Selling on - Italy
If a business ceases to be viable, transferring ownership may be a better option than simply closing it down.
Types of business transfer
There are different types of business ownership transfer in Italy:
- the owner sells the business or its branch;
- the owner transfers the business to an existing or new one in return for subscription dues or shares;
- the owner simply donates the business to a third party.
In the five years following the transfer, vendors are not permitted to start up a 'rival' business. The new owner must comply with all existing contracts. The business's loans and debts are transferred to the new owner. However, the vendor is not freed from the debts of a transferred business unless the creditors have specifically agreed to this.
Taking over an existing company is a worthwhile alternative to setting up a new business.
Formalities for transferring the ownership of a business are similar to those for setting up a new one.
Business transfer procedures
Transfers of ownership between vendors and buyers must be formalised by a notary, who then enters the arrangement in the Business Register.
All licences, bills, insurance policies and services must be re-registered in the new owner's name.
A single access point provides businesses with specific information on how to transfer a business locally.
Check also the legislation on this topic in: