Company Registration in Greece- Complete Overview
Greece is a very business friendly country that is why the number of investors and business entities in Greece keeps on increasing with each passing year. The country’s geographic location makes accessibility to the Middle East and Southeast Europe easy. This means that investors can access these huge markets easily with their products and services from Greece. There are a lot of trade benefits for businesses in Greece. Further, low levels of bureaucracy in company formation also encourage investors. There are various things that one must consider before incorporating their company in a particular location such as business structure available, market dynamics, eligibility requirements, scope of business, compliance requirements etc. Once all these aspects are considered, you may move ahead with the incorporation procedure.
Reasons to Incorporate Company in Greece
There are multiple reasons which attract business owners to set up a company in Greece. In this segment we have discussed some of them-
- Low labour costs
The cost of labour in Greece is low. So businesses tend to save a handful by incorporating a company in Greece.
- Tax incentives
Company registration in Greece has benefited foreign investors because of tax-efficient business opportunities. Tax allowance were introduced in the country for all representatives of business which has led to the development of enterprises and companies in different fields.
- Well-developed infrastructure
Greece offers high-quality logistics and communication infrastructure, moreover, roads, ports and train infrastructures in Greece are now being upgraded. This has eased the way of doing business considerably.
- Liberal regulatory environment
The business environment in Greece is quite liberal given the country’s reputation for bureaucracy. New online systems have drastically reduced the bureaucratic issues.
- Investment friendly incentives
The government in Greece continues to offer investment incentives with a view to promote regional development, environmental protection and energy-efficient initiatives. The amount of the incentive depends upon the industry and the location, but typically involves grants, interest subsidies or tax allowances.
Different types of Business Structures in Greece
Before a company can be incorporated, an appropriate business structure should be chosen. There are various business structure to choose from, namely-
- Limited Liability Company
LLC is one of the most common type of business structure especially for establishing a small and medium-sized business. In Greece one can opt for LLC business structure with at least one shareholder and one director. This may be an individual or a legal entity regardless of their nationality. The liability of the shareholders shall be limited to the amount of capital invested by them.
- Private Company
Just like limited liability company, this business entity also requires just one shareholder and one director who may be an individual or a legal entity regardless of their nationality. The difference between these two business structures is that in this case the entity can be set up with share capital of just 1 euro.
- Public Limited Company
This business structure mandates one shareholder and 3 directors who may be individuals or legal entities regardless of their nationality.
Investors can register either general partnerships or limited partnerships. In case of general partnerships, members don’t have limited liability unlike limited partnerships. Therefore most foreign investors in Greece prefer a limited liability partnership which is more flexible in nature and comes with the assurance of limited liability in terms of debts and obligation. Minimum two members should register a partnership, with a minimum share capital of 1,000 Euros.
- Branch Office
Branch Office in Greece can be set up with one shareholder and one director. The parent company shall be held responsible for activities of the branch office as the branch office doesn’t get registered as a separate legal entity.
- Representative Office
Representative Office is set up to promote its parent company’s products and services and to carry out market research. It cannot perform any profit making or commercial activities.
Documents required for Company Registration in Greece
The following documents will be required:
- Copies of Valid Passport;
- ID proof;
- Genuine copy of the codified Articles of Incorporation of the founding legal person’s;
- Evidence to prove the payment of corporate capital, where required by law, for the establishment procedure;
- Complete details of directors;
- Complete details of shareholders.
Company Registration Process
The Company Registration Process is very straightforward. The process has been laid down below:
- Business Name Registration
Firstly decide upon the name for your company. Company name availability can be checked from Chamber of Commerce and Industry to get an evidence of the uniqueness of the business name.
- Documents filing
After that, it is mandatory for business owners to submit company documents to the concerned authority and be a signatory to the article of incorporation before a legal official.
- Deposit share capital
As per the business structure of your company, the minimum share capital needs to be deposited.
- Submitting AOA to the national printing press
A summary of the Articles of Association should be delivered to the National Printing Office, for it to be published in the Greek National Gazette. The AOA should comprise of full trade name of the business, objective of the company, contributions of the partners by category and their value, seat of the company etc.
- Company Seal
A company seal needs to be made. Such seal must also contain the company’s tax registration number and the competent tax office.
- Certificate of incorporation
Once the above procedure is completed certificate of incorporation will be issued. The Greece Certificate of Incorporation is issued by the Greek Companies Registry when a Greek company is incorporated.