Singapore company cannot be incorporated without first having a registered office address in Singapore, which is one of statutory requirements.
A registered office address should fulfill the following criteria:
It is open for at least five hours during ordinary business hours on each business day
It should be a physical office address located in Singapore
It cannot be a P.O. Box
In addition, given that all government bodies and entities will be sending their correspondence to the company’s registered office address, the company should ensure that the incoming mail sent to its registered office address (or registered office address service) is checked regularly.
Examples of correspondence that a company may receive from government bodies and entities would include timely reminders to comply with annual requirements, new government incentives, changes to policy, etc. In addition, banks may also send the correspondence to the company’s registered address as well, unless advised otherwise. It’s self-evident that conscientiously corresponding from your registered office in SIngapore, or employing a responsible registered office address service, is not only an issue of regulatory compliance but of good business practice.
One of the primary key considerations that business owners have to take into account is cost. Given Singapore’s land scarcity, renting office premises is extremely expensive. However, for companies that have sufficient capital, Option 1 would be the preferred choice.
That said, there are situations where inexperienced administrative personnel may not know the importance of certain mails received. For example, the e-services Access Code sent by the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (“IRAS”) is often overlooked and misplaced, particularly since the company will not utilize it until it needs to file its Estimated Chargeable Income or Income Tax Returns.
Alternatively, foreign investors or entrepreneurs who wish to start with minimal overhead costs or do not foresee the need to invest in a physical office address in Singapore can go for Option 2. The benefit of a virtual registered office address service is that companies can choose from a variety of services that they wish to opt for. For example, Rikvin provides the following services at its virtual office:
Registered office address
Dedicated phone line
Dedicated fax to email
In addition, as compared to physical offices, virtual offices can be set up in a far shorter time – Rikvin in particular, can set up your virtual registered office service within one hour. Hence, many companies find this to be far more convenient.
Some business owners may have the misconception that a virtual office will not be able to provide them with the facilities that they require to meet clients, prospective investors, etc.
However, while virtual office services such as Rikvin’s provide a registered office address in Singapore at a fraction of the cost of a physical one, it also provides the following facilities that companies can use, as and when required:
Meeting room facilities to accommodate different groups from 4 pax to 14 pax
Video conferencing facilities
Unlike the costs associated with leasing or renting your own office space, the costs associated with a virtual office service can be adjusted in tandem with your needs and budget. In the long-run, business owners can afford to invest more in their marketing, product development and business expansion plans.