How to Start a Tissue Paper Production Business

Tissue paper is most commonly used as toilet paper which is a product used by people primarily for the ablution of the anus and surrounding area of faecal material after defecation and by females for cleaning the perineal area of urine after urination and other bodily fluid releases. It also acts as a layer of protection for the hands during these processes. It is sold as a long strip of perforated paper wrapped around a paperboard core for storage in a dispenser near a toilet. Most modern toilet paper in the developed world is designed to decompose in septic tanks, whereas some other bathroom and facial tissues are not. Other toilet tissue paper products in the market include;

  • Facial Tissues
  • Tissue Napkins
  • Paper Towels
  • Serviettes

Toilet paper comes in various plies or layers of thickness, from one-ply all the way up to six-ply, implying that it is either a single sheet or multiple sheets placed consecutively on atop the other to make it thicker, stronger and more absorbent. Facial tissue and paper handkerchief refers to a class of soft, absorbent, disposable papers that are suitable for use on the face. They sometimes contain disinfectants and are disposable alternatives for cloth handkerchiefs and have recently become more used in the kitchen.

The terms are commonly used to refer to the type of paper tissue, usually sold in boxes, designed to facilitate the expulsion of nasal mucus from the nose (nose-blowing) although it may refer to other types of facial tissues including napkins and wipes.

The continuous developments in the tissue paper industry have enabled individuals to lead a more sterile and hygienic life. Global Tissue Paper market to grow at a CAGR of 4.9 percent over the period 2012-2016. One of the key factors contributing to this market growth is the increasing demand of tissue paper for personal hygiene.

On the other hand, the increasing demand for hand-drier machines could challenge the growth of this market. But even with this, you still find the tissue paper placed side-by-side the hand drier in Nigeria. The global tissue paper market has been forecasted to grow at a CAGR of 4.88% over the period 2014-2019. Up to a billion rolls are needed in Nigeria annually there is so much deficit of the product that could even reach up to half a billion rolls.

Tissue Paper
Tissue Paper

Running the Business

Before venturing into any manufacturing business, you have to make sure that you have thorough knowledge about the product you want to produce. If it is required, take the necessary training to gain experience in the business. You also need to have some managerial skills. In a small scale business, you cannot appoint staff for every department like accounts, marketing, supervising and others. It may be necessary for you to take the responsibilities of different jobs. This is why it is important that you have the knowledge along with the will to work hard to enjoy the success of the business.

One thing you will have to deal with in tissue manufacturing business, apart from the infrastructure challenge in Nigeria, is the stiff competition as tissue making companies in Nigeria are so numerous, it is difficult to count. Your marketing strategy is vital to your overall success. Now that we have established the importance of tissue paper in our everyday life, it should stimulate your interest to venture into it as a profitable venture. Don’t worry, competition is good for business.

Getting Started

To begin, you have to register a business name. Create your brand which should be what you want your tissue papers to be called and known. The business name is not necessarily the brand name.  To succeed as a production company you need a strong brand, something people can identify with. Chose a brand that can appeal to everyone and cut across all age groups. Let your brand capture your market and build it to be strong. Never do anything to tarnish that name especially compromising the quality of product. The tissue paper business has great potentiality in the international market if you can produce quality products.

It is also important that you prepare a well scripted marketing plan which is simply a document that gives a clear vision of what you want to achieve in your business, at a given time and with the financial resources necessary to achieve the objectives and strategies of the business. It should examine the current situation of the business, perform its analysis, study the competition; create strategies and action programs to be implemented.

Get a Production Site

You need a place to produce your product. It should be easily accessible because there will be need to move products in and out of the area. Your site needs access to good road so that big vehicles can deliver jumbo rolls without problems. It needs to be secure to avoid access to unauthorized people. Take into cognisance that you are dealing with materials that are very burnable so ensure that measures are taken to prevent fire outbreaks. It doesn’t have to be elaborate but you need a roomy environment where you can keep machines, assemble and package tissue paper, and keep your company running till you can afford to build a more befitting complex for your business. A three bedroom flat should or a warehouse- be adequate for starters depending on the scale you want to begin on. You should locate your site very close to market. Everything runs on electricity so keep this in mind when you choose a site. It’s possible to purchase power generating machine but the cost of running the machine could be burdensome for someone just starting out. So find a place that has passable power supply.

Raise Capital

This is just to make you know the financial implication of going into the venture. To start you will need up to N5,000,000.00 for small scale and a minimum of N20,000,000.00 upwards for medium to large scale production. You can raise capital from your personal savings, partnership and bank overdraft or even get an investor who can invest in your idea. How much you have when you are beginning is going to determine your scale of production. It is possible to begin to make profit on investment in the first year if the enterprise is properly managed.

Purchase Equipment

The type of equipment you buy depends on the amount of money available and on your intended scale of production. For medium or large-scale production, you will need machines. Some of the machines are made locally by fabricators while the more efficient machines are produced by engineering companies around the world and usually pretty expensive. We patronize Chinese products a lot in Nigeria in this industry probably because they are relatively cheaper than most.

Buy Jumbo Reels

A jumbo reel is a very gigantic reel of tissue from which different tissue sizes are made. It is the most vital component of tissue production. Jumbo reels are manufactured by paper recycling companies. In Nigeria, there are a number of paper recycling companies in Lagos. Tissue manufacturing essentially involves cutting up jumbo reels into smaller sizes for home use.

In addition, note that you will need to hire both skilled and unskilled employees to kick start your business. Indeed skilled workers will save you a great deal in the cost of training newbie’s as they will definitely bring in the experience they must have gathered from previous employers and at the same time train your newbie’s on the job

Raw materials also play an important part in the successful running of this business. Core paper and jumbo reels are the main raw materials used in tissue paper manufacturing. The others materials are wrapping paper, glue, cellophane etc. The process of the production of tissue paper is not a complicated one as most of the work will be done in the tissue paper making machine. Below is the different equipment that you will need for the manufacturing process:

  • Band saw cutter
  • Jumbo Reel Winding Machine
  • Core Gluing Machine
  • Cutting Machine
  • Perforating unit
  • Embossing unit

The Production Process Involved in a Tissue Paper Manufacturing Business

The production unit is the key to the success of your business. The quality of papers you make and how you market them will be the key that sets the tone for your business. The process of making tissue paper includes.

  • Creation of the stock
  • Head box

First and foremost, the pulp is dissolved using water. The fibres in the pulp can either be fresh or derived from recycled paper. The fibres usually come from wood, although they also can originate from straw or sugar cane residue. Tissue paper products are generally made from three main types of raw material namely; wood free (or chemical) pulp, wood-containing (or mechanical) pulp and recovered paper.

At this stage the stock is sprayed into the machine and distributed evenly along the entire width of the machine in the gap between two rolls. On one roll there is a wire (screen cloth) and on the other a felt.

  • Felt

The future paper attaches to the felt and follows it on into the machine. The felt is made of thick textile and absorbs some of the water.

  • Pressing

At this stage the paper web is pressed between a suction press roll and the large Yankee dryer. The suction press roll is perforated and, together with the felt, removes the water from the paper web.

Tissue Paper
Tissue Paper
  • Drying cylinder

Then the cylinder is heated up with steam under pressure. The paper web attaches to the hot surface of the drying cylinder. Water is now evaporated from the paper web.

  • Creping

The creped structure of the tissue paper is achieved when the paper web is scraped away from the drying cylinder using a steel blade.

  • Rolling

The finished tissue paper is rolled up onto large jumbo reels. The paper is now ready for processing in other machines, in order finally to be made into toilet rolls, kitchen rolls, paper tissues or paper towels.


Packaging is usually dependent on the type of toilet tissue paper you have produced be it facial tissues, tissue napkins, paper towels or serviette. Just ensure it is attractive and well branded with your brand name.

Registration and Licensing

While working on securing a production site you need to get your business name and business registration this helps for the smooth running of the business without interruption from business regulatory bodies at any point in time. Cooperate Affairs Commission (CAC) is the place to get your business registered so visit this ministry or contact your lawyer to go about this in a legal way.

Market Your Product

There is need to push your product into the market by vigorous marketing through all available channels. Ensure that the quality of your product is consistent as if you fail to make it consistent, it can tarnish the brand people may not readily accept the product again.

With this post on How to Start a Tissue Paper Production Business you can go into the business with confidence that you can excel. Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t gain valuable experience where necessary to enable you master the intricacies of the production cycle. Make hay while the sun shines.

Tissue Paper

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