Guide To Opening A New Branch Office In Singapore

 

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Picture Credits : criticablog.wordpress.com

First off, we would like to congratulate you on the success of your original office because if it weren’t successful you would not be looking to open a branch office in Singapore. However, the team here at ThunderQuote feels that you’re making the right decision about wanting to set up a branch office here in beautiful, sunny Singapore. We have been the most advanced economic hub in all of Southeast Asia. We are doing well beyond our peers and we have the proof to show it to you. Plenty of big names from all over the world have reached our borders and have expanded their wings to reach greater heights here in this country.

So you have also decided to open up a branch office in Singapore. Do you even know where to start? Sure, opening up a company and having it be super successful that you can come spread your wings here is great but Singapore has many rules and regulations set in place so you need to know about them beforehand. Research is key here. But we wanted to try to help with that, so we have compiled an article to serve as a guide for entrepreneurs wanting to spread their wings into Singapore.

Opening up a branch office in Singapore is one of the easiest and fastest way for foreign companies to expand their wings into a different country. The Singaporean government has seen that and has made it a lot easier for foreign companies to step foot into Singapore.

Making sure your office has a business entity

When you decide to step foot into Singapore and expand your business, it is known that any activity carried out on Singaporean soil for profit purposes needs to be registered under the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) of Singapore. If you are a company that has been incorporated outside of Singaporean soil, then you are deemed to be a foreign company. This means that because you a foreign company, you need to register as a business entity in Singapore before commencing any type of business activities here.

Additional Tips :

A foreign branch office is deemed as a non-resident for tax purposes which means that it is not eligible for tax incentives or exemptions that are made available to Singaporean private limited companies.

Your branch office will become a proper legal entity in Singapore once it has been registered with the company registrar in Singapore. Your branch office will be considered as an extension of the foreign company and will not be treated as a separate legal entity which means that the parent company is still liable for all the legal and economical liabilities of the branch company. According to the law, a claimant can initiate legal proceedings against the parent company in Singapore because of the branch office being available on Singaporean soil.

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The Next Step : Registering Your Branch Office in Singapore

You might be wondering what are the steps that need to be taken to fully register your branch office here in Singapore. The first thing to do is to engage in a local firm who are professionals like a legal firm to start the ball rolling.

Name of Branch Office
  • The name of the branch office has to be similar to the parent company for obvious reasons. The Singaporean branch office must have a corresponding name to the office in the origin country.
Requirements
  • When it comes to the requirements for the branch office, it is important to note that the new Singapore branch office must appoint at least 1 representative who is either a Singaporean citizen, permanent resident or someone with a valid working permit.
  • The representative needs to be a normal persons who is at least 18 years of age.
  • If you are planning to relocate more than one person from the original office to the new branch office, please make sure you comply with the government and apply for an employment pass.
Registered Address
  • Having a proper registered address for your new branch office in Singapore is extremely important. This is required by the Singapore Companies Act.

So what are the main documents needed for the branch registration?

Registering a new branch office will definitely require a copious amount of paperwork. Especially in a country in Singapore when everything is super streamlined and everything has it’s place. Therefore, you need to make sure that you have these general documents beforehand all prepared to make sure the registration process goes as smoothly as possible.

1. A certified copy of the Certification of Incorporation of the foreign company
2. A certified copy of the Constitution of the foreign company
3. All the particulars of the Directors in the foreign company
4. A memorandum of appointment of the representative in Singapore
5. The details of the appointed representative (at least 1) who is resident in Singapore who is the authorised person in the Singapore branch office
6. A memorandum stating or authorising the power of the representative by the foreign/parent company.
7. Details of the registered office address for branch office in Singapore
8. Details of the latest audited financials of the parent company.

Additional Notes : Please ensure that all these documents are in English and have them translated into English if necessary.

The Main Event : The Actual Registration of The Branch Office (plus how long it takes!)

After you’ve gone through and ensured that you have all the necessary documents it is now time to finally register that branch office of yours. If you did go ahead and contract a local professional firm, they would be doing all these procedures for you. They will take care of all the necessary registration formalities. This is great because no company executives need to come down from the foreign country. Unless you decide too, of course.

TWO MAJOR STEPS

STEP 1 : NAME APPROVAL

STEP 2 : ENTITY REGISTRATION

Name Approval : Basically you just need to make sure that the branch office and the parent company have the same name and to also make sure that it is not vulgar or disrespectful in nature.

If there are no problems with the name and assuming that all the documents are in order, the process should not take more than two days to complete.

Entity Registration : Once everything is registered, the registrar will send an email notifying you of the registration. Note that the registrar does not give out hard copies anymore.

There you go! These are the simple steps that you need to follow to ensure that you get to open a branch office in Singapore. It’s not that hard and it can be done fast if you get the paperwork ready and have them make sure it’s sufficient enough for the registrar.

ThunderQuote is the most comprehensive business services portal in Singapore, Australia and ASEAN , where hundreds of thousands of dollars of procurement contracts are sourced every month by major companies like Singapore Press Holdings, National Trade Union Congress and more.

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