Photocopier Leasing for companies setting up an office in the UK

If you are looking to start a company in the UK from overseas and require a photocopier or printer for your new London office.

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Anyone who has embarked on a new business venture will know that it isn’t always as simple as it sounds.  Establishing a new office takes an enormous amount of hard work, time and financing, therefore careful planning is the key to success.

Added to this, for international companies, intent on setting up an office within the UK, there are a vast range of other factors to be aware of, and although they are certainly not insurmountable, they can pose problems if they aren’t addressed. 

This guide should give you the ‘heads up’ on what to do when setting up a UK office, along with some practical ideas on some other important elements like the technical equipment to make the transfer as seamless as possible.  

Setting up an office in the UK
London makes a particularly attractive location for anyone wanting to establish a business in the UK.  It is considered by many to be one of the most competitive economies in the world, due mainly to its innovation and technological prowess.

Providing that overseas businesses comply with a few legal regulations, they can set up an office in the UK.  The following things need to be taken into consideration before you proceed.

    1. Open a Branch or Subsidiary

      If you wish to establish yourself within the UK you can open a branch or a subsidiary.  Branches, also often called ‘representative offices’ are fairly limited in the transactions they can complete.  Generally the role of a foreign branch within the UK is to promote its wares and provide information about its services.  Subsidiaries, by comparison, are independent and are entirely separate from the parent company. They have greater power and possess the ability to sign contracts, open and close deals, along with many other important dealings due to their full legal status.  If you set up a subsidiary, be prepared for a more complicated and costly process. 
      Other differences between the two relate to their tax status.  If you have an international business branch operating within the UK, you won’t necessarily need to pay corporation tax, however the parent company could incur tax on any profits it makes. Due to the difference in its remit, subsidiaries, by comparison, are required to pay corporation tax.  The best advice is to get legal advice from a tax expert, who’ll determine whether or not your subsidiary or branch in the UK is subject to taxation.

    2. Apply for Legal status in the UK

      Those who intend to establish a branch or subsidiary within the UK must have legal status. Foreign nationals should get any required visas before arriving here.  Valid for up to 3 years, this visa, known as the Representative of an Overseas Business Visa, is essential before you travel. 

    3. Take care of Regulations and legalities.

      It’s compulsory that every international company, even European companies, who set up branches or subsidiaries in the UK, must register their company with Companies House within 1 month of establishing an office in the UK.  (This complies with the rules of The Overseas Companies Regulations of 2009). Branches must provide any essential information relating to the parent company and can either register under a different name, (as long as it doesn’t not contravene any given restrictions), or use the parent company name. On completion of registration, Companies House will provide a certificate of registration which contains an important registration number. With all written communication, ensure that this number is clearly visible. If you decide on the subsidiary route, then you are also required to submit audited accounts annually. Failure to comply within the deadline period results in a penalty of between £1,500 and £3,000.
      This is statutory for foreign companies in the UK who meet any two of the following three benchmarks.

      1. The entire company workforce has 50 employees, which includes both the parent company, along with any other worldwide subsidiaries.
      2. Gross assets of the group are £3,260,000(net) or £3,900,000(gross) or above
      3. Annual turnover of the group is £6,500,000(net) / £7,800,000(gross) and above

If international companies who trade within the UK have taxable revenues which are greater than £77,000 per annum, they are required to register for VAT. Check also to see if your goods will incur Excise Duty.  Furthermore, any international company who pays UK tax and employs a workforce here in the UK has to register for PAYE, which deducts tax and NI from their wages.

Kick Starting your business once in the UK
Having planned, mastered and addressed the factors specific to international companies establishing a UK office, we now need to consider some practical issues that may arise regarding other vital elements involved in setting up any office, which applies to anyone in business, anywhere in the world.

      1. Financial Issues

        To ensure any business thrives, be it an international branch, subsidiary or locally grown UK company, keeping control of your assets is vital.  Therefore you need to be canny and think of as many money saving ventures as you can, to make that 1st year less of a burden financially. 
        Within the office environment, for example, technical equipment like computers, printers and copiers can result in a hefty bill if bought outright.  Yet there are alternative options, especially where photocopiers and printers are concerned.  Photocopier/Printer leasing for example, could help you get into gear with a lower cost solution to funding your office equipment, allowing you to kick start your new business without being tied into lengthy contracts or paying for vastly expensive equipment.

      2. Quantify your needs

        Whatever the size of your new business, and whatever your needs are regarding your copying requirements, you must first try to ensure that what you buy or lease will be suited to all your needs.  To keep costs lower only select the machine with the features that you really need!  There is little point in having an expensive all singing, all dancing photocopier, if you only have small copy requirements.  Similarly, at the other end of the scale, a larger company who is likely to use much higher quantities of duplicated material, would be silly to use a ‘pocket sized’ copier which doesn’t have the ability to cope.  So assess your needs before embarking on your choice of copier or printer, so you’ll be well informed about your exact requirements.

      3. Use a reputable equipment provider and consider renting or leasing 

        This done, visit a reputable provider who’ll advise you about the models that might be suitable and what they will cost you!  Remember outright purchase is expensive, and will tie up a lot of your start- up capital, so it makes sense to consider Printer Rental or Photocopier Leasing, rather than buying. 
        Short term printer rental will cost more than long term photocopier leasing in the long run, although this may be an option if you’re unsure if your business will ‘take off’ or if you aren’t certain of the amount of copying that you will do.  By taking this route you’ll get the time to evaluate your usage for several months, allowing you to upgrade your machine if needed at a later date.
        Longer term leasing helps you to conserve your cash, as it releases the capital that you would have spent when buying your device outright, allowing you to focus this money elsewhere.  It also ensures that your company moves with the times, as you can update your copier during the lease period, if, for example you expand.  Furthermore, leasing enables you to always have the most modern appliance at your disposal, instead of being left with the ageing appliance you bought several years ago,  which can’t perform as well as it did, is now outdated and isn’t up to the task anymore.  Successful businesses innovate, change and update regularly, which often means your equipment also has to.  Photocopier leasing helps you to do just this. By keeping up to date, especially where printing and copying is concerned, your company won’t be left floundering.  Leasing is a flexible and cost effective solution for companies, allowing you to get the latest technology that you require, without costing the earth.
        Another money saving feature of renting or leasing a photocopier is that of photocopier repair and maintenance costs.  These are largely covered when you lease, which can be a substantial saving, as opposed to having to fork out for repairs after the guarantee has expired on a purchased machine.
        Photocopier leasing is therefore becoming increasingly popular with new start -ups as they can avoid the large outlays required through outright purchase, which significantly reduces their start-up costs.  And when money is tight, conserving your cash resources is critical, so it makes sense to rent or lease a photocopier, rather than buy.  With more than 50% of new businesses failing within the 1st year, successful ones know how to keep their expenditure to a minimum with photocopier leasing.

So whether you’re an international company setting up an office in the UK or perhaps a new start up already within the UK, you should by now have some idea about what’s involved in the set up procedures and where to get help and advice regarding the technical side of the office environment.  Although not extensive, this guide will allow you to begin to make the informed choices needed to make your business run as seamlessly as possible and, if you are an international company setting up in the UK, stay within the remit of the law. 

If you are looking for photocopier leasing to help your new business or office prosper, you can find a range of lease printers and photocopiers to suit your needs at London Printer Rentals. Our short term photocopier leasing is perfect for businesses that are still testing the water.  To find out more, browse our range of hire services and photocopier leasing online today. We’ll ensure you are completely happy with your new photocopier or printer before we arrange your lease.  You’ll receive accurate, unbiased information from our experienced staff along with unbeatable prices.  And it doesn’t end after taking out your lease, as our aftercare service is second to none.  We’ll give you a first class service at economy prices, contact us today.

Rent your photocopier or printer today call 0800 772 0101

If you are interested in discussing options for renting a photocopier or printer on a short term basis or long term lease give one of our experienced consultants a call on 0800 772 0101 or email us at

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