Is it best to use online company incorporation services in Singapore?
Singapore consistently ranks as one of the best places in the world to do business because of its strategic central location, attractive tax structure, highly competitive economy and political stability.
Therefore, it’s unsurprising that the city is also a leading global start-up hub. As the number of new start-ups has grown, online company incorporation services in Singapore have increased.
While these service providers offer speed and convenience for straightforward setups, businesses with more complex structures will benefit from engaging an expert incorporation services provider.
What ‘self-serve’ online incorporation services offer
Many online incorporation companies have appeared in recent years. They usually offer ‘self-serve’ incorporation model services. Essentially, they take care of the basic company incorporation paperwork and administration for you, including:
- checking and reserving a company name;
- preparing registration forms (based on information that you provide through online forms);
- filing with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA);
- drafting the company constitution; and
- preparing the corporate compliance kit (share certificates and registers).
Incorporating online is a modern trend offering speed and convenience. For example, local businesses can be incorporated within three hours using the ‘self-serve’ method. As a no-frills service, it’s an attractive, affordable option for companies with simple business structures.
However, there are some pitfalls to be aware of when incorporating your business online. Typically, online incorporation services don’t provide advice and guidance on how best to set up a business in Singapore to meet your specific needs. Without expert incorporation advice, your company risks increased costs and non-compliance as a result of:
- selecting the wrong business structure which has significant long-term implications for tax and personal liability obligations;
- overlooking important local statutory requirements such as obtaining work permits; and
- missing out on the valuable corporate tax incentives available in Singapore.
Why engage an expert incorporation service provider?
There’s a lot more to incorporation than paperwork. While the ‘self-serve’ model takes care of the simple administrative aspects of business registration, it doesn’t optimise your company setup for ongoing growth and profitability.
Unlike the majority of online incorporation service providers, professional services firms like BoardRoom focus on the bigger picture for your business. In addition to taking care of the business registration paperwork for you, our team of certified professionals can assist you with all aspects of incorporation, including:
- tailoring the ideal setup and business structure for your company to minimise tax and personal liability obligations;
- flagging any potential compliance risk oversights;
- applying for any relevant tax incentives;
- providing advice on and applying for work permits, residency passes, dependant passes and permanent residency;
- establishing an efficient, automated payroll process and accounting system for your company; and
- providing a nominee director, a company secretary or a local registered office, where required, to meet your statutory incorporation requirements.
Which incorporation service is right for your company?
Larger companies or those with complex structures are more likely to benefit from working with an expert incorporation service provider such as BoardRoom. Our team of incorporation professionals can guide your company on the most suitable setup and ensure that all compliance requirements are taken care of.
Using the ‘self-serve’ option may be more appropriate for smaller businesses, particularly those with a limited budget. Additionally, online incorporation can be done relatively quickly when company structures are less complex because the process is more straightforward. For example, you could save a good deal of money if you complete the company incorporation process yourself if you are:
- a Singaporean citizen wanting to set up your own business; and
- the only shareholder and do not intend to add more shareholders.
However, your needs will be very different if you are part of a foreign company looking to enter into the Singaporean market, especially if:
- you already have several entities in other countries; or
- you are part of a consortium of businesses looking to incorporate.
In these cases, your organisation will likely need expert guidance on the best way to set up and structure your new company in Singapore.
Set up your company for long term success with our incorporation experts
Online incorporation using the ‘self-serve’ model is a good starting point. However, to set yourself up for success long term, it’s worthwhile investing in a more sustainable and holistic approach that leverages expert knowledge.
From commencement to completion, BoardRoom’s team of experienced, certified professionals can guide you through incorporation, so it’s done correctly for your type of business.
For over 50 years, we have helped businesses like yours thrive through using our company setup, incorporation and company secretarial services.
Speak to one of our incorporation experts today to find out how we could take your business further, faster.