Your essential guide to incorporating a company in Singapore

Your essential guide to incorporating a company in Singapore

Singapore is a land blooming with opportunities. In the past couple of years, its economy and the entrepreneurial environment have seen a massive overhaul in growth and prosperity. Just about any other day, we come across a new startup with potential and promise. As a result, it has been deemed obligatory for the government to incorporate a way for these companies to settle and get started without hassle.

If you are also that person looking to figure out a way to kick-off, fortunately, you couldn’t have come across this blog at any better time than this. We will mentor you on how to incorporate a company in Singapore with all the intricacies so that you are fully aware of everything. No omissions!

Spoiler alert: it’s easy.

How to incorporate a company in Singapore

Our guide on how to incorporate a company in Singapore is broken down into two main phases. Once you get through those, you are good to go.

They are:

  • Figuring out what structure your business needs
  • Informing your service provider before incorporation

Let’s discuss these.

Figuring out what structure your business needs

Before breaking the ice, you need to figure out a structure that fits your business model, everything from its vision to goals, so that you can plan out your strategic approach.

Knowing your planned business activities will put you in a position to determine each one of your moves. Everything you would do will align with your goals, and your entire team will be on the same page, supported by your plans.

Determining the capital you will have will help you understand and identify where to spend your money and know that it will be an investment.

Next, your revenue projections must be clear to you so that you can know where you are heading while leaving room for adjustments as you continue in your pursuit.

Understanding your company’s scaling process will help you partner with the right companies and associates to assist in your growth to the expectations you have thought of.

Lastly, identifying the number of partners or shareholders will allow you to hit the right partnerships at the right time.

Singapore has a plethora of legal business structures such as sole proprietorships, limited liability companies, branch offices, subsidiaries, and representative offices. Choosing from these is dependent on your business model and it’s crucial to get that settled as soon as possible.

Informing your service provider before incorporation

While receiving incorporation services from a service provider, you must keep in mind a range of things. These include everything from the company’s name to the shareholders to the resident directors to tax exemptions and incentives.

At this stage, ACRA is the governing body you will interact with. They will help you get through everything with their incorporation services.

Company name

ACRA will inspect your company name; therefore, you must choose one representing your services or products. Their criteria are strict as it demands that the name should not be obscene or disgraceful. It must not resemble another company and transgress trademarks.

Therefore you must look into all of these with caution so that you are not rejected by the governing body and have your hopes shattered. The safest bet is to go for something that you can imagine coming across as an ordinary consumer.

It is also recommended to have back-up options in the case of rejection for the one you had prioritized. As an added tip, ensure if there is a site domain that can go alongside your business.

Shareholders

The company incorporation services Singapore demands you to have at least one shareholder or a maximum of 50. The difference in countries doesn’t matter; it can be a foreigner or a local, and so does the scale. It’s okay to have a single person or even a full-fledged corporation. The only thing that concerns authority is that the shareholder must have purchased your shares or have subscribed to them.

Since the details are always public, you should get this aspect done and dusted, so there remains no barrier in your way. Any requirement that you fail to complete will result in a non-approval by the company incorporation services Singapore.

Resident directors

If you are a foreigner seeking your company’s incorporation, you need to get at least one resident director. That person needs to be a Singapore citizen, permanent resident or may possess a Singapore Pass- the Entrepreneur Pass.

If the director is an Employment Pass holder, he should first get a Letter of Consent from the Ministry of Manpower. The age requirement for him needs to be at least 18, while the person’s past must be clean of any criminal record and must never have been declared bankrupt.

Moreover, the director can be the shareholder too.

Company secretary

If you are going to incorporate your company in Singapore, a company secretary is an essential aspect of the job. Once again, that person needs to fulfill requirements such as being at least 18 years old, a Singapore citizen or holding a Singapore Pass, and a permanent resident. Plus, you should have him appointed within six months of incorporation.

This is not something to ever overlook because a company’s secretary holds great importance in Singapore’s business world. He needs to be competent enough to guide and communicate with the directors.

If the company has several directors, one of them can be the company secretary too. Several company incorporation services Singapore allow you to outsource your secretarial work to the sea of professionals seeking work.

Share capital/paid-up capital

Paid-up Capital is the money that you have received from exchanging your shares with stockholders. In Singapore, the rule is to have at least S$1 paid-up capital for the registration. However, an equivalent amount can be in other currencies too.

It is to be considered that ‘bearer shares’ and ’No par value shares’ are not allowed. The maximum amount of share capital can be any amount!

 

The company incorporation services Singapore are tailored to ensure that your company is legitimate and authentic, and they do it by layering their process on several stages.

Registered address

Amidst the incorporation process, ACRA demands an official address of the company. This address acts as the geographical location for all your mailing and communications. People looking to acquire your services or contact you will visit this location.

Once again, ACRA has its requirements that must be fulfilled. The location must strictly be allocated for commercial use, should not just be a P.O box, and the office must be accessible to everyone for a minimum of 5 hours every workday.

Singapore also offers the choice to go for a virtual or coworking office. Incorporation services providers can suggest options for choosing an address too.

Governance structure

Clearing through the stage of Governance Structure is a crucial part of getting your company incorporated. The structure and your relationship with the stockholders are determined by the company’s constitutional documents.

As of 2016, the document called ‘Constitution’ has merged the memorandum and the articles of association. All those companies registered before this can continue in their own way and would not have to combine their documentation.

Moreover, members of the companies can go on to secure an important place in how the company has laid its governance structure.

Taxation services Singapore

Tax exemptions and incentives

Taxation services Singapore are targeted at your own benefit. Singapore’s government has initiated tax exemptions and incentives to the new and novel start-ups to encourage their bloom. Newly registered companies enjoy attractive exemptions such as paying less than 9% tax for the first S$300,000 you create annually. This is then followed by a direct 17% tax on all the profit.

The companies have this massive advantage of not paying dividend tax or capital gains. Therefore, it’s safe to say that taxation services Singapore love the emergence of new companies as it leads to healthy and sound competition.

Registration timeline for incorporation

The past couple of years have seen an overhaul in letting ideas instantly become corporations. Today company incorporated services have approached the task digitally, and it takes only two days to get running.

This is a piece of great news for entrepreneurs as company incorporated services have made it a breeze to get through the entire process and start.

Documentation required

  • Description of your business model
  • Your activities
  • Details about the stockholders
  • Details about the director
  • Particulars of the company’s secretary

Conclusion

So that’s just about everything you need to know about incorporating your company in Singapore. Since the entire process is cohesive, numerous brands have initiated their work in the country, encouraging an entrepreneurial and competitive environment.

This is the best time for the young entrepreneurs to be alive as gone as those days when you had to wait for years, just to get up and running. Got an idea? Then, just hop on and get on board! And good luck! There will be fierce competition but you can still make a mark!