As we stated in, the ‘creation’ of your journey to success, company formation for the start-up often includes much more than meets the untrained eye. Here is our step by step guide:

  1. Get a name

    Which cannot be any other company’s trading name. We can check this for you at Companies House.

    You should already be thinking about branding, logos, perception etc. Reason being, you should, when checking a name, already be aware of what domain name you will want for your website.
    This is very important, as most 3 or 4 letter combinations of names are basically not out there !
    Having a name for a company and then not being able to get the required .com or domain name, could potentially be damaging further down the line.

  2. Structure

    Already have an idea about the potential share structure you may wish to have in place – think about this over the next 1-3 years to start with.

    Think about founder share splits and how you may wish to reward employees in the future for their commitment to your startup – EMI / employee investors.

    Think about initial seed investment, SEIS funding to begin, how much % do you want to give up?
    If there is a group structure, consider the SSE (substantial shareholdings exemption), tax planning that we can help you with from the offset.

  3. Legals

    Ask us to refer you to our independent local corporate Lawyer, to draft your Shareholders’ Agreement.

    Part of this process may involve an appraisal of the requirement to complete a section 431 election; this is an important document that we can advise you on to mitigate your tax liabilities when you come to sell / dispose of your shares.

    A shareholder’s agreement may feel like overkill before you are even off the ground, but part of being a successful business owner is to understand and plan for the extremes – especially when wives and partners invariably get involved ! / if founders are dual residence.

  4. Companies House

    Get us to set up the company with Companies House.

    We are now in a position to understand the shareholdings that you and your other founders need.

    We shall complete the process online, we shall log your data into our dedicated company secretarial software, this will produce founder share certificates.

    We shall send you the founder share certificates and also the certificate of incorporation – you will need these to set up a UK bank account.

    We shall retain your Memorandum and Articles of Association on our network.

  5. Tax

    Get us to register you for the correct UK taxes.

    VAT may again seem like an imposition so early, as the threshold for turnover is £82k, but again consider who your customer is.

    If BTC, once you hit the threshold, you then have to eat into your margin to maintain your prices.

    If BTB, then no bother, as your customers are probably VAT registered already.

    Overseas suppliers / markets, do you need to register in other countries.

    Perception again, a VAT registered company carries more gravitas.

    Cashflow, if making no sales, can you recover some input VAT to generate a little more cash.

    If you have some cash already, do you need a director’s payroll, we can advise on the most tax efficient strategy for your remuneration.

  6. Banking

    Get us to refer you to our local bank manager to set up your business bank account.

    You need your certificate of incorporation and share certificates that we’ve created for you.

    Be prepared for some serious form filling!

  7. Accounting software

    Talk to us about which accounting software to use.

    In all honesty, early days, you just need excel, as things progress we can then look at VT (desktop), then Xero or whatever cloud solution will suit you best, we’ll talk with you as you go.

  8. Tax credits

    Start to talk with us about grants and R&D tax credits.

    Cashflow, getting money in from any sources is vital to the lifeblood of your business.

    We have a unique flexible system for our R&D tax credits, find out more here.

    We have collaborations with partners for all types of grants, we’ll happily put you in touch.

  9. Sail off into the sunset

    All is good to go, things may be a little more complicated if you are within an accelerator, or indeed if you need an Entrepreneurship visa, but we shall assist you with all of the above and help you anywhere that we can along the way.


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