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Jurisdictions allowing company incorporation online

When comparing various countries where to start your business, there are numerous aspects to take into consideration. While it highly depends on the company structure and business activities, every country has their own procedures and requirements which can facilitate, or just the opposite – make it harder to operate your business. These aspects can be related to tax policy, employee hiring and even political stability of the country. Just as important is the procedure of incorporation of the company. Each country has their own procedure, timeline and requirements to follow during the incorporation of a company and often these procedures indicate what is the level of bureaucracy and business environment in this jurisdiction.

Various jurisdictions offer the possibility to go through the company incorporation process online, which means it takes less time and effort as well as the entrepreneur is able to incorporate his or her business from any place in the world and not leaving their house or office. This is advantageous for the entrepreneur as it means that usually the incorporation procedure takes less time and the business can start operate sooner. It also indicates that the jurisdiction has advanced information systems and other state services are most likely available online as well.

South Africa

South Africa is one of the jurisdictions offering to register your company online within few easy steps:

  1. Select your preferred company type and complete the corresponding application form online. Afterwards you will receive a confirmation e-mail indicating a reference number for payment.
  2. The first available company name is reserved with the Companies Commission and the incorporation application with the reserved name and other documents are filed for registration.
  3. You receive a COR14.3 company registration certificate along with company income tax number via e-mail. You will also receive an e-mail with links following which you will be able to download your company registration documents.
  4. You can use your COR14.3 company registration certificate to open a business bank account and furthermore apply for a tax clearance certificate and/or Bee Affidavit.

Australia

Also Australia offer to register your company online. This is currently a Beta service and still is under development but it is already possible to incorporate your business online. The online business registration service is currently available for new businesses starting as a joint venture, sole trader, trust, company or partnership who can apply for a business name, ABN (Australian Business Number) as well as company and tax registrations. Superannuation funds will also able to use this online service in the future. This service is also available for already existing businesses with an ABN and can apply for tax registration or an AUSkey login. Australian online business registration service is organized in three easy steps:

  1. Complete an online application and choose an available company name. Company name search engine is available online for free.
  2. Complete a registration fee payment and submit the incorporation application to ASIC (Australian Securities and Investments Commission) and receive an e-mail with a confirmation of your submission.
  3. You will receive an ACN and ASIC Certificate along with Company Register and tax receipt within 2 minutes via e-mail. In case you also applied for an ABN, you will receive it within 1 hour during business hours via e-mail. If domain names were ordered, they are registered immediately. With these documents you are able to open a bank account.

More jurisdictions offer company incorporation online. For example, if your company is limited by shares and has standard Articles of Association, it can be registered within 24 hours for 12 GBP in United Kingdom (in comparison to 8-10 days and 40 GBP if applied via post).