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  #1 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 9th, 2007, 08:15 am
Whistleblower's Avatar
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Join Date: Oct 30th, 2006
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Default Setting Up a Business in Korea

Hiya all,

Thought I would start this forum after brainstorming the idea with the Korean missus of starting a business over here in Korea. I have looked at so many Hagwons here in Korea and think, "if they can do it (and earn a nice salary) why can't I?".

So, I am thinking that in the next 12 months I would like a nice small teaching business set up here in Korea. However, I have no idea what is needed in Korea to set the business up. Can anyone point me in the right direction or organisation to setup a business in Korea? Are Korean nationals pretty happy for foreigners (us Weigooks) to setup a business? Nonetheless, my wife's friend is an accountant so taxation is not a problem it is more to do with the opportunity for foreigners to setup businesses abroad, especially in Korea. I suppose the business will be viewed as an SME (Small Medium Enterprise) with two people employed (myself and my wife).

If anyone has experience setting up a business in Korea please let me know or PM me as I have a couple of questions.

Many thx. (Can't believe I am thinking about this whilst I am relocating and have dozens of things to do).
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  #2 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 9th, 2007, 12:00 pm
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Clive Hawkins
Join Date: Aug 1st, 2006
Location: Italy
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Default Re: Setting Up a Business in Korea

I don't know about Korea but I guess setting up a business is pretty much the same the world over.

I did it 18 months ago and the one thing I can tell you is you'll need money, and lots of it. Once you've registered there'll be bills flying at you from all directions - even before you've started to earn a single cent. It's like leeches sucking you dry before you've had a cahnce to even get going.

Then there's the paperwork \ unhelpful officials \ documents with the i's dotted and the t's crossed \ I could go on.

It's a lot of hard work but now we're just about finding our feet - ie we're not losing money any more.

Don't let this put you off, but just be aware it's not as easy as you think. I wish someone had told me the same back then. I'd have still gone ahead and done it but certainly with a sharper eye on the financial side of things.

In any case, I wish you the best of luck. Be your own boss (at least in the office!) :-)
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  #3 (permalink)  
Unread Mar 9th, 2007, 10:46 pm
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Join Date: Jan 16th, 2006
Location: South Korea
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Default Re: Setting Up a Business in Korea

I think that it has to be your wife's business with you working for her, at least legally. I think it's very hard for non-Koreans to have businesses in Korea so usually their spouse "owns" it. I am not sure on that but it's work looking up. Also if it's a school, it has to be a certain size (X amount of peong) before they can hire a native teacher, that's why only large schools can have teachers and why the rest get part time teachers. I'm sure that there are some loopholes and a million others things to look into but it's interesting to think about it.

Best of luck!
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Unread Mar 11th, 2007, 03:07 am
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Default Re: Setting Up a Business in Korea

I thought France was the most difficult country to set up a business ( lots of red papers) and the bailiffs if you don't pay your taxes on time even if you haven't earned a cent.
Good Luck for your project.
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