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Registering a Business in South Africa

There are several advantages to registering your business. These include financial assistance, tax incentives and business name protection. In South Africa, businesses can be registered online on the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) website, or on the website, a platform created by the CIPC that offers company registration and related services. Businesses can also register via a bank, for example Nedbank and First National Bank. Another way to register a business is to make use of an organisation that offers company registration and related services. Most of these types of businesses offer packaged services that include SARS consulting, labour registrations, CIDB registrations, and upgrades.

The CIPC replaced the Companies and Intellectual Property Registration Office (CIPRO) in May 2011, at the same time the new Companies Act came into law which changed the way business owners had to register their companies. For example, no new close corporations (CC) can be registered. Types of companies that can be registered with the CIPC include non-profit companies, profit companies, personal liability companies, public companies, and private companies.

The registration process can take three to five days depending on whether the correct documents were submitted and the workload at the registrar’s office.

Some useful information to know is that you can still register a company even if you are blacklisted. The company needs to have at least one director to register. Foreigners may also register a company in South Africa, but to do this you need to provide a valid passport copy or RSA ID document and have a residential address in South Africa.

Therefore, registering a business in South Africa is not complicated and has advantages. Registering a business can be done either through the CIPC, the bank, or by outsourcing the admin thereof.

If you need support with registering a company, contact us at

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