Singapore Company Formation for Foreign Entrepreneurs

Singapore Company Incorporation & Employment Pass Package


This package is suitable for foreign entrepreneurs who wish to setup a business in Singapore and relocate (themselves or one of their key executives) to Singapore on an Employment Pass. Under this package, we will first incorporate your company and then apply for Employment Pass.

Enquire now to request this package or find out more.

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This package includes the following services:

Company Incorporation

  • Name reservation
  • Preparation of incorporation documents
  • Registration with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA)
  • Bank account opening assistance
  • Electronic Certificate of Incorporation
  • Company profile extract from the ACRA
  • Minutes of first board meeting
  • Share certificates
  • Company seal
  • Company rubber stamp
  • Government and our professional fee

Company Secretarial services for 1 year

  • Appointing a senior Hawksford Singapore team member as the professional company secretary
  • Providing assistance with understanding and compliance with Singapore Companies Act including reminders of the various statutory compliance deadlines
  • Safekeeping, updating, and maintaining registers, minutes book, and other statutory records of the company
  • Consultation during the year on routine corporate secretarial matters
  • Maintenance of the register of controllers

Company Registered Address (RA) for 1 year

  • Listing our address as your company’s registered address with ACRA
  • Receiving official notices
  • Receiving and forwarding incoming mail for your company

Local Director for 1 year

Employment Pass (EP) application filing for 1 applicant

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The process and the steps for this package are as follows:

Step 1: Submit your request

Let us know that you wish to proceed forward with this package by clicking the “Set Up Now” button above and completing the online form. Upon receipt of your request, one of our client services consultants will follow-up with you to clarify any questions you might have and to advice you of the next steps.

Step 2: Provide company incorporation details

We will send you the relevant forms for you to furnish the required details. Supporting documents will be required to facilitate the due diligence work and preparation of the incorporation documents accordingly.

Step 3: Make payment

Upon receipt of the completed registration details form and due diligence clearance, we will send you an invoice for our services. In order for us to commence our services, you will need to make payment as per the invoice sent to you. We accept bank transfer, local cheque, or credit card.

Step 4: Prepare company incorporation documents

Upon receipt of the payment, we will prepare the necessary registration documents and email them to you for signing. If you are in Singapore, you can visit our office and sign the documents.

Step 5: Incorporate company

Upon receipt of the signed incorporation and supporting documents from you, we will proceed to branch office registration with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority of Singapore (ACRA).

Step 6: Open Bank Account

Once the company has been registered with ACRA, if you have availed to our bank account opening service, we will assist you with opening of a corporate bank account by providing the necessary incorporation documents for the newly incorporated company. Please note that the bank will conduct their own due diligence and may require to meet with the Executive Directors of the company.

Step 7: Prepare and file Employment Pass application

In parallel to steps 5 & 6, we will work with you to prepare the Employment Pass application and supporting documents. Once ready, we will then file the Employment Pass application along with supporting documents and wait for the outcome.

Step 8: File an appeal, if necessary

In case your EP application is rejected initially, we will explore the reasons with authorities and then prepare and file an appeal (at no extra cost) accordingly.

Step 9: Arrange for Employment Pass issuance

Upon receipt of the Employment Pass approval letter, you will be required to visit Singapore to collect your pass. We will assist you in scheduling an appointment with authorities for the issuance of the pass.

Step 10: You are done. Congratulations!

After you have collected your Employment Pass, you are ready to relocate to Singapore and start work for the branch office.

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Documents required for this package:

Documents required for Company Incorporation

For each Singapore individual resident shareholder and director:

  • Copy of Singapore IC; or
  • Copy of passport if the individual is not a citizen of Singapore

For each non-resident individual shareholder and director:

  • Copy of passport; and
  • Copy of residential address proof such as a recent utility bill, residential phone bill, tax bill, or cable TV bill

For compliance with our local director service:

  • Personal bank reference letter (see sample) for at least one shareholder and director
  • Completed know your client form along with resume/CV and passport

Documents required for Employment Pass application filing

  • Completed EP application
  • Copy of passport
  • 1 passport size recent photo
  • Copies of educational certificates (above high school)
  • Copy of resume
  • Copies of past employment testimonials, appointment letters, etc, if available
  • Tenancy agreement for business operations address in Singapore
  • 1-2 page document that outlines a) detailed description of the duties to be performed by the applicant; and b) detailed description of activities and/or products of the company
  • If you have a similar existing business overseas, it would be helpful to provide details such as audited accounts, brochures, client contracts, website details, etc.

Documents required for Dependant Pass for Spouse

  • Completed DP application
  • Copy of passport
  • 1 passport size recent photo
  • Copy of marriage certificate
  • Educational details
  • Salary details for the most recent employment held, if any

Documents required for Dependant Pass for Child

  • Completed DP application
  • Copy of passport
  • 1 passport size recent photo
  • Copy of birth certificate showing the names of both parents
  • School enrollment details in an educational institute in Singapore

Please note the following:

  • All documents must be in English or officially translated in English
  • All copies of documents must be certified true copies by a notary public or you must bring the originals to our office for sighting
  • If you are overseas, you can email us the scanned copies of documents so we can proceed with preparing the necessary incorporation documents. However we must receive the original certified true copies (or sight the originals at our office) before we can incorporate the company
  • Our compliance department may ask for additional information if necessary

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Package specific questions and answers:

  • How long does it take to register a Branch Office in Singapore?

    The actual incorporation of a company can be accomplished in a matter of few hours as the whole process is computerised. However, the overall process can take anywhere from one day to few days depending on the following factors:

    • Name reservation. Before a company can be registered, its name has to be reserved first. Assuming there are no objections to the name being proposed, the name reservation process can be accomplished in less than an hour. However, if the name conflicts with an existing name or if the proposed name contains some sensitive words that may require a review by relevant authorities, the name approval process can get delayed to few days or weeks.
    • Signing of registration documents. If you are in Singapore, this is a quick and easy process. However if you are located overseas, the logistics involved in signing and sending the signed documents can take few days.
  • Can I apply for Employment Pass prior to incorporating my company?

    No, unfortunately that's not possible. Your company must be incorporated first before you can apply for Employment Pass.

  • As a company shareholder can I apply for Employment Pass?

    If your company is less than six months old:

    • If you hold more than 30% shares, the authorities may ask that you apply for Entrepreneur Pass (EntrePass) instead of Employment Pass (EP). However, if you prefer to apply for Employment Pass, it is still possible. In this case, authorities will review your EP application and may approve your EP or advise you to apply for EntrePass instead if they determine that the EntrePass is more appropriate in your situation.
    • If you hold less than 30% shares, you can apply for the Employment Pass.

    If your company is older than six months:

    • You can only apply for Employment Pass

  • Does our company require a resident director service if we are applying for Employment Pass?

    This situation applies to foreign individuals or companies who intend to incorporate a Singapore company and relocate to Singapore. As per Singapore Companies Law, each company must have at least one director who is ordinarily resident in Singapore. Therefore you will need to use a resident local director service on a temporary basis until your Employment pass is approved. Once your Employment Pass is approved and you have relocated to Singapore, you can replace the resident director with yourself as the local director in the company.

  • How long does it take to process Employment Pass?

    When the Employment Pass application is filed online, it takes within 3 weeks for most cases to receive the outcome notification from authorities. It may take longer during peak periods or when additional information is required from the various economic agencies.

    When thinking about the timeline, keep in mind the following:

    • The company must be incorporated first before Employment Pass can be applied for. This can take anywhere from couple of days to couple of weeks depending on whether you are present in Singapore or overseas.
    • If you intend to submit the application online, and if the company is newly incorporated, the MOM will need to be prompted of the company’s particulars in order to activate the EP-Online system. This process can take up to 14 days from the day of notification to the MOM.
    • It may take certain amount of time for you to provide us with the completed application and supporting documents before we can file the application.
    • After the pass is approved, there are still certain formalities that will need to be taken care of such as the medical examination, the appointment for fingerprinting registration, collection of the pass, etc, which may take few more days.
  • What are my chances of success with Employment Pass application?

    The chances of an Employment Pass application depend on the credentials of the company and the credentials of the individual applicant. We will be able to advice you further once we are in touch with you.

  • What is the best time to apply for Dependant's Pass for family members?

    You can apply for family’s Dependant’s Pass (DP) at the time of applying for your work pass or after its approval. The following guidelines apply:

    • If you apply for Dependant's Passes for your family members together with your own work pass, they will be processed simultaneously. This approach is faster, but please be mindful that if your work pass is not successful for any reason, you would have incurred the unnecessary expenses in applying for the Dependant’s Passes.
    • The alternative approach is to apply for the Dependant’s Passes after your work pass application is successful. This will mean that your family members will have to wait few more weeks before they can collect their Dependant’s Passes.
  • What are the paid-up capital requirements for Singapore companies?

    You can incorporate a company in Singapore with a minimum paid-up capital (also often known as share capital) of SGD1 only. However, you must keep the following in mind:

    1. If you are applying for relocation visa Entrepreneur Pass (EntrePass), the company must have a minimum paid-up capital of SGD50,000. Find out more on GuideMeSingapore.com
    2. If you are applying for relocation visa Employment Pass (EP), although there is no official minimum paid-up capital requirement, we recommend a paid-up capital of at least SGD50,000 in order to improve chances of EP approval. Find out more on GuideMeSingapore.com
    3. If the company business is a regulated business (e.g. travel agency, recruitment agency, financial services, etc.), the minimum paid-up capital requirements will be dictated by the relevant licensing requirements.

    The concept of authorized capital has been abolished in Singapore. The paid-up capital can be listed in Singapore Dollar or any other major currency, although Singapore Dollar is the preferred currency of choice as a matter of convenience. Whatever capital you list is treated as paid-up capital and you will be required to inject this amount into the company. Paid-up capital of the company can be freely utilized towards company's business needs. There is no requirement for this money to be locked in the bank account for any specific period of time.

    If you want to list a paid-up capital higher than the minimum SGD100, you have two options:

    Option 1: List a higher paid-up capital at the time of incorporation

    Keep in mind that whatever paid-up capital amount you list, will need to be deposited into the company's bank account. Since we will be acting as your company secretary, we carry certain fiduciary responsibilities in this matter and have to ensure that the necessary paid-up capital is in fact injected into the company. Therefore, if you wish to list a paid-up capital higher than SGD100 at the time of incorporation, we will require you to deposit that money with us first. Once your company bank account is open, we will transfer the paid-up capital amount into your company's bank account.

    Please note that as a Hawksford policy, the maximum paid-up capital that we can accept under this option is SGD100,000. For paid-up capital higher than SGD100,000, you will need to choose Option 2.

    Option 2: Increase paid-up capital after registration of the company

    Under this option, you can increase the paid-up capital any time after registration of the company. In this case, the process is as below:

    1. Incorporate the company with minimum share capital
    2. Open corporate bank account
    3. Inject funds into bank account
    4. Prepare documents for increase of share capital
    5. File documents for share capital increase with authorities

    We will then prepare and file the necessary paperwork with Company Registrar to reflect the revised paid-up capital of the company. Note that a fee will apply for for additional work that has to be undertaken for items 4 and 5.

    Most of our clients prefer Option 1 because it does not cost extra and is faster. Your paid-up capital amount is deposited into a separate 'Client Deposits' account with us and transferred immediately to your corporate bank account once it's open. This service is provided by Hawksford Singapore for the sole benefit of clients only.

    Let us know which option is preferred by you.

  • What is the role and scope of company secretary service?

    Each Singapore company must appoint a qualified company secretary who is knowledgeable and experienced with Singapore company laws. A company secretary typically assist the members and officers of the company with the following matters:

    • Assisting members with understanding and compliance with Singapore Companies Act
    • Reminding members of various statutory deadlines and assisting them with statutory compliance
    • Maintaining the statutory registers
    • Ensuring that the company files statutory information accurately and on time
    • Providing members and directors with notice of meetings
    • Preparing and filing necessary corporate resolutions as and when necessary
    • Ensuring that people entitled to do so can inspect company records
    • Custody and use of the company seal

    We act as the company secretary for all companies that we incorporate. Our annual company secretary retainer fee is for routine corporate secretarial services that include:

    • Appointing a senior Hawksford Singapore team member as the professional company secretary for your company
    • Reminding you of the various statutory compliance dates
    • Safekeeping, updating, and maintaining registers, minutes book, and other statutory records of the company
    • Free consultation during the year on routine corporate secretarial matters
    • Charging of discounted fees for non-routine services

    Please note that non-routine service requests are charged on a per request basis.

  • Will Hawksford Singapore handle annual filing requirements for our company?

    We offer a comprehensive range of services with the objective of being a one-stop service provider for all your company needs. For almost all of our clients, we handle annual statutory compliance requirements for their companies that consist of:

    1. Preparation and filing of Annual Return with the ACRA; and
    2. Preparation and filing of Annual Tax Return with Inland Revenue Authority.

    In a nutshell, our core services consist of:

    • Incorporation of local companies, subsidiaries of foreign corporations and registration of branches of overseas companies
    • On-going statutory administration of companies
    • Accounting, payroll, and tax filing for companies
    • Application for business licenses
    • Application for work passes for expatriates
    • Other related corporate services

    We also have a deep network of professional and dependable partner firms that augment our own in-house services such as trademark registration service, office lease services, specialized business licenses, legal services, etc..

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Important information about this package:

  • The company must be incorporated before Employment Pass application can be filed. The EP application is subject to approval by authorities.
  • For the provision of our local director service, we also collect a S$5,000 refundable security deposit. The security deposit will be refunded when you no longer need our resident director service. 
  • The appointment of our local director is subject to the satisfactory outcome of our client due diligence exercise conducted by our compliance team.
  • Upon In-Principal-Approval notification of the Employment Pass/Dependent Pass, the disbursements for issuance of each pass will apply, as well as visa stamping fee and change of local director, where applicable.
  • As part of our compliance requirements when using our local director service, you are required to appoint an executive director to manage the company. You are also required to engage our Registered Address service, Accounting and Corporate Tax filing service unless otherwise approved by our compliance team.

Enquire now to request this package or find out more.

Enquire now

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