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Company Registrations

Name Reservations and Company Registrations in South Africa

According the South African Companies Act of 2008, you can now register your company with or without a name. In the latter instance, your company registration number will be used as the company name. This of course, speeds up the process of company registrations where people are in a hurry to get a company started.

It also means that you can operate the company and may later apply to reserve a name. Note that you will need to reserve the name and then apply to have the name changed from the registration number to the reserved name. In this instance it will also affect the Memorandum of Incorporation (MOI) and such changes will need to be submitted.

The initial name reservation may be rejected and then you will need to apply for a new name. You fortunately have the right to apply for 1 to 4 names in a single application, which makes it more likely to get one of the four names approved.

Registering a Defensive Name

Name reservation forms an integral part of company registrations and it is imperative to carefully select the name relevant to your business. You can register a defensive name for a period of 24 months where after you can renew it for another 24 months. For this process you will have to submit evidence of having a direct interest in preserving the name for usage. You can only transfer the defensive name to another person, but you cannot convert the name to serve a business entity such as a company. You can also not terminate the name before the 24 months have expired. The process must be done manually.

Steps Involved

You need to register with CIPC as customer and then deposit the required funds and submit form CoR10.1 together with supporting evidence regarding your direct material interest in preserving the name. The application should include the full details of the period for which you have used the name and sales or advertisement copy used. In addition, you must supply a statement regarding the public usage of the name. Add the certified copies required.

Private Company Registrations

Note that you can no longer register a Close Corporation. You can register a private company and need to submit the standard MOI. As part of this process you can reserve a name for the company.  If all the names you have selected are rejected, then the registration can still commence under the company registration name or you can submit another application for name reservation. You can also apply for name reservation before company registration.

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