How to register a business in Kenya
Good news, no more manual registration of businesses and companies. The hustle of long queues and endless trips to the registrar are over or rather since 15th October 2017. Now all you need is to create an eCitizen account and you are few steps from being a business owner.
So how do you create an eCitizen account?
Go to http://www.ecitizen.go.ke/ and create an account
Click on the Business Registration service. Once you are there, click on the Make Application tab and it will direct you to a section where you then click on the Business Name Registration.
Next, choose your preferred business type and name. For a business, you can choose a partnership or a sole proprietorship. You can also choose to register a private company, limited company, a foreign company, company limited by guarantee and so forth.
Be keen to strictly follow the guidelines and regulations on choosing a name. You can only submit one name search per application. Modifications to already existing names are not allowed so think long and hard about a name that you will stick to completely. Like, you can’t change from Bake designs to Baker designs.
Name search registration takes about 24hours and only from Monday to Friday within normal working hours excluding the public holidays.
A single name search costs kshs 100 but you also pay a convenience fee of kshs 50, so for a total of kshs 150, you’ve saved massively on time that you would otherwise have spent doing manual registration. You can make payments via Mpesa and a confirmation will be sent to which you will then enter the code for payment verification.
After your business name has been approved, you then go ahead and register your business,
Make sure you have the below requirements before applying for the business:
For Partnership and Sole proprietorship
- Fill a BN2 form
- Upload your ID card/passport, KRA PIN certificate and your recent colored passport photographs of sole proprietor or partners as the case might be.
Registration for a partnership or a sole proprietorship takes about a week and certificate will be available to you on the eCitizen platform for download.
For a company you will need:
- Fill in your company registration form CR1
- Fill in the details of all the directors and the shareholders and upload their scanned copies of I.D. card/passport, KRA PIN certificate and their recent colored passport photograph. Note that Directors and the shareholders have to be registered on the iTax platform.
- Fill in your shareholding details.
- Fill in the notification of directors’ residential address in the Form CR8.
- Finally, fill in the statement of nominal capital.
You can register a company with one person acting as both the shareholder and the director. Company registration takes about a week as well and a certificate will be available for download on the eCitizen platform.
You can always log in to your eCitizen account and check the progress of your application. If you feel it has taken long, kindly contact the business registrar on the contacts listed on the account.
Daisy Chepkoech is a Freelance Blog Writer, Social Media Manager and Trainer. She is also the Marketing Director at Dake Business Solutions. Daisy holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communication and Media Technology from Maseno University.