Company Registration in Singapore

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How to Register A Company in Singapore

Singapore is known as a top financial centre, with robust IP protection, lots of options for securing funding, several assistance schemes for startups, a pro-business regulatory environment, ease of doing business, and an attractive corporate tax framework. It also has excellent connectivity and proximity to the world’s largest emerging markets of India and China – aided by a world-class Changi Airport. The city-state also has over 100 plus comprehensive trade agreements.

All this makes Singapore an ideal destination for company incorporation in the Asia-Pacific, both for foreign individuals – may be an investor or an entrepreneur, as well as foreign companies. For this, there are lots of business registration options to choose from, with the option of relocation, or without relocation by appointing a nominee resident director.

We discuss these in detail below.

Company Registration Options in Singapore

FOR FOREIGN INDIVIDUALS

In Singapore, there are five different business structures to choose from, these are sole-proprietorship, partnership, limited partnership, limited liability partnership, and private limited company, which is the most common and flexible business entity. It is also considered a separate legal entity, is limited by shares, and must abide by the Singapore Companies Act. This means that the company’s shareholders are not liable for its debts and losses. To do company registration in Singapore, the requirements are:

  • At least one shareholder, which can be a natural person or a corporate entity.
  • One resident director (who may be a Singapore citizen, permanent resident, Employment Pass holder or a Dependant Pass holder).
  • One company secretary who is resident in Singapore.
  • Initial paid-up capital of at least S$1, or it’s equivalent in any major currency.
  • A physical address in Singapore as the office address; PO Box is not allowed.

 

Notably, a foreign individual can incorporate a company in Singapore either by relocating to Singapore, and choosing either of the two options of:

  1. Employment Pass and
  2. EntrePass, or
  3. Without relocating, and choosing our nominee resident director service.
Employment Pass in Singapore

EMPLOYMENT PASS

Here, a foreign individual can incorporate a Singapore private limited company using our company incorporation services, which include a resident director (nominee director temporarily), company secretary, and local physical address requirements. After the company incorporation, we can apply for your Employment Pass (EP). Once it is approved, the foreign individual can relocate to Singapore. Then, our temporary directorship ceases and the individual acts as the sole director.

Incorporate a Singapore Company with Employement Pass


Entrepreneur Pass

ENTREPASS

Here, a foreign entrepreneur, who wants to form a company in Singapore, can apply for an EntrePass, which comes under the scheme Startup SG Talent, which is part of Startup SG – an initiative of the Singapore Government to encourage and nurture a thriving startup ecosystem in the country.

Singapore’s Ministry of Manpower and SPRING Singapore are jointly responsible for the EntrePass, which is applicable for the innovative technology sector, and R&D-intensive enterprises including the clean-tech and biotech sectors.

The eligibility requirements for an EntrePass application include:

  • Funding of at least S$100,000 from a recognised third-party venture capitalist, or a business angel accredited by the Singapore Government.
  • Possession an IP registered with an approved national IP institution by any shareholder of the company.
  • Research collaboration with institutes of higher learning in Singapore.
  • Based at a Singapore Government-supported incubator.
  • 30 percent stake of the applicant in the incorporated company with paid-up capital of at least S$50,000.
  • A 10-page draft business plan with objectives clearly stated.
  • Total local business spending of at least S$100,000 in the first year.
  • The hiring of at least two Singaporean residents in the first year.

 

Incorporate a Singapore Company with EntrePass


Appoint a nominee director in Singapore

NOMINEE RESIDENT DIRECTOR

The procedure is similar to incorporating a company with EP, except in the need for EP application and resident director.

If the foreign individual doesn’t shift to Singapore, there’s no need to apply for the Employment Pass. Instead, the individual can continue using our nominee resident director service, to fulfill the statutory requirements as mandated by the Singapore Companies Act.

Incorporate a Singapore Company and Appoint a Nominee Resident Director


 

FOR FOREIGN COMPANIES

Any foreign company has three business registration options in Singapore. This include a private limited company, a branch office, and a representative office.

Foreign company in Singapore

FOREIGN PARENT COMPANY

The key requirements, benefits, procedure and statutory compliance requirements of this is just the same as incorporating a private limited company in Singapore. Again, similar to foreign individuals, foreign companies too can incorporate the company either by relocation (with Employment Pass) or without relocation (with nominee resident director). But the option of EntrePass is not available to foreign companies.

Incorporate a Singapore Subsidiary Company of a Foreign Parent Company


Branch Office in Singapore

BRANCH OFFICE

Another option for a foreign company is to set-up a Branch Office (BO) in the city-state, which facilitates business operations and revenue generation in and around the region. Importantly, a BO don’t enjoy any tax exemptions or subsidies available to private companies in Singapore. The requirements for setting up a BO is a registered physical office address in Singapore, which cannot be a PO box; and two Singapore resident agents, who can be citizens, residents, EP holders, or even Dependent Pass holders. Do note that foreign companies cannot register their Singapore BOs themselves. Instead, they have to engage an authorised third party, such as us, to do it for them.

Set up a Singapore Branch Office of a Foreign Company


Representative office in Singapore

REPRESENTATIVE OFFICE

A final option for foreign companies – looking to explore business opportunities first before deciding on a permanent set-up – is to set up a Representative Office (RO) in Singapore, which can be its launch pad in the Asia-Pacific. An RO is just an extension of the foreign company and is not permitted to engage in revenue generation.

Set up a Singapore Representative Office of a Foreign Company


Looking to establish a company in Singapore? Start by filling in the form below.

Contact our consultants

Selected Testimonials

  • Matthias Coessens - Empyrean

    When I was looking for a reliable partner who could help with company registration, payroll, taxes and working permit in Indonesia, Cekindo’s domain knowledge and clear communication astonished. Firstly, we decided to pursue cooperation with Cekindo in terms of company registration, but they also assisted me in obtaining the necessary working permits and visas (KITAS), and we use their payroll and tax reporting services until now.

    Matthias Coessens
    Product Director at Empyrean Solutions Apac
  • Ivana Bartonkova

    Cekindo handled business visa for our new colleague promptly and made the start of our company in Vietnam easier and faster. I particularly enjoyed communication with the consultant, who advised the best solution for us and was all the time available to answer any questions. She made sure that all the documents were collected and prepared on time and we got great support during the whole process. Thank you Cekindo and I hope to cooperate again in the near future!

    Ivana Bartonkova
    Marketing and HR director of Port Cities Vietnam
  • Phyto CZ Sro

    Cekindo assisted us with a selection of our local distributor in Indonesia and organised several meeting in Jakarta. Their assistance enabled us to meet our potential local partners and choose the best distributor conveniently. The decision to cooperate with Cekindo was based on a recommendation from our prominent partner in Bali and we cannot be more grateful. Cekindo’s systematic work, active communication, thoroughness and professionalism was exceptional.

    Ing. Václav Tomek
    Phyto CZ Sro
  • Vivek Singh Rathaur

    Cekindo initially helped us with setting up our business structure in Indonesia and getting us all due licenses and approvals. Currently, Cekindo is associated with us as our business partner in Indonesia by providing a face to our name and handling various business activities on our behalf. Without their help, we would be lost in keeping up with regulatory requirements and being a compliant company in Indonesia.

    Vivek S.Rathaur
    Vega Industries
  • akvo - cekindo

    Thanks to Cekindo and its one-stop market entry solutions, we could start exploring the Indonesian market. Cekindo’s broad portfolio of services included a formal process of our representative office registration, consultations regarding proper legal set-up and even working permit and visa applications. Cekindo’s extensive knowledge of the latest developments and legal requirements allowed us to focus on more operational matters and to build a local team in Indonesia.

    Peter van der Linde
    Co-founder / Director strategy & solutions, Akvo Pte Ltd
  • morning-star-cekindo

    After extensive research online, I reached out to several companies including Cekindo. Cekindo’s info package and summary of services were by far the most thorough and professional and their pricing was competitive and reasonable. Cekindo’s sound knowledge of all administrative requirements gave me the confidence that my company incorporation of 100% foreign owned export company was being executed correctly and legally.

    Kingsley Fiegert
    Director, Morning Star Investments (WA) Pty Ltd
  • Jason Peter Stevens

    With knowledgable team, Cekindo helped me make the whole process of company registration and product registration of health and beauty products in Indonesia less confusing and seamless at the same time. They have always been swift in response and hands-on at every email, never leaving me wondering or worried. As far as I am concerned, they go above and beyond the call of duty. They will most certainly be my long-term partner moving forward into the years to come. Thank you Cekindo!

    Jason Peter Stevens
    Group CEO, Studio XII Pte Ltd
  • Konstantin-Simonov

    We chose Cekindo because we considered Cekindo as a professional company with a good attitude and a streamlined business model. Cekindo met all our expectations as it created the atmosphere of accountability and transparency. The most significant added values that we received from cooperation with Cekindo are the time we saved and mistakes we avoided.

    Konstantin Simonov
    Director, PT. AEKS Konsultasi dan Integrasi
  • DESMI Testimonial - Cekindo

    Cekindo provided outstanding services in registering our representative office in Indonesia in a timely manner. Their financial services have been helping us a lot — our local employees feel secure working for our company. Cekindo became our reliable partner with quick response on our needs. Their flexibility and full support of our business in Indonesia are the main reasons to continue in our cooperation.

    Rajendra Iskandar
    Sales and Support Engineer, DESMI
  • (CFLD), Mr. Max Yang, President, Indonesian Region

    After comparing several consultants, I found Cekindo is a international and professional organization with good understanding of local market. Cekindo helped our company to set up our first Indonesian entity, and also helps with day-to-day operation.  Cekindo showed high level of professionalism. Jump start the business in Indonesia, take care of routine process, therefore we can focus more on our core business.

    Max Yang
    President, Indonesian Region, China Fortune Land Development Co., Ltd.