How to start a small business entity (SME) in Thailand and things to keep in mind

Thailand is one of Asia’s fastest-growing economies with a flourishing middle class, a thriving startup community, and increasing demand for consumer products and services. It offers strong opportunities for investors in different sectors, especially in the service and industrial firms and the import and export sectors in general. That said, starting an SME in Thailand can be quite daunting.

There is a myriad of issues that new entrepreneurs face, including finance, human resource and legal issues among others. For most people, the entire process can be overwhelming. Still, if you get it right, you can build a business that is not only lucrative but also enjoyable. Here are a few tips on how to start a small business entity in Thailand and the things you should keep in mind:

Decide on a legal entity

Before registering a business, it is important that you consider which organisation structure will suit your needs. These legal entities include;

Sole proprietorship

This is an enterprise owned by one person. Note that in Thailand, some professions are prohibited from working as a sole proprietor such as banking and finance. Also, whether or not you can set up a business as a sole trader will depend on the country you are from.


This is a business that is set up by a minimum of 2 people who share unlimited liability for all the partnership obligations. There are three types of partnership business structures in Thailand:

  • Unregistered ordinary partnership
  • Registered ordinary partnership
  • Limited partnership

Limited Company

This is the most popular form of business entities in Thailand. A Thai limited company is made up of a minimum of 3 investors and 1 director.

Joint Venture

This refers to a group of people pooling their resources together to start a business.

Choose a great name

Your business has a significant impact on its success. For starters, choose a name that does not limit your business growth and one that is not hard to spell.

Register the business

All businesses in Thailand have to be registered with the Department of Business Development, Ministry of Commerce.

Things to know before getting started

Build a great website for your business

Devote some of your time and effort into building a robust and user-friendly website. Prospective customers, partners and investors are highly likely to check your website before investing. Therefore, you want one that will impress them.

Get all employees and consultants to sign a confidentiality and invention assignment agreement. This will ensure that they keep the company’s propriety information confidential. It also makes sure that the ideas, work products and inventions that the employees or consultants create, which are related to the business belong to the company and not the consultant or employee.

Market your business like crazy

For your Thai SME business to succeed, you need to continually be attracting, building and educating your target market about your products or services and what makes them different from the competition. You can achieve this through the use of search engine optimization, social media, creating engaging content and networking on a regular basis.

Get the right business lawyer

Finally, make sure you hire the services of a professional and experienced business lawyer. This will ensure that you receive the advice of a seasoned legal counsel, which could potentially help you avoid serious legal issues.  For instance, noncompliance may result in a 3-year prison term or a fine of between 100000 to 1000000 Baht or both.

During the process of starting and operating a business in Thai, you will find yourself requiring to send and receive money to and from international clients more often. DeeMoney is a leading local and international money exchange and transfer company in Thailand that is highly recommended for companies that require sending money to other countries. Its money transfer services are affordable, fast and reliable compared to other financial institutions like banks. With the DeeMoney app installed on your phone, you and your clients can easily make money transfers all over the world with some of the best exchange rates which are updated on a daily basis.