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Company registration in Switzerland in 2020

Creating a business in Switzerland has a number of advantages, and the main ones are:

  • Prestigious jurisdiction;
  • The country's banking institutions are among the most reliable in the world;
  • Investment attractiveness;
  • Political and economic stability;
  • Qualified management.

Company registration: from 4 900 EUR

Company registration period – from 21 days

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Switzerland is a federal republic located in Western Europe. It is among the top 10 world states in terms of economic competitiveness. This is one of the reasons why entrepreneurs from all over the world seek to register a company in Switzerland and open an account in Swiss bank.

Switzerland is one of the richest countries in the world. The official languages are: French, German, Italian, Romansh. Most of the population uses only one or two languages.

Read also:

European markets are open to all companies registered in Switzerland, and companies can enjoy all the economic rights of EU member states.

For more information, we recommend that you ask for personal advice on business organization process in Switzerland from IQ Decision experts.

Business benefits

Setting up a Swiss company and opening a Swiss company bank account will be the right decision, because of:

  • Prestige of the country (more than 40% of world capital is concentrated directly in Switzerland);
  • Skilled and competent workforce;
  • The authority of the country in the global financial arena;
  • Political and economic stability;
  • Reliable service sector;
  • Favorable legal conditions for registering a company in Switzerland;
  • Confidentiality of the banks attracts foreign capital;
  • Promotion of innovation in world markets;
  • Investment attractiveness;
  • DTA agreements signed with other countries;
  • Switzerland is not listed on the FATF and OECD;
  • No currency control;
  • One of the lowest crime rates in the world.
Legal forms

Those who are planning to set up a company in Switzerland, especially foreign investors should be looking at these 2 most popular business entity types:

  • GmbH. Those who want to start a small or medium business have an opportunity to register a GmbH in Switzerland with the share capital of 18 500 EUR. Opening a GmbH in Switzerland is a popular option, because the registration scheme is the easiest among all the legal forms in Switzerland. The administrative costs that accompany the company activities much lower too;
  • AG. You can register an AG in Switzerland for medium and large businesses. AG type companies are the most popular legal forms in Switzerland. Very often, this option becomes ideal for foreign companies, especially if you are interested in registering a branch in Switzerland. The share capital for a company of AG type is 91 500 EUR.

It worth noting that when you choose the legal form it is related to the type of business in Switzerland which you plan to conduct. In both types of Swiss companies you will need 2 directors (1 of them should be a resident of Switzerland). Also, you have an opportunity to order nominee director services from IQ Decision lawyers.

Tax rates in Switzerland

Switzerland has a three-tier tax system. Income tax at the federal level can be from 3,63% to 9,8%. WHT on dividends and interest payments is 35%. Corporate tax at the cantonal level can be from 20% to 35%.

Taxes in this country are quite high. Therefore, our specialists recommend that you register a company in the Canton of Zug (tax rate is only 6%). Pay attention to the possible companies statuses that can be obtained for certain types of activities.

The following legal forms are eligible for tax benefits:

  • A holding company. It is a type of company that receives about 2/3 of all the revenues of its holding from investments in international or local companies. If you want to register a holding company in Switzerland note that a share in the capital of its subsidiaries should be at least 20% (a share of at least 2 million CHF).
  • A domicile company. It is a company that does not conduct business in Switzerland. It must have an official address in Switzerland. Registered office, as well as staff is not required.
  • A mixed company in Switzerland. It is a company that receives 80% or more profit from outside;
  • A service company. If you decide to set up a service company in Switzerland, should know that it can be engaged in advertising, technical support, marketing or administration of those operations that are carried out by a parent company or other companies in the group.

The Swiss tax system offers reduced tax rates (at the level of the cantons) if the company does not conduct business activity within the Switzerland.

If you are interested in registering a Swiss company remotely, take into account that such operations do not include:

  • Company management;
  • Investments;
  • Exploitation of intellectual property, etc.

The company's goal should be long-term ownership of shares of other companies. At least 2/3 of the income should come from capital gains and dividends.

To learn more, you can receive an individual advisor on Swiss company registration procedure by calling our office.

Registration requirements

If you are intended to open a company in Switzerland remotely, then consider the following:

  • When setting up an AG in Switzerland note that at least 1 of directors should be an individual (Swiss citizen);
  • In order to register a Swiss company, you can use any name that is not currently used. If certain requirements are met, you can use the words: Switzerland, International, European, etc. The name must have the suffix AG/SA or GmbH/SARL (the suffix depends on the type of company);
  • The annual filling of the balance sheet and income statement of the company are required. If you want to set up a GmbH in Switzerland. you should know that there are no requirements for independent audit. Conducting an independent audit for AG depends on the company's turnover and number of employees;
  • Corporate shareholders are allowed. There is a public register of shareholders in this country;
  • If you want to open a business in Switzerland, do not forget that bearer shares are prohibited;
  • All companies registered in Switzerland must have a local address within its territory;
  • Board meetings should be held at least once a year.

If you have questions, you can ask for qualified advice on taxation system of Switzerland and business registration process. Also, IQ Decision lawyers will provide you with a full range of legal support services on account opening in Switzerland or obtaining a license.

The information outlined in the article is actual at the time of its publication. Please refer to our specialists for checking possible solutions for your business.

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