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How To Create Multiple Sources Of Income From Poultry Business You Never Thought About

For anyone who values financial security and
ultimately desires financial freedom, creating at
least one additional stream of income is no
longer a luxury. It has become a necessity.
And the good thing is that there are
opportunities to diversify your business into
several areas leveraging on the current business,
and such that the businesses complement one
Mr. Fidelis Ogbogbo, MD/CEO Rifi Food Ind Nig
Ltd captures the essence of the principle of
multiple streams of income so well when from
poultry business he started with 1,000 has
expanded to several businesses,

complement one another and have become
market leaders in their respective niches.
He shares his business experience with SD,
including valuable ideas on how to start and
succeed in some of the businesses, as well as
how one can discover new business
opportunities in the sector one is currently
operating in, enjoy it!
Can we meet you?
Am an entrepreneur, we deal on agro allied, we
have a farm, we produce feed for different
animals, and it is called Rifi Feed. We are also
into construction; we produce Aglomar, which is
a finished product that is used for plastering and
painting of houses.
We are also into building block production, we
just recently started production of cassava, we
have a cassava mill where we process garri,
cassava flour, cassava starch, and the cooled
water starch for clothes, this is still in process
though but the machines needed are all in place,
and recently, we entered an agreement to supply
a multinational company chilli pepper in large
quantity. We cultivate, we procure, we process
and supply
How did you start?
I have been venturing into several businesses for
many years until I started Rifi Feed in 2001 and
it has been upward movement from that date till
now. I have never really believed in paid
employment at any point in my life. I read Peace
Study and Conflict Resolution from the Nigerian
Open University, and before then I had sold used
clothes in Yaba Market in Lagos, Nigeria.
I sold pure water, from there I went into running
a restaurant business, but I started by first
selling the food in coolers and walking around
before I got the shop for the restaurant but
towards the end of 2000 I came to a resolution
that I was not going to continue with any of
those businesses because I did not see a future
in them, without knowing exactly what to do
next, but I was so sure I was not going back to
those businesses again. I gave out my shops -
two of them - I gave them out for free to my
neighbors because I wasn’t coming back.
With the little money on me, I made a trip to
Ghana to see how possible it will be for me to
travel to other European countries, but few
months into that year I found my way back to
Nigeria and I knew this was the Holy Spirit
directing me back home. With a new mindset, I
started again, buying bags and wrist watches
from the popular Idumota market in Lagos
Island, and coming to Ikeja to sell. I started with
N2, 000, and by the end of the day I had N5,
I was using the wrist watch to sell the bags, like
a promo kind of stuff, if you buy a bag I will give
you a wrist watch. I started with one set, came
to Ikeja, sold it, went back to Idumota market,
bought two sets, came again to Ikeja, sold it and
went back again to Idumota and bought another
three sets, which I took home for the day and
used to start my marketing the next morning.
I was into that business for a while and making
progress, and then I moved to Owode in Ogun
state. I had some trainees that were now taking
the materials out to sell for me while I focus on
other things and getting the materials from the
main market.
After a while, I discovered that some of the
marketers were making away with my goods,
some will not sell with profit, some stories of
being attacked by hoodlums, there and then I
started looking at other areas I can focus on.
This was how I decided to start a poultry farm
and because of my versatility and the drive to
succeed, I was producing quite fine, but my
greatest challenge was disposing the birds after
maturity. The few that we sold were on credit
and the remaining continued to consume our
food, because you can’t leave them to starve,
and at this point of maturity their rate of
consumption is out of this world.
So, if you have trained them to maturity stage
and you cannot dispose them, you are in for a
mess. So, I began to search for solution on how
I could cut down on my expenses on feed
production. Then we started making poultry
One of the products we used in producing feeds
is noodles’ waste. These wastes cost a lot of
money too, so one day as I got to the company
to buy the materials for our feed production, I
discovered that they have several other wastes
that could be very helpful for our feed mill
production and to the company. It is a complete
waste and they are even spending money to
dispose of it. So, I had to apply for the collection
of the waste, and that was how I got the
exclusive right to be lifting the waste from the
From that one company we have been able to
cover other similar companies that produce
noodles both in Lagos and Ogun States, with
more materials for us to produce our feeds. It
also means that we have more clients because
we have developed our products to meet the
hunger needs of every animal in high nutritional
And because we also have poultry, piggery, goat
farms we also use these feeds for our own
animals, different farmers with their different
needs, goats, dogs, fish, cow, pigs, chicken, etc,
all of them come to us from all over the country
to buy feeds. And we are still producing but we
have also gone into other businesses.
At what point should you diversify your business
or start another business?
For me, I started with poultry like I said earlier,
and as I make progress I decided to go into
production of feeds because I was having the
challenge of not been able to dispose my birds
on time after maturity, and after maturity their
rate of feeding increases drastically.
So, because of this I went into animal feed
production, and because I may not be the only
person facing such challenge, I went into
commercial production.
If I want to start a poultry farm now what are
the things I need to know?
The fore knowledge of the business you want to
do is very important, I don’t mean just head
knowledge, a practical knowledge that even if
you employ people to do it, you are sure they are
doing the right thing. Then apart from the fore
knowledge of the business, you must have a
ready market to sell to after you have produced
your chicken.
Poultry business is one business that if you have
succeeded in raising your chick to maturity
stage, and you are unable to dispose them by
the following week, you will begin to eat your
profit from the amount of feeds they will be
consuming, in fact, if the second week meets
them in your cage, you will start to eat your
capital all in the bid to keep them alive.
It is either you have a pre contract with someone
you will be producing for that as soon as they
reach maturity stage you deliver, or you have a
very good storage facility like a cold room or
deep freezers and a means of generating your
own electricity to power the cold room or
freezers, so that you can kill, de-feather, and
store them. It is not just about to produce or
because you saw your neighbour going into
poultry business you too want to start.
Also, please note that if you are going to be
producing pullets, the type of birds that produce
eggs, you have to make sure that at maturity
you are on ground, or you have a trusted hand
that will help in monitoring the birds and their
eggs. If you are not mindful of these you may
not break even at the end of the day because of
theft. This kind of production takes a lot of time
and this is why you have to know exactly what it
is that you want to do.
How much does it cost to set up a medium scale
poultry farm?
It also depends on the kind of birds you want to
keep. If you are keeping cockerels, it will cost
N50 for one so with N10, 000 you can start with
200 birds, but you have to also add the cost of
what they will eat till maturity. For a broiler
chick, a day old, will cost about N180 each, 180
times 200 birds, that will amount to N36, 000
and to feed that day old chick to maturity will
require 4kilo of feed.
Because they were very cheap to buy I started
with 1, 000 birds and they don’t eat much at
that early stage in life but as they grow and get
to maturity, you will understand that they are
heavy eaters and that you need to dispose of
them on time, because if you don’t, they eat so
much that you will be so worried to be feeding/
caring for them more than you own children, just
to keep them alive because of your investment.
How lucrative is this business?
From my experience in the business, when people
come to me for consultation, these are some of
the things I tell them: the business is lucrative,
let’s again assume that you started with 200
birds, mortality 10%, which will amount to 20
birds less or more depending on a lot of other
factor. So, if 20 birds died, you will be left with
180 birds. And let us assume that you raised one
chick with 4kilo of feed to maturity level, then
4kilos times, 200 birds that will give you
800kilos, we also assume that 50kilo (1bag) cost
N4, 000. Therefore, N4,000 times 16bags of
feeds, you will be spending N64, 000 on feeds.
Now, If you are to raise that 180 successfully
and you sell at N1, 500 each during festive
period, what you will have will be about N270,
000. If you remove all your expenses, you will
still have some good amount of money, but like I
said earlier, you have to know a lot about the
business before you venture into it, so you can
avoid a lot loop holes.
In my case I read about all the chicken birds that
we were going to be dealing with, pullets,
cockerels, and broilers, I studied their feed type
and vaccines and medication, when to and how
to administer, this helped my business to
How or why did you start the block industry?
When I saw the rate of our growth and
expansion I knew it is only a matter of time we
will become a conglomerate so, I cannot afford
to go and be buying building blocks, so I went
and did my research on what it will cost us to
have a block molding machine, mixer and the
pallets for the blocks, with less than N1million
we were good to go, so we started and from
there as we mould to do our projects people
were coming to ask if we sell, that was how we
started the building block business.
What does it cost to setup a block molding
Like I said we needed structure in place for our
own operations so, all our operation is seated on
some acres of land, so we have a lot of
construction going on every day, then we decided
to get involved in the production of block, setting
up to produce 3000 blocks per day will cost
about N150, 000 for the molding machine, then
another N150, for the engine that will power the
molder, then you have the boards where you will
mold the blocks on, it cost N150 each times
3000, that will cost you about N450, 000, and of
course you should have a land and a structure to
protect workers and your machines. N1million
will be ok for a start.
Does it mean that I cannot go into any business
that is not related to the one I am currently
No, you can do any type of business even if they
are not related but the most important thing is
you must be able to ask yourself some definite
questions and also provide definite answers to
them, if you have all that it takes, you don’t
have any problem, for me, I want my businesses
to complement each other, so they are
integrated, because I really don’t like to stress
myself a lot.
Like our cassava processing mill, it really has no
business with poultry farming if you look at it
very well, but the peels from the cassava adds in
the content of the feeds we produce, this doesn’t
mean that someone that is into farming cannot
do banking, it doesn’t mean you cannot go into
forex trading, anything is possible if you have
the means of monitoring the businesses, but you
must have the fore knowledge of that business,
either you are trained or you taught yourself.
What has been your experience in managing all
these businesses together?
It’s like someone constructing a 20 story
building, as the construction progresses, there is
this push, anxiety that you will have to get to the
completion stage, the beauty here again is
because the businesses are interwoven, in our
factory we are a conglomerate and some
businesses will yet spring up because they are in
the plan for the future, so there is really no
stress at all.
Everyone in our employment knows what to do
and this doesn’t mean that there is no challenge,
but as the challenge comes, they help us grow
or stay strong.
With the recent ban on importation of some
items and dollar restriction, a very big
multinational company has decided to be
sourcing locally and they have partnered with us
to be supplying them the major raw material for
their production. This is in metric tons, and
because of this development it has given us a
push to speed up the completion of our facility
as the company will be coming for inspection
soon, so this also fosters growth.
It has helped us achieve our dream sooner than
we expected, now this doesn’t mean that if your
businesses are not interwoven that you are not
in the right business, no, what I am saying is
that you have to be sure of what you are doing
so that you are not called jack of all trade but
master of none.
For every business I venture into, I have
practiced it by myself before I get people to
come on board, that is before getting people to
do it for me, so, I know what is involved and if I
have employed someone to start doing it for me
they cannot come and tell me what is not, and
over the years we have been able to train
lieutenants who know what to do at each point
in time, so what we just do now is to supervise
the operations, even in our branches in Port
How are you able to market your products?
Initially, it was very difficult because whenever
we go to farmers asking them to buy the feeds,
they felt reluctant because it was new to them.
They were already used to the regular feeds and
the traditional maize a source of energy for the
chicken, but we were persistence even though
the profit was not much then, we kept going out
to inform farmers and introduce our feeds to
But now that there is a ban on importation, local
content is selling, as I speak to you, we don’t
even meet the demands of our customers
anymore. You have to book ahead for you to get
it, we have overcome that challenge of
marketing, in all our products we have enough
market for them now.
How did you start the cassava mill?
It is our quest to meet a need both in our farm
and for others, we have a very large cassava
farm where we produce garri from, and as a
result of that it will not make any economic
sense for us to be taking those cassava after
harvesting to somewhere to mill them, so we
decided to have our own mill and because we
also have some farmers around us who will need
our services.
You can own a cassava mill factory at the
cottage level, but you can scale it up. Depending
on your budget, there are different types of mills,
there are manual, semi automated and the full
automated machine. You need a piece of land,
and you need storage for your garri after
production. You also need a structure where you
will install the machines.
You will need about N500, 000 or less to start a
cassava grinding machine and the machine that
will power the grinder can come within N300,
000. A presser is within N100, 000, then the
structure and some other tools can come in less
than N100, 000, and then you are good to go.
And how much you can make per day will also
be determined by your location.
Imagine if you are located in a village were
probably you have several other mills or you are
situated not too far from town and not too far
from the villages, what you will be charging will
definitely be different, but the truth is you will
make your money if you are able to manage the
business very well.
Advice to young Nigerians and would be
You need to be patient, don’t allow this get rich
quick syndrome to enter you, do not be in a
hurry. I discovered that if you get anyone that
says he or she needs to do business and you tell
them that you will show them what to do for
two years and after they will make money, I am
sure that you are not likely going to get anyone’s
attention, be patient and start small and keep at
making progress all the way up.
It will get to a time when you have gathered
enough momentum and when you look back you
will appreciate that you started small.
Then you need to trade with integrity, let people
know you for your words. Since I started
business I have never had any issue with anyone
that gave me money and I didn’t deliver as
promised. I told you earlier that people pay in
advance to get our products delivered, it doesn’t
matter how good your product is, if you lack
integrity that business will suffer
How do you cope with your responsibility as a
father, husband, a boss and a brother?
My home is my safe heaven, I hardly receive
visitors at home, it is a restricted place,
exclusively for the family, once am home am at
peace and this is why my business operation is
between 8am to 2pm daily and from 2pm I
return to my family and my ministry because I
am also a minister of God. I don’t joke with my
family and give to Caesar what is Caesars, I
don’t stay out late, if not for ministry you cannot
meet me outside my home by 7pm.
Doing all of these businesses together, what
have you achieved that you can say is worth the
Needless to say that God has been faithful to me
and to us as a company, we run scholarship
program every year to minister to children whose
parent are unable to pay their school fees and
it’s in 7 digits figure. We have been able to
minister to divers needs as they arise. My
ministry is my business and my business is my
ministry, I have sat down at some point to check
our expenses and I discovered that at times I
have not spent N10, 000 on myself but for the
ministry God gave me, we have spent over a
million Naira, and this is on a monthly bases.
My joy is that we are able to touch lives with
what God has blessed us with and we will
continue until Jesus comes, not relenting at all,
we don’t try to accumulate wealth but we
dispense, and that has been the driving force.

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