Portugal can be a great base for running an international business, accessing EU markets, and protecting one’s assets. Portugal is a jurisdiction with a good reputation and growing potential. It is possible to set up a company remotely, at a relatively low cost. If you need a company within the European Union, read on to find out why Portugal might be the ideal solution.
The Portuguese government has recently invested a lot of effort into the economic recovery, and business joined this effort pro-actively. The country needs business persons: both experienced and newcomers, young and senior, residents and those from other countries. Businesspersons are attracted by the favorable business environment.
The tax system in Portugal is very transparent, the time required to open a company was reduced to 10 business days (less if you buy a ready-made company), and the EU jurisdiction offers huge advantages and ways to grow and develop a business.
But this is only a brief description. In the article below, we invite you to read about all the subtleties!
Many of our clients who want to do business in the EU, or simply want access to reliable EU banking, choose to incorporate a company in Portugal!
What is Needed to Register a Company in Portugal?
There are two ways to open a company in Portugal: the simplified and the standard one. The simplified method reduces the company registration procedure to a few days.
In order to successfully register a Portuguese company, an authorized capital of at least 1 EUR is required, as well as at least 1 shareholder who can also hold the position of director. It is recommended that the authorized capital should be at least 1,000 EUR.
In Portugal there is a peculiarity related to the ready-made or shelf companies. The existence of a special register of ready-made company names provides the opportunity of choosing an already existing name. Otherwise, it will take a longer time (about 15 days) to approve registering the new name. It would be technically accurate to call these ready-made companies “partially completed” since they are ready to go, but still need to undertake a few formalities. A Portuguese lawyer will be able to take care of these for you.
A very popular option is to choose ready-made. The name appears in legal documents only, so you can use any “trading as” name you like. It’s also possible to change the formal company name later at your leisure, after you have started trading.
A useful document that we advise you to obtain while getting your limited liability company registered is online access to the Permanent Certificate of Business Registration. The document serves as proof of incorporation to banks within and outside Portugal. The three months access is included in the service package.
Access to the certificate enhances the reputation of the Portuguese company. This will give you more advantages in all of your business operations, from attracting skilled employees to working with major partners and, perhaps most importantly, easy access to reputable international banks.
The main document for a Portuguese company is the Articles of Association. It contains the following information:
- Name, nationality, country of residence of owners and directors;
- Scope of business;
- The name of the limited liability company in Portuguese;
- The details of the company’s management.
Documents required at the start of registration:
- Proof of the residence addresses of the company’s directors and owners;
- Passport copies of the above mentioned people;
- Articles of Association (Offshore Pro Group will supply a standard template).
The process of registering a company in Portugal takes up to 10 business days. It can be faster if you purchase a ready-made company.
Tax ID (TIN) for Non-Residents When Registering a Company in Portugal
Every shareholder and director of a private Portuguese company must have a personal Portuguese tax number. This is a very important point especially for a company that also must obtain a tax ID. You won’t be able to get the company tax ID if you don’t have a personal tax ID first. Fortunately, the process is simple and tax IDs can usually be issued within a few hours. (During the covid-19 pandemic, however, there have been some delays – so please contact us for updates on the current situation).
An EU resident can obtain a tax ID at any time by simply visiting a tax office. Non-EU residents will need a Portuguese tax representative who will be responsible for receiving any communications from the tax department. (Citizenship is not important for this purpose, only residence.)
For non-EU residents, we can offer several options on how you can get a tax representative service:
- Use our service that is included in the company registration fee;
- Order the service from a local lawyer;
- Obtain residency in Portugal (we will provide you the necessary assistance in obtaining a residence permit) so you don’t need a tax representative.
Company Registration Costs in Portugal
It is possible to set up a limited liability company in Portugal for the price that starts from 1,200 EUR for an already-made company. When registering your own company name, the cost of opening a company is 2,400 EUR.
The price includes
REGISTRATION SERVICES With a ready company name With a company name of your choice Company registration 1,200 EUR 2,400 EUR Tax representative in Portugal for 12 months 600 EUR Accounting services for 3 months 900 EUR Tax ID 500 EUR Legal address Permanent Certificate of Business Registration Total 3,600 EUR 4,800 EUR
The Family Office Package is useful when managing a Portuguese company.
The Family Office Package
|Start-Up Concierge Package||Basic|
300 EUR per months
600 EUR per month
1,200 EUR per month
|Physical Registered Office address including the right to use a meeting space||V||V||V|
|Storage of original documents, archive, scanning of incoming mail and coordination with the accountant (up to 5 emails/calls per month)||V||V||V|
|Coordination with tax authorities, public institutions and banks||V||V||V|
|2 hours of counseling or legal work||V||V|
|2 hours of other work for you||V||V|
|Unlimited assistance in dealing with the accountant and government agencies||V|
|Transfer from the airport to the city and back||V|
|Local transportation in the city for 2 days||V|
|3 hours of simple tasks||V|
|1 extra hour of counseling||V|
Please see more services here.
Corporate Account with a Portuguese Bank
Portuguese banks are very careful in picking up their clients. Since the 2008 crisis, the executives have reviewed their institutions’ policies in favor of thorough due diligence. Yet despite the difficulties, it is possible to open a bank account with the support of our experts. If you can’t travel to Portugal it can be done remotely via a power of attorney to a Portuguese resident.
An important point is that you need to have a Portuguese company in order to be approved for a corporate account with a local bank. And also your company in Portugal should be able to show local substance. This is where the Start-Up Concierge service, described above, really comes in handy!
This local substance has a significant impact on the bank’s onboarding decision, so you need to think this through in advance. Please feel free to consult us on this matter at: email@example.com.
Documents required for opening a bank account with a Portuguese bank:
- Company’s corporate documents;
- Passports of directors and owners;
- Tax IDs of the local company and individuals listed above;
- Connections in Portugal (can be provided by the Start-Up Concierge Service);
- Personal Tax ID will also be required for a foreign company if it acts as an owner.
Opening a bank account in Portugal requires a few additional conditions to be met:
- Appointment of a resident director in Portugal. We are ready to offer you a local professional director who meets all the requirements;
- Having a local tenancy agreement with the owner/beneficial owner for a period of 6 months or more. We will help you rent in Braga;
- If you wish you can make an employment contract with your own or someone else’s company. This will increase your credibility although it is less relevant for a corporate account;
- The company will need to sign a virtual office contract for at least a year;
- You will be asked to specify why you need a bank account in Portugal.
A serious advantage for opening a corporate bank account will be the case when the company’s owner has a personal account with the same bank. It is advisable to open a personal account 6 to 12 months before opening a corporate account. This will require a rental agreement in Portugal (we can assist you in arranging it) for 6 months or more and an employment contract for 3 months or more (or owning a local company).
Banking Services in Portugal
We will be able to select and advise a bank that works with your type of business. For example, a large and reputable Portuguese bank offers the following services:
- POS-terminals installation;
- Account opening for companies;
- Transfers within the SEPA system and in other currencies such as USD via SWIFT;
- Business insurance;
- Plastic cards:
- Prepaid cards;
- Debit and credit cards;
- Gold and silver corporate and business cards;
In addition to the above, the bank provides investment management services and the possibility of managing your account completely remotely via the Internet bank or mobile app.
Corporate Account with Foreign Banks
If you do not plan to open a local bank account, requirements can be simplified and costs reduced. Remember that you will still have access to EU banking services so you can then use services such as Revolut Business, Transferwise or Stripe to cover the banking needs of your Portuguese company. There are also various banks in other EU countries such as Handelsbank in Germany or LHV Bank in Estonia that will open accounts for Portuguese companies. The banking situation is dynamic so feel free to consult our experts for the latest updates. To open an account abroad, a set of certified company documents will be required.
Documents required for opening a European bank account:
- Company’s corporate documents;
- Passports of owners and directors;
- Documents serving as proof of residence of the owners and directors.
More precise information depends on the specific bank. Contact us to discuss your personal requirements.
Procedure of Registering a Company in Portugal
Please inform us in your intention to set up a company and, if necessary, open a corporate account, at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also reach out to us via WhatsApp or live chat for faster service.
Have a Zoom meeting with our Portugal expert with all the initial information about the details of your future operations.
After that we will ask you to pay for the service, and send the necessary documents (which will be specified by the expert).
We will start the procedure of registering your Company in Portugal.
As soon as all the processes are completed, we will send you the corporate documents of your newly registered company and you will be able to start your business operations.
Please do not hesitate to contact us right now and register your own limited liability company in Portugal!