According to the Global Startup Ecosystem Report and Ranking, Singapore is the number 1 location for start-up talent and the 2nd place for ease of business as affirmed by the World Bank. The robust legal and Ip regime, the well developed technological infrastructure, and the access to investors worldwide enable startups and SMEs to begin and scale up their business in Singapore. Not only that, but Singapore also provides various private and government-funded initiatives to startups and SMEs to help them get off the ground.
Additionally, the tax system of Singapore is one of the best in the whole world. The corporate income tax has been the lowest since 2010 and has stayed constant at 17%. The tax rate is the same for local as well as foreign businesses. The effective tax liability gets further low once the government incentives, schemes, and subsidies are considered. The location of Singapore in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region makes it easy to approach a larger audience, making it one the fourth largest financial centers and one of the world’s major commercial hubs. 50% of the world’s population is at a distance of a six-hour flight from Singapore.
Having considered the immense benefits the country provides to businesses, it has it’s on set of challenges. Hence, it is still imperative that you understand the market and the necessary elements to conduct business in the country before going for your business registration in Singapore.
1. RESEARCH AND PLAN OUT
Irrespective of whether you want to scale up your business in Singapore, research has to be your key strength for making the correct business decisions. Evaluation of the business services you are providing, the competition you have to face on an immediate and a larger level, the audience you need to cater to in the APAC region. Comprehensive research on the same will help you to determine if expanding your business to Singapore will be beneficial? If yes, then what should be your strategy such that you do not invest a significant amount of your funds to fail later.
2. CHOOSE YOUR BUSINESS STRUCTURE
Before getting your business registered in Singapore, you need to specify the type of legal entity. It could be a sole proprietorship, partnership, a limited liability partnership, or a private limited company depending on your choice, provided you are aware of the options available.
3. GET YOUR BUSINESS REGISTERED ONCE YOU HAVE PLANNED IT
The process is quite methodical, and you need to be particular about it. Get your business registered with the Accounting & Corporate Regulatory Authority (ARCA), then submit your application online through Bizfile for a new business. Once you get this done, you need to appoint two residents of Singapore with employment passes as agents for your business. You can also apply for the ‘EntrePass’ at the Ministry of Manpower before the incorporation of your company.
4. GET A LOCAL ADDRESS
This might be a time-consuming process because to register the business you need a local, physical address. Keeping this in mind you need to find a suitable location, depending on your target market. A locality that reduces your transportation cost and eases your everyday business operation.
5. GET THE LICENSE
Based on the nature of your business, you will require a certain number of licenses, most of which can be obtained online, reducing the effort significantly. Application of license is made once the business has been incorporated.
6. TAKE ASSISTANCE FROM GOVERNMENT AGENCIES
As mentioned above, Singapore is renowned for its supportive and pro-business regimes which include providing various resources for start-ups, SMEs, and new businesses. There are various government agencies like the Economic Development Board (EDB), Standards, Productivity and Innovation Board (SPRING), Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ARCA) from where businesses can seek help to scale up.
7. REGISTER YOUR DOMAIN
You need to have a very strong online presence, and for that, you need to have a website. Your website meets your prospects before you do, so it needs to be engaging, click-worthy, and enriching. There are numerous ways to get your website up and running with a Singapore domain name only you need to figure out the time for getting it done.
We hope that these tips will suffice for you to decide whether your business deserves a flight to Singapore or not.