The main business structures to consider in Seychelles are:
This is a business that is owned and operated by one person. This person is fully responsible for the business, both legally and financially. A sole proprietorship is a simple and affordable business structure and is a popular choice for non-residents. The registration fee is estimated to be around 150 SCR (approximately US$12), with the possibility of additional business license fees and taxes, depending on the type of business. This form of organization is attractive to most foreign entrepreneurs due to its low cost and the simplicity of the process.
This is a business in which two or more people own and operate together. The partners share both the profits and losses of the business. A partnership can be successful if the partners trust each other and work together in a coordinated manner.
Limited Liability Company
This is a business structure similar to a partnership, but in an LLC, the owners are only responsible for the amount of money they put into the business. This means that the owner’s assets are protected in the event of a loss or liquidation of the business.
LLCs enjoy significant tax advantages in Seychelles. In particular, they do not have to pay taxes on income earned outside the country. This means that profits distributed to foreign partners are not taxed.
In addition, LLCs are exempt from certain taxes within the jurisdiction. For example, corporate income, real estate transactions, and import/export proceeds may not be taxed.
International Business Company (IBC)
This is a company set up to conduct international business. IBCs in Seychelles have several advantages including confidentiality, flexibility, and no taxation.
This structure is often used by entrepreneurs and investors for various purposes such as acquiring assets, owning and managing other companies, conducting international trade, or investing in overseas companies or projects. IBCs are also ideal for businesses operating over the Internet.
International company with a special license (CSL)
Foreign investors can set up a local company in Seychelles in the form of a Special License Company (CSL). This form of business was introduced in 2003 when the Special License Companies Act was issued.
Forming a CSL company in Seychelles does not require complicated procedures as in the case of an IBC. The main difference is that a CSL requires a special license issued by the Seychelles International Business Authority (SIBA). That said, a CSL can do business both inside and outside the country.
Also, unlike an IBC, to register a CSL a company must have at least two shareholders and at least two directors. A company secretary is a mandatory requirement. The authorized capital must be at least 1 US dollar, and it is mandatory to deposit at least 10% of this amount at the time of registration.
CSL, being a tax resident of Seychelles, is authorized to conduct business both domestically and abroad. Accordingly, it is subject to corporate income tax at the rate of 1.5%. However, unlike IBCs, companies with a special license can benefit from double tax treaties signed by Seychelles with the home countries of foreign investors. This is one of the main advantages of CSL. Seychelles has signed double taxation agreements with the following countries:
There are also several tax incentives applicable to CSL companies, such as exemption from stamp duty, social security contributions, and import and export duties related to equipment and furniture.