A Business Company Registered in Seychelles: Advantages and Disadvantages

As the rules are becoming tougher in the business world, many international companies are writing their assets in the names of offshore companies to reduce their tax burden. In foreign jurisdictions, they find advantages that they cannot find in their home countries.

A company registered in an offshore zone can bring many benefits: low taxes, a high level of information confidentiality, asset protection, lack of corruption, etc. Nevertheless, the number of offshore jurisdictions is growing smaller and smaller year after year. To be more precise, the number of advantages that offshore jurisdictions can offer is growing smaller. Only very few countries provide a full range of offshore services and Seychelles is one of these countries.

Companies are not taxed there, no financial reporting is required, no currency control is applied, and so on. In Seychelles, you can find benefits that you can hardly find anywhere else. This fact makes the jurisdiction highly popular with entrepreneurs from different countries.

Actually, Seychelles has become an international financial center where a great number of large companies and their subsidiaries are registered. The jurisdiction has gained a high profile in the business world. One of its advantages is lax requirements to economic substance. An offshore company registered in Seychelles has to have only an office and a registered agent and that is all. Other advantages that Seychelles boast include lack of reporting requirements, state support for business ventures, the opportunity to use nominee services, small company registration fees, etc.

Main advantages of Seychelles

Registering a company in Seychelles would be the right solution because you could find the following weighty benefits that any entrepreneur would appreciate very much:

  • Your confidentiality is protected by law;
  • You can hire a nominee company director;
  • No minimum authorized capital requirements;
  • Shareholders’ meeting can be held in any country of the world;
  • The company registration procedure is simple;
  • Minimum requirements for shareholders and management of the company;
  • Declaring commercial property is not required;
  • The fiscal information is confidential;
  • Your corporate structure can be flexible;
  • No currency control is applied;
  • Seychelles is not listed among uncooperative jurisdictions: it is a reputable country.

Legislative system in Seychelles

The legislative system is a bit unusual in Seychelles because it has borrowed some elements from French legislation and some elements from British law. International business operations are governed by the International Commercial Companies Act that was passed by the Seychelles Government in 1994.

The matter is that Seychelles has two primary sources of revenue: tourism and company registration/ extension fees. For this reason, the authorities of the country are doing their best to create the most comfortable conditions for companies to attract more businesspeople from other countries.  

What additional advantages do Seychelles offer?

You have to pay a small annual fee to extend your company registration in Seychelles. The fee is only US$ 100 and you can pay nothing else at all in the jurisdiction if you register a company there.

And what about the company registration process in Seychelles? The local authorities have designed a fast and highly efficient instrument for registering international companies and have put this job on the line. Registering a legal entity takes 3 to 5 days in Seychelles.

Establishing a company is extremely easy in Seychelles due to the following facts:

  • Company shareholders and directors can be residents of any country;
  • The same person can be the company shareholder and director;
  • The company name can be in any language but it has to be translated into French or English;
  • There are no requirements to keep accounting or financial records (This said, however, we suggest that you should keep records to be able to demonstrate the legality of your sources of income at any time. You must have heard this saying; God helps those who help themselves);
  • No audits are required in Seychelles.

At the same time, you have to take certain characteristics into account and abide by the law to be able to make full use of all the advantages that this offshore jurisdiction offers.

What limitations would you find in Seychelles?

  • An offshore company cannot own real property in Seychelles;
  • An offshore company cannot conduct business operations in the country;
  • A license is required if you would like to provide banking, investment, credit, or trust services;
  • Electronic commerce, brokerage, stock exchanges, and consulting service are the most popular business areas for Seychelles-based companies;
  • The most popular form of company ownership is International Business Company (see below);
  • Documents can be legalized with the help of an apostille because Seychelles has signed the Hague Convention.
  • Main requirements for companies registered in Seychelles:
  • The name of the company has to be unique and meet other requirements applied to company names;
  • The company has to have at least one director and it can be a natural or a legal person;
  • The company can have a secretary and an accountant but filling these positions is not mandatory;
  • The foreign entrepreneur has to file an official application for company formation;
  • The authorized capital has to be deposited but it can be as low as 1 US dollar;
  • A corporate bank account can be opened with any bank;
  • The Company Registration Certificate and other company documents can be kept anywhere but they have to be available on request.

Please note that if you would like to engage in one of the licensed types of business activities in Seychelles, you would have to become a tax resident of the country.

International Business Company

As we have noted above, an International Business Company (IBC) is the most popular form of company ownership in Seychelles. The combination of the following properties will account for the popularity of this type of company:

  • Company owners have limited liabilities;
  • The International Commercial Companies Act regulates the activities of the company;
  • The company can engage in any types of legal business operations;
  • The company shall have an office in Seychelles;
  • The company shall have a registered agent;
  • The company shall have at least one director;
  • Board of Directors and Shareholders’ meetings can be held anywhere in the world;
  • Having a secretary is not mandatory;
  • The company register is closed to the public;
  • A single person can own the company;
  • The company owner can be a resident of any country;
  • Nominee services are legal in Seychelles;
  • Now lower threshold for the authorized capital;
  • Minimum number of issued shares is one;
  • Corporate documents can be kept anywhere in the world but the registered agent has to be informed about the place;
  • Shareholder register shall be kept at the company office in Seychelles;
  • Accounting documents can be kept anywhere in the world but the registered agent has to be informed about the place;
  • No reporting is required unless the company is engaged in business operations in Seychelles;
  • No audit requirements;
  • The annual registration extension fee shall be paid on time.

The fact that Seychelles is a country with wonderful landscapes, fantastic beaches, and warm water of the Indian Ocean makes it even more attractive.

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