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How can the owners merge three separate businesses in three different countries?

I work for a company that has branches in three separate countries, as three separate businesses. Each is owned and operated by the same people. The owners would like to merge these three entities to form one company. Is this possible, or do they need to form an entirely separate entity? What must they do to reach their goal?
Nina Kaufman answered September 24, 2008
URL: http://www.entrepreneur.com/answer/221657
You can merge three separate businesses from three different countries into one business . . . but whether you would really want to is another matter.

Depending on the size and industry of the businesses (as well as the country of the business you merge into), you may face a phalanx of local and international regulations and tax issues.

Similarly, selling the assets of the three businesses to the merged company could involve complications. To get to the heart of the matter, each business should speak to legal and tax counsel about the options, and then perhaps schedule a conference call for all participants to hash out the most cost-effective approach.

Nina L. Kaufman, Esq. is an award-winning New York City attorney, edutainer and author. Under her Ask The Business Lawyer brand, she reaches thousands of entrepreneurs and small business owners with her legal services, professional speaking, information products, and LexAppeal weekly ezine. She also writes the Making It Legal blog.