BVI Company formation
The Virgin Islands, often called the British Virgin Islands (BVI), is a British overseas territory and overseas territory of the European Union, located in the Caribbean to the east of Puerto Rico. The islands make up part of the Virgin Islands archipelago, the remaining islands constituting the U.S. Virgin Islands. British Virgin Islands government publications had traditionally continued to commence with “The Territory of the Virgin Islands”, but recently, more legislation now simply refers to the Territory as the “British Virgin Islands”.
The British Virgin Islands consist of the main islands of Tortola, Virgin Gorda, Anegada and Jost Van Dyke, along with over fifty other smaller islands. Approximately 15 of the islands are inhabited. The capital, Road Town, is situated on Tortola, the largest island which is approximately 20 km (12 mi) long and 5 km (3 mi) wide. The islands have a population of about 22,000, of whom approximately 18,000 live on Tortola.
Why form a corporation in BVI?
The main reasons for BVI Company formation are as follows:
- Maximum security of assets includes the ability to transfer domicile
- The directors may protect the assets of the IBC for the benefit of the IBC, its creditors and its members by transferring its assets to another company, trust, foundation, association or partnership; and merge or consolidate with any other company or foreign corporation in another accommodating jurisdiction.
- International Business Companies are exempt from all local taxes and stamp duty
- Maximum, confidentiality and anonymity are provided by BVI bearer shares being available by the absence of any requirements to file any organizational or accountancy information with the Registrar of Companies, (other than the memorandum of Articles of Association), and by share registers being available for inspection only by company registered shareholders or by order of the BVI court.
- Ease of operation, maintenance and control are facilitated by flexible corporate features. IBC’s can re-quire and re-issue their own shares. Shares can be issued for a consideration other than cash, with or without par value, and be denominated in any currency. Only one subscriber and thereafter one shareholder is required. Single directorates are permitted. Shareholders’ and directors’ meetings are not confined to the British Virgin Islands. Books of account, records and minutes can be maintained elsewhere. There is no statutory requirement to hold annual general meetings. No distinction is made between public and private IBC’s. Incorporations can take place within one or two days. Computerized access for Registered Agents to remotely reserve preferred names is now being finalized.
BVI – Wide Range of applications
A wide range of application are possible with a BVI Company, including: investment, property holding, financial management, trading and copyrighting and/or licensing. Unlike many other jurisdictions, there are no disclosure requirements, nor any minimum capitalization regulations, nor any prohibitive license fees pertaining to trust and trustee companies for application in private-label trust company, unit and mutual fund situations.
|Minimum number of shareholders||1|
|Minimum number of directors||1|
|Mimimum share capital requirement||US$ 1|
|Company secretary||Not required|
|Nationality and address of shareholders / directors||No restrictions|
|Hong Kong registered address||Not required.
Keeping of Hong Kong corresponding address is useful for corresponding with registration agent.
|Incorporation time||Ready-made: 1 day
Tailor-made: 6 working days
|Purpose and Benefits|
|Resistance of customer and client||Higher resistance as registration is not open for public search|
|Risk reduction||Reduced risk as registration is not open for public search|
|Tax benefit||No Profits Tax, but limited to profit not derived from BVI. Company may still be subject to tax of another country.|
|Asset holding||Asset transfer can be achieved by share transfer.
No stamp duty and no financial statements are required for share transfer.
|Bank account opening||More stringent requirements, such as: Personal banker’s reference letter of directors, disclosure of beneficiary owner, purpose of opening bank account, Certificate of Good Standing or Incumbency|