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  #261  
Old 01.07.2015, 06:12
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

Honestly: If you don't know the difference between revenue and profit should you really learn some basics before starting a company...
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  #262  
Old 01.07.2015, 09:39
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

This may help.

http://www.kmu.admin.ch/kmu-gruenden...x.html?lang=en

I would think as part of your busines plan you'd need to have some fairly firm commitments to buy your products from some Swiss firms. Just having suppliers is unlikely to be enough.

Have you also checked about any food handling regulations/requirements that you may need to have before you can import things like meat?

I agree with Treverus, if you don't know the difference between revenue and profit then you need to take an accounting course or hire an accountant to deal with the finances. It's a pretty fundamental part of running a company.
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  #263  
Old 01.07.2015, 13:53
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

Both of you are correct, in a way. As I said, English is not my first language so I'm having difficulties with understanding "professional" words. 15 years I've been working in sales before coming to Switzerland, I think I know something. Google translate says that revenue is profit, in my language, so I just want to double check that.
Everything here is different from what I'm used to. Example, I'm mechanical engineer by profession, with couple of years of experience. When applying for job here, one company told me that they cannot accept my application because I don't have relevant experience in their industry.

About a food regulations, there is a VI ( Border veterinary inspection ), and also there is a Federal Office for Agriculture in Bern. I'm still waiting for response from customs about some more details what happens on the border. For FOAG I have to do a little reading before contacting them. I suppose they will ask for sample for testing. No idea how much that will cost and how it actually goes. Will let you know if you guys are interested.

I'm just asking questions because I want to play by the rules, not to push your buttons. Next time I write here I'll try to be more specific and try not to ask stupid questions.
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  #264  
Old 01.07.2015, 14:13
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

Revenue is what money you make from sales, profit is that money LESS your expenses. So you buy a product for 10 francs, sell it at 25 francs, but it costs you another 10 francs to import it. Your revenue is 15 francs (sale price against purchase price), but your profit is only 5 francs once all your costs (purchase plus importation) are taken into account.

http://smallbusiness.chron.com/sales...fit-23058.html

I can never understand why the financial/business sector makes so much fuss about revenue/turnover when what you really want to know is how much profit a company is making. It could have revenues of billions, but only profits of a few thousand.
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  #265  
Old 01.07.2015, 15:46
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

I would steer clear of meat and food products as the are subject to a phytosanitary inspection by cantonal veterinary authorities and if yoiu fail the WHOLE shpt ius condemed.

You will have little recourse on your supplier as he will have worded the contract accordingly and you will have certainly paid 100% up front before the shipment takes place.

Food can be a brutal product to trade, be careful !
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  #266  
Old 01.07.2015, 16:07
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

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I can never understand why the financial/business sector makes so much fuss about revenue/turnover when what you really want to know is how much profit a company is making. It could have revenues of billions, but only profits of a few thousand.
It's very difficult to misrepresent/manipulate revenue, whereas net total profit is a lot more 'open to interpretation'.

Profit also says little to growth/market share/other important operative KPIs, whereas revenue (and, I suppose, operating profit to an extent) give a much better picture of how a company is performing.

I'm sure googling Starbucks UK tax might help you gain a better idea of why operating revenue/turnover is often reported...
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  #267  
Old 01.07.2015, 16:13
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

By the way, as a sole proprietor or GmBH owner, can you hire yourself, pay into RAV, then lay yourself off when revenue does not come through?
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  #268  
Old 01.07.2015, 16:58
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

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Honestly: If you don't know the difference between revenue and profit should you really learn some basics before starting a company...
Unfortunately accounting terms in other languages can be quite confusing. The direct Google translation of some of them can result in the wrong meaning.
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  #269  
Old 02.07.2015, 05:27
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It's very difficult to misrepresent/manipulate revenue, whereas net total profit is a lot more 'open to interpretation'.
That's not entirely true: Yes, I can manipulate profits easily, but the same is true for revenue. Every sales manager with revenue targets knows that it is very easy to "buy" revenue if you are only cheap enough... selling a lot of stuff is easy - selling it profitably is difficult.

On a side note: Anyone who worked in a small business knows that profit is only the second most important factor. The absolute key is cash flow: It's great if you earn a lot "on paper", but the money has to arrive on time to pay salaries...

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Revenue is what money you make from sales, profit is that money LESS your expenses. So you buy a product for 10 francs, sell it at 25 francs, but it costs you another 10 francs to import it. Your revenue is 15 francs (sale price against purchase price), but your profit is only 5 francs once all your costs (purchase plus importation) are taken into account.
Erm, no? Revenue is the gross total income or "top line". In your example 25 francs. expenses and everything else only come into account when calculating profit.

That's why the limit of 100k is pretty low and only works for real hobby companies - if you assume your are a highly profitable company making 10% profit do you just earn 10k of profit on your 100k revenue. Not enough to live on full time...

Last edited by 3Wishes; 02.07.2015 at 14:47. Reason: merging consecutive replies
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  #270  
Old 02.07.2015, 09:27
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

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It's very difficult to misrepresent/manipulate revenue, whereas net total profit is a lot more 'open to interpretation'.

Profit also says little to growth/market share/other important operative KPIs, whereas revenue (and, I suppose, operating profit to an extent) give a much better picture of how a company is performing.

I'm sure googling Starbucks UK tax might help you gain a better idea of why operating revenue/turnover is often reported...
Yeah, because it took them 17 years to make any profit in the UK.

http://www.theguardian.com/business/...rst-uk-profits

I'm surprised they're still in business. Their product is rubbish and overpriced. Costa Coffe is a lot better.
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  #271  
Old 02.07.2015, 09:36
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

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Yeah, because it took them 17 years to make any profit in the UK.

http://www.theguardian.com/business/...rst-uk-profits

I'm surprised they're still in business. Their product is rubbish and overpriced. Costa Coffe is a lot better.
Well, to be fair is it nobody else than the UK that is blocking European initiatives (the CCCTB relaunch) to fill those loopholes...
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  #272  
Old 02.07.2015, 12:52
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Yeah, because it took them 17 years to make any profit in the UK.

http://www.theguardian.com/business/...rst-uk-profits

I'm surprised they're still in business. Their product is rubbish and overpriced. Costa Coffe is a lot better.

If by 'product' you mean their coffee/other drinks and food then yes, I agree.

But I think that the Starbucks product is actually more that it is a 'second living room/office' for a lot of people. Somewhere you can always pop in and feel comfortable, with the same wifi, amenities etc.

The coffee etc is just a way of monetising for a lot of people. Costa and Cafe Nero do this as well (and I think, better in the UK in the case of Costa) but don't have the international scale.

That said, I was delighted to spend my 30minute wait at Lisbon airport in a Costa Coffee recently.

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That's not entirely true: Yes, I can manipulate profits easily, but the same is true for revenue. Every sales manager with revenue targets knows that it is very easy to "buy" revenue if you are only cheap enough... selling a lot of stuff is easy - selling it profitably is difficult.

On a side note: Anyone who worked in a small business knows that profit is only the second most important factor. The absolute key is cash flow: It's great if you earn a lot "on paper", but the money has to arrive on time to pay salaries...
Yes, you're right of course. Also about the cash flow - it's a big problem in the DACh area with so many b2b orders going out with up to 90 days 'Zahlungsfrist'. Some friends of mine recently set up a start-up called Advanon, which provides investors with a whole new asset class to try and sort out this problem.

The point I was trying to make is that looking at operating revenue often tells you a lot more about the future of a company than the profit does. Zalando, for example, has had a net operating profit in the DACH area for the past few years, however has never posted an overall profit as they are expanding aggressively into new geographical markets.

I'm sure there are sales managers who do try and manipulate the revenues by selling at a lower/negative operating margin, however I think that most well run companies nowadays have very strict rules about pricing, dictated by algorithms not people. That's not to say it can't happen though.

Last edited by 3Wishes; 02.07.2015 at 14:47. Reason: merging consecutive replies
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  #273  
Old 02.07.2015, 13:28
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

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I'm sure there are sales managers who do try and manipulate the revenues by selling at a lower/negative operating margin, however I think that most well run companies nowadays have very strict rules about pricing, dictated by algorithms not people. That's not to say it can't happen though.
I worked for a medium sized export oriented Swiss software house when the financial crisis hit: Within six months did the CHF go through the roof and we found ourselves very suddenly to be 50% more expensive than even the European competition (let alone the competitors from low cost countries). Left our owner with two choices:
- fire everyone and close the shop
- sell at no or slightly negative margin trying to get through the crisis with losing a part of your staff over some time...
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  #274  
Old 06.07.2015, 00:17
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

I read this page: http://www.gruenden.ch/en/founding-p...lue-added-tax/

but I didn't understand properly. Should I register myself if I want to open Sole proprietorship?

Edit: I will import some staff from China and sell in Switzerland. I will also sell some IT Services
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  #275  
Old 10.11.2016, 16:29
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

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Been there, done it, got the t-shirt


One headache has been the VAT/MWST. Getting to know everything dealing with import and export was a real challenge, and still is!

If you have any specific questions, ask. General questions leave too much open to answer properly.

Bests,
Scott
Hi everyone, and particularly Scott -
I'm planning to start a business that would include production abroad (somewhere cheap like China) and then selling the products internationally (CH, Europe, and beyond..)
I assume the complexities of import/export/ VAT could be quite a headache, and additionally could be pretty costly..
Any advice on how to get started on figuring out what these costs and processes are? I'm wondering what would be the best business model, and if it even makes sense to register this company in Switzerland or maybe better to do so elsewhere in Europe?

Thanks for any tips!

PS I am based in Geneva.
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  #276  
Old 10.11.2016, 21:28
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

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Hi everyone, and particularly Scott -
I'm planning to start a business that would include production abroad (somewhere cheap like China) and then selling the products internationally (CH, Europe, and beyond..)
I assume the complexities of import/export/ VAT could be quite a headache, and additionally could be pretty costly..
Any advice on how to get started on figuring out what these costs and processes are? I'm wondering what would be the best business model, and if it even makes sense to register this company in Switzerland or maybe better to do so elsewhere in Europe?

Thanks for any tips!

PS I am based in Geneva.
you might start with telling us what the product and the business model is. If you produce and sell outside of Switzerland then you would not import it here and export it again would you?
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  #277  
Old 15.11.2016, 09:45
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Re: Starting a business in Switzerland.

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Hi everyone, and particularly Scott -
I'm planning to start a business that would include production abroad (somewhere cheap like China) and then selling the products internationally (CH, Europe, and beyond..)
I assume the complexities of import/export/ VAT could be quite a headache, and additionally could be pretty costly..
Any advice on how to get started on figuring out what these costs and processes are? I'm wondering what would be the best business model, and if it even makes sense to register this company in Switzerland or maybe better to do so elsewhere in Europe?

Thanks for any tips!

PS I am based in Geneva.

Hi Guys, Quite new on the Forum, but I saw this thread and it seems quite interesting.

Regarding the Export/ Import issue, as someone has mentioned you will probably not be importing and then exporting out of Switzerland.

There are many Benefits of running a company through Switzerland and Mwst/Tax is pretty straight forward here. You do it all on line when you are registered.

If you are concerned about the tax/border clearances, you can easily get that done through your logistics company ( if you need advice on that I started one here).

The production on China thing is really nothing new, and there are many companies here that do that and sell in the rest of Europe/ world.
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