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Starting a company in thailand ? price ?

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I heard that you can create a personal company in thailand, with one work-permit ( 1 foreigner only ) for like 500-1000 USD ? is that true ?

What im looking at is to start up a smaller IT company with a small team of developers based in ex. bangkok, if anyone know about how this can be done the cheapest way ( and create the possibility of workepermit and residence permit ) im all ears.

Also interested if anyone here is or know a good lawyer thats not too expensive in relation to starting up a company ?

cheers,

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I heard that you can create a personal company in thailand, with one work-permit ( 1 foreigner only ) for like 500-1000 USD ? is that true ?

What im looking at is to start up a smaller IT company with a small team of developers based in ex. bangkok, if anyone know about how this can be done the cheapest way ( and create the possibility of workepermit and residence permit ) im all ears.

Also interested if anyone here is or know a good lawyer thats not too expensive in relation to starting up a company ?

cheers,

I believe you have bad information. It might cost you $500 - $1000 in legal fees but that is not what you need to set up the company.

First off, unless you're an American, you can only own 49% of the company. The other 51% must be owned by Thai citizens. Part of your legal fees will probably go to paying off some Thais to vouch that they own stock in your company.

Second, registering a company has little to do with getting a work permit. Obviously you would need a company in order to give yourself a work permit but applying for the work permit is a entirely different process than is registering the company.

It's my understanding that in order for your company to even be eligible to apply for a work permit for you, you would need to capitalize it with 2,000,000 baht. Then there are a ton of fees like a 500 baht per 100,000 baht in capitalization fee which adds another 10,000 baht onto the bill.

Your best bet would be to talk to Sunbelt or another legal firm that has experience in setting up companies for foreigners and obtaining work permits. They'll have the most up to date rules and all the little tricks for getting around the Thai system.

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I believe you have bad information. It might cost you $500 - $1000 in legal fees but that is not what you need to set up the company.

First off, unless you're an American, you can only own 49% of the company. The other 51% must be owned by Thai citizens. Part of your legal fees will probably go to paying off some Thais to vouch that they own stock in your company.

Second, registering a company has little to do with getting a work permit. Obviously you would need a company in order to give yourself a work permit but applying for the work permit is a entirely different process than is registering the company.

It's my understanding that in order for your company to even be eligible to apply for a work permit for you, you would need to capitalize it with 2,000,000 baht. Then there are a ton of fees like a 500 baht per 100,000 baht in capitalization fee which adds another 10,000 baht onto the bill.

Your best bet would be to talk to Sunbelt or another legal firm that has experience in setting up companies for foreigners and obtaining work permits. They'll have the most up to date rules and all the little tricks for getting around the Thai system.



If work permit from your own company, do you not have to employ a certain amount of Thais per work permit too?

Also think the 500/1000 USD even for legal fees sounds waaaaaaaay too low.

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If work permit from your own company, do you not have to employ a certain amount of Thais per work permit too?

Also think the 500/1000 USD even for legal fees sounds waaaaaaaay too low.

Yes, I believe there are requirements for the number of Thais you must employ as well. I've heard some people saying that they have to take pictures of their staff, the building, their staff in the building, etc, etc, etc whenever the government wants to confirm that you're actually employing the staff or trying to get a work permit.

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Yes, I believe there are requirements for the number of Thais you must employ as well. I've heard some people saying that they have to take pictures of their staff, the building, their staff in the building, etc, etc, etc whenever the government wants to confirm that you're actually employing the staff or trying to get a work permit.


Think the employees need to be registered with 'social registration' scheme? (can't remember correct name)

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Guest aamit918

hello feeds for you are not correct, i have worked with thaicome satellite and there is no as such issue to start a company in thailand, so dont get cheated, for registration and all that u need 1k and rest you have to invest whatever u want for your company, if u need my help i will be happy to do so, regards

amit

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The 2 million in capital can also be in the form of intellectual property, so an idea can help you get to the 2 million if you don't have it. However, if your idea isn't worth 2 million after a couple of years, red flags will go up. They are not strict on that 2 million thing at least in the beginning.

The easiest way to do it would be to contact a company like SunBelt Asia, get a list of their fees for starting a company, learn what you have to do, and then do it on your own for much, much cheaper. I forget how much it costed me to start up a company in Thailand, but you should definitely get a smart Thai on your team that can shop around for you.

If whatever SunBelt quotes you looks reasonable to you and you're a bit lazy, just go with them. They churn out businesses everyday like a factory.

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I think I was also paying about 2-3,000 a month for an accountant that filed with the Thai government for me. Again, all of that stuff can be done for cheaper, but it's much better to have someone take care of it if you hate doing stuff like that. If you don't do it, you get all sorts of fees and strange people visiting your office looking for extra tea money.

They constantly change the rules on what you need to file as well. All in all, it's a pain in the ass to do business in Thailand unless you're willing to pay someone to take care of the headaches.

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Yes you can start a company for very little, BUT, the ongoing costs add up. Whilst Sunbelt are not the cheapest initially they will get it right and not "forget" to tell you of all the charges. Look at the overall costs, not just the initial costs.

As stated above part of the 2M baht capital can be intellectual property, like most countries this is a limit to liability of the company rather than money in the bank (although some bureaucrats will argue this point). This is all determined by one government department. Work permits are determined by a different (Labor) department, yes you will need 2M Baht paid up capital, 4 Thai staff earning at least 6K per month, paying tax and getting social security per work permit. You will also have to be registered for VAT, more monthly reports to the government (Tax Department). Do some research what you are letting your self into here. Talk to people who are in business in Thailand and deal with the ongoing paperwork.

Then if you want to leave, closing a company is a long and costly experience (from personal experience).

If you are a US citizen, there is the Treaty of Amnity option, however it is expensive to set up and requires even more paperwork. The treaty has expired but they are still accepting applications and processing them.

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Yes you can start a company for very little, BUT, the ongoing costs add up. Whilst Sunbelt are not the cheapest initially they will get it right and not "forget" to tell you of all the charges. Look at the overall costs, not just the initial costs.

As stated above part of the 2M baht capital can be intellectual property, like most countries this is a limit to liability of the company rather than money in the bank (although some bureaucrats will argue this point). This is all determined by one government department. Work permits are determined by a different (Labor) department, yes you will need 2M Baht paid up capital, 4 Thai staff earning at least 6K per month, paying tax and getting social security per work permit. You will also have to be registered for VAT, more monthly reports to the government (Tax Department). Do some research what you are letting your self into here. Talk to people who are in business in Thailand and deal with the ongoing paperwork.

Then if you want to leave, closing a company is a long and costly experience (from personal experience).

If you are a US citizen, there is the Treaty of Amnity option, however it is expensive to set up and requires even more paperwork. The treaty has expired but they are still accepting applications and processing them.

It's still surprising that the gov doesn't try to be more helpful in attracting foreign investment. The costs to start a company are high and the paperwork is a pain. And we're not even going to start about the 51% Thai owned requirements.

But, most companies start off small. Apple was started in the garage of the owners. Google was started off on a shoestring. Heck, I remember way back in the day when the founders of Yahoo would personally respond to your requests to be included in the Yahoo directory.

Most of these companies wouldn't have a chance in Thailand. I'm not talking about the access to skilled engineers and such but the whole anti-small business overhead that comes with setting up and running a business in Thailand.

The government has no problems if you want to open up a factory and employ 5,000 people but if you want to start up a company and grow it to being big enough to employ 5,000 people, they make it as difficult as possible.

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It's still surprising that the gov doesn't try to be more helpful in attracting foreign investment. The costs to start a company are high and the paperwork is a pain. And we're not even going to start about the 51% Thai owned requirements.

The Thai government or rather those who make the rules are convinced that any foreigner who does business in Thailand is taking work from a Thai. Small investment is to much effort for them, they are interested in large investment, sort of, they promote the benefits of a BOI (Bank Of Investment) approved venture with a minimum 30 million Baht investment.

Part of the problem is the ignorance of what happens outside the borders of Thailand. This starts in the education system, and goes through the class system to the way the government operates.

But, most companies start off small. Apple was started in the garage of the owners. Google was started off on a shoestring. Heck, I remember way back in the day when the founders of Yahoo would personally respond to your requests to be included in the Yahoo directory.

Most of these companies wouldn't have a chance in Thailand. I'm not talking about the access to skilled engineers and such but the whole anti-small business overhead that comes with setting up and running a business in Thailand.

Those companies would probably not have happened in Thailand, even if some Thais came up with the ideas as the culture would have stifled an idea coming from a young person.

The government has no problems if you want to open up a factory and employ 5,000 people but if you want to start up a company and grow it to being big enough to employ 5,000 people, they make it as difficult as possible.
Even a BOI company is a lot hard work. I'll give a few real life examples.

An Australian firm is trying to invest $30M AUD in a BOI approved company in Thailand. After submitting over 5kg of paperwork it is time to put some money in a bank account as part of starting a company, they have the cash to transfer in Australia. They need an account to put the money into so the BOI can approve the company formation. So lawyers in tow they off to the bank to open an account. They have to submit the same 5kg of paperwork plus approvals from the BOI to the bank, the manager responded, "Cannot open account because company is not formed." Back to the BOI "Cannot form company without money in account" This went back and forward a couple of times. It was resolved eventually. The Australian GM told me if he was aware of the paperwork nightmare he would have invested in Cambodia.

Example 2, a friend was buying repossessed motorcycles to use for rentals. The bikes came with proof of ownership from the motorcycle company. Part of the vast amounts of paperwork with each bike included all the details of the original purchaser, including a copy of their ID card, and a copy the motorcycle company's repo order, and all the details of the Japanese GM, ie copies of his passport, visa, work permit, all signed in person by the GM as all copies have to be signed by the original person. This paperwork was to kept and handed on to the next owner if need. My friend's venture was not fully legal as he is a foreigner.

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Even a BOI company is a lot hard work. I'll give a few real life examples.

An Australian firm is trying to invest $30M AUD in a BOI approved company in Thailand. After submitting over 5kg of paperwork it is time to put some money in a bank account as part of starting a company, they have the cash to transfer in Australia. They need an account to put the money into so the BOI can approve the company formation. So lawyers in tow they off to the bank to open an account. They have to submit the same 5kg of paperwork plus approvals from the BOI to the bank, the manager responded, "Cannot open account because company is not formed." Back to the BOI "Cannot form company without money in account" This went back and forward a couple of times. It was resolved eventually. The Australian GM told me if he was aware of the paperwork nightmare he would have invested in Cambodia.

Example 2, a friend was buying repossessed motorcycles to use for rentals. The bikes came with proof of ownership from the motorcycle company. Part of the vast amounts of paperwork with each bike included all the details of the original purchaser, including a copy of their ID card, and a copy the motorcycle company's repo order, and all the details of the Japanese GM, ie copies of his passport, visa, work permit, all signed in person by the GM as all copies have to be signed by the original person. This paperwork was to kept and handed on to the next owner if need. My friend's venture was not fully legal as he is a foreigner.

I didn't mean to imply that it was easy. I just mean, the government is more likely to do something to actually court getting your business because there's an immediate benefit for the government. If you come and say you want to open a factory and employ 5,000 people you'll have an easier time than someone who wants to start a company in their condo and it starts to quickly expand to the same size as the 5,000 person company.

When you're small, every roadblock is a potential death sentence for your company. When you're huge, you just pay off the right people to make it happen regardless of the laws.

The sad part is that because of this shortsightedness, Thailand has had growth stunted. An untold number of jobs have not been created in Thailand that could have been if the government was friendlier to small businesses, or more to the point, foreign owned small businesses.

It's interesting because in India, it's even worse. India has one of the worst systems to set up a new business in. But, the place is growing like crazy. BPOs, IT, manufacturing, etc are all booming in India. But part of the reason for that is that India welcomes all sorts of foreign investment. And that foreign investment spurs unique solutions locally which entrepreneurs latch onto and start creating other businesses (i.e. a large IT shop opens and small specialty shops pick up outsourced specialty work).

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