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Register the Ultimate Beneficial Owners

Register the Ultimate Beneficial Owners

An ultimate beneficial owner (UBO) is an owner or a person responsible for a business. As an EU state, the Netherlands has set in place an EU regulatory framework that requires all states to store data on all UBOs in special registers. Such a registry has been enabled in this country in 2020.

Below, our company formation specialists in the Netherlands explain how the UBO Register works and who must be recorded with it based on company type.

Who qualifies as a UBO in the Netherlands?

A Dutch UBO is a company’s owner or the individual who has control over the enterprise. Among the ultimate beneficial owners are:

  • individuals who own more than 25% of a company;
  • individuals who hold more than 25% of the voting rights in a company;
  • persons who act as statutory company directors;
  • persons who exercise control over a company.

An important aspect to consider when starting a business in the Netherlands is that it must register at least one UBO.  Our local consultants can help you with the incorporation of your company and registration of the ultimate beneficial owner.

Entities that need to have UBOs registered in the Netherlands

The UBO Register in the Netherlands is administered by the Trade Register, and it must hold the personal details of the qualifying individuals mentioned above. With respect to the types of entities that must record their ultimate beneficial owners,

  • private and public limited companies that are not listed on the Stock Exchange;
  • foundations;
  • cooperatives;
  • associations with full and limited legal capacity engaged in commercial activities;
  • mutual insurance companies
  • general, limited, and professional partnerships (silent partners are exempt from registration as UBOs);
  • shipping companies;
  • European limited liability companies and cooperatives;
  • European economic interest groupings with legal seats in the Netherlands;
  • churches.

Entities that must register their UBOs are required to enter a minimum of one person in the Dutch UBO Register. The company representative must record the data of UBOs. Associations and other organizations that are in the course of incorporation can register through the public notary drawing up the creation documents.

Our Dutch company registration agents can also advise on the procedure of registering UBOs.

Foreign UBOs

Dutch companies with foreign shareholders must also register them with the UBO registry. There are no nationality or residency criteria that apply to them. Our local consultants can help you record overseas ultimate beneficial owners.

Exceptions for UBO registration in the Netherlands

Not all entities are required to have their data shared with the UBO Register in the Netherlands. Exceptions apply in the following cases:

  • sole proprietorships;
  • private companies listed public limited companies that are listed on financial markets;
  • subsidiaries of companies that are listed on the Stock Exchange;
  • real estate owners’ associations;
  • associations without commercial activities;
  • various private bodies, such as guilds and courtyards.

Also, companies that are in the course of incorporation are exempt at the respective time from registering UBOs in the Netherlands.

Dutch companies by industry

The Netherlands was home to 1,859,105 companies, out of which approximately 450,000 were small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) at the beginning of 2023, according to recent information. Large enterprises are divided into:

  • 765,911 businesses operating in the services sector;
  • 699,118 companies registered in the finance, insurance, and real estate industries;
  • 101,537 retail businesses.

If you need assistance in registering a UBO in the Netherlands, do not hesitate to get in touch with our company registration specialists.