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Startupr gets the TCSP License

A new article was published on 25 January 2018 under the Companies Ordinance (Cap. 622) in order to enhance the transparency of beneficial ownership. As of March 1st, 2018, trust and company service providers (“TCSPs”) in Hong Kong are required to be licensed under the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing Ordinance.

This new regime strives to improve the transparency of beneficial corporate ownership by asking companies incorporated in Hong Kong to achieve and maintain up-to-date helpful ownership information.

Startupr is granted the TCSP license!

We are proud to announce that Startupr has received the TCSP license number “TC003638” from The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Companies Registry.

As TCSP Licensee, Startupr is authorized to render the following services to the other business owners in Hong Kong.

  • Providing professional secretarial services and advices for customers.
  • Formation of Hong Kong Companies.
  • Providing registered address, business address for a corporation.
  • Arranging Government filings for companies, directors, shareholders.
  • Assisting customers to keep companies in good standing.

Before this recent regime, Hong Kong trust companies didn’t have their own regulatory regime. Only registration via the Companies Registry had claimed legitimacy from the use of the word “trust” in a company’s name. As part of this process, trustees were registered, but not regulated.

But now, under the new licensing regime, both trust and corporate service providers (TCSPs) are required to apply for licenses from the Companies Registry and satisfy a “fit-and-proper” test before they can provide trust or company services in Hong Kong. TCSPs also have to comply with statutory due diligence and record-keeping requirements which was set out in schedule 2 to the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorist Financing Ordinance, Cap. 615.

Startupr

(Team Startupr Celebrating their Success in HK Office)

What is a Trust or Company Service Business?

The first question that might come to mind is, what is a trust or company service business? To keep it simple, trust or company service businesses (as specified in Part 1 of Schedule 1 of the AMLO) are services provided in Hong Kong by a person by way of business to others.

It may include working or arranging for another person to work, as a trustee of an express trust or a similar legal arrangement. In considering whether a person is carrying out a trust or company service by way of business, it is essential to take into account whether the person:

  • Aims to make a profit when he carries out the business activity.
  • Carries out the operation with reasonable or recognizable continuity.
  • Undertakes one or more of the events of a TCSP.
  • Advertises or publicizes his business activity or receives referrals from other businesses.

A TCSP license is unlikely to be required if a person accepts a one-off appointment by a friend or relative to act as a trustee of a trust in a personal capacity and with no commercial profit.

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Who is required to apply for this new licensing regime?

Once you understand the importance of TCSP license, you must be curious to know who is required to apply for this license? Well, a person who wishes to carry a trust or company service business in Hong Kong are required to apply for this license regime. Besides this, a company which has already been registered under the Trustee Ordinance (Cap. 29) is also required to apply for this license.

Startupr’s License Number

Startupr has received a new licensing regime and has become a Licensed Company Secretary provider in Hong Kong, in order to provide you with all the services uninterrupted. We have received the TCSP license number by Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Companies Registry with the registration no. of “TC003638”.

We are also pleased to announce that our registration number “TC003638”, issued from Hong Kong special administrative Region Companies Registry, has a special meaning in Chinese. If translated directly to Chinese, the numbers mean “continued growth and business prospect” or in the Chinese language “生祿生發.” So, if you want more information about this new license regime, or wish to incorporate a company in Hong Kong, feel free to contact us!