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How to ensure you meet the requirements to register a Company (Sdn Bhd) in Malaysia




So, you're looking to start a business in Malaysia. Irregardless of if you are a local or a foreign entrepreneur, read on. This article will go through the items you need to cross off your checklist, before submitting an application to register your company.


The Companies Act 2016 spells out in detail what prerequisites must be fulfilled, before a company can be formed. But before we dive in to that, let's go through some jargon that you should be familiar with.


  • Director - a person who make decisions that will affect the reputation of the company and the interests of other stakeholders including workers, shareholders, clients, suppliers, as well as the community at large. A Director may also be a Shareholder of the Company.

  • Shareholder / Member - simply refers to an individual (or corporation) who owns one or more shares in the company. They have the right to influence decisions concerning the company, and more importantly, have the right to dividends once declared. A shareholder may also be a Director of the Company.

  • Company Secretary - a licensed officer appointed by the Board of Directors of the company to ensure that the company's legal obligations under the corporate legislation in Malaysia are complied with.

  • Paid-Up capital - the actual amount of funds/capital pumped into a company by the Shareholder(s), usually in exchange for shares in the Company. The capital may then be utilised for the day to day operations of the Company to pay salary, debts and other expenses.

With the update of the Companies Act in 2016, setting up a company in Malaysia has never been easier. We've listed below the requirements that must be complied with at all times during the incorporation and operation of the business.


Requirements for Directors:

  1. Every company must have at least one Director

  2. At least one director shall ordinarily reside in Malaysia by having a principal place of residence in Malaysia

  3. All directors must:

  • be at least 18 years old

  • not be an undischarged bankrupt

  • not have been convicted of an offence within a period of 5 years preceding his appointment


Requirements for Shareholders and Paid-Up Capital


  1. Every company must have at least one shareholder

  2. Minimum paid-up capital of RM1


Requirements for Company Secretaries of the Company

  1. Every company must have at least one Company Secretary

  2. The Company Secretary must be a member of the one of the prescribed professional bodies or licensed by SSM

If you're a foreigner who wants to start a company but is NOT residing in Malaysia, talk to us about our nominee director services.


Here at Ashton Corporate Services, our team of professional and qualified Company Secretaries will be with you every step of the way. Contact us today if you're ready to incorporate your company, or even if you just have a few questions you want answered beforehand.


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