How to Register a Business in Singapore

Singapore’s robust business environment offers many exciting possibilities for entrepreneurs. However, there are certain requirements that must be met before starting a business in the city-state.

For one, you must register your business. This can be done through ACRA’s BizFile+ system. The process requires you to choose a business name and submit the necessary documents.
What is a business?

A business is an entity which offers goods or services. It may be a sole proprietorship, a partnership or a private limited company. Each has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. It is important to determine your business structure before registering your business with ACRA.

The most popular type of company registered in Singapore is a private limited company. This company type is preferred by entrepreneurs because of its credibility and scalability. Its shares are not made public and the liability of its shareholders is limited to the amount that they invested in the firm.

As one of the world’s booming business centres, Singapore has a strong track record in welcoming and nurturing new businesses. The 1 SGD minimum start-up capital, government and private-sector funding assistances, and streamlined bureaucracy make it a desirable location for companies looking to expand. It is also a great launchpad for overseas companies as it is well-connected to key markets in Asia.
Choosing a business name

Choosing a business name is an essential step in the process of registering a company in Singapore. The right name can help your company stand out from competitors and build trust with customers. The wrong name, however, can have the opposite effect and make people suspicious of your business.

You need to ensure that your chosen business name does not resemble another existing registered business in Singapore. This includes identical names or those with similar pronunciations and sequences. Also, you should avoid names that sound too similar to trademarks or registered domain names to avoid confusion and potential copyright infringement complaints.

After you’ve settled on a business name, you should check whether it is available for registration via ACRA’s online portal, BizFile+. Once you’ve done that, you can proceed to filing your company’s documents with ACRA. ACRA will then process the application and issue a certificate of incorporation. The certificate will include your company’s unique business number.
Incorporating a company

When you’re ready to open a company, the first step is to decide which structure suits your business best. The most common type of business in Singapore is the private limited company. This provides legal separation and limited liability for shareholders. It requires a minimum of one and maximum of 50 shareholders, who can be individuals or other legal entities.

You will also need to select a Business Activity Classification Code (SSIC) that best describes your company’s intended activities. This is used for Government statistics, and some codes may require specific licenses.

After you’ve completed the registration process with ACRA, you can start to operate your business. You will need a corporate bank account and you should apply for any necessary permits or licenses. If your projected annual turnover is more than $1 million, you’ll need to register for Goods and Services Tax (GST) – the equivalent of VAT in other countries. You can find more information on this at the Business Profile website.
Setting up a business in Singapore

The first step is to prepare a Memorandum and Articles of Association, which will govern the internal affairs of your company. You can download the standard form from ACRA’s website. Timcole can assist you in drafting them for a reasonable fee. We can also collect any other necessary Know-Your-Client (KYC) documents and submit them to ACRA for you.

Once your application is approved, ACRA will issue your business a Unique Entity Number and send you a Business Profile via email. You will then need to decide on a registered address in Singapore, which must be a physical address used by ACRA and other government agencies. If you are not a Singapore resident, we can provide nominee director services and use our serviced office as the registered address for your company.

The next step is to start working on your business plan and determining the amount of capital you will need. Then you can begin applying for the various schemes available to help your business thrive in to register a business in Singapore

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