Rough times? Start a laundry business in Nigeria for N10,000

What if I told you that you could start laundry business in Nigeria with just N10,000?

Hard to believe right? Then you can imagine the surprise when my good friend Wale told me how he started his. I will share his story later in this article.

For me, it’s not difficult to imagine why laundry business is profitable. For starters, there are much more people that detest the chore of washing clothes. Imagine the joy taking your dried clothes off the lines all smelling nice. Now picture your clean clothes delivered to you without you lifting a finger.

Pure joy, yes? That is why laundry business will continue to thrive.

With growing urbanization, there will always be more dirty clothes and lesser time. Jobs are getting extra demanding, both parents now work to meet family needs, everything is fast-paced. For the growing numbers of bankers and corporate workers, they have to ‘look sharp’ every day, all year. Having a washing machine might save time but not everyone can afford one – plus if the cost of diesel to power a  generator to run a washing machine is greaterthan the cost of getting it professionally laundered/ironed minus the hassle, then I know which option I would pick.

The Laundry/dry cleaning industry in Nigeria might seem saturated. Laundry shops might exist on every street but the good news is, there is enough market for everybody.

You see, starting a laundry business doesn’t have to take much capital. Like I earlier said, Wale started his with just N10,000. It is very doable and he is a living testimony. He is about to move to the next phase of getting a shop and more equipment.

How my friend started his laundry business with N10,000

One thing that maade it possible for my friend to do this was that he already had a generator and access to clean water. Here’s what he spent the N10,000 on:

  • 1 dry iron (fairly used) – N2,000
  • 1 steam iron (fairly used) – N2,500
  • Ironing board (fairly used) – N3,500
  • Pegs – N500
  • Detergent and smaller supplies – N1,500

All his clothes were hand-washed. Since he worked from home, it was easier to iron clothes at nights when ‘NEPA’ was friendlier with power supply.

Marketing was chiefly through word of mouth. Another strategy he employed was by wearing his own well-washed/starched clothes to church. Through this, he was able to build a good customer base.

From his story, one can see it is possible to start a laundry service by hand washing clothes first. With time and dedication, more equipment can be purchased.

Equipment needed to start a laundry business

Once you get a steady stream of regular customers, it is important that you don’t just spend all your profits. Always remember how you started and save a portion of your weekly profit for expansion. When you are ready to expand, here’s how you can scale the business.

The following equipment will be needed to start a medium scale laundry business

  • 12-15kg Washing machine
  • Drying machine
  • 6.5 KVA Generator
  • Irons (Dry and steam iron)
  • Ironing board (A good table can be constructed specially for this purpose)
  • Drying racks
  • Packaging waterproofs
  • Washing supplies (Detergent, bleach, stain removers)
  • Others (tagging gun, hangars, buckets, brushes, etc)

Skills needed to start a laundry business

If you are going to be physically involved in the process, then you need to have some skills. It is normally advised to have experience in the business first. Working at another laundry (even if it is for free) will expose you to various parts of the business such as cloth handling, customer relations, bookkeeping.

Perhaps, the above is not an option then you can check on the internet for resources on laundry and dry cleaning. This is also necessary if you’ll only be in a managerial capacity. Must have laundry skills include; cloth handling/sorting, cloth folding, starching, washing, dry cleaning, ironing, dealing with white clothes/special fabrics etc. For help with some of these, see these YouTube videos.

Being good at washing is not enough to sustain this business. Ironing and packaging might just be what puts ahead of the competition.

Marketing and Promotion

The cheapest means of marketing is through word of mouth. Social media platforms such as WhatsApp and BBM can be used to send customised messages to friends and family. You can start by informing people from your place of worship, workplace, and build from there. If you’re tech savvy, you can design simple flyer designs using Microsoft Word. Online print shops such as this can deliver beautiful flyers to you for as low as N6,000.

These flyers can be dropped at homes in your vicinity, hotels, boarding schools, offices or when you visit your bank. If you offer specialized services such as collection and delivery, expedited washing, you should include them in your marketing campaign.

As the business grows, you could invest more in branding. Packaging nylons can be branded with your business name. Branding can be promoted with online presence such as a website. The nature of marketing at any point in time will be influenced by the size of the business at that point.

Promotions can be done to increase patronage and customer loyalty. In my area, some drycleaners include a branded pen with every 5 clothes they handle for you. You can also give free socks/tie washing for clients that spend over N5,000 per month. A customer reward program can be done when customers refer someone else.

Collection and home delivery

For small-scale startups, collection and deliveries are usually done on foot. This works best if customers are close by. Further deliveries can involve public transport. A bicycle or motorcycle can be gotten with time. On a much larger scale, a delivery van or bike will be needed. This will involve more personnel.

Estimated Start-up cost (medium sized laundry service)

12-15kg washing machine N65,000

Drying machine N45,000

1 Steam and 1 dry Iron N7,000

6.5 KVA Generator N150,000

Cloth rack N5,000

Advertising N6,000

Detergents, soaps, bleach, stain removal, other washing accessories N10,000

Others (buckets, hangars, waterproof, permanent markers, tagging gun etc) N20,000

Shop rent N150,000 per annum

Shop remodelling, painting N20,000

Total: N478,000

Depending on your search, some of these can be gotten fairly used thereby saving cost.


For a medium scale laundry, there will be a need for extra hands. As the business grows, more personnel can be added. For example, a receptionist to handle customer queries, a delivery man for deliveries and so on.

Pricing, running cost and profit

Every day clothing can be cleaned for N200-N300. In parts of Port Harcourt, washing and ironing a long sleeve shirt goes for N300. Lighter items like singlets, socks, ties, head-ties go for N50-N100. Heavier items like bed sheets and suits are done at higher cost. Suits are handled for N500 with N350 for some native attires. This article gives a price list for Lagos.

In price fixing, it is important to know what is obtainable in your area.

Running cost include money spent on washing supplies, generator fueling, utility bills, transportation etc. For a medium sized laundry, this could reach N30,000 per month. If you have workers this figure should rise. However, having extra hands should match up with volume of work being done. Monthly revenue can amount to N100,000. A pretty realistic amount when you consider someone like this man who makes about N120,000 monthly.

In Summary

Laundry business is very lucrative. Initial cost is not high and it is highly possible to break-even in first year of operations. It also has its peculiar challenges which are surmountable with dedication and commitment.

Found this information useful? do let us know in the comment section below


  1. Afribankonline December 26, 2017
    • Ethan January 2, 2018
  2. omowunmi olaniyi February 14, 2018
  3. Veesax May 9, 2018
    • Ethan May 10, 2018
  4. Abdulkareem Aliyu June 12, 2018
  5. Silver July 3, 2018
  6. Silver July 3, 2018
  7. Rex September 10, 2018
  8. Micheal September 20, 2018
  9. Daniel O Joshua October 16, 2018
  10. How To Start NG October 22, 2018
  11. Felix obinna March 11, 2019
  12. Benjamin Sylvester March 13, 2019
  13. Rektoh April 8, 2019
  14. Tioluwalope April 8, 2019
  15. chorun Peter August 29, 2019
  16. Damilare September 18, 2019
  17. Kalu September 20, 2019
  18. Amoo azeez October 17, 2019
  19. Adline October 30, 2019
  20. michael samuel December 24, 2019
  21. michael samuel December 24, 2019
  22. michael samuel December 24, 2019
  23. Maxwell Chinecherem December 28, 2019
  24. Folake January 11, 2020
  25. IDRIS AMINU MUA January 29, 2020
  26. Tokunbo January 29, 2020
  27. Babatunde January 31, 2020
  28. Ekwebelem Paschal February 3, 2020
  29. Erivo Regina February 3, 2020
  30. Ojomah O Andrew February 27, 2020
  31. Araba Adeola April 24, 2020
  32. Stephen Emmanuel May 1, 2020
  33. Preciouaanoke May 1, 2020
  34. Freeman May 5, 2020
  35. Paul donalds June 3, 2020
  36. Confidence Kalu June 3, 2020
  37. Omolue john Emmanuel June 24, 2020
  38. Ope July 11, 2020
  39. August 14, 2020
  40. Slideup August 15, 2020
  41. John November 21, 2020
  42. Lsnzrk May 5, 2023
  43. Hffdny May 8, 2023
  44. Hzvyke May 9, 2023
  45. Qrwpcq May 9, 2023
  46. Amhyoy May 11, 2023
  47. Dudieo May 11, 2023
  48. Pbengx May 12, 2023
  49. Gyosvt May 12, 2023
  50. Gnavey May 14, 2023
  51. Rumocg May 16, 2023
  52. Lrfntg May 16, 2023
  53. kelvin May 16, 2023
  54. Fkllfz May 17, 2023
  55. Ftbxwn May 18, 2023
  56. Pxzbni May 18, 2023
  57. Psmush May 20, 2023
  58. Lyxuzp May 21, 2023
  59. Vgatzf May 21, 2023
  60. Srlwem May 22, 2023
  61. Mrqebx May 24, 2023
  62. Jvvrxx May 25, 2023
  63. Zysvzz May 26, 2023
  64. Arazey May 27, 2023
  65. Lyxifa May 27, 2023
  66. Grwrea May 29, 2023
  67. Qqsnmv May 29, 2023
  68. Mhfwsj May 30, 2023

Leave a Reply