Help with Importing to UK from India

Discussion in 'International Business' started by beautyandthebeast, Jan 8, 2018.

  1. beautyandthebeast

    beautyandthebeast UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    13 0

    I am moving to India and will be living between there and dubai. I am looking to set up a UK company selling certain items sourced from India.
    Eventually I will be looking for Distributors across the world.
    This is totally new to me, although I have imported products previously from Poland and China Etc.

    My questions are:

    Will I need to be VAT Registered in the UK?
    Should I set up my business in the UK or India or do I set up both, for example all sales in UK go through UK account and all trade business from distributors go through Indian account?

    Also I am british not Indian - How easy is it to open up an indian bank account and trade from India? Can I do this if I am living in Dubai?

    What problems may I face importing products?

    Thank you so much for reading and hope you can enlighten me - Jamie
    Posted: Jan 8, 2018 By: beautyandthebeast Member since: Dec 22, 2017
  2. Vardan 89

    Vardan 89 UKBF Regular Full Member

    175 12
    Hi Jamie,
    I am a British citizen of Indian origin, lived in London from.2002 - 2013 and currently living in India and doing business.

    Though yoyr circumstances are different to mine, I might be able to get more information for you.

    Pls feel free to PM me if you need any information.

    Posted: Jan 16, 2018 By: Vardan 89 Member since: Aug 23, 2011
  3. Business Adviser

    Business Adviser UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    3 0
    Hi Jamie,

    This will require more information before making any remarks like your country of sale, branding you are trying to develop, which geographical areas are suited most for the nature of your business, do you want to do it all alone or a partner is required, etc.
    Feel free to drop me a PM with more details, and I will try my best to help you.

    Posted: Jan 22, 2018 By: Business Adviser Member since: Nov 15, 2017
  4. Clinton

    Clinton UKBF Big Shot Full Member

    3,680 1,234
    What does any of that have to do with the questions he asked in the OP?

    Ah, the old "contact me privately so I can sell you my services". :rolleyes: Why don't you demonstrate your "business adviser" expertise by answering some of his questions in public?!

    @beautyandthebeast , VAT registration is dependent on turnover. If you have a UK registered business and it does over £85,000 you need to get VAT registered.

    If you're importing from India you don't need to have an Indian company and don't need to have an Indian bank account. Indian distributors can supply directly to your UK company.

    Yes, you can absolutely own and run a UK business despite not being based in the UK. You say you're British, not Indian.That's a shame. I suggest applying to the Indian High Commission for PIO status especially if you want to make frequent trips to India, open an Indian bank account etc. If you want to live in Dubai, however, it's better to be on a British passport rather than an Indian passport with PR/ILR (as you will lose your PR/ILR if you spend long periods outside of the UK).

    You should also have a word with the Indian High Commission about trade - they have a whole department to encourage UK-India trade and answer questions / give advice.
    Posted: Jan 22, 2018 By: Clinton Member since: Jan 17, 2010
  5. Business Adviser

    Business Adviser UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    3 0
    Hi Clinton,

    Without taking an arrogant approach (like you did in your previous message), here are some remarks that should ease your pain. I don't post messages like these often but an over-smart approach of yours is something that I didn't like.

    Everyone has a different approach to a problem and I have mine and you have yours. A lot of this depends on the kind of exposure and experiences. You maybe coming from a broker background, but I have been in business advisory (investment banking and international strategy) for years. I like to understand things in a bit more detail before jumping on to give an advise. That's my approach and I am fully comfortable with it. You need to get comfortable and appreciate others' diverse approach else this forum will be full of 1000s of Clintons doing and thinking alike.

    I do have my other sources of income and ways to take on my conversations. This forum is not my bread-earner and never even earner a single penny from here. I prefer to keep my conversations a little private and that's my choice. You don't need to jump-in and advise me around this. Also, I carry this habit from various other highly established and moderated business forums that I have been part of in the past. There a trolling message like your's or even a 'Send me a PM' message like mine can also attract a ban. Even the premium business accounts (not mine) were banned for posting something like a 'LOL' too and >70% of conversations used to happen in PM. It just depends on the kind of moderation level. So I think you need a little bit of exposure to the wider world and understand regulations better before commenting on others' ways of working. Also, I am sure you must be selling your services actively here which is quite evident from your marketing signature. Why are you making a public sales pitch then, if you are so concerned about people selling their services through PM? :rolleyes: So please clean up your house first before commenting on others. Trust me my friend, if I have to sell my services on this forum, you won't be able to stop me. But it was not an intent here and I equally love to assist startups and SMEs with their challenges.

    What do you want to prove by throwing open challenges? This only shows your over-confidence and unprovoked arrogance. I don't need to prove anything here. Let me quickly introduce myself now. I am the same guy who bumped into your business brokerage website few days back which was not very clear on the size of the deals. And I had reached out to you regarding a USD 600 million deal which was beyond your scope and as you mentioned you don't get deals of that size. Maybe you could check your recent emails for an evidence and understand my advisory background a little better. This is where I learnt that you offer a UK business brokerage service but I have a cross-border M&A, fundraising and deals advisory service - perhaps a big reason of how we approach a question very differently. Remember my friend, don't be so proud of what you are. There is always a better one than you, out there in the open market (which is true for me and any other individual).

    I don't see how you added value here. Since Jamie plans to do an international business, has travelled internationally and IT literate since he is already here on this forum - he could simply find this info & threshold value on Google / UK government website.

    You have definitely given Jamie, good grains to start with and how to approach. But I have an international network of business owners and quite strong one in India. This was also the reason I wanted to have a PM conversation to see if anyone in my network could have been of his help.

    I would suggest you please have a wider approach and thought process before generalizing and making any personal remarks. Get a little more familiar with regulated and unregulated ways of working and develop international and cross-industry exposure. Also, you need to understand that brokerage approach is very different from advising and acting like a business partner on every step. My responses are not meant to upset you, but to give a fair share to other voices on this platform and also to tone down your voice in messages.

    Last but not the least. Sorry Jamie (@beautyandthebeast), my intention is not to hijack this thread and I will not post any unrelated responses hereafter.
    Posted: Jan 24, 2018 By: Business Adviser Member since: Nov 15, 2017
  6. Kat Haylock

    Kat Haylock Community Editor Administrator

    453 221
    Guys, let's focus on the OP and not what you don't like about each other. And as per our rules, please don't post 'stubs' - if a member asks for advice and you can help, don’t just tell them to contact you. Our forum would die overnight if the response to every question was "I can help. PM me"
    Posted: Jan 25, 2018 By: Kat Haylock Member since: Jul 11, 2016
  7. GraemeL

    GraemeL Pain in the neck? Full Member - Verified Business

    5,017 1,074
    [responds to removed post]

    Above makes no sense.
    Personally, if @Clinton gives advice or guidance I 'listen' to it. He has given a lot of pragmatic information that I have found of value. The content of his post above in which he replies to the points that the OP has asked about seems to me reasonable and helpful. You - you have so far said nothing at all that helps the OP. I agree with @Kat Haylock - please do keep to the point by responding publicly to the OP''s first post.
    Posted: Jan 29, 2018 By: GraemeL Member since: Sep 7, 2011
  8. beautyandthebeast

    beautyandthebeast UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    13 0
    Hi Guys
    Really appreciate the feedback so far. Let me elaborate somewhat further.

    I am already VAT registered on another UK business that I have. I will be living between Dubai and India but due to such strict guidelines in Dubai I do not want to trade there and I will be there on a spouse visa.

    I want to set up a distribution business, buying products in India and sending shipments to the UK to sell from eBay, Amazon and my own websites. I will use a fulfillment company for shipping out individual items. I will also be looking to find distributors across the world to supply in their own countries.

    I am british with a british passport. My Husband is Indian with a Canadian Passport. I have a 1 year tourist visa for India that expires in May.

    I Will be based near Mumbai.

    So I guess I would like the company to be set up in India for ease of finances and paperwork etc. I am sure my Brother in Law would be able to advise more on this but wondered if it was easy or not. I of course would need a personal and business bank account in India.

    If I am taking payments from sales within the UK through Amazon, Paypal and Stripe etc - does this fall under UK Law - Would I need to pay taxes as I would a normal company based in the UK?

    If not and I can run the company from India - will I still have to register for VAT on this business for import purposes.

    Totally confused on how to run this one :(
    Posted: Jan 29, 2018 By: beautyandthebeast Member since: Dec 22, 2017
  9. Business Adviser

    Business Adviser UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    3 0
    As I mentioned in my PM, One side is that you can utilize the existing business you have in UK and get your agreements in place. If at all you want to keep this legal entity separate, then its quite fast to setup a new company in UK. It will take more time to start a company in India.

    India allows below types of offices to be setup for foreign firms-
    Branch office
    Liaison office
    Project office
    Partnership (or joint-venture)

    You can look at a possibility of joint-venture with a local partner firm but that will have its own set of prerequisites in terms of operational number of years and revenue for both the partner firms. But this will complicate your financial reporting and funds repatriation as you will have to take the legal governance clearances like RBI, FEMA, SEBI, etc. This reporting complication will be there for Branch office as well.

    Liaison and project office will not be the case if you plan to get engaged in local trading and transactions and long term import/export business activities.

    Alternatively, you can go for a UK based company and get a good lawyer in India and have your agreements (as of now I mainly see 2 agreements here) drafted correctly to maintain a buyer-supplier relationship if you want to keep it lean.

    Since your husband is of Indian origin (so your brother-in-law will also be provided he hasn't denounced the Indian citizenship), he can be your entry route in setting up your business and local bank accounts. There has been lot of changes in the Indian banking system especially after the introduction of Aadhar ID cards. So you may check with a local bank to see how best to go forward and who can be your guaranteer. This would again depend on how you plan to do business in India as few sectors allow easier foreign direct investment after recent reforms in FDIs. Also do keep a note that India has eased out taxes on export in their recent GST (replacement of VAT) implementation. A good thing for you.
    Let me know if you need some local contacts in and around Mumbai. I will in Pune (near Mumbai) till March before I fly to UK in April.

    The online payments will be taxable per the local country laws of the bank account which is linked to Paypal (or other payment gateway account). Even the PayPal setup and withdrawal process will differ in case you want to withdraw funds to the local bank account.

    Hope this helps.
    Posted: Jan 29, 2018 By: Business Adviser Member since: Nov 15, 2017
  10. kulture

    kulture UKBF Legend Staff Member

    7,730 2,104
    I have removed some posts and warned both parties. This thread will remain on topic please. I would like to remind people that if you receive 3 warnings in 6 months you get banned.
    Posted: Jan 29, 2018 By: kulture Member since: Aug 11, 2007
  11. meyor

    meyor UKBF Newcomer Free Member

    1 0
    Posted: Apr 6, 2018 By: meyor Member since: Apr 6, 2018