The Christmas and New Year holidays are characterised by sharing, and heavy feasting and spending quality time with family and friends. This is also a period where small (seasonal) business excel.
BUSINESSES THAT EXCEL DURING THIS FESTIVE PERIOD.
Christmas trees and decorations.
“Oh Christmas tree! Thy leaves are so unchanging” Apart from the commemoration of the nativity of Jesus Christ, the Christmas tree is the most magnificent symbol of Christmas. These trees can be found in almost every home and business milieus (offices and working areas). While many people buy artificial trees, those who cannot afford it use the branches of the cypress tree.
These trees are sold along with decorations (lights, Christmas bells, candy canes etc.) Many Africans who cannot afford these decorations replace them with balloons and colourful candies. Others use handmade decorations made out of papers.
This is a very prosperous business as demand for these products are particular high at this period.
Toys and gadgets
This is another business that flourishes during this festive season, especially few weeks to Christmas. All types of toys, ranging from toy cars to dolls and gadgets like multimedia tablets, and mobile phones are among the many gifts that parents and relative offer their children or family members during this period.
It is like a tradition for some people especially kids between 1 and 15 year old to wear a new dress on Christmas and New Year day. As a result, many people take advantage of this tradition to buy and sell clothes and shoes during this period. It is interesting how the prices of these article increase as Christmas draws nearer. As a result, many people shop for their children’s clothing in November.
Livestock and food stuff
Beef, chicken, pork and goat’s meat are top on Christmas and New Year menus in many families. Also, social groups and meetings (Njangi) also buy these animals, especially cows, slaughter and share among its members; who pay a monthly contribution throughout the year. These groups also buy and share other things items like rice, cooking oil, maggi cubes, salt and many other, depending on the kind of group.
Some people keep livestock throughout the year, with the aim of selling them during the Christmas and New Year holidays because the prices are usually better at this period.
Snacks and bars
In the African context, the success of a party is measured by the amount of food and drink available for the guests. This has encouraged many people to open temporal bars and snacks where they sell drinks during this period. The peak periods for sales are the 24th, 25th and 31st of December, and the 1st of January. This seems to be the best and most profitable business during this period, as many people invest in it. The most interesting fact is that most of these bars that sprout on every main street in African cities during this period are functional for only 6 weeks in most cases, and close a few days after New Year day. It is worth noting that most of these bars operate without licences.
WHY CHRISTMAS AND NEW YEAR PERIOD IS IDEAL FOR BUSINESS
Christmas and New Year are considered the best period for seasonal businesses because demand is usually very high at this period.
Some people also believe that people spend more during this period in a bit to make their families and friends happy.
There is also more money in circulation as “bush fallers” come back home to spend Christmas with their families.
Whatever the reasons are, Christmas is definitely the best season for some businesses because it is the period for sharing love and happiness, as it is commonly said that sharing is caring. Most people go an extra mile just to make their families feel the spirit of Christmas. The smart ones exploit this opportunity to make lots of money.
AFRIC Editorial Article.