How to Change the Name of My Business

Changing the name of your company in Malaysia is entirely possible. There could be several reasons why a name change is required. Among the common reasons include:

  • The company has undergone a change of management
  • The company has undergone a change of shareholding
  • The company has changed its business direction
  • The company has changed its business activities
  • The company is going through a rebranding process
  • The company intends to change its name for the shelf company

A company may also have its named changed by special resolution. The Registrar must be notified of this change within 30 days from the date that the special resolution was approved/ passed. The Registrar will decide if your name complies satisfactorily with the provisions of the Companies Act. Once payment has been made, the Registrar will then register the new company name, and issue a notice of registration.

Steps to Changing Your Company Name in Malaysia 

You will need to provide SSM with the new name that you have decided on. However, the name change is subjected to approval. You will not be allowed to use the old name of another company to incorporate the new company.

Before attempting to change your company name, here is what you need to do first: 

  • Discuss the new name change with your Company Secretary.
  • The Company Secretary will be responsible for applying for the new name with SSM.
  • Once approved, the Company Secretary will then prepare the resolutions and the EGM documents for all directors of the company
  • The documents must be signed by all directors and shareholders of the company, signifying they approve of the name change.
  • The Company Secretary will then submit the related forms to SSM
  • Await the confirmation from SSM approving the name change.

SSM will still require you to display the old company name TOGETHER with the new company name for 12-months from the fate of the name change. If your company name is too similar to the existing one, SSM may reject your request for a name change. Reasons for rejection could also include undesirable company names, or names which are prohibited by the Companies Act.

New Company Name Guidelines 

A general guideline for selecting company names includes:

  • Names must use correct spelling and language.
  • Meaning of the name must be given if it is in a language other than Malay or English.
  • Must not be blasphemous or offensive.
  • Must not contain elements which resemble religion.
  • Names must not be an acronym which could be misleading or related to the name of another multi-national company.

Approved company names can be transferred to another party if desired. To do so, you must re-fill Form 13A, make the payment of fees and submit a consent letter from the previous applicant. Once your company name has been approved by the SSM, it must be registered within one month from the approval date of the name change issued.

Once the name change has been registered, a notice of change of company must then be issued. More information regarding the name change is available in Section 28 of the Companies Act 2016.