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Business in Bulgaria - How do you start?

Hi all,

I am out of europe and plan to run a startup company in Bulgaria,  I already read requirements for long term visa, but I didn't find any option for non_europe citizens who want to work in Bulgaria as self employed.

I would be thankful if someone could help me the first step I should do? Logically, I should apply for a visa and grant a permission to stay and run a business in bulgaria as far as I know. Please let me know if I am wrong and so what should I do as a first step and which visa I need to apply from out of europe?

Thank you so much in advance for your kindly help

Do you still offer this help.

Hi J9Mc,

It is not clear whom is your question addressed to and what kind of help you need?

Good evening, I want to start some business company in Bulgaria.
Kindly can you please send me the requirements and procedures and potential costs.

Hi there,

Opening a bank account in Bulgaria takes about 15 minutes. Costs nothing. In your case, probably the bank will require a bulgarian address.

Setting up a company is a bit more work to do:
1. Company registration either by a lawyer or by an accountant, takes 1 week, costs between 100 and 1000 BGN, depends on the person you hire. Say 3 - 400 BGN if you choose a good company.
2. Opening a bank account - will be within the services for setting up the company.
3. VAT registration - 2-3 weeks, price varies, but say 500 BGN.

Car in BG - no need to rerregister it. You can drive it like this. In case you decide so - 1 day, cost is about 120 BGN (roughly). Car insurance is two types:
1. Third party liability /compulsory/ - about 250 BGN, depends on the insurance company.
2. CASCO - full coverage, optional, about 3 % of car price /current/.

So much with info and help.

Advice - get a local do all this for you.

Hi there

My name is mahin. I'm from and currently living in Iran.
Two of my friends and I would like to start a dog kennel or petshop in Bulgaria, preferably in Varna or Sofia. But we have almost no information of the process. The most important thing is to get permanent residency of bulgaria, all 3 of us.
I appreciate any information you can give me.

Thank you in advance
Regards
M

Mghaffari :

Hi there

My name is mahin. I'm from and currently living in Iran.
Two of my friends and I would like to start a dog kennel or petshop in Bulgaria, preferably in Varna or Sofia. But we have almost no information of the process. The most important thing is to get permanent residency of bulgaria, all 3 of us.
I appreciate any information you can give me.

Thank you in advance
Regards
M

If you read the previous posts on here and on the Bulgaria forum a lot of your questions will be answered. If you have any further questions please start a new thread with them.

SimCityAT
Expat Team

Hi Mahim,

You and your friend need to start a company on your 3 names, buy a house and then start the business and hire 10 people, even if it's part time, at least 6 months a year and then you can get your residential permit.
send me a message and I'll put you in touch with a lawyer who has very good contact with the immigration as her aunt was the director of the immigration in Yambol

Is there any updates from anyone, I am heading to Sofia on the 27th May, I was in touch with 2 companies to help set me up, but when both were asked for some tax examples they stopped replying, can anyone share some light, are there risks/scam companies trying to set people up, how do you know if the accounting company are legitimate.

Are you going to settle and run your business in Sofia? I don't know anyone there, but getting experience with setting up my company in Plovdiv - both good and not so good experience. At the moment the Trade Register has an unusual backlog of about 2 weeks, hopefully, it will go away by the end of May.

I guess every legitimate accountant has some kind of a license, and, usually, a physical office. Some of them (as I have experienced) try to impose ridiculously high fees on gullible foreigners, including paying for the company address (and until you settle down for a long time at one address you don't want to pay EUR 120+ every time for changing it. This is because they supposedly speak English (which is sometimes... errrrm... supposedly). When choosing an accountant, call them on the phone or Skype, you'll know if they can understand (as opposed to using Google Translate). Accountants that don't know (or pretend to know foreign languages) are much cheaper.

A couple other warnings: (1) Bulgarian banks are now on a rampage "clearing" foreigners before opening any account (particularly, a business one). Some even demand 100 leva for this, irrespective of the result (2) If you don't know the Cyrillic script, you are at a disadvantage. Try to learn it, it's not that hard

Sogy, I planned on buying a small apartment in Byala Varna, but I didn't view anything yet, not sure on what the rules are when buying a place in what seems to be a resort complex such as:

I will want to change the locks and re-decorate
What happens if 5 years down the line the complex wants to close where does it leave me legally
How safe is it if its unattended through the winter months?

The plan for opening my company is simple, I am a contractor that works in various countries for contracts from 2 weeks to 2 years depending on the duration, I want to be a resident of bulgaria but not live there full time.

I just Don't know what to do :0

Is there any kind of citizens information offices that can help?

Stevie, I don't know much about buying property here. I don't plan to do that for a long time. Renting is cheap (at least in Plovdiv) and ho worries.

And know nothing about accountants in Varna.

BTW, if you work in various EU countries, your business model is likely to collapse after Brexit. Getting residence in Bulgaria is rather unlikely to entitle you to Freedom of Movement :(

I'm not from the UK so brexit will not affect me, thanks for the advice :)

Lucky you!

If you would consider Plovdiv as you base, I can let you know in a week or so, which providers (accountants, banks) worked best for me.

Perfect, you can PM me, thanks again :)

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