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 Start-up flow chart: Who owns the company?
General.

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Forming a company:



Who owns the company?

The Members.

A company is owned by 'the members', usually shareholders.

How many?

There is no maximum amount of shareholders in a private limited company. As long as the shares have not been offered to the general public.

It is possible for a company to have just one member, and for that member to have only one share.

Is there a minimum amount of capital required to form the company?

There is no statutory minimum or maximum capital for a private limited company, (although a public limited company has to meet certain capital requirements).

How much is there to lose?

A company may have limited liability for its members. The effect of this is that, if a company is unable to pay its debts and is put into liquidation, the members will not be required to contribute more more than they have actually paid, or agreed to pay, towards settling its debts.

A private company can be limited by shares or by guarantee, (which is a commitment to contribute a given sum if the company is wound up). E.g Your bank may ask for a directors' personal guarantee on a company's loan.

Who can own shares?

Directors and secretaries are not generally required to own share's in the companies that they manage, but there is nothing to prevent them from doing so, and they often do.

A limited company is a legal person in its own right and can own shares in another company.

A private limited company cannot offer to sell its shares to the public (but a public limited company, or PLC / CCC*, can.)

* Cwmni Cyfyngedig Cyhoeddus (If it's registered office has to be in Wales),

Show me the money!

Corporation tax is paid on profits. Dividends are declared by the board of directors and paid to the shareholders, but profits may be kept in the business.

Companies House produce a number of publications which may be useful.

Companies House
Companies Registration Office
Companies House
Crown Way
Cardiff
CF4 3UZ Tel: (029) 2038 8588

http://www.companieshouse.gov.uk/



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