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Company Formation in Singapore

Updated on Saturday 13th July 2024

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BridgeWest offers full company formation packages in Singapore, in order to cover any of your various business needs: opening representative offices, establishing branches or subsidiaries, starting an NGO, providing accounting services or legal consultancy, tax planning and tax minimization strategy.
 
This offshore jurisdiction is famous for its pro-business atmosphere, proficient in attracting wide-ranging overseas funds and big business entrepreneurs.
 

What company types are available for registration in Singapore? 
 

Singapore offers a variety of corporate structures available for incorporation. Investors can open a company in Singapore as a company limited by shares (in the form of a private or public entity) or a public company limited by guarantee. 

They can also set up an exempt private company or unlimited companies (there are 3 types – unlimited private company, unlimited exempt private company and unlimited public company). Regarding these company types, we present the following:

  • the 7 company types represent companies with legal personality, separate from the shareholders;
  • in most cases, the companies can be set up by minimum 1 shareholder and maximum 50;
  • it is possible to start a business in Singapore with more than 50 shareholders in the case of a unlimited public company;
  • there are 2 company types where the maximum number of shareholders is limited to 20 and this applies to the exempt private company and the unlimited exempt private company;
  • any of these companies can be incorporated with a minimum capital of $1, and those that will have a capital of $500,000 will automatically become members of the Singapore Business Federation (SBF).  

 

 

Steps for company formation in Singapore

 

The steps we present here apply to incorporating a company (a limited liability company) in Singapore. This is the most common business type found in this country and is the equivalent of a private limited liability company. 

This is the best solution of organization for small and medium business in Singapore, especially for the small costs of registration and advantageous tax system. There are some more duties to abide by compared to other business structures such as the sole proprietorship. The registration procedure is very easy and the process is made done online so the bureaucracy is almost inexistent.

The first step for starting a company in Singapore is to choose the name/names of the future company. Shareholders’ or directors’ details are also needed. The submitted name will be checked via Bizfile by the Singapore authorities and availability thereof will be confirmed in the shortest of time. Names are reserved for 60 days upon registration.

Entrepreneurs should be informed that opening a Singapore company is a very straightforward procedure, once the following conditions are met. The client provides a series of identification documents for the Companies Registrar, among which we mention: the passport copies of the shareholders and the managers, their residential addresses and the details regarding the parent company.

The company is registered at the Company Registrar of Singapore and will receive a certificate of registration based on the above documents. Once this step is taken, a bank account must be opened. The next step is registering for the Goods and Service Tax (Value Added Tax) at the Inland Revenue Authorities of Singapore.

The bank account is a necessary formality regardless of the company type of choice and it is a requirement that is maintained across the world, including in countries that allow offshore incorporation, where investors need to set up an offshore bank account. 

The foreign ownership of the company is allowed 100% in all the sectors and no authorization is requested at registration from the Singapore’s authorities. The registration of a company in Singapore takes approximately 2 days since the moment we have received all the necessary documents. The process of incorporation must be carried by a local professional agency (service provided by BridgeWest).
 

Appointing company officers in Singapore
 

The company’s officers refer to the directors and the secretary. Their information must be registered with ACRA during the incorporation process. All companies must have at least 1 director, who must have his or her residential address in Singapore. 

The person can be a Singaporean citizen, a permanent resident or a person who has received certain long-term permits, such as the Employment Pass or the EntrePass. The residency rule is maintained for the company secretary as well. 

The shareholders may be a corporate body or a natural person. A local resident must own the manager position along with other appointed local or foreign managers (if there are more directors). The managers can only be natural persons, above 18 years old.

A natural person, local resident, must be the secretary of the company. He/she may not be at the same time shareholder of the company or manager. 
 

Services provided for Singapore company incorporation

 

Our team will help in drafting the Articles of Association (necessary for company incorporation in Singapore); the Articles of Association of the Singapore company can be signed through Power of Attorney.

The current form of the Articles of Association in Singapore is known as the Constitution, the main document through which a legal entity gains legal personality and recognition. This document must provide information on the basics of any company, such as:

  1. its trading name;
  2. the registered address;
  3. the objects of activity;
  4. the capital and the number of shares;
  5. the company’s internal rules of governance. 

 

We can also assist in drafting all other documents required for the incorporation of the Singapore company; these documents include: specimen signatures, special forms provided by the Company Registration Office in Singapore, passport copies etc.

You can rely on us on offering a registered office in Singapore for your company, which is mandatory to have for starting a business in this offshore jurisdiction (the registered office may be any address where the Singapore company declares to have its headquarters), as well as in setting up a bank account for your Singapore company.

 

 Singapore key facts

 

Singapore has a very convenient location, being situated in the heart of Southeast Asia, making it possible for your business to access a market of 2.8 billion people. A nucleus in the Asia-Pacific region, Singapore’s Changi Airport provides businesses with trouble-free contact to all key Asian markets. The workforce is well trained and educated, considered to be number one in the world.

Singapore is considered the most politically stable country in the world and also is ranked on the 1st place in Asia at the quality of life. The government tax policy is a major factor in the decision of opening a business here. Singapore is seen by many specialists to be the most suitable destination in the world for doing business.

Investors from all over the world look for setting up companies in Singapore, due to many advantages, as presented below:

 

  • rated no. 1 country in Asia for the quality of life;
  • personal tax rates start at 0% and do not exceed 24%;
  • the corporate tax rate is 17%;
  • no dividend or capital gains taxes;
  • no estate/death/inheritance tax;
  • Singapore ranks no. 1 in the world, according to the World Bank, for ease of doing business;
  • Singapore is known as the third wealthiest nation in the world (Forbes magazine).

 

There are other reasons for selecting this country for business purposes, which can be detailed by our team. Bridgewest provides company formation services in Singapore. Please contact us for more information and prices.