Switzerland welcomes foreign investors and the country is a popular location for international company headquarters in Europe. Some of the main reasons to invest in Switzerland include a stable economic and political environment, a well-established and transparent legal system, good infrastructure and developed banking and financial sectors.
The process of setting up a company in Switzerland is a simple one and investors benefit from various tax incentives at a cantonal level.
Types of companies in Switzerland
The main types of companies in Switzerland are the corporation (AG), the limited liability company (GmbH), the partnerships and the branch of a foreign company.
The corporation is a widely-used business form that requires a minimumm share capital of 100,000 CHF, with a minimum share value of 0,01 CHF. The Companies Law requires that at least 50% of the capital or 20% of the nominal value of each share (whichever has the highest value) needs to be paid by the date of the first shareholder’s meeting.
Requirements for company registration and management in Switzerland
Investors who want to start a business in Switzerland need to follow a few steps for company incorporation:
- choose the type of company and an available business name;
- open a bank account and deposit the paid-up capital;
- draft the company’s Articles of Association;
- file the registration documents and forms with the Commercial Registry;
- register for VAT purposes;
- register with the Cantonal Social Security Office;
The taxes for companies in Switzerland are levied at a federal and cantonal level. Companies need to observe the applicable tax rates and the requirements for tax filing and annual reporting. Companies observe the Swiss Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) and they are subject to audit if they meet two of the following three criteria: balance sheet of 20 million CHF, 250 full-time employees and/or a revenue of 40 million CHF.
Investors who want to open a company in Switzerland are advised to seek professional legal assistance for the entire company registration procedure from our reliable partners - Experten in der Firmengründung Schweiz.