Starting your own business: preliminary advice and agencies providing assistance

Smiling man in a beige suit in the street against a blurred background

In Switzerland, it is relatively easy to set up your own company. Here are the formalities.

What do you need to do to set up a business on Swiss territory? The process is quite easy. Only certain regulated sectors in the Confederation (medical, educational, social professions) or in the cantons (traffic, architecture, legal professions, etc.) require special authorization.

Preliminary advice

Before jumping in, a few crucial steps should be taken: These include:

  • Conducting a market analysis
  • Creating a business plan
  • Choosing a suitable legal structure
  • Registering with the trade register
  • Intellectual property

An ordinary partnership can be created without too many formalities. It is not until later that the entrepreneur needs a Unique Enterprise Identification Number (UID) and can decide on a business structure which, from a legal and tax point of view, is more appropriate.

Agencies that will help you start a business

There are numerous tools and agencies providing assistance to help the entrepreneur during these various stages. The SECO supports setting up a business through its portal EasyGov.swiss.  

Other partner institutions and organizations offer effective assistance:

  • The cantonal Economic Development Departments can provide preliminary information.
    The Swiss Innovation Agency, Innosuisse, has set up a detailed coaching program.
  • Venturelab is a Swiss Innovation Agency initiative aimed at young entrepreneurs. It has enabled the emergence and development of many start-ups.
  • Genilem is a not-for-profit association, the mission of which is to increase the chances of start-ups succeeding.
  • The Eurostars support program is aimed at innovation projects in European. It offers start-ups and spin-offs the chance to apply for financial assistance.

There are many support structures to assist with the various administrative formalities. Depending on the circumstances, they can even suggest office spaces or personalized services with advantageous terms.

The State does not grant any direct financial support for starting a new business. The unemployment scheme is the only exception, introducing support measures for unemployed individuals wanting to set up their own company. 


Information

Last modification 22.10.2018

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