Switzerland has roughly 8 Mio residents and stretches around 41,295 square kilometers. It has a GDP of 340 billion € which results in a GDP per capita of around 45’000€.

Switzerland is one of the richest countries in Europe and in the world. Unlike other countries in Europe, Switzerland is not a member of the European Union and has not adopted the Euro. Nevertheless, Switzerland is part of the Schengen agreement, which ensures travel without boundaries in Europe. Switzerland is divided in 26 different cantons.

Foundation of a company

Only holders of a valid C permit (settlement permit for third-country nationals) have the legal right to establish their own business in Switzerland. All other persons have no legal right to set up their own business. They must submit an application to the respective cantonal authorities. It is decisive in the evaluation that the company will have a "lasting positive effect or influence on the Swiss labor market". Therefore, entrepreneurs need to have a very clear business idea already before they eventually move to Switzerland.

A convincing business plan is the best foundation for a successful evaluation process. Existing organizational relationships with other companies is another requirement. And the application must include a foundation charter and/or a Commercial Register entry. If the application is accepted by the cantonal authorities, the entrepreneur is granted at least a short-term residence permit for third-country nationals or a residence permit. When the residence permit is granted for the first time, the period of validity is usually limited to one year. It can normally be renewed unless there are reasons against a renewal.

The corporation (AG/SA) is the most important and widespread type of company in Switzerland. A corporation is a distinct legal entity, and its liability is limited to its assets, the minimum capital is CHF 100’000, at least one company representative (number of the board or executive manager) must be a resident in Switzerland.