For years, Belgian entrepreneurs Kaspar and Hugo were planning on opening their new business. Not a business in the most classic sense, though. Their idea involved around designing and building skate parks in a truly innovative way and luckily, in a way, which no one had thought of before. The business partners-to-be had spent their year traveling to different product designers, signing preliminary contracts and researching various safety measures. With its temperate climate, Estonia had sprung into their focus already a while ago and they decided to dive in to Estonian culture. Kaspar and Hugo were considering purchasing their first plot of land in there, while enjoying traditional sauna with the potential seller, Marcus. According to him, the land plot price was estimated to increase very fast, so Belgian entrepreneurs had to decide quickly.
A week later they where at the opposite ends of the globe when Kaspar discovered a deadline for business kick-start supports from the state. A deadline due in two days. To which only businesses could apply. Apart from the temperate climate, Estonia’s suitability levels suddenly skyrocketed. As they learned, Estonia was using a unique e-Business Register that lets entrepreneurs set up their businesses entirely online with only using their national ID cards (ID cards from countries other than Estonia equally acceptable). Apart from enabling to register a company over the internet, the e-Business Register lets the company owners also view annual reports, personal and commercial pledge data, to monitor data processing and record amendments of companies in real-time, to send out detailed queries of other companies and to inquire about their possible tax debts or criminal activity.
Considering the fact that both of them were far away from Estonia at the time, Hugo knew that they had no chance to set up a notary appointment in less than 48 hours. When inquiring about the extra fast notary appointments just to make sure he had pulled every string he could, Hugo was in for a big-time surprise – there was no need for one. With the help from digital signatures, Hugo and Kaspar could submit all the required forms over the internet. Kaspar also checked the National Online Land Registry just to make sure there were no unresolved issues around the ownership of the land they where purchasing from Marcus. And since they had their mind on building a second skate part to the other side of the country in a year or two, they used the Land Registry to search for suitable registered immovables and to obtain the contact information of the owners. Now, with a calm mind, they where ready set up their business without any obstacles. But the best part of it all? The whole process took a little bit less than half an hour.
Already next day, still one day ahead of their deadline, Kaspar and Hugo filled in their applications for the possible kick-start support. And on the day that followed, they were already on the look-out for local target groups. The state portal had provided them withquick access to nearly all the operations needed for establishing a company in Estonia, including selecting the primary area of activity, selecting and verifying their business name, filling in the registration with the Tax and Customs Board and acquiring all the needed licenses for running their company. Yes, the planning stage had been a long one. As it should be. But when it was finally time to take action, they had managed to get their boost from the best possible business climate.
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