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Old 06.10.2011, 10:35
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Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

Okay, so I'm looking to move to Switzerland from London for business reasons. I want to help it develop it's digital economy by bringing my tech company there.

I've been researching and read that the area next to Lake Geneva in Geneva is the location that is becoming the tech-hub for the country, but I still have some questions regarding living and tax.
  • Is the area around Lake Geneva the best tech area in the country? I need to be surrounded by a good technology infrastructure.
  • How easy will it be to find good housing around this area? Let's say I want to spend £1000 per month max on housing costs and need at least 2 bedrooms.
  • Let's say my company made 10million CHF in a year and i was paid 1million CHF as a dividend. How much tax would my company pay and how much would I expect to pay, assuming I lived and worked in Geneva?
  • If I decided not to live in Geneva because of tax, where would be the best place to live and commute from?
  • How hard would it be to find people with at least university degree level computer programming abilities around this area, whether they actually have a degree or not? (I know if it's difficult to find any then I can just find commuters, but specifics are always better)

Any and all help is greatly appreciated and thank you in advance. Hopefully the answers I get will help me fully commit and get Switzerland's digital economy on the same wavelength as the US
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Old 06.10.2011, 10:54
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

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  • How easy will it be to find good housing around this area? Let's say I want to spend £1000 per month max on housing costs and need at least 2 bedrooms.
Hopefully the answers I get will help me fully commit and get Switzerland's digital economy on the same wavelength as the US
For £1000, about Chf 1400.-- you'll be very lucky to get studio flat in Geneva !

If indeed your company is so profitable, maybe you should think about investing a little more of your income in housing. A individual house with 2 bedrooms in a decent area will cost minimum Chf 6'000.-- and upwards.

Switzerland is conservative and moves slowly, it won't be you changing the system but a collective move towards an enhanced digital economy that will move Switzerland
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Old 06.10.2011, 11:46
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

I can't be of much help but can offer three things:


1000 pounds for a two bedroom is pushing it in Lausanne or Geneva but if you are willing to live a bit out of metro areas it is findable...eventually...

Tax wise, geneva and lausanne equally suck (geneva taxes are more but what is a couple percentage points between friends). Taxes don't get interesting until you get into the german parts -I will save in the five digits on my income tax this year just by moving from Lausanne to what is considered a "high tax area" of Zurich canton. I don't know about business taxes though but understand certain sectors get preferential rates, which leads me to my third point:

As far as moving your company you have probably already seen www.alpict.ch in your research? Even if you have already seen the site, I would suggest going one step further and giving them a call even just to have a coffee and talk shop, they are awesome and really know the tech pulse of the Lake Geneva region. They take their role as facilitators very seriously and are very close to the businesses in their "loop." So Alpict would definitely be able to answer the questions in your post and more regarding moving your company.



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Okay, so I'm looking to move to Switzerland from London for business reasons. I want to help it develop it's digital economy by bringing my tech company there.

I've been researching and read that the area next to Lake Geneva in Geneva is the location that is becoming the tech-hub for the country, but I still have some questions regarding living and tax.
  • Is the area around Lake Geneva the best tech area in the country? I need to be surrounded by a good technology infrastructure.
  • How easy will it be to find good housing around this area? Let's say I want to spend £1000 per month max on housing costs and need at least 2 bedrooms.
  • Let's say my company made 10million CHF in a year and i was paid 1million CHF as a dividend. How much tax would my company pay and how much would I expect to pay, assuming I lived and worked in Geneva?
  • If I decided not to live in Geneva because of tax, where would be the best place to live and commute from?
  • How hard would it be to find people with at least university degree level computer programming abilities around this area, whether they actually have a degree or not? (I know if it's difficult to find any then I can just find commuters, but specifics are always better)

Any and all help is greatly appreciated and thank you in advance. Hopefully the answers I get will help me fully commit and get Switzerland's digital economy on the same wavelength as the US
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Old 11.10.2011, 21:08
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

NicoleCZ,

Regarding Alp ICT - how do you know them? No offense, but you sound a bit too much like their employee.
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  #5  
Old 11.10.2011, 22:19
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

Look at Yverdon, it is technically well represented and has sensible prices. Even better would be Fribourg for the lower taxes.
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Old 11.10.2011, 23:09
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

Good advice as usual Ittigen. Neuchatel region is also a good destination as business tax has been hugely cut to 15% recently to attract new businesses.
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Old 12.10.2011, 20:02
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Cheers for the info so far. Trying to decide upon where to locate the business and where to live is more work than I'd thought it would be.

I read up on neuchatal and it's said to be a quiet area, which is great because I'm moving from UK in an attempt to hide somewhat (being a popular face in London becomes really annoying when you want people to just leave you alone), and the major reduction in local corporate tax to 5% is brilliant, with a total effective tax rate of 11.5%. The income tax rate though is the highest in switzerland going by the comparison chart I used, which I'm not so fond of.

Why can one never have their cake and eat it too when tax is concerned

I'm also a sucker for beautiful scenery (primary water scenes like lakes and falls) and some of the neuchatal pics I've seen are awesome. Weren't too much of a fan of the Yverdon and Fribourg pics I saw

Last edited by Longbyt; 24.10.2011 at 09:36. Reason: same poster, consecutive posts
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Old 12.10.2011, 20:16
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

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Cheers for the info so far. Trying to decide upon where to locate the business and where to live is more work than I'd thought it would be.

I read up on neuchatal and it's said to be a quiet area, which is great because I'm moving from UK in an attempt to hide somewhat (being a popular face in London becomes really annoying when you want people to just leave you alone), and the major reduction in local corporate tax to 5% is brilliant, with a total effective tax rate of 11.5%. The income tax rate though is the highest in switzerland going by the comparison chart I used, which I'm not so fond of.

Why can one never have their cake and eat it too when tax is concerned
So put your company in Neuch (low co tax) & live in Fribourg (lower income tax). Although I have to say, at a salary of CHF1 million I don't know why you are penny pinching.

Basically I agree with you it's not the prettiest part of the country. See sentence #2 above.

Last edited by miniMia; 12.10.2011 at 20:36.
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Old 12.10.2011, 20:27
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

...when I am thinking about where I want to go, even check out a person, company or store, I jump on Google Earth and take a "drive around". I don't know any way better to to get the overview and wider picture.
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Old 13.10.2011, 11:31
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

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I've been researching.....
Some cantons have incentives to encourage new businesses. My experience is limited to canton Aargau, in my experience they are very keen to attract new businesses.
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Old 24.10.2011, 08:20
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

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Okay, so I'm looking to move to Switzerland from London for business reasons. I want to help it develop it's digital economy by bringing my tech company there.

I've been researching and read that the area next to Lake Geneva in Geneva is the location that is becoming the tech-hub for the country, but I still have some questions regarding living and tax.
  • Is the area around Lake Geneva the best tech area in the country? I need to be surrounded by a good technology infrastructure.
  • How easy will it be to find good housing around this area? Let's say I want to spend £1000 per month max on housing costs and need at least 2 bedrooms.
  • Let's say my company made 10million CHF in a year and i was paid 1million CHF as a dividend. How much tax would my company pay and how much would I expect to pay, assuming I lived and worked in Geneva?
  • If I decided not to live in Geneva because of tax, where would be the best place to live and commute from?
  • How hard would it be to find people with at least university degree level computer programming abilities around this area, whether they actually have a degree or not? (I know if it's difficult to find any then I can just find commuters, but specifics are always better)

Any and all help is greatly appreciated and thank you in advance. Hopefully the answers I get will help me fully commit and get Switzerland's digital economy on the same wavelength as the US

1. don't think so. the best place for tech companies is IMHO Zürich - ETH plus lots of companies around it have the best people in the country
2. don't know - don't live in Genf
3. a lot. around 23-25%. Genf is one of the most expensive cantons in terms of income tax. if you make that much Zug or Schwyz are far far better in tax terms.
4. see 3.
5. in Genf - probably not too easy. its university doesn't have a really strong or famous IT department so you wont find the top students there.

again, overall - if you are serious about running a tech company then Zürich area is by far your best bet. yes Genf is a much nicer place to live in, but that comes at a cost.
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Old 24.10.2011, 09:32
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

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Okay, so I'm looking to move to Switzerland from London for business reasons. I want to help it develop it's digital economy by bringing my tech company there.

I've been researching and read that the area next to Lake Geneva in Geneva is the location that is becoming the tech-hub for the country, but I still have some questions regarding living and tax.
  • Is the area around Lake Geneva the best tech area in the country? I need to be surrounded by a good technology infrastructure.
  • How easy will it be to find good housing around this area? Let's say I want to spend £1000 per month max on housing costs and need at least 2 bedrooms.
  • Let's say my company made 10million CHF in a year and i was paid 1million CHF as a dividend. How much tax would my company pay and how much would I expect to pay, assuming I lived and worked in Geneva?
  • If I decided not to live in Geneva because of tax, where would be the best place to live and commute from?
  • How hard would it be to find people with at least university degree level computer programming abilities around this area, whether they actually have a degree or not? (I know if it's difficult to find any then I can just find commuters, but specifics are always better)
Any and all help is greatly appreciated and thank you in advance. Hopefully the answers I get will help me fully commit and get Switzerland's digital economy on the same wavelength as the US

Your best bet IMHO is Canton Zug. The taxes are very low there, and it is conveniently located between Luzern and Zug. Housing is hard to find, but with a little patience, you can find something. Otherwise, you
can live in one of the neighboring Cantons 10 minutes away.
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Old 24.10.2011, 09:33
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

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again, overall - if you are serious about running a tech company then Zürich area is by far your best bet. yes Genf is a much nicer place to live in, but that comes at a cost.
Many people would argue about which place is nicer to live. I prefer
the Zürich area.
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Old 24.10.2011, 09:46
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Re: Considering move to Switzerland. Need some questions answered.

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Many people would argue about which place is nicer to live. I prefer
the Zürich area.
yeah - question of preference of course. myself i'm sort of indifferent to Zürich and I like the towns on the Vierwaldstättersee best - living in Küssnacht am Rigi right now - which is nothing short of awesome if you like nature.

of course if youre the outgoing type then you'll die of boredom here
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