Forms of IT contracting - umbrella companies?

I'm a software engineer, currently working in Sweden. I'm looking to start a company in Cyprus, to do software development contracts from there. Realistically, such contracts would be remote, to clients in the EU for the most part. Figuring out the size of that market is pretty hard though, since there is a lot of hype around remote work.

So I had the idea of already creating the Cyprus company while still staying in Sweden. That way I would be able to search for opportunities before going all in. The problem with that approach is that the company would need an address in Cyprus, and while services providing this are available, the additional cost would be a loss until I'd get started with a contract from Cyprus.

Then it occurred to me that the easier way to shift to Cyprus would be to use an umbrella company first, and then to create my own company as soon as possible. In the UK, where I had worked for a long time, umbrella companies used to be (maybe still are) a very normal way to conduct contract work. I had done many contracts using umbrella companies.

But when I tried searching for 'umbrella company' combined with 'Cyprus', I got almost no hits. So I'm wondering whether umbrella companies are a viable form of doing contracts in Cyprus at all, or whether maybe the legal framework rules then out as a construct?

@stupor-mundi Hello and welcome on board !

Till members provide you their insights on the topic, I would perhaps suggest that you contact an accountant for precise and legal infos. Feel free to contact those registered in the Accountants in Cyprus section for a good start.

All the best


Seems that term I used 'umbrella companies', is a UK terminology that's not used in other countries. I found one company in the meantime, Access Financial. It seems the term used in Cyprus is 'contract management', and that it's a regular thing in Cyprus.

Hi Stupor do you have these contracts in place or do you plan to search for them using LinkedIn or other job boards ? Most employers who offer remote IT contracts offer them through third party payroll agencies and all you would need is a local tax number.

For formation and filing taxes for a local company, it is preferable to use an accountant in Cyprus as they are strict on tax filing requirements. Even though the government forms in Cyprus are in English it is preferable to use a charted accountant or a certified tax preparer as the beaurecracy may bog you down.

@dvb123 good advice ... Thank you

Hi @dvb123 ,

these are interesting points.

But when you say 'Most employers who offer remote IT contracts' , are you really referring to IT contracts?

It sounds to me that what you're referring to is remote work, but employed. Basically involving a PEO.

For clarification, what I was referring to with 'IT contracts' is what would be the 'contract' searchbox in a typical IT jobs search engine, the contract would be advertised as xyz months, xyz daily rate, or xyz hourly rate. In some contexts also called freelance.

I've never seen it that such a contract is offered by the agency inclusive of a company which conducts such payment services, but maybe things have moved a bit since my last contract which was in 2016, i.e. before the whole remote thing really took off.

E.g. Linkedin Search

search keyword: software developer

location: European Union

Job Type: Contract

On-site/remote: Remote

As long as you have European Union passport and Cyprus individual tax number the agency should be able to pay you directly as independent contractor. Let me know if any rules changed.


I'm still confused about this mode of operation. Will have to read up on it.

When I look for contracts, and talk to agencies, I'll ask them about it.

@stupor-mundi thank you ! Please keep us updated . This is a very interesting area of knowledge as most expats would like to do a remote IT contract to supplement their pensions and the ever increasing cost of living in Cyprus paradise.

 Every employment agency or end client in EU also have their own rules for signing IT contracts depending on the EU country where they are located .

Meanwhile you can research more or email these entities to find out costs of setting up a company vs being self employed.

Registering as a self-employed professional is a much simpler and quicker process compared to incorporating your business as a company. … -business/ … in-cyprus/


wrote the answer too quick before seeing yours...

I see now, this is the mode called 'sole trader'

I will look into it some more, to compare it with the 'umbrella company' approach.

I do want to create a company in Cyprus after a few month, so I'll have to see what is best compatible.