One characteristic of the most successful brands, from Apple to Volkswagen, is that they have a huge offshore presence. Opening new branches offshore provides investors with new markets, allowing them to optimise sales and profits. With the right offshore jurisdiction, it becomes easy to transform your firm into a multinational. One of the most revered jurisdictions for offshore company expansion is Hong Kong.
To get into this jurisdiction and see your business grow, the first step is company registration. Keep reading to learn more about the process of company registration in Hong Kong. We will also tell you why you should work with an agency of experts for company registration.
Hong Kong in Numbers
- Hong Kong is ranked the fourth largest market in Asia and seventh in Asia.
- The jurisdiction is among the most service-oriented in the globe. Services contribute about 93.4% of Hong Kong’s GDP.
- The global FDI inflow to Hong Kong for 2021 was USD140.7 billion.
- Hong Kong’s population is 7.4 million people, according to 2021 estimates.
- The island’s GDP, according to 2021 estimates, was USD367.9 billion.
- The retail sales grew by +8.1 in 2021 compared to -24.3 reported in 2020.
The Process of Registering a Company in Hong Kong
The economic numbers of Hong Kong highlighted above indicate the high potential it holds for investors. So, let’s look at the most important steps that you need to follow to register a company in Hong Kong.
1. Make the Decision to Register a Company in Hong Kong
This is the first and, probably, most important step when going offshore. This decision should trigger a range of activities, especially research about the new markets and crafting of new goals. At this stage, you should seek to answer a number of questions:
- Why do I need to go offshore?
- What types of customers are in Hong Kong and neighbouring markets?
- What capital is required?
- What assistance do I need?
2. Select the Preferred Business Structure
There are a number of business structures that you can select for running a company in Hong Kong. These include branch offices, partnerships, companies limited by guarantee, and companies limited by shares. The most preferred option is limited companies because they provide protection to personal assets.
3. Select a Company Name
Before you can commence preparing the documents needed for company incorporation in Hong Kong, get a company name. Make sure the name is unique to avoid conflicting with other businesses or government departments. You should also check the Companies Registry for more information on how to select the right company names.
4. Decide the Shareholders, Pick a Company Secretary, and Identify a Registered Office
After getting the name of your company reserved, you should decide who will be shareholders, pick the directors, and appoint a company secretary. Remember that the secretary must be a Hong Kong resident. Then, select an office in Hong Kong to serve as the main address of the company.
5. Prepare the Required Documents and Submit them to the Companies Registry
For your company incorporation in Hong Kong to be approved, you have to prepare all the documents for incorporation and submit them to the registry. These documents include details of the directors, company secretary, and shareholders. Also, you need to include the articles of association, notice to the business registration office, and a duly filled incorporation form (NNC1).
6. Acquire Additional Permits Where Necessary and Open a Bank Account
Once your certificate of incorporation is issued, there are several more steps required before operations can commence. First, you need to acquire additional permits where necessary. For example, companies in telecoms, finance, and pharmaceuticals are all required to get additional permits. Next, you need to open a bank account and acquire a Business Registration Certificate.
Does the above process look lengthy and complex? Many are those who find it challenging, although it is way simpler compared to what happens in other countries. To simplify the process, you should consider working with an agency of experts. The experts, such as GMHK, can help you not only register a company in Hong Kong but also with other executive functions such as accounting, immigration, and filing tax returns.