Americans In Europe

Are You A US Citizen Looking To Open A European Company?

Make Sure You Read This First…

In the United States, opening a company can be fairly quick and the requirements tend to be the same from state to state. In Europe, as each country has its own government, this tends to vary from country to country.  In certain countries such as the United Kingdom, Ireland and Denmark applications are done online and are therefore very fast. However, to open a European company elsewhere it can be a different story. Germany, Spain and Portugal use a notary system- thereby increasing the time to incorporate. Timescales for setting up a company therefore depend upon the country and can take from 24 hours to 6 weeks according to where you wish to set up.

The good news for Americans is that it’s no more difficult for them to open a bank account in Europe as it is for a European to open up a bank account in America. The bank will require: two certified forms of Identification and a passport, two utility bills that are less than three months old –this should be sufficient for their requirements. There are certain banks that will require a business plan and in some cases a reference from an attorney or CPA.

One aspect of opening a company in Europe is share capital. This is the amount of money you need to deposit in your corporate account to show the relevant authorities you possess enough money to successfully operate your new business. This can be done by bank transfer from your personal account to show where the funds have come from. Your European business bank will simply send a statement to the notary in the country you are setting up, to show you have deposited the money.

One of the advantages of opening a European company is that you don’t have to be physically present to take advantage of the legal and tax benefits of the chosen country. Virtual offices are available in most European countries and calls can be forwarded or a message taken for you pick up in your American office. At we have extensive connections with virtual office facilities and can rent a virtual office in most countries. In some countries such as Germany, Spain and Ireland you will need a member of staff physically working in the office, if this is the case we can help with office rentals and recruitment.

E-Commerce businesses will require a merchant account but this can be set up quite easily, we have long standing relationships with merchant providers who are able to offer very competitive rates.

As with many countries, including America in order to qualify for a work permit or business visa you would need to prove you can support yourself financially and not rely on your chosen country. We will need to look at each individual case before we can offer any advice.

There are many reasons Americans open a European company. One is to expand their existing business into Europe and take advantage of various legal and taxation benefits; we can provide a complete package of services including in most cases someone who can accompany you to all your necessary appointments in your chosen country.  For E-Commerce businesses, merchant services in Europe will require you to set up a European company as part of their requirements. Fortunately we can assist with all aspects of this as we have long standing links to merchant service providers throughout Europe and know exactly what they need. Another reason many Americans open a European company is to hold Trademarks; Some US companies wish to incorporate a company in Europe to hold intellectual property and trademarks. Again we have been providing trademark registration assistance for many years now.

To see just how we can help you and to have a free client consultation, feel free to contact us at your descretion. If you have an immediate question you can chat live now to one of our experts, call us, have us call you or fire us an email. The choice is yours, please take a look to the right.