Doing Business in the Netherlands

How to Register your Business

When starting a business, the first thing you will need to decide is the type of legal business structure that best suits your company’s operations. For a list of business structures in the Netherlands, please click here. See also The Legal Format.

Generally, the procedure requires to set-up your business depends on the legal structure you choose. This information is further discussed in the DIFME toolkit Module 4, which explores different types of business formats, emphasising how each format may facilitate your needs.

Here is a link where you can check out what the process is for your chosen legal format.

For starting entrepreneurs the most common form is sole proprietorship. For this form, you go to the KVK website and follow the steps mentioned. This entails completing an application form, and make an appointment at the KVK office. For this form, there is no minimum capital required (which is the case for a limited company e.g.), and the costs for registering is €51,30.

When establishing a business, it is imperative to consider the start-up capital you will need. Typically, this will vary according to your company’s legal status and anticipated expenses (e.g. rent for premises, employee wages, water and electricity, audited accounts, etc.). For more information on start-up capital, please refer to DIFME toolkit Module 2.

Prior to establishing your business, it may be advisable to seek professional assistance or consultation from a qualified accountant or corporate lawyer. You can also contact the Chamber of Commerce for advice.

Dutch registered companies

In the Netherlands, all companies need to keep up a financial administration. The requirements for the administration you can find below (more information about this here):

  • Invoices
  • Transaction overviews
  • Cash administration
  • Contracts and correspondence with clients and suppliers
  • Time management
  • Travel administration
  • Taxes (both VAT and income tax)
  • Model agreement
  • Business correspondence

Dutch links and information: