In a limited company, the liability of members or subscribers of the
company is limited to what they have invested or guaranteed to the
company. Limited companies may be limited by shares or by guarantee.
The former may be further divided in public companies and private
companies. Who may become a member of a private limited company is
restricted by law and by the company's rules. In contrast, anyone may
buy shares in a public limited company.
Limited companies can be found in most countries, although the
detailed rules governing them vary widely. It is also common for a
distinction to be made between the publicly tradable companies of the
plc type (for example, the German
PLC, Czech a.s., Italian S.p.A., Hungarian Zrt. and the Spanish,
French, Polish, Greek and Romanian S.A.), and the "private" types of
company (such as the German GmbH, Portuguese Ltda., British Ltd.,
Polish sp. z o.o., the Czech s.r.o., the French s.a.r.l., the Italian
and Romanian s.r.l., Hungarian kft. and Slovak s.r.o.)
1.1 Private company limited by guarantee
1.2 Private company limited by shares
1.3 Public limited company
2 In specific countries
2.6 South Africa
2.7 United Kingdom
2.8 United States
3 See also
5 External links
Private company limited by guarantee
Main article: Private company limited by guarantee
This is a company that does not have share capital, but is guaranteed
by its members, who agree to pay a fixed amount in the event of the
company's liquidation. Charitable organisations are often incorporated
using this form of limited liability. Another example is the Financial
Conduct Authority. In Australia, only an unlisted public company can
be limited by guarantee.
Private company limited by shares
Main article: Private company limited by shares
Has shareholders with limited liability and its shares may not be
offered to the general public.
Shareholders of private companies
limited by shares are often bound to offer the shares to their fellow
shareholders prior to selling them to a third party.
Public limited company
Main article: Public limited company
A public limited company can be publicly traded on a stock exchange;
this is similar to the U.S.
Corporation (Corp.) and the German
In specific countries
The private company equivalent in
Australia is the Proprietary Limited
company (Pty Ltd). An Australian company with only Limited or Ltd
after its name is a public company, such as a company listed on the
Australia does not have a direct equivalent to the plc.
A shareholder in a limited company, in the event of its becoming
insolvent (equivalent to insolvency in the United Kingdom) would be
liable to contribute the amount remaining unpaid on the shares
(usually zero, as most shares are issued fully paid). "Paid" here
relates to the amount paid to the company for the shares on first
issue, and should not be confused with amounts paid by one shareholder
to another to transfer ownership of shares between them. A shareholder
is thus afforded limited liability.
In Brazil, a limited company is registered as any other type of
company. To found it, you must pay an accountant to research the name
of your future business to check if it wasn't already registered, then
the accountant contacts the offices responsible for giving you the
CNPJ (the national code for company identification), which are the
commercial joint of the state and the IRS. After that the Ltda. or
Lda. (rarely used) suffixes can be placed after the companies name or
with Cia. (abbreviation for companhia, company in Portuguese):
[company name] & Cia. Ltda.
In Canada, a person wishing to register a limited company must file
Articles of Incorporation
Articles of Incorporation with either their provincial government or
the federal government.
In India, there are three types of limited company: a public limited
company, a private limited company, and a one-person company. A
company's liability may be limited by shares, in which case the
liability of the company's members is limited to the amount of the
shares held by them, or it may be limited by guarantee, in which case
the liability is limited to a predetermined amount the company's
members have agreed to contribute if the company is dissolved with
outstanding liabilities. A private limited company is a limited
company incorporated under the
Companies Act 2013
Companies Act 2013 (or one of its
predecessor acts), with a minimum paid-up share capital (if any) of
₹1 lakh (US$1,500), with an article that restricts the transfer of
its shares; it may have between two and two hundred members, and its
name ends with "Private Limited" (abbreviated Pvt Ltd). A public
limited company must have a paid-up share capital of at least ₹5
lakh (US$7,700), and at least seven members; its name ends "Limited"
(abbreviated Ltd). A one-person company (OPC) is a private company
with similar proprietorship and privileges to a private limited
company, but with fewer requirements; this type of company may have
only one director and member.
No Minimum Paid up Capital – Earlier the business organisations
which wanted to take up a company as the preferred form of business
organisation had to fulfil the requirement of minimum paid-up share
capital of not less than ₹ 5 lakhs in case of public company and
₹1 lakh in case of private companies by way of Section 2(71) and
2(68) respectively. However, after in the recent Companies Amendment
Act 2015, this requirement is scrapped, and a company can go ahead
with its incorporation without fulfilling this criterion.
In Nigeria, there are two types of limited companies namely: a company
limited by guarantee and a company limited by shares. The company
limited by shares is further divided into two namely a Private limited
company (Ltd.) and a
Public limited company
Public limited company (Plc.) In Nigeria
shareholders of limited companies are only liable for the amount of
money they contributed to the company, All Nigerian companies
regulated by the CAMC (
Company and Allied Matters Commission).
In South Africa, the term "Proprietary Limited", abbreviated "(Pty)
Ltd", is used to refer to a private limited company. All South African
companies are regulated by the CIPC (Companies and Intellectual
The registration of companies in the
United Kingdom is done through
Companies House, which operates offices in London, Cardiff, Edinburgh
Prior to 1 October 2009, the registration of companies in Northern
Ireland was the responsibility of the Department of Enterprise, Trade
and Investment (a department of the devolved government). On the
commencement of the Companies Act 2006, Northern Ireland's previously
distinct company law was repealed and the new companies code
instituted by that Act was extended to Northern Ireland.
In the United States, corporations have limited liability and the
expression corporation is preferred to limited company. A "limited
liability company" (LLC) is a different entity. However, some states
permit corporations to have the designation Ltd. (instead of the
usual Inc.) to signify their corporate status. A Limited company
must file annual tax returns ("corporation" tax returns) with the
Securities and Exchange Commission.
Zimbabwe the term "(Pvt) Ltd" refers to a private company limited
by share capital. All private entities are regulated by the Registrar
of Companies in Harare.
Company formation (UK)
Limited liability partnership
Limited liability partnership (LLP)
Types of business entity
^ "Australian Limited Companies". Archived from the original on July
23, 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-15.
^ More detailed information on Private Limited
Archive.is Retrieved 2013-02-28
^ "Incorporate in Canada, Alberta, BC, Ontario and SK, Business
Registration, Incorporation Services". Retrieved 5 November
^ "Companies Act 2013" (PDF).
^ A Beginners Guide to CIPC[permanent dead link]
Company ((Pty) Limited) and Close Corporation". Retrieved 5
^ Driska, Jan. "Delaware LLC". Archived from the original on
^ "UK Limited
Company Formation". www.companiesmadesimple.com.
Limited liability company
Limited liability company UK Business Link