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Registration of a Business in South Africa

The New Companies Act 71 of 2008 which came into effect in May 2011 saw a great deal of change with regards to the registration of a business. For one thing, no more Close Corporations may be registered in South Africa as these businesses have now been replaced with various types of companies. Naturally all existing Close Corporations or CCs will continue to operate and changes in terms of new company officials, new auditors, changes of address and so forth will still be allowed.

The process involved during company registration in South Africa has therefore changed. Many will agree that registering a business is much easier than in the past. The New Companies Act has strived to make the registration process as simple and effective as possible.

The types of companies one can now register are also different under the new Act. Companies are new divided various groups, namely a Non-Profit Company, Private Company, Public Company, State-Owned Company, External Company and a Personal Liability Company. When deciding on which of these you want to register your business under it may be a good idea to speak to a company that specialises in registering businesses as it may be quite confusing if you are not familiar with the various criteria for each.

One of the main differences between new companies and businesses registered under the old Companies Act is that not all companies have to be audited. This does, however not mean that new businesses do not have to keep accurate financial records of the businesses financials.

By law all new registered business have to ensure that all their annual financial statements are kept up to date and are as accurate and transparent as possible. For this reason, if you are considering registering a company it is advisable to approach a charted accountant or accounting company that offers bookkeeping services in order to ensure your new business adheres to these requirements.

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