I've registered my company in Hong Kong to provide Data Management Consultancy (hopefully) with a global outreach. There are two parts to the registration process - "Company Incorporation" and "Business Registration". Thankfully, the authorities have made it possible to combine the two processes and do them at once, as described here: https://www.ird.gov.hk/eng/pdf/one_stop.pdf.
The process is still somewhat cumbersome, particularly for people who, like me, don't like filling forms (or are not in HK). Apart from filling forms, it involves searching to see whether the name is available or not (which, to be honest, is not very difficult but is still a step) and you also need a Company Secretary. Again, thankfully, I found a company that does all these things for a not-very-unreasonable premium over the actual fees - the aptly named, GetStartedHK. I interacted with their General Manager, Brian Yiu who was highly responsive, understanding, and helpful. Not only did he take care of registration but also introduced me to e-wallet services and referred Airwallex.
Airwallex is an e-wallet approved by HKMA. It is a payment solution to which you can link your bank account and can send and receive remittances (both local and overseas). The account setup process is straightforward and you can be up and running sooner than with a bank account, which involves visiting the bank - something I wanted to avoid in order to adhere to the much needed social distancing practices. I'm guessing virtual banks might be a decent option but I haven't tried them yet.
As is evident, I've had a number of people to be thankful to, for helping me lay my foundation. I'm a strong believer in the barter system and think that it's a great way to build an ecosystem of successful businesses. I've observed this kind of give-and-take in Silicon Valley as well and think that it's a force for good. To this end, I'm open to talk to companies, of any size, looking for help with their Data Management needs. Please feel to reach me by leaving a comment below or writing to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Onward & Upward!