One of the biggest problem start-up entrepreneurs in Cameroon and Africa in general face is funding or raising capital for a business venture. They have good business ideas but no capital or sources where they can get funding. Banks are not willing to give loans to small businesses. Investors are lacking or have no confidence in investing in businesses at the level ideas.

Is it Possible to Start a Business Without Capital?

Many if, not all entrepreneurs have once asked themselves if there is a business they can carry out that demands little or no capital. Is it really possible to start a business especially in Cameroon with no capital? Yes, it is possible, but that depends on what you mean by ‘no capital’. Anyhow, there are some businesses that you can start with a very little capital. There are also other methods you can use to finance your business other than personal capital or loans.

See Also: How to Get Free Funding For Startup: Startup Competitions For 2017

Businesses you can Start with Little or No Capital

There are certain business activities that require very small capital to start with. Some of them require just your knowhow. This we can say no money is involved, but in real business or accounting terms, we can call it human capital. Below are a list of 8 businesses you can start with little or no capital.

1- E-commerce business

You can start an affiliate website where you can sell goods online that actually doesn’t belong to you. The only expense here is setting up an e-commerce website and selling products. An example can be setting up a review website for Jumia. Here, you write reviews about a specific set of products online and drive in traffic. When people read your reviews and buy the product through your website, you are given a commission by Jumia.

2- Personal Service Business

You can start a business whereby the services are offered by you. In this case, you can offer specific services to homes like extra classes, cleaning, taking care of old, sick or disabled persons, etc.

3- Activities that Need Just Few Materials

In Cameroon, they are usually called maçon. They can do many small jobs in homes. It can be painting, plumbing, gardening or some sort of jack-of-all-trades.

4- Activities that can be Done at the Home of Clients

There are certain activities that can be done at the home of clients. Such activities need little or no capital in the strictest sense. Hairdressing and beauty, massage services at home, and many others. Usually, female students in secondary schools offer services like plaiting during the weekends. It is a weekly job, though payment is not much, it could help them cover some of their expenses.

5- Middleman or Commercial Agent

These are intermediary activities. That is, you work as a middleman or commercial agent on commission. Examples include selling of houses or independent commercial agents.

6- Intellectual Activities – Coaching & Training

This falls in the line of advisory and training services. These are knowledge activities whereby you sell advise for money. Small business advisory services, business plan writing, offering training at home or in offices, etc

7- Home Businesses

There are certain businesses that can be run from home. Naturopath, massage therapy, etc

8- Professional Services with Little Capital

Photography, decoration, etc

There are other means you can start your business without personal capital as well as going out to get a loan. An example could be pre-selling your products or services before offering them. In this case, you take your customers command, ask for an advance payment before making the product or providing the service at an accepted time.