How to Create a Sole-proprietor Business in Cameroon
Many people are still unaware of what is needed to create a sole-proprietor business in Cameroon. I am going to share with you what it takes and the necessary documents needed to create the most common type of small and medium sized enterprises – I am talking here of sole-proprietorship with a turnover from 10 million and above. I will be giving you the modalities for creating a sole-proprietorship of less than 10 million francs CFA.
Sole-proprietorship Creation in Cameroon
I know you may be confused as this is not actually the most common type of business in Cameroon. Many people usually confuse this type of business with a limited liability company. It should be noted that the business license in a sole-proprietorship is given in the name of the owner and not a specific business name. Note should also be taken that the liabilities of the debts of the owner are not limited. I want to insist on this point because this complain usually come when I am counseling startups. They believe the liabilities of the owner of an ETS is limited to what the owner puts in.
One other thing you should know is that in Cameroon, it is possible for an individual to be the only shareholder of a limited liability company. Don’t forget also the initial capital to start a company was reduced from minimum XAF1,000,000 to XAF100,000. You can see more that in this other post.
Business Creation in Cameroon
Business creation in Cameroon is done under the coordination of the Ministry of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises through its One-Stop Shops that are dotted around the Cameroon. See the list of One-Stop Shops. However, this is done in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Justice and the National Social Insurance Fund.
How to Create Businesses in Cameroon
There are two main methods of creating businesses in Cameroon:
Online Creation: It is now possible for businesses to be created online in Cameroon. You just need to visit the My Business and follow the instructions. If you are not able to do it yourself, then you can visit any of the One-Stop Shops where they can direct you on how to do it. This is in the case where you have all the documents and necessary fees needed to benefit from their technical assistance. It should be noted that not all centers accept Online Payments. Checkout this list to know which centers accept online payments.
Physical: In this situation, the business owner or agent has to go to any of the One-Stop Shop with the necessary documents for business creation. This is the only method used in case you want to create a company in the list of One-Stop Shops that are not yet online.
Sole-proprietorship Business Creation In Cameroon
As I said above, I am talking about sole-proprietorships with 10 million francs CFA and above. I will list below the documents needed to create what is commonly known in Cameroon as “Etablissement” or ETS. Many find it difficult to differentiate this specific type of business. Some think it’s a limited company since you can actually use a name which is not yours.
It should be noted that such sole-proprietorship with 10 million francs CFA and above pay for a business license. They can have an official business name, but under the law, it has to start with the “ETS”. The unique difference of an ETS and a limited company is that the business license of an ETS carries the name of the sole-proprietor meanwhile that of limited company carries that of the company.
List of Documents to Create a Sole-proprietor Business in Cameroon
In order for you to create a sole-proprietorship business with turnover greater than or equal to 10 million in Cameroon, you must provide the following:
A photocopy of your national identity card in the case of nationals
A photocopy of your passport or resident permit if you are a foreigner
A non-conviction certificate (this applies to both nationals and foreigners)
Location sketch of your business premises
A photocopy of marriage certificate in the case where it is needed
Tenancy agreement if you are renting the premises or your land tax receipt in the case you own the premises
The Documents Delivered
Business Registration document
You can also check how to start a sole-proprietorship in Cameroon with a turnover of 0 to less than XAF10 million. If you plan to create a limited liability company, then this will be of help to you. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with us if you need possible help or if you want to benefit from our services. Leave a comment in the comment box below for any contribution you think you may want to share with us.