Setting up a business

The formal procedure for starting a business in Kenya is to a great extent determined by the type of business you as the investor wishes to establish and the sector to which the business belongs. The principal types of business enterprises in Kenya are:

  • Registered Companies (Private and Public)

  • Branch offices of companies registered outside Kenya

  • Partnerships

  • Sole Proprietorships

  • Cooperatives

Co-operatives Companies are registered as Limited Liability Companies as in i and ii above, and regulated by the Companies Act (Cap 486). Kenya’s legal system is based on the English law and practice with a wide range of legal services locally available.

Company Registration

Link to the step-by-step guide to Company registration procedure

In order to register your company, you will need to;

  • Reserve a company name and get it approved Registrar of Companies

  • Prepare the Memorandum of Association and Articles of Association.

  • Complete  various forms including Statement of Nominal Capital, Particulars of Directors and Shareholders, Situation of Registered Office and Certificate of a Lawyer involved in the Formation of the Company,

  • Stamp the Memorandum of Association and Articles of Association and the Statement of Nominal Capital at the Lands Office together with payment of stamp duty on Nominal Capital.

  • File all the forms together with one stamped copy of the Memorandum of Association and Articles of Association with the Registrar of Companies.

You will then be issued with a  Certificate of Incorporation by the Registrar of Companies. For public companies, in addition to the Certificate of Incorporation, the Registrar will issue a Trading Certificate

Opening a branch office of an overseas company

Link to the step-by-step guide of the branch registration procedure

An overseas company wishing to open a branch office in Kenya should deliver the following to the Registrar of Companies:

  • A certified copy of the Charter, Statutes or Memorandum and Articles of Association of the Company, or other instruments defining the constitution of the company;

  • A list of the directors and secretary of the company, giving full names, nationality and other directorships of companies in Kenya;

  • A statement of all existing charges entered into by the company affecting properties in Kenya;

  • Names and postal addresses of one or more persons resident in Kenya authorised to accept, on behalf of the company, service of notices required to be served on the company;

  • Full address of the registered or principal office of the company in its home country and;

  • Full address of place of business in Kenya.

Register with KenInvest

Link to the Investor registration procedure 

You can reduce to reduce the bureaucracy you face in relation to licensing, immigration and negotiating tax incentives and exemptions from the relevant authorities by registering with us. In order to do this, you will need to;

Fill the Investment Application Form

Engage legal advice in Kenya.

Register Your business

Submit Application Form + Certificate of Incorporation + Articles and memorandum of association to KenInvest

Issue of The Investment License

You will be then be issued  with an investment Certificate after your project has undergone an Enviormental, Health and Secuity impact assessments depending on the sector.