How to open a pharmacy business in Nigeria

Pharmacy business is a health care business that is lucrative. It is relatively easy to open and run especially if you are a pharmacist or using the services of one.

If you are not a pharmacist and wishes to open one anywhere in Nigeria, please contact us by clicking here so that we will help you do it. You can send us a mail at equally.

Pharmacy business is not like every other business out there that anyone can just open anywhere and starting operating. There are laws that guide its opening and operations. It take processes to open.

In this article, we will discuss how to open a pharmacy business in Nigeria with ease. We will equally discuss who is eligible to open a pharmacy business in Nigeria according to the law.

Note that anything pharmacy in Nigeria is controlled by the pharmacists council of Nigeria (PCN). They are the regulator of pharmacy practice and businesses.

Remember that we can help you in opening any type of pharmacy business in Nigeria.

Now let hit the ground running.

Who can open a pharmacy business in Nigeria?

Anyone can open a pharmacy business in Nigeria. Yes, anyone can but this is dependent on the type of pharmacy business in question.

We have three types of pharmacy. These are:

  1. Retail pharmacy
  2. Wholesale and distribution pharmacy
  3. Manufacturing and importation pharmacy.

1. Retail pharmacy

A retail pharmacy is a type of pharmacy that can only be opened by pharmacists.

Non pharmacists are not allowed to open or to owe one in accordance with the Pharmacy law.

This is the most common type of Pharmacy businesses.

They are scattered around every corners of the country and more of them keep on springing up each passing day. Well, this is probably because it is relatively a lucrative business.

Remember that pharmacy practice and businesses are controlled and regulated by the pharmacists council of Nigeria (PCN). PCN only approves and registers retail pharmacy that is owned by pharmacists.

This is the reason they will disapprove any application that is made by non pharmacists.

Well, there is a way actually for non pharmacists who so much desire to owe pharmacy businesses. This will be discussed much later.

2. Wholesale and distribution pharmacy

Wholesale pharmacy which can equally double as a distribution pharmacy can be opened by anyone. By anyone, we mean that both pharmacists and  non pharmacists can open it.

The basic requirement here is your ability to fund its opening and operations.

Even though non pharmacists can open wholesale pharmacy businesses, pharmacists are equally needed in the opening processes and its full operations. This is to be discussed later. You can hire our Pharmacist if you need us to help you in opening one. Click here to get started.

3. Manufacturing and importation pharmacy

This type of pharmacy business is similar to wholesale pharmacy in that anyone can open it.

Just like like a wholesale pharmacy, pharmacists are needed for the opening and operation of a manufacturing and importation pharmacy business. As usual, you can use the services of our Pharmacist for this. Click here to get started.

Remember this, you and anyone else can open a wholesale pharmacy likewise manufacturing and Importation pharmacy.

Now that you know who can open different types of pharmacies, let us discuss how to open different types of them.

Our emphasis will be on how to open and run a retail pharmacy outlet. This is what majority of people refer to as pharmacy.

It is equally a retail pharmacy that many people are interested in.

We will therefore discuss how to open it in details.

For non pharmacists who wish to owe one (retail pharmacy), keep on reading. You will learn how to go about it. Alternative, contact our Pharmacist to help you out. Click here to do so.

How to open a pharmacy business in Nigeria

1. Retail pharmacy

We will discuss how pharmacists can open a retail pharmacy and how non pharmacists can open one. This is because there is a little difference in the method of doing this.

1 a. How pharmacists can open a retail pharmacy

By law, it is only pharmacists who are permitted to open and run a retail pharmacy business in Nigeria.

Well, Nigeria factor has made it possible for non pharmacists to owe pharmacy businesses too.

We are not supporting this situation in any way, we are rather making a statement of fact only.

Pharmacists who wish to open a retail pharmacy business are to follow the simplified steps below:

  1. Get a befitting name and incorporate it with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).
      • You can actually do this yourself. If you don’t have the time, you can hire this company to do it for you. Use contact us page to write them requesting this service.
  2. Get a location you want to site your pharmacy:
    • The location should be at least 200M away from an existing Pharmacy for it to be approved. The building space should be at least 30 meters square.
  3. Apply for site or location inspection:
    •  You will be required to pay some fees during this application. The fees include ACPN dues, PSN dues, location inspection dues among others. Of course you should have renewed your annual practicing licence. PCN will definitely guide you on this when you get your state office.
  4. After the site approval, do shelving, install air conditioner, and other necessary things that needs to be in the pharmacy.
    • On request, PCN will give you a list of what is required to be in place for next inspection called facility inspection.
  5. Apply for facility inspection:
    • when you must have put the necessary things in place in the pharmacy space, invite PCN for facility inspection. Mandatory things like air conditioner, refrigerator, poison cupboard and book, reference books, shelves are expected to be in place before they come for facility inspection. You should not put drugs on the shelves yet. Doing so could be misinterpreted as having been illegally operating as this will lead to stopping of the Pharmacy opening permanently.
  6. Register the pharmacy and open for business:
    • The Pharmacy registration starts after facility approval
    • After facility approval, you are good to start the pharmacy even as you are registering the Pharmacy.

1 b. How non pharmacists can open a retail pharmacy

Before we begin, note that you can hire us to open any kind of pharmacy for you.

Reachout to get started. Note also that you will need to pay a nonrefundable fee of N20,000 before we can start the discussion.

Are you a non pharmacist and wishes to open a pharmacy, this guide will help you to do that.

Before we enlist the steps you must take, let us tell you who should be involved in the opening processes.

Normally, non pharmacists are not allowed to open retail pharmacy businesses. But then, there are s good number of non pharmacists who owe pharmacy across the country.

This is how it is done:

A. Get a pharmacist to do it for you.

The pharmacist will be the Pharmacy director.

He will get another pharmacist who will be the second pharmacy director. This is not a must as he can use any of his siblings to complete the registration.

The pharmacist literally fronts as the owner of the Pharmacy. You who truly owes the Pharmacy wouldn’t come into picture during incorporation. Well, you can be made the secretary. This doesn’t matter though. It is a trust game.

The pharmacist who will open the Pharmacy for you can double as both Pharmacy director and the superintendent pharmacist.

Please note that you will pay him for these services. That’s, you pay him for being the Pharmacy director and pay him for being the superintendent pharmacist (if he wants to be both). The payment can be done yearly or one off. You agree with him on the payment modalities.

At times, he may not want to be superintendent pharmacist. In this case, he will get you another pharmacist who will be the superintendent. You will still pay the superintendent pharmacist and this is done yearly.

The steps are basically the same as the above.

  1. Get a pharmacist to incorporate the Pharmacy for you
  2. Get a location for the Pharmacy
  3. The pharmacist director will invite PCN for site inspection
  4. After site approval, the superintendent pharmacist will invite PCN for facility inspection
    • Before this, it is expected that you must have put the Pharmacy space in order. The pharmacist director can double as the superintendent pharmacist also. If he doesn’t not want, then he will get you another person.
  5. After facility approval, stock the Pharmacy with drugs and start operation. The superintendent pharmacist will complete the Pharmacy registration as you run the Pharmacy.
B. Franchise with an existing Pharmacy

This method is straight forward. Meet an existing Pharmacy and beg to use their name to open another branch for yourself.

Terms of this will be given to you by the Pharmacy you want to be in franchise with.

C. Invest in a pharmacist

This process is similar to the first two above. In this method, you are acting like an angel investor.

You have the money here, the pharmacist has the expertise and authority to open and run a Pharmacy.

You will agree with him on the profits sharing formula.


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