What is a Singapore Branch Office and How to Have it Registered?

A branch company is a business you can set up in Singapore as a foreign company owner with means of expanding your business. A branch company in Singapore is one of three types of business type options a foreigner can choose to run in Singapore. As other businesses and companies in Singapore, there are certain procedures and regulations you must abide by in order to run your business legally.

Know that Singaporean law obliges all activities with the purpose of profit gain that is conducted continuously to be registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) of Singapore. In order to be registered, a company must go through the procedures of company registration according to the existing rules. Only after getting officially approved, a branch office in Singapore is registered as a legal entity. A branch office in Singapore is regarded as an extension of the foreign parent company. A branch office is not viewed as a separate entity. This makes the parent company of a Singapore branch office responsible for its liability and debts.

As a foreigner, you are obliged to use the service of a professional firm in Singapore to help you register your company. There are many kinds of firm that may help you in this process, such as law firms, accounting firms, or corporate secretarial firms. Before you go through the process of registration, there are a few administrative requirements that you need to fulfill as follows.

1. Name

The name of the branch office in Singapore must be kept the same as the parent company.

2. Officers

A Singapore branch company must appoint staffs that are Singaporean residents. Singaporean residents include Singapore citizens, permanent residents, or the holders of an employment pass. All staff must be at least 18 years old of age.

3. Constitution and Activities

The parent company is obliged to direct all activities, shareholders, and company structure with no separate constitution.

4. Registered Address

A Singapore branch office must register an office in the country. The address must mention the company name and incorporation place.

Aside from these administrative requirements, you are also required to provide documents for registrations. These documents are all to be submitted in English. The list of documents you need are:

  • The particulars of the foreign company’s directors
  • The copy of the foreign company’s Certificate of Incorporation and Constitution
  • A memorandum of appointment for the authorized representative of the Singapore branch office
  • A memorandum that states the powers of the authorized representative executed by or on behalf of the foreign company
  • The details of the registered office address in Singapore, and
  • The parent company’s latest and audited financial statements

The time required to get a branch office registered is usually one to two days. All the procedures will be handled by the professional firm you hired. Once approved, you will receive an e-mail that officially states your branch office’s registration success in Singapore. You can use virtual office in Singapore to save cost. This e-mail is a valid approval proof of companies in Singapore as hard copies are no longer required in the country.