The new and improved user interface of the official website of Corporate affairs commission (CAC) was on March 4th 2018 released for the general public and having gone through it personally I can say the site and process is now faster and user friendly – you can begin your business name registration by visiting https://services.cac.gov.ng/signup and start registration online.
On Monday, 12th March, 2018 physical submission will end in Akure, Umuahia and Abakiliki.
Others are Lafia, Minna, Makurdi, Osogbo, Gombe, Yola, Yenagoa, Owerri, Awka, Benin and Katsina.
Also on Monday, 19th March, 2018 physical registration will end in Birnin-Kebbi, Dutse, Maiduguri, Damaturu, Jalingo, Calabar and Gusau.
So if you are in the states above, don’t wait for the date, just follow the guide below to register your business name online without having to visit their office except of course to pick up your certified true copies.
Just for the record, this article is about business name registration and not company registration as both are two different things; the first step is registering a business name which also regarded as pre-incorporation filings, seconded by Company registration also referred as incorporation filings and the third stage which is post-incorporation filings involving tax returns, FIRS filings, change in board of directors etc.
how to register business with cac Step 1
So you want to register your business name? okay. The first step is conducting a public name search on http://publicsearch.cac.gov.ng/comsearch/, this is pretty easy much like conducting a simple google search. Input your proposed business name to see if it exists in their database, the good news is that the results include both registered names and the ones undergoing registration. When you are sure that your proposed names are not taken proceed to the nex step below.
how to register business with cac Step 2
First you need to register for your personal account in CAC portal https://services.cac.gov.ng/signup. This improved user interface is much smoother and faster than the former, just click on the link above and sign up. Ensure you have a valid email address and a phone number handy. You will also need a valid means of identification such as National Identification Number (NIM), permanent voters card (PVC), Drivers license or international passport.
Fill the registration form correctly and ensure you provide accurate information and then click on register, check your email address for activation link and activate your account. With this you can login with your default password which is in your email and after login in you will be prompted to change your password. Login and take the next step below.
how to register business with cac Step 3
After successfully login in on your personal account, the next step is to reserve your proposed business name which you have confirmed available from the public search you conducted on step one. This costs only 500 naira and you can pay via ATM cards, internet banking, or direct bank payment using your RRR number generated by the portal. It takes less than 24hrs for approval after a successful payment, when your name reservation has been approved proceed to step 4.
Select payment option:
Fill out the payment form page:
Your payment receipt:
how to register business with cac Step 4
This step starts when you have successfully completed your payment steps above and have an approved reserved business name, After payment has been made, to check your application status or your payment status, go to “My Reservation History”. If your payment was approved and your application status still reads “Not Submitted”. Kindly click on “Action” , then click on “View payment history” to enable you know your payment status. If the payment status reads FAILED, DISAPPROVED or IN PROGRESS, kindly click on the
“Check Status” to manually check your payment status then wait for 15mins to see the updated status of your payment.
To register your business name hover your mouse on “COMPANY REGISTRATION” and select new registration:
This will open the registration page with a message: “Kindly note that by starting registration as a public user, you agree to become a director, proprietor or trustee as the case may be”. What this means is that if you are not an accredited agent of CAC you must be part of the business you are registering as a proprietor.
Enter your availability code as shown in your reserved name approval note:
After inputing the availability code, the business name registration page will be displayed, Click on “continue registration” to continue.
Fill the forms carefully and accurately provide all the requirements stated earlier. Make sure you fill in the names and addresses of proprietors, nature of business, and principal place of business addresses correctly. In filling the nature of the business, don’t forget to add general contracts as advised, as correction of any mistake after incorporation would cost you more money and time. Including the fact that it can be a very tasking process.
When asked if you need additional copies of a certified true copy, select zero, as this is applicable to those registering a Limited Liability Company.
The next step is the payment of the sum of 10,000 Naira for registration.
Click on the “action button” to download and print the completed form for the proprietors to sign and have their passports attached.
how to register business with CAC Step 5
After the proprietors are done appending their signatures and attaching their passports, scan the document and save it as a PDF file.
3). Type in the availability code you used in registering the business and select the nearest CAC office you wish to pick up your certificate from.
4). Type in the captcha.
5). Click on begin.
6). Click on “Choose Scanned Document Below” and select the documents you wish to upload.
- You will have to upload the BN/1 form you filled, availability of name approval note, payment receipt, copies of ID cards of the proprietors, proficiency certificates where applicable.
7). Click “Attach” to attach the document.
8). Attach all documents one after the other.
9). All attached documents are displayed in the “List of Documents window”.
1o). Click “submit” to submit.
11). Wait for your certificate. Once the certificate is ready, you will receive an email to that effect, the status of the registration will change, and the BN number would have been generated.
Tips on how to avoid queried applications:
The process above if followed will lead to a successful business name registration without having to go to their office, but sometimes your applications maybe queried or rejected based on some reasons that borders on your line of business. There is more to CAC online registration and manual registration that any simple mistake will lead to losing your money paid and restart all over again. Proper guidance is needed even if you want to do it yourself and save cost. However the following tips can help in mitigating the risks:
First there is what is called proficiency certificate needed for company registration in Nigeria, this is because there are some professions that requires membership of trade unions in order to register the trade name, for example a law firm must provide membership certificate of Nigeria Bar Association and a medical consultant must be a member of Nigeria medical association.
Here are some proficiency certificate needed for company registration in Nigeria
- Nursery/ Primary School: N.C.E/ B.Ed
- Secondary School: B.Ed
- Post-Secondary School: M.Ed, PGD. Ed, Phd (Edu)
- Investment/ Mutual Fund Company: SEC Authorization
- Advertising/ Media/ Marketing: APCON
- Engineering/ Construction: COREN
- Microfinance Bank/ Bank/ Any Other Financial Services: CBN Authorization.
- Insurance Company: NAICON Authorisation
- Consultancy/ Management: Masters Degree in precised field
There might be other areas which are not covered in the list above but make sure you do your own research to know if you need a proficiency certificate before registering it, otherwise you may have to get the certificate before proceeding.
Also make sure you provide correct and unambiguous data such as business description, address, ID cards etc.