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What is a PBC?
A PBC (Private Business Corporation) is a formal corporation designed for small to medium enterprises in Zimbabwe.
Why is the PBC cheaper to register?
The PBC is a lot cheaper to register as it is government’s attempt to formalize the informal sector. It’s also specifically designed for small to medium businesses hence the attempt to reduce the price to accommodate smaller businesses who cannot afford the higher costs of registering a PLC. Not only is a PBC cheaper to register, it’s also cheaper and easier to maintain. It has no annual returns and laws that govern it are pretty straight-forward.
What are it's advantages?
Easy and cheaper to establish and to operate.
The life of the Private Business Corporation is perpetual.
Members have limited liability.
Transfer of ownership is easy.
Fewer legal requirements than a private company.
No need for audits.
Allows one to register as a sole trader.
A Private Business Corporation does not pay annual returns at the
Registrar of Companies.
Can employ an unlimited number of employees.
A PBC is not limited in terms of how much revenue it can make.
What are it's limitations?
The number of members/ shareholders/ owners are limited to 20 natural persons.
Only individuals (i.e. natural persons) can be shareholders. This means you cannot have organisations as shareholders.
Not as popular as the Private Limited Company.
Non Zimbabweans may be members of a Private Business Corporation (PBC), provided that they have at least one Zimbabwean as a member.
Can a PBC register for tax and open a bank account?
A PBC can own and operate a bank account.
A PBC can register for taxation with ZIMRA, apply for a tax clearance certificate and VAT registration.
Which documents do I get?
No. In a PBC you get what is called a Certificate & Statement of Incorporation. This document contains the same details as are in the CR6 and CR14.
CR6 specifies the address of the business and CR14 specifies who the directors of the company are. So whenever a bank, company or stakeholder requests for your CR6 or CR14, simply provide them with your Certificate & Statement of Incorporation.
The memorandum and articles of association are for internal use and govern the relationship of the shareholders in a company. The equivalent in a PBC is a document called ‘a bylaw’. This is an optional document but you can have it drafted for your PBC if you prefer.