Setting Up A Company In Switzerland

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Switzerland is one of the most attractive business locations for company formation because it has a business-friendly legislation and taxation system and a well-developed infrastructure to support business activities from various industries. Therefore, those interested in setting up a company in Switzerland should be aware of the necessary steps required and the incorporation procedure.

Start with a good idea

A great business idea is like a strong foundation for any new venture. It could be something totally new and innovative, offering a product or service that nobody else has thought of, or it could be a way to make existing products or services even better in industries that make a lot of money.

To make your business idea work, especially if you’re thinking about expanding into Switzerland, you need to do some research. For example, let’s say you make medical devices and want to start a company in Switzerland. You’d need to study the market carefully and if need be, work with big companies in the industry, like IDR Medical, which is headquartered in Switzerland. If interested, you can Click here for more information about IDR Medical and their approach to helping businesses. Similarly, if you run a cosmetics company and want to sell your products in Switzerland, you’d want to find out what Swiss people like and who your competitors might be by doing some market research.

Choosing the legal structure for a company in Switzerland

Choosing the most suitable legal structure for a company depends on various factors, such as the required minimum capital, the number of founders, the company’s liability (private company or share capital company), and public perception. Generally, a fairly universal decision that most businesses make is choosing between the S Corporation vs LLC business structure for their company. It may be called different names in different countries, but more often than not the gist is the same. For example, in Switzerland, a corporation (AG) is considered to be more prestigious and has more credibility than a limited liability company (GmbH).

In Switzerland, it is also possible to incorporate company branches, holding companies, mixed company partnerships, or sole proprietorships.

Drafting the documentation for a company in Switzerland

The legal procedures for the company setup will start with the drafting of the company’s documents. It is necessary to draft the articles of association of the company, to establish the governing bodies of the company (if required), and to register the company with the Swiss Commercial Registry. The documents must be notarized according to Swiss legislation.

Keep in mind that you may need to translate the documents into the official language of Switzerland, before submitting them to the officials. Most countries require documents to be in their official language for legal purposes. Therefore, if you are submitting documents to officials in Switzerland, make sure they are translated into German, French, Italian, or Romansh, likely by certified translators (such as those found at This will ensure that the documents are accepted and processed correctly.

In addition, in most cases, it is required to have a registered office in Switzerland and to provide contact information for the company’s founders, shareholders, and directors. The creation of the documents is a rather quick process because it takes between 7 to 14 days.

Depositing the share capital

To incorporate a company in Switzerland, it is mandatory to deposit the minimum required share capital with a Swiss bank upon registering the newly-formed company. The bank must issue a letter of deposit for the deposited share capital in case of GmbHs and AGs.

Opening a Swiss bank account is not difficult even in the case of foreign citizens or legal entities. In some cases, it is possible to appoint a legal representative that will be able to handle the necessary requirements to open a bank account with a Swiss bank and deposit the share capital.

Notarization of the company’s documents

As mentioned above, after the documentation is drafted for the company in Switzerland, it must be authenticated and certified through a notary (in the case of Swiss corporations). After the documents are notarized, they must be sent to the commercial register.

Registering a company in Switzerland with the Commercial Registry

After the company’s documents are notarized, they must be sent to the commercial register in order to create a register entry for the company. The documents must comply with the requirements of the cantonal commercial register (requirements may vary from one canton to another). The commercial register will issue an excerpt with the information that is entered into the register, to avoid any type of errors or inaccuracies that might occur during the process.

When the commercial registry entry is concluded, the deposited share capital is at the disposal of the company’s founders and the deposit bank account becomes a business account for the newly-formed company in Switzerland.