How to start a business in Singapore

1. Conduct proper market research

For anyone who is interested in becoming a business owner, it is important to know what you want the business to be about and to know the current market situation. Are you able to provide the gaps in the industry? What more can you bring to the table?

It is also ideal to have a proper business plan to ensure to a certain extent the sustainability of your business.

2. Determine the type of business you want to set up and its structure

There are many forms of entities your business can take up in Singapore. Click here to learn more about the various types of business entities in Singapore. This decision should be made with care as the form of business structure can affect many aspects of your business.

3. Pick your business name

Selecting a name for the business is a mandatory part of business registration and it is important that the name you want does not overlap with existing businesses. Hence, a thorough check on current company and business names should be done before the incorporation of your business. Name selection is also crucial as it reflects the philosophy of your business and will affect future marketing decisions. To save time and trouble, you can engage business incorporation services such as ours to help you with registering your business every step of the way.

4. Get the right premise

In order to register your business, a local address is required for your business. There is a wide variety of choice for business premises in Singapore. The Singapore Economic Development Board provides a list of business parks and industrial parks which can be found here.

If you are not planning on renting office space in order to cut costs, working from home or a rented home is also an option. However, approval might be needed from the Housing Development Board (HDB) under the Housing Operation Scheme (HOS). Take note though, that going under the HOS may place some restrictions on the hiring of employees. If unsure, you can always contact us for consultation services.

5. Register your business

Once you have completed all the previous steps, you can finally proceed to the actual registration of your business with the Accounting and Corporate Regulation Authority (ACRA) using Bizfile+, to officially kick start your business.

There are 3 most common business entities and structures entrepreneurs would start up and register. We have written the various guides as follow:

  1. Incorporation and set up a Private Limited Company
  2. Form a Limited Liability Partnership
  3. Register a Sole Proprietorship

If you are a foreign company looking to set up a representative office in Singapore, you can proceed to approach the following government ministries depending on the nature of your business:

Alternatively, if you are too busy to deal with the administrative side of starting your business, you can entrust the job to professionals like us to formally get your business registered and ready to go.

Starting a business doesn't need to be complicated.

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