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Starting a new business
I am looking to start a new business and at times I feel like I might be biting off more than I can chew. But before I go and try to get some help from legal advisers or other professionals who I’ll have to pay, I thought I’d give the forum a go and see if any kind people on here can help me out with a few things. Some things might be very basic, but bear with me.
First of all, a quick background story: I’ve designed a travel app with excursions, tours etc. I am looking to distribute it primarily via rental companies (the app works really well if you have a car). The car rental company will sell it as an add-on to the car and they will retain a percentage of what they charged the customer, and the rest will be paid to me. All this will take place in Spain. I live in the UK and have no connections with Spain. I am currently self-employed (nothing to with this business; I’ve been self-employed for 5 years now). I have never ran a company before.
1. Trademark: I am looking to register the trade mark in the EU and the US as my first step. I think I know how to do it on the WIPO’s website (World Intellectual Property Organisation), so don’t really have any questions, but perhaps any advice or anything I should watch out for? The cost is roughly 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs), which is around £1700, so very pricey, but seems inevitable if I’m to treat this business seriously and if I am to be treated seriously by other companies that I want to work with, am I right?
2. Registering as an LTD here in the UK: Once the trademark has been approved, I can settle for the company name. I will not have an office (this business doesn’t require it), so any ideas on those virtual offices that you can get? Any recommendations? I know Companies House requires a physical address and I don’t mind giving my personal address for correspondence, but not for the public record as it’s not safe and also not professional. Any other ways around it, other than a virtual office?
3. Contract: once it’s all up and running, I will have to fly out to Spain and pitch the product to the car rental companies. Once they decide that they want the product, both parties (my company and their company) will have to sign a contract. Now, I have no idea what this contract should look like etc. So my question is, who would I get to draft such a contract, as I don’t even know where to start? Bear in mind that this could either be a local Spanish car rental company or a large well-known international car rental company (perhaps the latter wouldn’t even be registered in Spain, but Ireland or wherever those huge companies tend to be registered). So will this contract be bound by Spanish law, even though it will be between a UK company (mine) and a Spanish company (smaller car rental company) or between a UK company and an Irish (for example) company? Will the contract have to be in Spanish? The actual sale of the product will take place in Spain (either upon arrival at the rental desk or already purchased when booking the car online; all paid in Euros).
Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I’d like to believe I’m a fairly organised person and I have already come very far in understanding how to make this work, but the above issues just seem too much for me to figure out on my own and also quite specific, so not easy to find answers to online, especially number 3. The actually product itself is all set up and I know exactly what I am doing – it’s the bureaucracy and paperwork like this that I struggle with.
Thanks in advance!