SINGAPORE (Sept 5): A total of 15,855 new businesses were formed in Singapore over the second quarter of 2017 alone, according to data from the Singapore Commercial Credit Bureau (SCCB) as presented in Hawksford Singapore’s latest research report, Singapore New Business Trends Report Q2 2017.

Although this figure represents a 1.5% and 10.1% decline in business formation q-o-q and y-o-y, respectively, the corporate services firm believes it signals an upswing in business sentiment, which it expects to continue well into the second half of the year.

The majority of these new companies formed were in the lowest share capital bracket of the study of less than $10,000.

“Consistently ranked as one of the easiest places to do business in the world, Singapore is widely-recognised for its pro-enterprise, business-friendly environment that enables quick and easy set-up. Companies, for instance, are allowed to be incorporated with a nominal share capital of just one Singapore dollar,” notes Hawksford.

The firm adds that the 19.1% q-o-q rise in non-exempt private limited company (non-EPC) business formations is reflective of an uptick in business optimism, as non-EPCs are typically larger companies – while the 64.3% q-o-q increase in foreign companies over the quarter underpins Singapore’s reputation as the preferred launch pad for regional business operations.  

Over the quarter, wholly locally-owned companies and companies with foreign ownership accounted for half of company formations each, with the latter’s share increasing 1% on-quarter to 38% and 55% of subsidiaries formed over the quarter having local shareholders.

Meanwhile, the share of companies with mixed local and foreign shareholding dropped marginally to 12% from 13% in the preceding quarter.

British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands were notably among the top foreign source countries of subsidiaries formed during the quarter at 5%, followed by Hong Kong with a share of 4% – while the city state continued to attract investors from Malaysia, China, India, Australia and Indonesia on an individual level with the share of these sources countries remaining largely unchanged from a quarter ago.

“Singapore clearly outranks as the choice investment destination with a dynamic and open business landscape that continues to attract investors and entrepreneurs from all over the world,” comments Jacqueline Low, COO, Hawksford Singapore.

“Given the upswing in a global economy that is fast gathering momentum, we expect business formation in Singapore to register a spike in the second half of the year,” she adds.