Why Start a Retail Business in Singapore?


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    In the vibrant landscape of Southeast Asia, Singapore stands out as a beacon of opportunity for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors. With its strategic location, robust economy, and pro-business policies, setting up a retail business in Singapore is a choice that can lead to immense success. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the benefits, features, and key facts of starting a retail business in Singapore, as well as why this island city-state is the perfect destination for retail entrepreneurs. We will also introduce you to OnDemand International, your trusted partner for navigating the intricacies of starting a retail business in Singapore.

    Why Start a Retail Business in Singapore?

    Starting a retail business in Singapore offers a myriad of advantages. Here’s why it’s a top choice for entrepreneurs and investors:

    Strategic Location: Singapore’s strategic location in the heart of Southeast Asia provides easy access to a vast consumer market. It is a center for trade and business, which makes it a perfect foundation for regional expansion.

    Pro-Business Environment: Singapore’s business-friendly policies, minimal bureaucracy, and transparent legal framework make it one of the easiest places to set up and run a business.

    Strong Economy: Singapore boasts a stable and resilient economy with a strong purchasing power, which is essential for retail businesses to thrive.

    Global Connectivity: The well-connected transportation and logistics infrastructure ensure seamless import and export of goods.

    Cultural Diversity: Singapore’s diverse population represents various consumer preferences, offering opportunities for a wide range of retail businesses.


    Legal Entities: Entrepreneurs can choose from various legal structures such as sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability partnership, and private limited company to suit their business needs.

    Intellectual Property Protection: Singapore has strong intellectual property protection, which is crucial for retail businesses dealing with branding and design.

    Tax Incentives: The city-state offers attractive tax breaks and incentives for recently established companies.

    Financial Support: Access to numerous government grants and schemes can help finance your retail venture.

    Key Facts 

    • Singapore is home to a diverse retail market, spanning from high-end luxury boutiques to bustling street markets.
    • The annual revenue of the retail industry in Singapore was approximately SGD 37 billion in 2021, demonstrating significant potential.
    • The e-commerce sector in Singapore is booming, providing various opportunities for online retail businesses.

    Procedure to start a retail business in Singapore

    Now that you understand why Singapore is the ideal place to start a retail business, let’s delve into the steps required to set up a retail outlet in Singapore:

    1. Business Plan: Begin by crafting a well-thought-out business plan that outlines your business goals, target market, and financial projections. This will function as a guide for your retail endeavor.
    2. Select a Retail Niche: Choose the retail specialty that best suits your interests and experience. Whether it’s high-end cuisine, gadgets, clothing, or interior design, selecting the right niche is crucial.
    3. Company Registration: Register your firm with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA). You can choose from various business structures based on your needs.
    4. Permits and Licenses: Depending on your retail niche, you may need specific permits and licenses. For example, suppose you want to sell meals, you’ll require a food establishment license.
    5. Location: Choose a strategic location for your retail outlet. High-foot traffic locations, such as shopping centers or popular streets are excellent choices.
    6. Branding and Marketing: Establish a compelling brand identity and a marketing plan to attract your target audience.
    7. Suppliers and Inventory: Establish reliable supply chains and source quality products. Keep a keen eye on inventory management to prevent product shortages or overstocking.
    1. Retail Technology: Invest in a point-of-sale (POS) system, e-commerce platform, and inventory management software to streamline operations.
    2. Hiring and Training: Recruit and train your staff to provide excellent customer service, which is key to success in the retail industry.
    3. Compliance: Comply with Singapore’s labor laws, tax regulations, and consumer protection laws.

    OnDemand International: Your Partner in Setting Up a Retail Business

    Navigating the intricacies of starting a retail business in Singapore can be a daunting task, but you don’t have to do it alone. We at OnDemand International are available to offer professional advice and assistance throughout your whole entrepreneurial journey.

    Our services include:

    Company Registration: We assist in registering your business, ensuring compliance with Singapore’s legal requirements.

    Licenses and Permits: We help you obtain the necessary permits and licenses, ensuring your retail business operates within the law.

    Market Research: Our team carries out market research to determine consumer preferences, trends, and competition in your chosen niche.

    Business Plan Development: We work with you to create a robust business plan that serves as a roadmap for your success.

    Location Selection: OnDemand International assists in finding the perfect location for your retail outlet, helping you secure a strategic spot.

    Financial Planning: We provide financial planning and advisory services to ensure your retail business’s financial health.

    Ongoing Support: OnDemand International offers ongoing support, including accounting, taxation, and compliance services, so you can focus on growing your business.


    In conclusion, starting a retail business in Singapore is a decision that offers numerous benefits, including its strategic location, pro-business environment, strong economy, and global connectivity. Setting up a retail outlet in Singapore is made easier by the transparent legal framework, tax incentives, and government support for new businesses. If you’re considering venturing into the retail industry in Singapore, OnDemand International is your trusted partner, providing comprehensive support and guidance throughout your entrepreneurial journey. Don’t miss the opportunity to tap into the dynamic retail market of Singapore – your path to success awaits.