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Top Reliable Business Loan Providers in Nigeria: Funding Options for Entrepreneurs and Startups in Nigeria

Starting a business in Nigeria can be a daunting task, especially when it comes to financing. Fortunately, there are a variety of reliable business loan providers available to entrepreneurs and startups in Nigeria. These lenders offer different types of financing options to meet the unique needs of businesses. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at some of the top reliable business loan providers in Nigeria and explore the various funding options they provide. With this information, you can make an informed decision when selecting a business loan provider that best suits your needs.

Bank of Industry (BOI)

Bank of Industry (BOI) is a Nigerian development finance institution that provides financial support to businesses in various sectors of the economy. BOI’s primary objective is to provide funds for entrepreneurs and small businesses in Nigeria that are unable to obtain credit from traditional lenders like commercial banks. BOI has been operating since 2001 and is owned by the Nigerian government.

BOI offers various financial products, including business loans, to Nigerian entrepreneurs and businesses. They also offer advisory services to help businesses improve their operations and increase their chances of success.

One of BOI’s flagship products is the Youth Entrepreneurship Support (YES) program, which aims to encourage and support the entrepreneurial spirit among young Nigerians. Through this program, BOI provides funding to young entrepreneurs with viable business ideas, technical skills, and the passion to succeed.

Another popular BOI product is the Graduate Entrepreneurship Fund (GEF), which provides business loans to recent graduates with viable business ideas and entrepreneurial skills.

BOI also partners with other institutions to provide specialized funding for businesses in specific sectors, such as the Agro-processing, Textile, and Fashion sector (ATF), the Cottage Agro-processing (CAP), and the Renewable Energy/Energy Efficiency (RE/EE) sectors.

Overall, BOI is a reliable and trusted business loan provider in Nigeria that has been supporting Nigerian entrepreneurs and businesses for years. If you are an entrepreneur or small business owner in Nigeria, you should consider exploring the financial products offered by BOI to help fund your business growth.

Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN)

The Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) was established in 2017 as a wholesale development finance institution in Nigeria. It is wholly owned by the Federal Government of Nigeria, with the mandate to increase access to finance for micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) through participating financial institutions (PFIs).

The DBN partners with commercial banks, microfinance banks, and other financial institutions to provide long-term funding at an affordable cost to MSMEs. These funds can be used to start a new business, expand an existing one, purchase equipment, and for working capital purposes.

The DBN offers a range of financial products including term loans, asset financing, invoice discounting, and credit guarantees. It also provides technical assistance and capacity-building support to PFIs to improve their lending practices and expand their outreach to MSMEs.

To access DBN funding, MSMEs are required to meet certain eligibility criteria which include having a registered business with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), having a viable business plan, and being able to demonstrate the capacity to repay the loan.

The DBN has a strong focus on women-owned businesses and youth entrepreneurs. It has also partnered with other development finance institutions and international organizations to leverage additional resources and expand its impact in Nigeria’s MSME sector.

In summary, the Development Bank of Nigeria is a reliable business loan provider for entrepreneurs and startups in Nigeria. Its partnership with participating financial institutions ensures that MSMEs have access to affordable finance and technical support to grow their businesses.


Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) is a government agency that provides funding and support for small and medium-scale enterprises in Nigeria. They offer a range of financial services, including business loans, to support the growth and development of entrepreneurs and startups in the country.

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One of the loan schemes provided by SMEDAN is the Conditional Grant Scheme (CGS), which is aimed at empowering micro and small-scale entrepreneurs with funds to start or grow their businesses. The CGS provides up to N50,000 to entrepreneurs who have completed SMEDAN’s Entrepreneurship Development Training Program.

SMEDAN also partners with other financial institutions, such as microfinance banks and commercial banks, to provide loans to small business owners. The agency also provides mentorship and training programs to entrepreneurs to help them succeed in their ventures.

To apply for a SMEDAN loan, entrepreneurs need to register with the agency and undergo their Entrepreneurship Development Training Program. After completing the program, entrepreneurs can then apply for the CGS or other loan schemes provided by the agency.

SMEDAN is a reliable loan provider for entrepreneurs and startups in Nigeria, as the agency is backed by the federal government and provides support beyond just financial assistance. With the right training and support, SMEDAN loan beneficiaries have a higher chance of success in their business ventures.

Fidelity Bank SME Loan

Fidelity Bank is one of the most reliable and customer-centric banks in Nigeria. It offers a wide range of financial products and services tailored to the needs of individuals, small and medium-sized enterprises, and large corporates. The Fidelity Bank SME Loan is one of the best options for entrepreneurs and startups looking for funding to start or grow their businesses.

The Fidelity Bank SME Loan provides a flexible and convenient way to finance various business needs, such as working capital, equipment purchase, and business expansion. The loan can be accessed by SMEs that have been in operation for at least one year and have a verifiable track record of financial performance.

The Fidelity Bank SME Loan comes with competitive interest rates, flexible repayment terms, and minimal documentation requirements. SMEs can borrow up to N10 million without collateral and up to N20 million with collateral. The bank also offers loan products for micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises.

To apply for the Fidelity Bank SME Loan, you will need to submit the following documents:

  • – Completed loan application form
  • – Business plan
  • – Certificate of incorporation
  • – Memorandum and articles of association
  • – Bank statements for the past 12 months
  • – Tax clearance certificate
  • – Proof of ownership of collateral (if applicable)

The loan application process is straightforward and typically takes between five to ten business days. Fidelity Bank SME Loan provides a unique opportunity for Nigerian entrepreneurs and startups to access financing that can help grow their businesses and create employment opportunities.

Stanbic IBTC Bank Business Loans

If you’re looking for a reliable business loan provider in Nigeria, then Stanbic IBTC Bank is an excellent option. They offer a variety of loans to help small businesses and startups in Nigeria get the financing they need to grow.

Stanbic IBTC Bank offers different types of loans to suit your specific business needs. These include working capital loans, asset finance loans, and trade finance loans. They also offer loans for SMEs in agriculture and other sectors.

One of the benefits of getting a business loan from Stanbic IBTC Bank is its competitive interest rates. Their loans are available at low-interest rates, and the repayment terms are flexible, making it easy for businesses to repay their loans.

To be eligible for a Stanbic IBTC Bank business loan, you must have a viable business plan, be a registered business in Nigeria, have a good credit score, and meet other requirements specified by the bank.

To apply for a loan, you can visit any Stanbic IBTC Bank branch near you and speak to a loan officer. Alternatively, you can apply online by filling out an application form on their website.

Overall, Stanbic IBTC Bank is a reputable business loan provider in Nigeria. If you’re looking for funding options for your small business or startup, consider Stanbic IBTC Bank for reliable and affordable business loans.

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Another reliable business loan provider in Nigeria is GroFin. It is an impact-driven private development finance institution that provides finance and support to small and growing businesses (SGBs) across Africa and the Middle East. GroFin offers funds of up to $1.5 million to startups and existing businesses, and its loans can be used for working capital, asset financing, and expansion purposes.

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GroFin’s loan repayment period is flexible, and it offers tailored financing solutions that are designed to meet the unique needs of each business it funds. The institution also provides non-financial support, such as business development services, to help businesses become successful and sustainable.

To qualify for a loan from GroFin, a business must be registered in Nigeria, have a viable business plan, and be able to demonstrate a strong potential for growth and profitability. Interested businesses can apply for funding by submitting their business plans and financial statements to GroFin.

GroFin is a trusted business loan provider in Nigeria, and its commitment to supporting small businesses is evident in the impact it has had on over 600 businesses in the country. If you’re an entrepreneur looking for funding to grow your business, GroFin could be a great option to consider.

LAPO Microfinance Bank

LAPO Microfinance Bank is another reliable option for entrepreneurs and startups looking for business loans in Nigeria. Founded in 1987, LAPO MFB has grown to become one of the leading microfinance banks in Nigeria, providing financial services to micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) across the country.

The bank offers a range of financial products, including business loans, micro-insurance, and savings accounts, to meet the needs of small businesses. LAPO MFB’s business loans are designed to provide entrepreneurs with the working capital they need to grow their businesses, expand their operations, or take advantage of new opportunities.

One of the key features of LAPO MFB’s business loans is their flexibility. The bank offers both secured and unsecured loans, with repayment periods ranging from three months to one year. This makes it easier for entrepreneurs to tailor their loans to their specific needs and budget.

To qualify for a business loan from LAPO MFB, entrepreneurs are required to provide a valid means of identification, proof of business ownership, and proof of income. The bank also conducts a credit check to assess the applicant’s creditworthiness.

In addition to its financial products, LAPO MFB also provides business development services to its clients, including training and mentoring, to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses and achieve long-term success.

Overall, LAPO MFB is a reliable and customer-focused microfinance bank that provides flexible and affordable financing options for entrepreneurs and startups in Nigeria. If you’re looking for a reliable business loan provider in Nigeria, LAPO MFB is definitely worth considering.


Which bank is best for MSME loans in Nigeria?

Bank of Industry (BOI), Access Bank, First Bank of Nigeria, Sterling Bank, and GTBank are some notable banks that offer MSME loans in Nigeria.

How do startups get funding in Nigeria?

Startups in Nigeria can secure funding through avenues such as angel investors, venture capital firms, government grants and programs, crowdfunding, incubators and accelerators, and bank loans.

What kind of loan is used to help an entrepreneur?

Business term loans, working capital loans, equipment financing, and business lines of credit are common loan types used to support entrepreneurs.

Which bank is best for a business loan?

Several banks in Nigeria provide business loans, and the best bank for a business loan can depend on factors such as loan terms, interest rates, and eligibility criteria. It’s recommended to research and compare offerings from different banks to determine the best fit for specific business needs.

How can I apply for CBN collateral-free loan?

To apply for a collateral-free loan from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), individuals and businesses can check CBN’s official website or reach out to participating financial institutions that offer CBN intervention loans, such as the AGSMEIS loan or other targeted loan programs. The specific application process and requirements may vary depending on the loan program and the financial institution.


These financial partners are more than just lenders; they are catalysts for transformation. They understand the unique needs of entrepreneurs and startups, offering tailored funding options that align with your aspirations. From traditional banks to innovative fintech platforms, Nigeria’s funding ecosystem boasts a diverse array of choices to suit every business’s requirements.

Whether you’re seeking working capital, equipment financing, or investment for expansion, these reliable business loan providers stand ready to fuel your journey. They are committed to supporting your entrepreneurial dreams and nurturing your business’s growth in a competitive marketplace.