Starting a Business in Thailand

Super User
22 December 2014
rebranding a company effectively

Foreigners who take their vacation in Thailand may easily fall in love with the exotic landscapes and enjoy the warm weather. Many actually start to seriously think of relocating and starting a business in Thailand

Among the reasons for starting a business the first that comes to mind is that the workforce is significantly cheaper there than in various Western countries. Another reason for starting a business in Thailand is also the fact that the country is an emergent market in full expansion, even if the global economy is not in the best shape. Are you one of those foreigners interested in starting a business in Thailand?

The reality is that the business landscape in Thailand is probably very different from your home country, everything from legislation to business customs. The usual mistake that foreigners make when planning on starting a business in Thailand is forgetting the slow period. For this reason you should have savings or a backup income source to cover the expenses over this slow business period.

If you have become enamored with the exotic beauty of the country and the lifestyle there, you can be successful in starting a business in Thailand if you really plan your move strategically. You can relocate there and live a comfortable life if you choose a business idea with real chances of success in the Kingdom. First of all, you need to be aware of the fact that, except for US citizens, foreigners are not allowed to fully own a Thailand Business. So if you are a foreigner there and not a US citizen, you’ll need to find a local partner in order to proceed with your plan on starting a business in Thailand. There are also legal boundaries and cultural differences that need to be taken into consideration before opening your Thailand Business. You need to first become accustomed with what is legally required from you when you plan on opening a shop there; as well as what to expect while operating your business.

There are many businesses that a foreigner could open in Thailand. One good business to start if you are thinking of starting a business in Thailand is opening a shop for retail sales. You can also choose to keep your business online by setting up a blog or web store on a personal website. Another idea for a good business to start in Thailand is opening a nightlife bar, or maybe even a coffee bar. In the case you have a bigger capital to invest, you can choose to open a bungalow resort on one of the nearby islands. One of the best ideas is starting a business in the food industry, such as a small restaurant, a fast food truck for crepes, waffles, or tacos, a pommes frites fast food, or a Buffalo style Chicken Wings. In case that you don’t want to invest much and prefer something simple in the food industry, you can choose to start an online business for food delivery.

On short, the basic steps for a foreigner in the process of starting a business in Thailand are:

  1. Corporate name reservation
  2. Filing of Memorandum of Association
  3. Statutory meeting
  4. Company Registration
  5. Tax registration

Setting up a personal website, or online business, is easy if you have basic HTML knowledge. If you are not a technical person you can also choose to hire a web designer or web developer in Thailand to set up your personal website for a small fee.

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