Off The Shelf Company

Off The Shelf Company

Off the Shelf Companies” are the way company formations used to be done before electronic company formations became the norm. An “off the shelf company” is a company that would be registered by a formation agent in their own name and then transferred to a customer. This was in a time when submissions to Companies House for company registration were made on paper and took weeks to complete. Company formation agents used to keep lists of ready formed off the shelf companies for people to pick from which could be quickly transferred to new owners when someone wanted to start a business.


Vintage Off the Shelf Companies

The Company Warehouse still provide a limited number of Off the Shelf companies. We typically refer to these as vintage companies. Our Vintage Companies have all been registered with Companies House for a number of years, with accounts and returns submitted where appropriate.  You can view a list of our current off the shelf vintage companies on our Vintage Companies Page.

Our vintage “off the shelf company” packages enable you to choose a company that already has a company registration number and include the ability for you to change the company name. They also include:

  • Certificate of Incorporation

  • Memorandum and articles of association

  • Register of officers

  • Register of Shareholders

  • Share Certificates

  • Application for shares letter

  • Consent to act letters for appointed directors

  • Completed Stock transfer form

VAT Registration can be applied for once an off the shelf style company has been transferred to you. In certain circumstances we may be able to make a retrospective application (back date the VAT registration).


Fast Electronic Company Formations

Off the Shelf companies started to be phased out when electronic company formations became possible. Submissions to Companies House can now be made online and a new company can be formed in a matter of hours. So instead of having an off the shelf company you can have a New Company Formationdone specifically for your business. This usually much cheaper than buying a vintage off the shelf company. Carried out online, our fast, simple company formation service starts from free and can have your new company properly registered with Companies House in as little as 2–5 hours!


For more information about setting up a new limited company please see our company formation guidance or speak to one of our business consultants on 01245 492777.