Set Up You Business To Grow, With Lawyer Precious Toju 

First, when you want to start a business, you should take advantage of asking a lawyer as many questions as you can. Precious Tojus was at Joadre Studios, and it was an enriching conversation. 

About Precious Toju: Precious Toju is a business lawyer, real estate consultant and mediation advocate. She helps startups and companies structure their business legally and established companies with financial matters around mergers or acquisitions of other companies. 

Joadre: You encourage startups to set up a legal structure. However, people embark on entrepreneurship often through hustling, without any thought of a legal setup. What is the difference between a hustler and an entrepreneur? 

Precious: A hustler and an entrepreneur are both business people. But the significant difference is that a hustler does their business randomly, as it comes. Depending on what is said to be the in-thing, they hold on to multiple firms simultaneously without any specific focus or plan. The primary goal is to make money to survive the economy. But an, entrepreneur approaches their idea with a structure, a vision and a plan. Such an approach demands a legal system which is the starting point. 

A hustler does not have a direction. It is just business to survive!

Joadre: There are entrepreneurs with multiple business ideas. Is it about focusing on one idea, or what would you advise as a lawyer?

Precious: An entrepreneur goes into business to solve a problem. They see a vacuum in the market and want to fill it up. Even if an entrepreneur ends up joggling 3 or 4 businesses, you will discover that they did not start all of them at a go. The person will take it one step at a time. They will ensure they have built a business and venture into the next. So yes, entrepreneurs have multiple businesses but develop a well-structured manner to build a group of brands or companies. 

Joadre: Can a hustler become an entrepreneur? Why is it essential to legally structure your idea? What are the advantages?

Precious: I must highlight that a hustler can aspire to become an entrepreneur. There is always a starting point for everyone. As a student, for example, you could hustle to survive that period. Still, later you can then structure that hustling into entrepreneurship. You should set up your idea or business legally to have legal protection because anyone out there can steal your idea. It would help if you also had legal recognition. This means that the relevant government authorities and agencies recognise you as the owner of a legitimate running business. This will give you access to grants, loans and other forms of official empowerment. Another reason to structure and set up legally is to use that brand name, avoiding conflict of interest exclusively. This takes us to trademark registration. 


Quick expert tip: 5 key reasons to legally set up your business

  1. Protect your idea
  2. Gain authority
  3. Legal recognition
  4. Get access to empowerment
  5. Avoid conflict of interest. 

Joadre: Why are people reluctant to set up legally? 

Precious: Well, being reluctant is typical of an average Nigerian. Most people see it truly as stress. Some are not even interested in any government grant or incentive. They want to make money to eat and feed their family. They would not see a reason when the vision is not big or meaningful. However, as I mentioned earlier, if someone starting a business does not have a vision for their business, they would be reluctant to do the right thing. Another reason is the system in Nigeria. Things work inconsistently and are frequently demotivating. The systems design needs to be improved, though there are ongoing efforts by various government agencies. Concerning tax, when you pay your tax in Nigeria, you hardly see what the tax is being used for. Hence people get reluctant as they cannot connect the tax payment with the value it brings. Take power supply as an example; people need electricity and internet to run their businesses. You pay heavily and extra for this, even when it is not efficient and consistent. So there is also the Nigerian factor involved. 

Joadre: What about European companies or diasporas who want to enter the market? What would you advise them?

Precious: I always encourage foreigners to seek initial legal counsel. I also offer online sessions, so the distance is not a barrier. This is important to know the legal groundwork and criteria for your idea. Because it is feasible in your country does not mean it can work like that in Nigeria. I offer foreign businesses or investors to guide them from the beginning to let them know what the law allows and does not work. I am a lawyer, and I have to protect the legitimate interest of my client. So I will find strategies within the system that supports and enhances the implementation. 

Before you think of doing business in Nigeria, get a legal opinion. 

Joadre: You are incredibly consistent on social media. What inspires you?

Precious: I have a vision; that at least 8 out of 10 businesses in Africa will have a solid legal structure. That is one reason I am consistent with my encouragement on social media. 

Joadre: thank you so much. 

You can follow Precious on Instagram and contact her for details or consulting. More talks with lawyer Precious Toju can be found in JoadreTribe App

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We created our one-stop digital incubator app to bridge knowledge and service discrepancies for African students and Savvy entrepreneurs looking to start a business. Get the app (Android version) here. For IOS users, a web app is available here at https://tribe.joadre.com. Sign up for our newsletter here to get consistent resources via email. If you want to contact us, use our contact form or consult us through the app. 

Thank you for reading to the end. 

Cheers

Joadre Editorial
Joadre Editorialhttp://www.joadre.com
Joadre Editorial team is an international mix of experts in the field of human rights, entrepreneurship and global politics. We are passionate to educate and create equity for Africans and the Africa continent.

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