What is the difference between an IBC and a domestic company?

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The differences are smaller since 2019

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What is the difference between an IBC and a domestic company?

The biggest difference is in their scope of business. A domestic company can operate in Seychelles and internationally, but can also engage in banking, insurance and trust business. However, it must obtain the necessary licences from the local authorities, particularly for specialised companies and especially for companies in the financial services sector. A domestic company must also file annual returns, financial statements and tax returns.

An IBC in certain circumstance since 2019 can now engage in local business (although it can invest in the domestic company moreover and maintain an administrative office in Seychelles). It must adhere to international business and not engage in banking, insurance and trust business and it cannot even apply for licenses for these above businesses. If it does not operate locally, it does not have to file annual returns, tax returns and accounts.
Read more about how an IBC can also be operated locally in the Seychelles.

Structurally, the two types of companies are very similar, but a domestic company needs 2 directors instead of one (which must be an individual) and 2 shareholders instead of one. In some local companies run by the domestic company, local shareholders may be required. This may change shortly and the domestic company may also soon allow you to have only one director and one shareholder, as with an IBC. The filing and reporting requirements of the domestic company may also be changed, so the only real difference that will remain is in the scope of its business and its tax positions.

You can find more and further information in our Lexicon/Glossary or in the IBC Act.

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