Ugodre Talks Figures: How “wait and get” photographers at the embassies make around N600k a month

I recently embarked on a trip to an Embassy on Walter Carrington, Victoria Island only to be told that  my passport photographs and that of my family wasn’t the approved type. As its typical with Lagos a solution was just around the corner. Loads of Photographers “Wait & get” like we call them where on standby to attend to people like me who either do not understand requirements spelt out in the forms or simply do not read them. And so I stepped into one of their cubicles and asked to be snapped a passport photograph. I was told it will have to be six copies each even though I only needed two to be attached to the forms we were submitting. Passport Photographers usually do not make two copies, they make 4 at a go. Six are typically on request I believe. I did not mind as I had no choice at that point in time. The bill came out and it was N1k for 6 copies!!!! That is N166 per copy!!! Since we were three I coughed up N3k on the spot.

I couldn’t help but wonder how lucrative this business must be and so I asked the chap with the pint sized funny looking handy camera that probably wasn’t as good as my camera phone, what business was like. He cheerfully told me business was good despite the competition. I counted over 4 of them and believe they could be double that figure. I asked how many people he gets a day on an average and he gleefully said about 30. At N1k per person that is easily a N30k a day, N600k a month (excluding weekends)  business. It is as simple as it gets. They do not need state of the art equipments (as the picture above depicts), no flushed up offices or staffs. They need just a workable camera, printer, photo papers, a pair of scissors, table, fan , chairs and a background wall. It probably does not require much training as well. A few touts who shop for customers, power and the embassies who attract visitors is the last piece of the puzzle and you are good to go. They surely pay rent to exist there anyway but that is a given for a business. One last thing you might need though is connection to get a shop space there at least.

In Nigeria, opportunities abound, it is everywhere. Just identify the amount of living expenses that is ok for you and you are good to go. You can’t expect to wish to live a luxurious lifestyle out of this business can you?


*Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

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