July 15th, 2020 | Updated on August 6th, 2020
How much does it cost to register a company in Singapore? This is the million-dollar question as many entrepreneurs are choosing to set up their bases here.
Small and medium companies all over the world acknowledge that Singapore is an ideal epicenter for business. Many of these use local experts Piloto Asia to help with their business formations and affairs.
How to register a company in Singapore is yet another concern for budding entrepreneurs who’re just learning about this country’s success potential.
If you’re new to Singapore’s business community, this article is for you. We’ll break down every cost associated with setting up shop in Singapore.
Let’s dive in!
The Minimum Requirements For Singapore Company Registration
Let’s begin with what you need to have to incorporate your company before we look into costs.
Ideally, to incorporate a private limited company, you’ll need to have;
- A minimum of $1 paid-up capital
- One director
- One secretary
- One shareholder
Before you can register a company in Singapore, you should at least have one director. The individual should either have a valid employment pass, be a permanent Singapore resident, or be a local citizen.
As a foreign company owner in Singapore, it’s important that you identify a trusted local person for this position. Be sure to choose someone who can perform in such a position because your business’ success depends on it.
Appointing The Company Secretary
Provisions specified in the Singapore Companies Act, under Section 171 require you to have a company secretary. You should already have a qualified secretary within six months of your company formation.
As a private limited company in Singapore, you can have as many as 50 shareholders. Shareholders can be legal entities or individuals, and they can be 100% foreign.
Since your business is in Singapore, your company should have a local Singapore address.
The minimum investment capital to start a business in Singapore is $1. However, it’s no secret that it costs way more than a dollar to start a business. To understand how much you would need to thrive in today’s business ecosystem, you could always sign up for Singapore company registration.
Detailed Breakdown Of Secretarial Services And What Determines Cost
We’ve already established that you need a secretary to start a company in Singapore. Now let’s look at how much it would cost you to hire one.
In an ideal world, you would have contacts of an individual with secretarial professional knowledge. However, that is not always the case; especially for foreign entrepreneurs entering Singapore’s business ecosystem.
This leaves you with the option of scouting for legit company incorporation services Singapore. While you’re in the market for a qualified secretary, bear in mind that there are three main factors that determine secretarial costs;
Ongoing Compliance Costs For Secretarial Firms
One of the main roles of a secretary is to pre-screen for shareholders and directors before you complete Singapore company registration.
Additionally, the secretary performs regular, and ongoing monitoring to ensure the company is not financing terrorism or laundering money. Your company’s risk profile determines how often this exercise is to be conducted.
Make sure the secretarial firm you partner with is a registered filing agent according to ACRA’s (Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority) provisions.
The guidelines stipulate that each secretarial firm should re-qualify as filing agents every two years. The firms are also externally audited to ensure they’re 100% professional.
Cost Of Professional Knowledge
Like any other professional service, your fees get dictated by your needs, as well as the qualifications of the professional. Secretaries are service providers like any other, and in Singapore, their professional knowledge determines the cost.
Corporate secretaries should be chartered with the SAICSA (Singapore Association of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators) once they pass professional exams and fulfill years of experience.
Every company has administrative responsibilities, and they fall on the lap of the corporate secretary. Administrative costs are straightforward because they cover typical expenditure costs like;
- Filing annual tax returns
- Special resolutions
- Changing of shareholders and directors
Do-It-Yourself or Engage a Professional Firm?
This is an honest question because forming a new company in a new business ecosystem costs a lot, even without adding secretarial services.
As a first-time company owner, you need to know the right option from the word go.
Doing it yourself sounds like an excellent cost-saving strategy. However, you should prioritize doing things the right way over saving money.
You’re better off leaving it to the professionals than dipping your toes into something so fundamental to the success of your company. Besides, engaging a professional firm will give you peace of mind, knowing your company is in safe hands.
Forming a new company in Singapore comes with many costs. Make sure you’re well conversant with all requirements you should fulfill before you can corporate your new company.
Always delegate to experts to guarantee the successful running of your company.