Major Steps in Starting a Cleaning Business in Nigeria – Morenike – Femnix Soaps
Let’s get to meet you. Please tell us about yourself and your background
Morenike is an outstanding entrepreneur, teacher, builder, and an impacter, who has worked as a customer care executive and a geoscientist before venturing into manufacturing and distribution of household and industrial cleaning products with the goal of taking unemployed persons off the street one person at a time while working to become the best home care product in every market we find ourselves. I see my brand becoming a household name in the next 5 years and also creating a manufacturing hub for smaller businesses in soap manufacturing to help take up their manufacturing stress of them while they focus on marketing and distribution.
She has trained over 100 young men and women on how to start and grow their manufacturing businesses from the comfort of their homes.
She is a master’s degree holder in Geophysics, a wife to an amazing Man, and a mother to wonderful children
Can you share what inspired you into your line of business?
I grew up in a family where my dad lost his job early in life and I saw our struggles with just my mum’s meager salary and the family business at that time and how the business helped many men and women find their daily bread too, this pushed my desire to join in the campaign to reduce unemployment, and this could only be achieved by building a business and also building other people.
As an entrepreneur, did you go through formal training or were you under the mentorship of someone? Kindly share with us.
The walls of the formal training institutions I passed through thought me about tenacity and resilience with some basic knowledge to thread through life, however, I started with an informal training of mixing, did so much research, bought formulation books on my own(self-taught), started with no formal business education, learned on the job, later got two mentors and attended some formal programs like the road to growth with EDC.
The revenue in the home and laundry care market is US$3.85bn and the market is expected to grow annually by 14.71%, what are the value chains that exist in this line of business?
The value chain is limitless for anyone can think and create, there are a few common ones to mention.
Branding of products
Raw materials sales
The distribution chain
There is a high level of competition in the cleaning business and a need for a standard service. How do you get and retain your clients? What kind of clients does your business attract?
Femnix attracts middle to high-class customers in both the B2B and B2C model. We have retained our customers not because of product quality or super beautiful branding but with excellent customer service and delivery excellence. We always over-deliver. We source our customers/clients through one on one marketing, social media marketing, referral, and word of mouth.
As an entrepreneur what has been your biggest business challenge and how have you been able to solve them? Do you think the government needs to do more to support the players in the cleaning industry?
Challenges are inevitable, however, the capacity to solve them is what makes you an entrepreneur.
In 2016, there was an economic meltdown and all raw materials were running wild on price increase, As a novice, I didn’t know what to do, I wanted to quit, however remembering my why, I went back to the drawing board and communicated price increase which was so difficult to my customers, it was difficult because I was scared of losing them. In the year 2022, we experience a microbial invasion in some of our products, we lost over 1500L of products to this, I took a break, discussed it with my team and customers, carried out some laboratory analysis and we proffered solutions to it and that was the end of the invasion. It was a trying time because we were losing money and products. It was tiring, however, my WHY kept me at it. The government needs to help us in the area of obtaining certifications like NAFDAC. The process tends to be rigorous, expensive, and tiring and this pushes a lot of small cleaning product business owners away from registering their products thus making it hard to compete
For people aspiring to get into your line of business, what are the basic skills required?
Marketing and selling
Are you involved in any initiative that helps promote and pivot the business of entrepreneurs?
A home care product manufacturer group where I provide support for other manufacturers.
Project 10 where I help indigent youth and women who are ready to start their micro businesses. AWE alumni
What should Nigeria and the rest of the world expect from you in the future?
Femnix will not stop at cleaning products but will build trans-generational businesses. The world should be prepared.