The Bahamas is one of the most popular offshore jurisdictions in the world. It offers attractive conditions to international entrepreneurs wishing to register offshore companies there. Doing so would be ideal for tax planning, asset protection, and maintaining confidentiality of your personal information. How can a foreign individual purchase an existing company in the Bahamas or register a new one there?
Why register an offshore company in the Bahamas
The most attractive factor that lures foreign investors to the Bahamas is the taxation system in the country. Corporate tax, income tax, capital gains tax, royalty tax, dividend and interest tax – all of these have zero rated there. What is more, these conditions hold both for resident and non-resident companies on the islands.
Why should you buy or register an offshore company in the Bahamas?
- Your company can use any national currency as there is no currency control in the country;
- The Registrar will have the information about the company beneficiaries but disclosing it to the public requires a court decision;
- There is no need to file accounting reports;
- There are no audit requirements;
- The company can open a corporate account with a local bank.
The cost of offshore company registration in the Bahamas is low and the same goes for the company maintenance costs. The application processing takes between 7 and 14 days.
One of the disadvantages that the jurisdiction has is its official offshore status. Many countries have the Bahamas on the lists of offshore jurisdictions with all the drawbacks that this entails. Besides, the country has not made a single agreement on avoidance of double taxation with other national states.
Forms of company ownership in the Bahamas:
- SPV – a special purpose vehicle, that is, a company established for a specific goal;
- IBC – International Business Company.
Foreign entrepreneurs most often prefer to register IBCs in the Bahamas.
Requirements to IBCs in the Bahamas
This form of company ownership requires meeting certain conditions and fulfilling some requirements. For instance, an IBC in the Bahamas does not have the right to do business locally nor provide any services to the local population. In addition, it cannot let other companies use its legal address.
An IBC in the Bahamas shall have an office in the country that will serve as its registered legal address. Besides, it has to use the services of a licensed local registration agent. The company cannot own real estate in the Bahamas. Neither can it purchase shares of locally registered companies nor sign partner agreements with them. If any of these requirements is violated, the company will cease to be tax-exempt.
Characteristics of IBCs registered in the Bahamas:
|Corporate legislation||The International Business Companies Act 2000 and The International Business Companies (Amendment).|
|Requirements to company name||The name shall be unique; it shall not contain words such as Building Society, Trustee Company, Royal, Bank, and others.|
|Registered capital||Recommended amount – US$ 50,000. Depositing not required.|
|Types of shares permitted||Ordinary, preferred, voting, non-voting, redeemable.|
|Minimal number of company directors||1 – can be a person or a corporate entity; legal residence or country of domiciliation is irrelevant.|
|Nominee shareholders and directors||Allowed|
|Minimal number of company shareholders||1 – can be a person or a corporate entity; legal residence or country of domiciliation is irrelevant.|
|Information about beneficiary company owners||Not accessible to the public|
|Annual financial reports||Do not have to be files. The financial records shall be kept at the registered legal address and they shall be accessible for inspection|
|Shareholders and Board of Directors’ meetings||Can be held in any country of the world|
|Income tax, VAT, capital gains tax||0%|
|Articles of Association and company By-laws||Required|
|Currency control Валютный контроль||None|
|Company secretary||Not required|
You can purchase or register an offshore company in the Bahamas to engage in any kind of legal business. A license is required for banking, insurance, reinsurance, fund management, and trust management companies.
How you can register an offshore company in the Bahamas
You can register an offshore company in the Bahamas without leaving the comfort of your home. To do so you have to take the following steps:
Think of a name for your prospective company and check it for uniqueness.
Register the company with the Registrar.
The standard package of corporate documents for an offshore company in the Bahamas will contain the registration certificate, a blank form of the share certificate, articles of association, shareholders register, directors register, minutes of the first meeting of shareholders, and letter of director appointment. If nominee services are used, a power of attorney, a resolution pertaining to it, and the shareholder’s trust declaration need to be obtained.
How you can purchase an offshore company in the Bahamas
Purchase of a ready-made company is another option that you have. You may choose to buy an offshore company in the Bahamas instead of registering a new one if you urgently need a corporate entity to strike a business deal, for instance. Our experts will gladly assist you in both purchasing and registering an offshore company in the Bahamas.
The purchase process takes from one day to one week. You have to choose one of the available companies (with a history or without it), acquire ownership of it, and open a corporate bank account. We will be happy to help you at each of these stages.
If you would like to purchase a ready-made offshore company in the Bahamas or register a new company there, please contact us by email (see above), WhatsApp or live chat and we will guide you through the process. We know exactly how to go about setting up an offshore company!
Can I register or buy an offshore company in the Bahamas without traveling to the islands?
Yes, you can both purchase and register an offshore company in the Bahamas remotely.
Where can I open a bank account for my Bahamas-based offshore company?
The banking industry in the Bahamas is well developed and you can set up a corporate bank account in this jurisdiction. You can also open a corporate account for your offshore company with a European bank but this is going to take a bit more effort. Apply for our assistance and we will help you find the optimal solution of this issue.
What restrictions are imposed on offshore companies in the Bahamas?
If we are talking about an International Business Company (IBC), it cannot engage into any economic activities on the territory of the Bahamas. It cannot do business with local partners, it cannot provide services to the local population, it cannot buy shares of Bahamian companies, and so on.