How to Start a Thrift Collection Business in Nigeria

For centuries, thrift collection in the form of community rotating savings and credit offerings has been a very lucrative business in Nigeria. Thrift contributions popularly called ‘Ajo’ or ‘Esusu’ or ‘Adashe’ started in the marketplaces and made it easy for traders to save and access Microloans. 

For centuries, thrift collection in the form of community rotating savings and credit offerings has been a very lucrative business in Nigeria. Thrift contributions popularly called ‘Ajo’ or ‘Esusu’ or ‘Adashe’ started in the marketplaces and made it easy for traders to save and access Microloans. 

The thrift collector also known as alajo or akawo, who is always a trusted member of the community, goes around the community shops and markets with a card usually called Ajo/Esusu/Adashe Card to collect their daily contributions and record every transaction. This is a different kind of microfinance banking business based on trust and integrity and with very little or no capital requirement for collectors to be successful in the thrift collection business. 

As interesting and lucrative as the business could be, the primary problem has always been security and accountability. Thrift collectors encounter more challenges when they started planning to scale the business, they get to have tonnes of thrift cards and data management becomes challenging. Their customers also find it difficult to access funds in the absence of the thrift collector and even build credibility outside the reach of their engagement with the thrift collector.

Today, it is quite safe to operate a thrift collection business with zero hassles. You don’t need to be scared of fund management and movement nor should your customers be worried about the safety of their money. AjoMoney, a digital platform has now digitized the entire thrift collection process, making it a more lucrative business in the digital age compared to the mobile money or POS agent banking business. With AjoMoney, you can efficiently manage the registration of your members, collect and settle payments, and track and manage savings, credit, and investment of funds. 

What you should know before embarking on the thrift collection business

The thrift collection business is a very lucrative business if done the right way. It is a business that is based on trust and you need to have full knowledge of why your customers choose to work with you. Below are some important factors that can aid your success in this business.

Start from your community

Community is the most powerful bond in the thrift collection business, if you do not have a good reputation in your community, excelling in the business will be very challenging as you need to first prove and defend your credibility. The easiest way is to commence operations around the people you know in your neighborhood.

Set a demarcation within your locality and start talking to people that get to see you around almost every day. It could be the woman that sells you provision or your barber, it can even be your parent or siblings, the validation you get is they know that you are around and reachable.

Partner with AjoMoney as an Agent

Before you go too far or commence operation as a newbie in the digital age, you will want to prepare yourself ahead for any possible situation that could jeopardize your trust and operation. Endeavor operates with technology and AjoMoney is that technology.

Remember the saying that if you want to go fast, go alone but if you want to go far, go together with people. Partnering with AjoMoney will give you the leverage to not only go far but also go fast. AjoMoney will help you with  the following:

  • Make it possible for customers registering under you to be open to financial opportunities outside your reach.
  • Onboard you on the agency platform for you to be able to efficiently manage the membership, savings, commission, payment, settlements, reminders, and loan disbursement.
  • Guide and support you with issuing micro-credit to your customer when they needed one.
  • Support you with branding and certification to enhance credibility.

Find a strategic location

A strategic location is very important for your success. As you are extending from your community, be aiming for places where people trade as your primary customers will be traders. Some strategic locations you can look out  for are:

  • Market square
  • Auto-mechanic workshops
  • Saw-mills
  • High institution campuses (primarily for other businesses there)
  • Transport garage or bus-stops
  • Street junctions

Set up a mini office or kiosk

If you do not have a place where customers can visit anytime to access you, it might be very challenging for you to operate. If you can not afford a space, try to partner with someone, place your banner or umbrella (AjoMoney can help with some) outside and stable when you are not moving around for collection.

As your customer reach expands, you can extend your kiosk to different joints in the specific community.

Be branded and registered

Branding is one of the things AjoMoney makes possible for you. All you need is a trading name that can be affiliated with AjoMoney. Registering your trade name with the corporate affairs commission can be achieved with about ₦12,000. With a registered business name and an operating address, you will be able to get first-hand support from AjoMoney which includes the promotion of your business during AjoMoney’s advertisements.

How much you can make and how?

You are embarking on a business not only because you want to make an impact but also to make money. Yes! Money that can sustain you and give you the reason to move on. In as much as you are able to cater to the information provided above, they are enough for you to achieve the primary thing you need to succeed, which is actively saving and paying customers.

The more the customers pay and save every day, the more the potential of the money you can make. Imagine yourself managing about ten (10) weekly contribution groups where you take ₦1,000 from each member collecting around ₦20,000 weekly. Multiply 10 by ₦1,000 and by four (4) weeks in a month, that earns you ₦40,000 monthly for managing ten (10) contribution groups. Let us now assume that you have twenty-five customers saving an average of ₦1,500 daily, with a day contribution being your fee, you will be making ₦37,500 monthly in commission. Which now totals ₦77,500 monthly from a set of people saving little amounts.

If you position yourself in a strategic location as described above, you will be open to a limitless number of customers which will likely multiply you’re estimated monthly earning by five (5) i.e ₦387,500. Yes, you might need employees at this stage and pay joint rents, if ₦100,000 is used to cover that monthly, you get still have about ₦287,500 left.

Partnering with AjoMoney as an agent, there is no limit to what you can financially achieve.

How to get started with running the thrift collection business with AjoMoney

Below are some additional tips that can help you with getting started on the AjoMoney platform:

What are the primary requirements?

The thrift collection business does not have any major Requirements. All you need to begin is a smartphone to download the AjoMoney app and you can begin to manage your business directly from the phone. You don’t have to be educated, rich, or have any high qualifications to begin this business. You can help you reach your long-term financial goals.  require any particular qualification, anybody can do it whether educated or uneducated. The business can be started without capital except for the cards and record book to be used.

How do I begin the thrift collection business?

When it comes to setting up a thrift contribution business, AjoMoney makes it easy and straightforward. All you need to do is create an account and then follow the steps below:

  • Complete the application form at https://agent.ajo.money. You will need to have an account on AjoMoney, visit https://ajomoney.page.link/launch to download and register. Your agent account will be linked to your AjoMoney wallet for commission activation.
  • Agent application is free and you don’t pay for anything (including training).
  • We will review your application within five (5) business days and contact you on how to start earning.

What are the Benefits attached to being an AjoMoney thrift collector?

  • We give you the tool and all the structure and technology needed to run the business.
  • We train you how to earn and successfully run the business.
  • You can be a lone agent or even an aggregator of agents.
  • You can earn up to N200,000 monthly based on the extent of your community of operation’s financial strength.
  • You make money when people contribute Ajo, Esusu, Adashe, and Akawo with you.
  • You make money when people buy airtime and data, and pay bills with you.
  • You make money when people do daily or weekly savings with you.

What precaution should I take In the thrift collection business?

  • Ensure you log all transactions and payments made by members on the AjoMoney app. The AjoMoney agent app will help you in the aspect of account management, payment, report, or data collection and storage.
  • For the security of funds, do not carry your members’ money to the house or try to invest it in businesses you are unsure of. Try as much as you can to deposit it before going to your house.

Finally, Legitimate and good money can be made in Lagos and Nigeria at large. You just need to recognize your strength in enterprise and boom! You’re good to go. Remember, financial security and wealth don’t just magically happen. You have to take action and here at AjoMoney, we specialize in helping you construct the kind of life you want financially.