Locate your business in the UK

Forming your company in the UK

Forming a company in the UK could involve creating a new business or registering an existing overseas company.

The five types of company structure to consider are:

  • private company - limited by shares
  • private company - limited by guarantee
  • private unlimited company
  • public limited company (PLC)
  • Societas Europaea (SE)
  • European Economic Interest Grouping (EEIG)

You can handle the registration process yourself, but it is a good idea to seek professional advice before you do so to ensure that incorporation is right for you. A company formation agent, solicitor or accountant can carry out the process for you for a fee, as well as offer advice. Read more about legal structures: the basics.

Choosing a company name

Choosing the right company name is important. Customers will deduce a lot from your name and first impressions count. There are some words and expressions that you cannot use in a company name in the UK without official permission. Find details about choosing and registering a company name. There are also rules about how you must display your company name.

Read more about how to choose the right name for your business.