Once you decide to land in Hong Hong…

Almost every oversea entrepreneurs come up with the same question:

Should I setting up a branch office, subsidiary company, or representative office in Hong Kong?

We have an article to go through the major 4 types of business vehicles in Hong Kong including private company and representative office (Remarks: Branch office is not classified as a type of business vehicle because of its high dependency on a locally registered business vehicles).

For those who are already familiar with these 4 types of business vehicles, we create this quick facts for comparison of branch office, subsidiary company, and representative office for quick reference.

Comparison Table: Representative Office, Subsidiary Company, Branch
Type of EntityRepresentative OfficeCompanyBranch
DefinationKnown as “Non-Hong Kong Company” – sole owned by a oversea body corporate (i.e. company).“Private Company Limited by Shares” incorporated in Hong Kong, shareholding by oversea parent(s).An additional “name” registered in Hong Kong for an existing Hong Kong registered business.
Naming RestrictionMust be the same as (highly related to) its oversea parent.Same as normal Incorporation.Same as normal Business Registration.
Separate Legal EntityNoYesNo
Limited LiabilityNoYesNo
Business Activities RestrictionDisallowed to handle and operate any capital intake and revenue generationNo restrictionRestricted to perform the same or similar business to its parent
Bank Accounts OpeningYes (Funded by its parent company)YesNo
Best fit forOnly foreign companies who wish to setup short-term vehicle in Hong Kong.Either local or foreign companies and individuals to setup a separate legal business entity in Hong Kong.Existing Hong Kong registered business entities (i.e. including Hong Kong company)
Minimum member compositionOne local agent (Hong Kong resident aged 18 or above)One director (Must be a nature person who ages 18 or above) & One shareholder. The same nature person can take up both positions. Maximum 50 members.Not Applicable.
Audit accountsYesYesYes (handled with the same account of its parent)
Annual returnYesYesYes
TaxationNo (Revenue generation is strictly disallowed, no Profits Tax burden on the office is generated)YesYes (handled with the same account of its parent)
CessationVoluntary deregistation / deregistration of parentVoluntary deregistration / strike off / dissolutionVoluntary deregistation / deregistration of parent
Governing authorityCompanies Registry (CR) & Inland Revenue Department (IRD)Companies Registry (CR) & Inland Revenue Department (IRD)Companies Registry (CR). For the registration of parent: Companies Registry (CR) & Inland Revenue Department (IRD)