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Open a Startup in Portugal

The startup ecosystem in Portugal aligns with important and appreciated business hubs from abroad and allows small or young entrepreneurs to access funds in a fast manner. The Portuguese government offers support through varied programs and incentives, letting businesspersons enter quite fast on the market. Those interested in opening a startup in Portugal can solicit assistance and guidance from our team of company formation agents in Portugal. We are here to help both domestic and foreign entrepreneurs start a company in Portugal, by handling all the formalities.

What is the proper business structure for my startup in Portugal?

LDA or the limited liability company is the most popular business structure in Portugal and the choice of numerous entrepreneurs looking for a fast start on the market. The incorporation of an LLC is quite simple, with complete support and guidance offered by one of our specialists. Here are the main steps for opening a business in Portugal:

  1. Prepare the Articles of Association with information about the owners, the activities, general rules, business address, etc.
  2. Make sure the business name is available – a name verification can be made with the Portuguese Trade Register.
  3. Apply for special licenses and permits, if the activities require so.
  4. The registration for tax purposes is required.
  5. If you hire employees, make sure you pay the social contributions.

The above-mentioned steps are part of the incorporation process of a startup in Portugal, mentioning that all the bureaucracies and procedures can be properly handled by one of our specialists in company formation in Portugal. Here is an infographic that tells you more about startups in Portugal:


What kind of business sectors can I choose for my startup in Portugal?

Startups in Portugal can be established in most of the business sectors with growth potential as long as there are no restrictions and if all the regulations are respected. The innovative and the tech sectors are quite fruitful in Portugal, alongside design, manufacturing, tourism, and agriculture. You can open a startup in Portugal in a few simple steps, like choosing the business field, prepare a business plan, open an LDA and hire the services of a specialist to continue with the formalities. Our agents can help you open a company in Portugal and can also represent your firm, so you can get in touch with us for extra details.

Can I open a startup as a sole trader in Portugal?

Yes, a sole proprietorship is another proper business form that can be chosen by overseas entrepreneurs who want simple and fast company formation formalities. Such a structure is ideal for small entrepreneurs who want to act as self-employed persons in Portugal. Foreigners will have to obtain the Portuguese residence card, the Social Security Number, and the Tax Number and then start the formalities for registering the sole proprietorship. A solid and structured business plan is recommended for opening a startup in Portugal, a matter where our team of consultants can help.

Do I need a Certificate of Admissibility for my business in Portugal?

Yes, a Certificate of Admissibility is normally issued by the Institute of Registries and Notaries that identifies the Portuguese company name. Such a document can only be granted after a preliminary verification of the business name for your startup in Portugal

How fast can I start my business operations in Portugal?

It takes no more than two weeks until your company is ready for business in Portugal. In some cases, if all the formalities are accepted, the activities can start even faster. This is where we recommend support and guidance from one of our company formation representatives in Portugal who can help local and international investors open their businesses in this country. The following facts and figures reveal a few important aspects of the business direction and the economy of Portugal, helping overseas investors create an idea about why they should invest in this country:

  1. the total FDI stock registered by Portugal in 2018 was of around USD 135,8 billion;
  2. around 6,100 new jobs were created in 2018, thanks to all sorts of FDI projects;
  3. non-EU citizens can obtain Portuguese citizenship in 6 years if they make investments of at least EUR 350,000;
  4. Portugal ranks 39th out of 190 worldwide economies, according to the 2020 Doing Business report issued by the World Bank.

Short facts about the Portuguese Trade Register

The Trade Register in Portugal is in charge of company incorporation and issuance of business certificates. The necessary documents for opening a startup in Portugal must be submitted to this institution, right after a name verification and reservation in the first place. The entire registration process of a company in Portugal can be properly handled by one of our agents. We have a dedicated team of company formation representatives who can help you register a startup in Portugal. It is also possible to choose “Empresa Online” and the complete registration of the firm, on the internet, supervised by our agents. Plus, if you are looking for a team of accountants in Portugal, you can send us your inquiries and let us propose you the right services. Lisbon startups are quite appealing to foreign entrepreneurs.

Shelf companies in Portugal

If you would like to skip the incorporation steps of a company in Portugal, you might be attracted by the possibility of purchasing a ready-made company. This is a shelf company that is already registered, it has no financial activities and therefore no liabilities or debts. Lisbon startups can be easily registered with the help of a shelf company for which you can ask more details from our specialists. A vintage company comes with a series of advantages like having no activities and no debts. Plus, this is already registered so you won’t lose time for specific incorporation formalities. We are here to tell you more about shelf companies in Portugal and about how you can open a startup in this country.

Opening a travel agency in Portugal

Interested in a Lisbon startup? A travel agency might be a great business idea for those who want to generate profits in this part of Europe. A tour operator can offer local or foreign touristic packages for domestic and international clients. It is a great idea to develop a travel agency in one of the most visited countries in the world, as Portugal is. If you believe it is a great business idea and you want more details about startups in Portugal, feel free to contact our agents and discuss further details. 

FAQ about startups in Portugal

Do I need a business plan for a startup in Portugal? 

Yes, a business plan is the first step to consider for your Lisbon startup. You can discuss each detail with our specialists.

What business structure suits most?

The limited liability company is the proper business form for a startup in Portugal. This is the simplest structure that can be easily incorporated.

What is the minimum share capital for a startup in Portugal?

EUR 5,000 is the minimum share capital for a company in Portugal. This sum needs to be deposited in a local bank account. One of our specialists can help you with the formalities of a Lisbon startup.

What documents do I need for a startup in Portugal?

Just like in the case of any company, the Articles of Association are the main documents of the firm. These contain details about business activities, business owners, general rules, voting rights, etc.

Is tax registration mandatory?

Yes, startups in Portugal must be registered for taxation before any activities. The same team can help you register for taxation of a Lisbon startup.

Where do I register the startup in Portugal?

The registration of a startup in Portugal is made with the Portuguese Trade Register. The institution receives the company documents for verification and registration.

Is it hard to open a bank account in Portugal?

No, there is no need to worry about complex formalities for a bank account in Portugal. This can be easily established and linked to your startup.

What is the Certificate of Admissibility?

The Certificate of Admissibility is issued when a preliminary business name verification is made for your startup in Portugal. You can discuss with us for complete details.

Is the sole trader a solution for my startup?

Yes, a sole proprietorship is a great option for startups in Portugal. This is another simple business form that can be easily registered in Portugal.

How fast can I open a Lisbon startup?

If all the documents are correctly submitted and accepted, the Lisbon startup can commence the activities in a few days. The entire process can be overseen and handled by our specialists.

Foreigners interested in startups in Portugal can choose from a wide range of business opportunities and explore the possibilities. The lack of complexities for registering a startup in Portugal is a great business advantage for domestic and international entrepreneurs in this country.

If you are interested in more details about how to open a startup in Portugal, we kindly invite you to contact our team of company formation agents in Portugal.