharmacies don't have patients' drug, they refer them to the community pharmacies. In some cases, the patients also decide to us the community pharmacies because of price differences.

• Community pharmacies

Community pharmacies are popularly known as 'chemist stores' and are located outside the hospitals' premises. You'll see them in the streets, markets or other places. They sell drugs to the general public and its what we'll be teaching you how to venture into in this article.

Why Start A Drug Store/Pharmacy Business?

In Nigeria, you'll see people suffering from different ailments like malaria, typhoid, cold or certain stomach ailments. In starting a drug store, you won't only be making money but also be helping humanity.
You'll be contributing towards eradicating certain ailments from the country. Apart from drugs, other things like sanitary pads and condoms can bee sold in chemist stores. Condoms help in reducing the spread of HIV/Aids and unwanted pregnancies and we all know the use of sanitary pads.

How To Start A Pharmacy/Drug Store In Nigeria

Having studied about the business and decided to venture into it, this article will guide you through the basic steps of setting up your own pharmacy in Nigeria.

Due to the nature of the drug business, the sale of every drug in the pharmacies are being monitored by the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria (PCN) and not everyone can start a drug store in Nigeria.
However, there are two ways of legitimately opening your own drug store in Nigeria:

• Starting a drug store under a franchise

You can skip the process of registering your store with the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria (PCN) by partnering with an already established pharmaceutical store.
One advantage of this is that it'll be less stressful on your side and you might easily win people's trust because of the other brand. In starting a drug store under a franchise, you only need to put your capital in place and keep to the terms of partnership.

• Starting your own retail drug store

If you don't like the idea of partnering with an already established drug store, then you'll have to work on setting up your own. You won't have difficulties registering your business with the PCN as a trained and certified pharmacist but in thee other case, you'll have to employ one.

No matter the step you choose, the guidelines stated below will help you in setting you your business:

• Register your business

Just like every other lucrative business, you'll have to register your pharmacy with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). Registering your business with the CAC is not expensive and will make your business to become recognized in Nigeria.
Also as stated above, you'll have to register with the Pharmaceutical Council of Nigeria if you'd bee running the store on your own. Thy have certain guidelines which include having a certified pharmacist who'll be running the business. If you're one, then your covered and employing another won't be compulsory.

• Find a good location

The location of every business has a lot to contribute towards that the success of the business. One good location for your new business will be near an already established government hospital. Patients in search of affordable drugs will have to patronize you and also, the hospitals don't usually have all the drugs in stock.
However, setting up your business near an already established pharmacy might not help you that much because of competition. People tend to trust drug stores as they advance and convincing them to turn to yours might be a hard task.

• Source for the required capital

For every business to start running, you must need a start-up capital. You'll have to carry out a feasibility study to help you know what and what you'd be needing.
Your capital will depend on the scale you intend starting with. Things you'll consider include your rent, setting up of the shop, buying of furniture and most importantly, purchasing the drugs.

• Find a credible supplier

Find a credible supply who you'll be having a long-term business with. Your supply has a role to play in the success of your business.
In addition, only sell drugs that have been dully registered by the NDLEA and NAFDAC to avoid landing yourself in the police nets.

• Employ competent staff

Depending on the size of your business, you might need to employ any or all of the followung:
  - A pharmacist
  - An accountant
  - A cashier
  - A stock worker
  - A manager
  - A security guard
Teach your employees good working ethics because they'll be working directly with your customers. Also, you'll specifically state their jobs and ensure that they keep to them.

• Start marketing

No business will go far without good advertisement. Implement good marketing strategies and explore the different types of advertising your business to maximize revenue.
You can run online adverts, sponsor radio, TV and newspaper adverts, print posters or even partner with doctors in the area so they'll refer their customers to you.

Thanks for reading along, what did I miss? Don't forget to drop us a comment and share with your friends. You can check out our next article on how to advertise your products for free in Nigeria, it's an eye-opening article that will save you a lot of money.
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