Business Name Registration

3 Powerful Tips for Successful Business Registration

Business name registration in Kenya is referred to as Sole Proprietorship or  BN2. Partnerships and LLP’s registration is done under the Business Names Registration Act Kenya
The Business Registration Services Act 2015 established the Business Registration Service (BRS) with the aim to streamline effective administration of the laws relating to the incorporation, registration, operation, and management of companies, partnerships, and firms. Additionally, the Registration Service is established as a state corporation under the general supervision and direction of the Attorney-General. This initiative is aimed at improving and promoting efficiency in business name registration in Kenya.

Registering a Sole Proprietorship in Kenya

A sole proprietorship or a business name is a business entity owned by one person. Moreover, businesses in these categories are small and medium-sized enterprises. Now, below are the steps to follow when registering a sole proprietorship business in Kenya.

How To Register A business  In Kenya online

Create an eCitizen account
To create an account, you must be above 18 years of age, possess an ID number, mobile number, and a working email, and have a stable internet connection. Additionally, ensure all the required information is readily available before proceeding.
Business name registration search letter Kenya
To register a business name, the applicant must propose three names. Subsequently, pending business registration, the names undergo reservation. Moreover, applicants should make a written application for reservation of a Business Name and pay the prescribed fee.
Application Form BN 2
After name search approval is complete, the applicant should fill out the BN 2 Form and lodge it with the Registrar of Companies Kenya. Subsequently, the registration process can proceed smoothly.
Business Name Registration Certificate

The processing and issuance of BN 3 occur thereafter.


Requirements for Business Name Registration in Kenya

  • The nature of Business / activities the business will undertake.
  • Names of the Proprietor/s in Full.
  • Postal address for the Business Name.
  • Proposed Physical address of the Business. Address includes road, plot number, town, county.
  • Copy of ID / Passport of the Proprietor or Partners.
  • Passport photo of the Proprietor/s.
  • Copy of PIN certificate of the Proprietor/s or partner/s.
  • Send us an email including the above requirements to
Other Business Services offered:
  • Change of Business Name
  • Change of Business particular and details
  • Removal or appointment of partners and members
  • Cessation of Business Name registration
  • Foreign NON Governmental Organization (NGO) Registration
  • NON Governmental Organization (NGO) Registration – Local
  • How to Register a Partnership Business Name in Kenya Online
In a partnership business, two or more people share ownership, and each partner contributes to all aspects of the business. Furthermore, the partners share profits and losses according to the agreement in the partnership deed. Additionally, the registration process for a partnership business is similar to that of a sole proprietorship, except that the partners provide a partnership deed.

Partnership business name registration in Kenya:

The following are steps for registering a partnership in Kenya.
  • The partnership deed contains the following particular
  • The name of the firm or partnership
  • The names and addresses of partners
  • The nature or type of the business
  • The duration of partnership.
  • The amount of capital to be contributed by each partner determines the initial investment. Additionally, the agreement may specify the amount and nature of drawings that can be made by each partner.
  • The company allows interest on capital and charges interest on drawings.

  • Rights and responsibilities of partners.
  • Duties of partners.
  • payment to partners.
  • The ratio of the profits or losses shared among the partners.
  • The basis and rationale for the calculation of goodwill during the Admission. Retirement, and death of a partner.
  • The keeping of proper books of accounts and the preparation of Balance Sheet.
  • Settlement of amount upon the dissolution of the firm.
  • The partners must adopt procedures and processes in the case of disputes among them.
  • Arbitration clause in case of dispute or disagreement.
The advantage of partnership business name registration, compared to sole proprietorship, is that in a partnership, you can apply for any tender without much restrictions, as your business has a KRA pin. Additionally, the cost of registering a partnership is minimal. In contrast, sole proprietorship does not have a business KRA pin but uses the personal KRA PIN of the owner.

Registration of Limited Liability Partnership in Kenya (LLP)

Section 2 of the Limited Liability Partnership Act, Chapter 30A, stipulates a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) as one registered under the Act. Whereas, the Partnership Act No. 16 of 2012 defines a partnership as the relationship which exists between persons who carry on business in common with a view of making a profit.
This relationship is termed as LLP registration Kenya. Moreover, currently, there are three forms of partnerships in Kenya: a general partnership, a limited partnership, and a limited liability partnership.

Legal Structure and Liabilities in Partnerships

To form an LLP, one submits a Statement of Particulars with the Registrar of Limited Liability Partnerships under section 17 of the Limited Liability Partnership Act. Additionally, the LLP Act appoints the Registrar of Companies to register limited liability partnerships, thereby transforming them into body corporates with perpetual succession and separate legal entity personality.

A general partnership is governed by the Partnership Act, Act No. 16 of 2012, while being registered under the Registration of Business Names Act. Consequently, upon registration, a general partnership does not become a body corporate.
Under section 7(2) of the LLP Act, the limited liability partnership must maintain and use a common seal that bears its name, which it will use to execute all documents that the law requires it to seal.
Under section 22 of the Partnership Act, the liability of a partner in a general partnership is unlimited. Consequently, the partnership holds each partner liable for the entire amount of any obligation it incurs.

While he is a partner. Their personal assets could settle business debts if /when becomes necessary.

General partners in a limited partnership have unlimited liability, while limited partners have their liability limited to the amount contributed at joining.

In a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP), partners are not liable for the partnership’s obligations or for another partner’s wrongful act. LLP liabilities are from the property and personal assets of partners, while general partners have the entitlement to participate in the partnership’s management.

In a limited partnership (LLP), all general partners can manage the business, but section 58(1) of the Partnership Act prohibits limited partners from doing so, making it a quasi-partnership.

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