Registering a construction company in Kenya

A construction worker or foreman at a construction site observing the progress of construction job or project, with copy space

In order to start a construction company in Kenya you have to meet specific legal compliance. The following tips will help you start on the right foot:

Company Registration

In Kenya, there are specific company registration requirements that you must comply with. Additionally, there are regulations for specific industries such as business permits, registration with industry bodies (National Construction Authority), compliance with specific standards, that you will have to meet for your business to start operating in that field.

Please note that foreigners may have to meet additional requirements to operate their business in Kenya.

Information Required in registration process

In order for you to register a construction company in KENYA below are specific information that you will ensure that you comply with under Kenya’s Company Act 2015;
Director(s) Details.

• Full names – your full names as displayed on your ID/Passport will be used on the application
• Occupation – you will need to state your occupation e.g. engineer, web designer, accountant, consultant, teacher etc. If you don’t have any occupation, then you can simply put either businessman or businesswoman.
• Postal address – if you don’t have one, you can register it with Posta Kenya.
• Physical Residential address – LR number or house number, building name (if any), street name, town name, country.
• Share Allocations – each director will need to be allocated at least 1 share. Remember that the total number of shares available for allocation is 1,000 shares. You can plan to allocate your 1,000 shares using percentages such as 60%/40%, 50%/50%. However, if you are just the sole director then you can have 100% share ownership.
See also: Nominal Capital Share Explained
• Proof of Identity documents – you will need to provide the following documents for registration, without them your application will be rejected.
o Copy of ID or Passport – you can scan or photocopy your identification document
o Copy of KRA PIN certificate – all Kenyan directors/shareholders will need to provide KRA PIN, however foreigners won’t need to provide one for the registration
o Photos – must have a clear background and show all your facial features, just like a passport photo. Please avoid submitting photos that has someone wearing sunglasses, hats; this could cause your application to be rejected by the Registrar.
Company Details
• Company Name Suggestions – it’s ideal to come up with 2-3 company name suggestions that you can use to check the availability of your company name. Please note that you are only allowed to perform one name at a time. You can perform name search at Huduma Center or eCitizen website or you can instruct us to help you with it. It usually takes 1-2 days.
• Nature of business – with the new Company Act 2015, you can now do all trade of business. This is good news especially for companies that would prefer to do multiple business activities. However, if you are specializing on a specific industry then you can list the business activities that you would like to be stated on the application form.
• Location of business premises – you will need to provide the location details of your office including LR Number or Plot Number, Building name (if any), Street name, Town name. If you don’t have a business premises yet, then you can provide your home address then make the changes later once you have secured a business premises.

What If I want To Register A Foreign Limited Company?
There are always additional requirements that foreign owned companies need to comply with. In the process of company registration, foreigners need to provide:
• Identity documents – such as copy of Passport and photo
• Alien ID – when applying for Company PIN
• Certificate of Incorporation & Memorandum of existing foreign company – if you are looking to open a branch or subsidiary company for an existing foreign company, then you will be requested to provide the certificate of incorporation and memorandum.
Company KRA PIN

Once you have been issued with your certificate of incorporation and memorandum, you will be able to apply for your company PIN. Data loading will need to be performed at any iTax centers or KRA offices. Here are some of the requirements you will need to have with you;

• Certificate of Incorporation
• Memorandum
• Individual KRA PIN for each director – you will need at least one individual KRA PIN for one director in order to register company PIN. If all directors are foreigners, then at least one of the directors will need to apply for Alien ID that will enable them to acquire their individual PIN.
• Director(s) details – including KRA PIN Number, Full names, date of birth, phone number, email address etc.

Company Seal & Stamp

In Kenya, Company Seal is considered a useful stationery for businesses. It is used for contracts, deeds, share certificates and most importantly for setting up subsidiary companies. Here is what you need to know if you are looking to get a company seal in Kenya.

CR-12 Letter and AGPO certificate

These are additional steps that only apply to those businesses intending to go for government (national or county) tenders. In order to apply for CR-12 letter, a letter will need to be written on your company letterhead requesting Company Registry to give you a CR-12 letter that contains list of directors in your registered company. You will also need to attach a copy of Certificate of Incorporation on your request.