Most Underrated Businesses in Nigeria; Yet Profitable

Business can sometimes be about driving value from neglect. A look into some of the most underrated businesses in Nigeria shows that sometimes class or general acceptance doesn’t always apply to the rules of investment. While several people want classy businesses, the interesting thing is that some of these most underrated businesses in Nigeria are ignorantly profiled even when some of their products or services are essential to our survival as a society.

At other times, people who underrate these lucrative enterprises could be looking from the perspective of aesthetic, societal appeal or personal views. Despite the majority of the population looking down on some of these business sectors or even looking down on the individuals who engage in such ventures, these services and products are highly lucrative.

Sometimes, because of Nigeria’s diversity, some of these businesses may be found in peculiar localities, yet while some of these ventures may be traditional to such localities, practitioners of such craft are often looked down on. At other times, these products and services may even be essential in the cities, yet people still underrate such sectors even when some of these most underrated but profitable businesses in Nigeria are integral to our cities’ effective running.

Even in the rural areas where some of these underrated but profitable businesses abound, the people while understanding the crucial role of these craftsmen and women, would still not appreciate these people nor their crafts and products as much as they would appreciate others, especially in the white-collar industry.

This seems like a societal bias; although there’s no discrimination once the money is made, everyone respects the monetary result of even these most underrated businesses in Nigeria, yet several would hardly be proud of the people doing these jobs.

It is important that every legitimate earning in any society should be appreciated. Humans are social creatures, and when we create a psychological scenario that makes hardworking individuals feel underappreciated about their contribution to society, this can impact their zeal towards such undertaking.

Let’s take a look at some of these Most Underrated Businesses in Nigeria

Sewage Removal business

image for Sewage disposal vehicle

The sewage removal business is one of the most underrated businesses in Nigeria but very lucrative. The sewage removal services people are the real heroes and heroines of modern Nigerian cities, yet hardly do we see anyone being proud of the job. Even when homes won’t function without the services of these heroes, those they serve look down on them. This is not encouraging. Despite how lucrative the business is, usually, people running these businesses most times prefer to keep it a secret as much as possible.

Although sewage removal is best done at night, part of the reason why the honorable venture usually undertakes their service during the night is to avoid being seen. There’s nothing dishonorable about sewage removal, especially if the society understands how important these businesses are to the effective running of our towns.

Apart from the crucial role of the sewage removal business, the sector is highly lucrative. Once the equipment is procured, the business is very profitable and has a huge market in Nigeria. Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa. This huge population churns out huge sewage waste every passing minute. This calls for the emptying of the septic tank from time to time. Despite the high profitability of this business, people don’t quite give the business a deserving appreciation.

Palm Wine Tapping

image for palm wine tapper

For rural areas, especially those of South East Nigeria, where palm wine tapping is a traditional occupation, people undertaking this highly lucrative venture are usually under-appreciated. Palm wine plays a very crucial role in several Nigerian cultures. The Igbos find palm wine very valuable, yet several people don’t always appreciate the ones that produce such wine.

Palm wine is the wine of choice in nearly all Nigerian gatherings where palm wine is available. Despite the high value of palm wine, palm wine tappers are not as valued as their product. This is why palm wine taping made it to our collection of the most underrated businesses in Nigeria, yet it is very profitable. Sometimes, an average palm wine tapper may produce a gallon of palm wine daily. This gallon of palm wine is usually sold at about #6,000 (six thousand naira).

Take note that several palm wine tappers produce more and most times, a gallon of palm wine even goes for more than #6,000, especially during ceremonies, which usually happen most days. In the festive period also, the price even goes way higher. If we look at a palm wine tapper in a rural area making #6000 (six thousand naira) daily, we can see that some of them make over #150,000 (one hundred and fifty thousand naira) a month. This is a country where the minimum wage is about #30,000 (thirty thousand naira), yet people don’t quite respect these palm wine tapers.

Keke Napep, Bus Drivers and Okada Riders

image for Bus and Okada Riders

These trio are in a class of their own. Despite the highly lucrative nature of these businesses, they are quite underrated by the very society that can’t function without them. It is quite disheartening that the people in these ventures, despite how much they contribute to the effective running of societies and how much money they make, don’t get as much respect. Sometimes, this disrespect can occur even in the homes.

For instance, while a bus driver who is the owner of his or her bus could earn better than a junior bank worker, the banker would command more respect within the society. You might think that it is because banks have some prestige to them; however, even when one compares Keke driver to a spare parts dealer or a phone accessory dealer, people tend to respect the shop owner more than the Keke drivers while in several situations, the Keke driver or bus driver may be making more money.

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Keke Napep

This also has to do with stereotypes; however, the trend needs to change. Decency is very important when looking at an individual or even a profession. An average Keke driver, especially those who own their Keke, makes about #6,000 (six thousand naira) profits a day. For bus drivers, this profit can even be more. While Okada riders make less profit than Keke or bus drivers, they earn quite enough to deserve some intentional decorum. The trio of Keke, bus driving and Okada riding are some of the most underrated businesses in Nigeria.

Traditional Fishermen

image for local fishermen

Despite fishing being one of the traditional occupations in the coastal part of Nigeria, this profession is not quite regarded among the populace. Fishermen are also responsible for a substantial provision of the country’s protein, yet in most rural fishing communities, their business is not respected. Traditional fishing is one of the most underrated businesses in Nigeria.

Despite the negligence accorded traditional fishermen, the business is very lucrative. On a day of good catch, a fisherman may be able to catch a handful of fish. This can turn out to be a huge sale while such fish also provide a vital part of our daily diet.

It is a little complicated for us to pinpoint exactly how lucrative traditional fishing in Nigeria is. Most of the fishing communities are located in the creeks of the Niger Delta and other coastal communities, which is relatively inaccessible for accurate data analysis of the traditional fishing profitability.


image for barbershop

Despite this business being highly lucrative, it is one of the most underrated businesses in Nigeria. Although high-class barbershops, especially those in highbrow areas, enjoy some level of appreciation, this benevolence is not extended to all the barbershops. Middle to lower-income barbers or barbershops are looked down upon by several people in Nigeria.

Despite this view of the barbershop business, the enterprise when situated in strategic location can turn out a profit of about #5,000 (five thousand naira) daily. In a month this profit is way higher than the salary of several government workers. Despite the lucrative nature of barbershop business. It is one of the most underrated but profitable business in Nigeria.


Apart from the few businesses that we have mentioned, several other businesses fall within the category of these most underrated businesses in Nigeria. Looking down on any legitimate venture is wrong. Hardworking individuals need to be encouraged. It is better to engage people in these neglected ventures than to have them patronize illegitimate wealth. These people who undertake these very vital yet neglected businesses are the heroes and heroines.

It is surprising that some of these underrated businesses are even things that our society won’t easily function without. In conclusion, these businesses and a host of other similar ventures are highly lucrative. It is important for people to be steadfast in these ventures without paying attention to how the venture is viewed. So far the endeavor is legit and solves problems, then it is worth doing and doing well.

These businesses are very profitable, and some of them are not capital-intensive. When your dream job or business doesn’t materialize, it is possible to give one of these ventures a try. In the end, when you make your money and solve problems, you will realize how much you will be proud of your accomplishments.

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