Business entities in Gabon in 2022

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Since 2003, Healy Consultants provides our Clients with the best corporate structures for doing business in Gabon. The most common way to start a business in Gabon is to set up a Gabonese limited liability company (SARL). Alternatively, entrepreneurs may also setup a new public limited company (SA) when they need to raise capital to finance their local operations. Foreign corporates may also register a branch in Gabon with the local authorities.

The Gabon limited liability company (Societe a responsabilité limitee)

  • The Gabon limited liability company is the preferred type of business entity to form a small business in Gabon. Such business entity only requires one director and one shareholder. Both can be of any nationality and need not to be resident in Gabon. A minimum paid-up share capital of US$1,700 (CFA1 million) is also required to complete Gabon company setup with the local Companies Registrar (Centre de Developpement des Entreprises, CEPIG);
  • An auditor must be appointed if the limited liability company has i) a paid-up capital of over US$17,000 (CFA10 million) ii) an annual turnover over US$420,000 (CFA250 million) or iii) more than 50 employees.

The Gabon public limited company (Societe anonyme)

  • It is possible to register a Gabon public limited company (PLC) with only one shareholder and one director. If the company has over three shareholders, a Board of Directors is then mandatory and must comprise at least three directors. The minimum paid-up capital is US$17,000 (CFA10 million) and the company will have to submit audited financial statements every year;
  • Such type of business entity is recommended for entrepreneurs willing to raise capital and to list their company on the Stock Exchange of Libreville. After Gabon business setup, public companies can also benefit from a reduced corporate tax rate of 25%.

The Gabon branch office (Succursale)

  • Gabonese regulations allows foreign companies looking to establish businesses in Gabon to open branch offices in the country. At least individual of any nationality must be appointed to be the legal representative of the branch office in Ethiopia.

Table of comparison between Gabon entities

  LLC PLC Branch Office
Also known as: SARL SA Succursale
How long to set the company up? 10 weeks 10 weeks 12 weeks
How long to open company bank account? 4 weeks 4 weeks 4 weeks
Legal Liability? Limited Limited Unlimited
Wholly foreign owned? Yes Yes Yes
Minimum paid-up capital? US$1,700 US$17,000 N/A
File annual tax return? Yes Yes Yes
Recommended corporate bank account? EcoBank Citibank BGFI Bank
Does our Client need to travel? No No No
Resident director required? No No No
Resident shareholder required? No No Yes
Minimum directors allowed? 1 1 1
Minimum shareholders? 1 1 0
Corporate shareholders allowed? Yes Yes Yes
Corporate director(s) allowed? No No No
Gabon corporate tax rate? 30% 30% 30%
Annual financial statements required? Yes Yes Yes
Statutory audit required? No Yes Yes
Regulated by? CEPIG CEPIG CEPIG
Allowed to issue sales invoices? Yes Yes Yes
Allowed to sign contracts? Yes Yes Yes
Allowed to import and export goods? Yes Yes Yes
Can rent an office in Gabon? Yes Yes Yes
Can buy Gabon property? Yes Yes Yes
Can own equity in other Gabon companies? Yes Yes Yes
Total Gabon business setup costs in Yr. 1 US$17,415 US$17,415 US$19,815
Subsequent annual costs (incl. accounting and tax fee) US$9,230 US$9,230 US$9,530
Sample engagement Invoice View invoice PDF View invoice PDF View invoice PDF

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For additional information on our business setup services in Gabon, please contact our in-house country expert, Mr. Simon Guidecoq, directly:
client relationship officer - Simon