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4. Methods to Acquire Companies in Belgium

Once you have decided which company type you wish to use to conduct your business, you can either start-up a company from scratch, or acquire an existing company.  There are several methods to acquire a company based in Belgium, the most common being the transfer of assets and the purchase of shares.

Asset deals

An asset deal is the buying of a small business.  It is the most common type of small business acquisition. The purchaser can buy all the assets that are needed, without assuming any unwanted liabilities, which can be excluded from the purchase. 

“Eventueel bij te voegen:

If all the assets of a company are bought then the seller and buyer need to contact the governmental institutions and inform them over the planned transaction. If this is not done then the buyer can be held responsible for the outstanding social and fiscal debts.

The transfer’s validity is subject to the fulfilment of transfer formalities. Asset deals are tax deductible for the buyer, while the seller will be taxed at 33.99%.  For more information on this subject matter, please contact an accountant or auditor, several suggestions can be found in the contact list.

Share deals

A purchasing of shares in a company is another way to acquire a company.  A formal share purchase agreement is not required to create a right of ownership for shares, although in practice a written agreement is always drawn up. The transfer as well as the buyer and seller’s identities can then be entered into the target company’s shareholders register. Share deals are neither tax deductible nor subject to tax, although the government is taking steps to decide otherwise.

For more information on this matter, please contact an accountant or auditor. Please find several suggestions in the contact list.

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Trisevgeni Stavropoulos

Head of Legal & Compliance