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Draivn always goes Dutch, or where to incorporate a company?
#startup
POSTED ON:
October 27, 2021
Previously, we told you about the importance of advisors and how we found them. This exciting journey made us stronger, accelerated concept and product development. Boosted by Theo and Reto, we were ready to kick start our venture. It only remained to decide “where.”

Remote headquarters
Normally, if one wants to establish a company, the worst things he faces are a legal routine and bureaucracy: name, company type, bank account, office. But “Normal” has never been enough for Draivn. We decided to clear this game on “Nightmare.” Anyway, it wouldn’t be harder than “Dark Souls,” we thought. But we were wrong.

Let us explain. When you find yourself in Minsk, Belarus, in August 2020, inspired to launch an international start-up, you don’t think about the company type or bank account. All your thoughts are occupied by running fast enough to get back home.
TAGS:
Draivn, startup ,
entrepreneurship
open mobility, Netherlands
Such a climate was too hot for us, so we went on establishing the legal entity in an EU country. As always, the European countries were subject to thorough SWOT, PEST, and BEST analyses. We mainly used the latter, being short for “BEST for Draivn.”

To collect the reliable data, we turned to the Level-2 advisor team – friends, family, and the Internet. Based on their expertise, we shortlisted several countries to host our headquarters: Lithuania, Estonia, Poland, the UK, and the Netherlands.

Let’s take a closer look at the best countries for company incorporation.

Lithuania
✅ Close. 200 km from Minsk.
✅ Friendly. The country supported Belarusian people on their way to freedom like no other.
✅ Simple. The procedure of establishing the legal entity there is a piece of cake.
✅ Homey. Considering the number of friends that moved there after the 2020 events, we can consider Lithuania our second home.

Estonia
✅ Fully digitalized. Here, you can do everything via the Internet, including the company establishment and taxation procedure.
✅ Attracts millions and millions of investments in tech companies
✅ Close… to Helsinki ;).

Poland
✅ Start-up friendly. StartUp HUB Poland provides support and benefits for future unicorns at an early stage.
✅ Belarusian-friendly. Poland has always been an EU gate for Belarusian people.
✅ IT-friendly. The #2 IT hub for Belarusian companies.

The UK
✅ The biggest. London is the major IT hub in the EU.
✅ The first. The UK is the motherland of insurance and many of its major players.
✅ Tech-savvy. Telematics penetration is deep here.
✅ Roots back to childhood. London is the capital of Great Britain if you know what we mean.
❌ Brexit can become an issue in the future.

The Netherlands
✅ Central. The country lies in the heart of Western Europe, very close to our potential customers.
✅ Supportive. Similar to Poland, there are several initiatives supporting foreigners in establishing and developing IT companies.
❌ Far... from Belarus.

In the end, we faced a choice to opt for Estonia, Poland, Lithuania, and make it easy, or stick to a more challenging way with the Netherlands or the UK. To be frank, the high-tech image of the UK and the Netherlands outweighed the closeness of the Baltic States.
Choosing between the Netherlands and the UK

The UK option seemed more beneficial, because of the customers, technology adoption, the image of the biggest IT hub in Europe. But the Netherlands appealed to us more. Maybe the advisors played their role, as Theo Bouts is Dutch, maybe the Hague, being a sacral city for millions of Belarusians turned the scales.

7 reasons to choose the Netherlands

✅ Beneficial environment for startups and tech companies (taxation and tax return, terms of doing business) and transparent regulations for establishing and developing business.
✅ Work relations. While we were choosing the best location for our HQ, our Board Member strongly advised us to pick up the Netherlands. Besides, many existing and potential customers and partners are based in the country, including Achmea, Leaseplan, Athlon.
✅ Reliable jurisdiction. While our primary clients are big insurers, brokers, and OEMs, we need an HQ in a strong and predictable environment. For that, the Netherlands is a perfect fit, unlike Belarus with its ruined investment climate.
✅ Investment. The Netherlands is one of the most prolific economies globally, making it attractive in terms of investments.
✅ Geography. The Netherlands has a perfect location in the heart of Europe and is close to its main Insurance Hubs: Munich, Berlin, London, and Zurich.
✅ Talent pool. The Netherlands attracts numerous highly skilled and talented individuals from all across the EU, forming a strong workforce market.
✅ Personal preferences. We intend to relocate a part of our Executive team to the Netherlands, as the next step after setting up a company.

That’s all for today. Maybe, we’ll meet you in the Netherlands someday. But if you have an idea of revolutionizing the insurance of today, let’s meet online. Follow Draivn, and its leaders Alex and Zahar on LinkedIn. Cheers!
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