Starting a company in Poland – an essential checklist

Are you thinking of starting a company in Poland? Here is a step-by-step guide to starting a company in Poland, covering all the essential information you need. 

Poland is the most populated country in Central Europe, boasting a consumer market of more than 38 million people, ranking ninth out of 51 European countries. It is geographically located in the middle of Europe, making it an ideal investment site for enterprises looking to export to the East and West.

Starting a company in Poland is one of the best decisions you can make for your enterprise. However, before you begin the legal procedures, it’s advised to follow some important steps to ensure smooth business functionality.

When setting up your company, you should follow these steps in order:

Know Visa Requirements

Europe has specific visa requirements, which you should know before starting a company in Poland.

If you’re from a European Union (EU) country, you don’t require a work visa to start a business in Poland. This is because Poland is part of the EU. However, if you’re from a non-EU country, you’ll need a work permit and a visa to conduct business in Poland.

For individuals from other countries, here are the different types of visas available:

  • Freelance or Entrepreneur Visa
  • Work Permit (Type A)
  • Work Permit (Type E or C)
  • Business Visa (Schengen Visa C or D)

These visas allow non-EU citizens to work and establish themselves in Poland under different circumstances.

Start with a Business Idea

This is the guide’s first, most important, and most time-consuming step. Why is it the very first? You can’t begin to plan out your business venture without having a solid and actionable idea in place. What makes it important? A business idea is the foundation of your entrepreneurial journey, your literal ride or die. Only 79.4% of companies can survive in their first year, while others have to shut down in their first year.

Before diving into business ownership, take some time to assess yourself and your capabilities. Understand your strengths, weaknesses, preferences, and interests. Consider your talents, desired lifestyle, budget, risk tolerance, and preferred type of employment.

Stay informed about upcoming industry trends like technology, health, and entertainment. Consider how these trends could impact life and business, and explore ways to position yourself and your business to benefit from these changes. Can you apply your unique skills from one industry to another? Consider reaching out to underserved areas.

Look online for potential company ideas that appeal to you. It all comes down to finding a suitable fit between your skills and the job.

Know Your USP

All profitable companies have one thing in common: they provide a better product or solve a problem better than competitors. People may refer to this as your unique selling point or the value you provide. This conveys two critical messages to customers and investors:

  • Why is your business different from others?
  • Why should people pick you instead of someone else?

When you work on your particular thing, think about the best thing the buyer gets. This frequently feels great or important, such as looking cool or saving money while eating healthy.

Conduct Market Research

Once you’ve got your little business idea, the next thing to do is check if it’s a good idea to go ahead with it. How? You can ask around and do some research to see if people would like what you’re offering. Also, look at what other similar businesses are doing – this will give you an idea of what’s out there and what people like. We recommend doing research in this order:

Identify your target customers.

  • Who are your ideal customers?
  • What are their needs and wants?
  • What are their pain points?
  • Where do they hang out online and offline?

Engage your audience

  • Conduct surveys and interviews.
  • Host focus groups.
  • Monitor social media.
  • Attend industry events.

Analyze your competition

  • Who are your competitors?
  • What products or services do they offer?
  • What are their strengths and weaknesses?
  • How can you differentiate your business?

Set goals for your research

  • What do you hope to learn from your research?
  • How will you use the information you gather?

Conduct your research

  • Use a variety of methods to collect data.
  • Be objective and unbiased in your analysis.

Summarize your findings

  • Write a report that outlines your key findings and recommendations.

Use your findings to make informed decisions.

  • Use the information you gather to improve your product or service, develop marketing strategies, and set pricing.

Choose Company Type

There are six different types of businesses entrepreneurs in Poland can start, known as “spółki” in Polish. The type of business a foreigner can establish depends on their legal status in Poland.

You have the option to choose any of these six types and receive the same treatment as a Polish business owner if you have the following:

  • Permanent residence card.
  • Long-term EU-resident card.
  • Temporary residence permit 
  • Refugee status.
  • Tolerated stay permit.
  • Valid Pole’s card.
  • Subsidiary or temporary protection.

If you don’t meet the above conditions, you can only start these types of business structures:

  • Limited partnership
  • Limited joint-stock partnership
  • Limited liability company
  • Joint-stock company

This rule also applies to foreigners who don’t live in Poland – if you want to start any of the abovementioned businesses, you’re free to do so. You don’t need to apply for any permits unless you plan to work in the business and perform specific tasks.

Write Your Business Plan

A business plan is a roadmap for your entrepreneurial journey. It’s a living document that should be updated as your business grows. It helps you clarify your goals, identify your target market, and develop strategies for success.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) recommends that business plans include the following sections:

Executive Summary: This is a brief overview of your business, including your mission, products or services, and target market.

Company Description: This section details your business, including its history, products or services, and competitive landscape.

Market Analysis: This section identifies your target market, analyzes your competition, and assesses the market potential for your products or services.

Organization and Management: This section describes your company’s organizational structure and management team.

Service or Product Line: This section provides detailed information about your products or services, including their features, benefits, and pricing.

Marketing and Sales: This section outlines your strategies for marketing and selling your products or services.

Funding Request: If you are seeking funding, this section should explain how much money you need, how you will use it, and when you will repay it.

Financial Projections: This section provides financial forecasts for your business, typically for the next five years.

Appendix: This section includes supporting documents, such as resumes, licenses, and contracts.

A well-written business plan can help you attract investors, secure funding, and grow your business. It can also help you stay organized and focused as you navigate the challenges of entrepreneurship.

Start the Registration Process

Now that you’ve written your business plan, it’s time to start your legal work and get your company registered in Poland as quickly as possible. The process is relatively simple and affordable, however; your negligence or procrastination can make it slower and more costly.

  • Choose a company name.
  • Complete and sign the Article of Association.
  • Notarize the document at a notary’s office.
  • Transfer the required minimum share capital to the company’s bank account.
  • Choose the management board through either
  • Shareholder voting.
  • Resolution in a general shareholder’s meeting.
  • Register the company with the National Court Register.
  • Complete an application form and submit the necessary documents.
  • Obtain Identification Number:
  • Receive an identification number for official and legal purposes.

Market Your Products/Services Digitally

A marketing plan is a document that outlines your marketing goals and strategies for achieving them. It should be tailored to your specific business and industry and should be updated regularly to reflect changes in your market.

It helps you to:

Set clear goals: What do you want to achieve with your marketing efforts?

Develop effective strategies: How will you reach your target market and achieve your goals?

Track your results: How will you measure the success of your marketing campaigns?

How to create a marketing plan?

The first step in creating a marketing plan is to define your target market. Who are your ideal customers? What are their needs and wants? Once you know who you’re targeting, you can start to develop strategies to reach them.

Your marketing strategies should be based on your target market, goals, and budget. Many different marketing strategies are available, so you’ll need to choose the ones that are right for your business.

Some common marketing strategies include:

Search Engine Optimization (SEO): This is improving your website’s ranking in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).

Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising: This is the type of advertisement where you only pay when someone clicks on your ad.

Content marketing: This is the process of creating and sharing valuable content to attract and engage your target market.

Social media marketing: This strategy is using social media platforms to connect with your target market and promote your products or services.

How to market your products/services?

Once you have a marketing plan, you need to start implementing it. This involves creating and executing marketing campaigns to reach your target market and achieve your goals.

Your marketing campaigns should be creative and engaging and provide value to your target market. They should also be measurable, so you can track your results and see what’s working and what’s not.

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