How to Kick-Start Your Company in Singapore
Singapore is the preferred destination for setting up new businesses or relocating already existing ones. This is due to Singapore’s numerous agreements to avoid double taxation, the several free trade agreements, and the high protection for ideas and innovations due to the strict intellectual property laws. The most preferred form of business is a private limited company because of its many advantages over the partnerships and sole proprietorships. Forming a company can be a cumbersome task at times, thus experts offering the guidance and processing of various documents are so much needed. Incorporation service providers come in handy in helping businesses be formally registered in Singapore, and they can save entrepreneurs so much stress.
The following are the major steps involved in starting a company in Singapore.
Idea incubation and development
The entrepreneur analyses the merits and the demerits of his business idea, and considers if whatever they are intending to offer will really attract buyers. The other consideration is if the business will make more dollars than it will spend, or simply, if it will be profitable.
Choosing the business structure
Singapore offers a wide range of business structures to choose from. It is up to those starting the business to decide which structure they will adopt. Private limited companies have more merits than other business structures because they limit the owner’s liability to their investment in the business. Furthermore, it is more credible to creditors in case of seeking debt finance, and to other persons dealing with it. Their sustainability is also more assured due to the several options of ownership transfer. They also enjoy tax discounts and incentives from the government. The various requirements and documentation needed must be met before they are formally registered.
Selecting the business name
Settling on a suitable name is a crucial part of the registration process. The name must represent the owner’s beliefs and not be misleading. It should also not resemble any other existing business name. Performing a thorough name check would be the ideal way to avoid possible duplication of name and other issues.
Securing the appropriate business address
The business must have a physical local address in Singapore and to which the business documents will be posted. The premises must have been approved by the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) to be used for commercial purposes.
It is mandatory to obtain licenses when operating a businesse in Singapore. Seeking legal advice early before registration by the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) is important to avert legal issues once registered. The ACRA is also needed to obtain the relevant licenses. A number of licenses may be required from different authorities, depending on the niche the business operates in.
Working on the visas
The business founders must address the issue of obtaining visas for their staff that will immigrate to Singapore. The staff will require an Employment Pass valid for two years. This is renewable as many times as needed once the holders meet the requirements. If the entrepreneur needs to be in Singapore before the business is even incorporated, they will need to have an EntrePass.
After satisfying all the necessary requirements, the business pioneers will need to personally register their business using the online platform of ACRA. Otherwise they will can entrust the task to professionals who deal with registration.