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Open a Branch in Italy

Introduction to setting up a branch in Italy

If you conduct business in Italy, having a local presence can have a number of advantages for your company. It can enable you to work closely with business partners and clients located throughout the country, while providing valuable insights and local industry knowledge back to the parent company.

A popular option is to open an Italian branch that’s eligible to perform the same business activities as the parent company. It’s important to note that a branch is not a separate legal entity and the parent company is liable for all its operations. It can however be a more streamlined and cost-effective structure than opening a subsidiary, particularly for lower cost or smaller projects.

What are the accounting requirements for an Italian Branch?

Under Italian law a branch is treated as an autonomous and separate entity with regards to accounting and is therefore subject to taxation. The branch will have to keep their own books, submit VAT and income tax returns to the relevant tax authorities and file the annual report of the parent company with the Italian Registrar of Companies.

What are the formalities regarding Italian branches?

– Foreign parent company is responsible for all liabilities of the Italian branch.
– A minimum of one director is required.
– Accounts to be maintained but there are no reporting requirements.
– A branch must appoint a legal representative of the branch who shall be a domiciled in Italy.
– You will need a registered office for the branch.

What office facilities are available when registering a branch?

A registered office is obligatory for the branch

Registering the Italian Branch

You will need to provide various documents to the Italian authorities that contain information about the company and the representatives assigned to the branch.

In accordance with Italian law these documents must be translated into Italian and will include:
– The parent company’s registration certificate.
– A certificate of incorporation.
– Memorandum and articles of association.
– The names of the company directors and secretary.

After registration has been completed the Tax Authority (Agenzia delle Entrate) will release a new tax ID code to the branch (codice fiscale) and VAT code (partita IVA).

What we do for you?

We will handle every aspect of the branch formation for you. Using our expert knowledge we can offer a branch formation package in which we take care of branch registration, issue of the certificates of registration, local directors, local representative and place of business in Italy, tax registration, VAT registration, and translation of documents (if required).

Our unique one stop solution for all European formation requirements also offers formation packages to set up multiple branches. The benefits for establishing multiple branches include further increased exposure and global presence, and we can organise everything for you.

A summary of Italian Corporate Taxes is available here.