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Starting Up

BPE has built a reputation for working with start up businesses and supporting them throughout their growth. From deciding whether to be a limited company or a sole trader to recruiting the right staff for your business and making sure your business is fully protected, we can help.

Start Up

Choosing the right business structure

Sole trader, partnership, limited company or LLP? How do you choose the right legal structure for your start up business? Unless it's part of your business plan to raise significant funds on the stock exchange within a defined period of time, you probably won't want to start off as a public limited company. Your best bet is to start with the simplest structure. You can always change to a more sophisticated model as your business grows.

Here's a quick business checklist but for more information and to discuss the best options for you, please get in touch with our Corporate Team.




Sole trader

Low cost and easy to set up. You retain control. Very little financial reporting required.

You are personally liable for any debt. Pay more in tax. May lack credibility,


Suitable for businesses with more than one individual working together.  More potential to raise finance

Same as a sole trader, each Partner is liable for debt. Can be messy to wind up.

Limited company

Less personal risk and has tax advantages. Ability to work for corporate clients.

Heavier administrative and regulatory demands. Must produce annual accounts and financial reports.

Limited liability partnership (LLP)

Flexibility: can be incorporated in members’ agreement. Advantages of limited company and partnership combined.

Profit taxed as income. Partners must disclose income. LLP must start to trade within a year of registration - or be struck off

Management buy out

If you are planning a MBO you will need to manage the existing relationship with your employer, run the acquisition and source the finance. MBOs are just an acquisition with a funding attached but carried out within the relationship of employer and employee. We will lead you through this minefield.

Buying a business

From starting up and structuring a business, to development either through growth, joint ventures, buying and selling to floating on the stock market, and creating and implementing an exit plan, our corporate team understands your business needs at every stage.

Buying or selling a business can be a difficult, time consuming and stressful experience but this is what we do on a daily basis. We take the stress and emotion out of the process, allowing you to continue running your own business while we focus on the deal.

Whether you are an owner-managed businesses, an entrepreneur or a private or public company we will manage the deal and get it done within your timeframe.

Buying a franchise

When buying a franchise, there are various legal stages you need to go through. We specialise in franchise agreements and can advise on the whole process. Whether you are the franchisor or the franchisee, we can help your business go from strength to strength, having helped many well-known brands set up successful franchise models.

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