When you are not familiar with the process of opening a business in Brazil, you might be faced with several steps and processes that can seem confusing, lengthy and nearly impossible to unravel at first. Therefore, in order to better help you understand and navigate this process, we have summarized the most important aspects of opening a business in Brazil into a short step-by-step guide, listing best practices for investors wishing to settle in Brazil.
The first step when considering opening a business in Brazil, should be (1) research and document preparation. At this stage, it’s highly recommended to confirm the need to obtain special authorization from public agencies in order to perform business activities and also confirm that there is no other company registered under the same name. This stage is crucial for the success of the entire process! All the documents must be in Portuguese, including the foreign ones. Non-Brazilian documents must also be submitted and notarized by the Brazilian consulate located in the investor’s country of origin. They must then be translated by a sworn translator and registered with a Deeds and Documents Registry Office (cartório) in order to have them ready for registration within the relevant government bodies.
Once all documents are ready, the next step is to (2) choose the best corporate structure for your company in Brazil, the most common being Sociedade Limitada, LTDA (limited liability company). After selecting the best corporate structure, it it time to (3) register the legal entity and corresponding shareholder(s) with the relevant institutions, for example the IRS. It is important to know that company registration in Brazil is required at federal, state and municipal levels. Once this process is completed, the company will receive a taxpayer, ID number, and it will become part of government's public records.
After all registrations have been filed, it’s time to (4) open a commercial bank account for your company. This step is important not only to obtain business operational efficiency, but it is also required in order to continue onto the next steps. Once you have a commercial bank account, the fourth step, is necessary to (5) obtain an E-CNPJ certificate, it is a company’s electronic digital ID and digital signature. This certificate enables authentication in governmental or private systems - allowing companies to sign legal documents, communicate directly with the Internal Revenue System and issue electronic invoices (NF-e), among other things.
The last two steps of the process of opening a business in Brazil are tied to one another and correspond to any foreign investment that might be injected into the Brazilian company. In order to invest in your business, it is mandatory to (6) register the legal entity with Brazil’s Central Bank system. During this registration process, two important documents will be obtained: a CADEMP ID number for the foreign investors and shareholders bringing foreign direct investment, and a RDE-IED number, which is the foreign direct investment registration ID. With these two important documents in hands, your Brazilian company will be ready to receive any amount of foreign investment, and then the final step will be to (7) send your investment to the Brazilian entity’s bank account.
The steps above have been summarized in order to provide a basic step-by-step guide for opening a business in Brazil. For more detailed information and services, please feel free to explore our content or contact us!