The European Company or Societas Europaea (SE) is a European Public Limited – Liability Company. An SE may be created on registration in any one of the Member States of the European Economic Area (EEA). EC Member States treat an SE as if it is a public limited company formed in accordance with the law of the Member State in which it has its registered office. UK national laws that apply to public limited companies also apply, in many respects, to SEs registered in the UK.
There are several ways of forming an SE: by merger, as a holding company, or as a subsidiary. An SE can also be formed by a PLC transforming into an SE.
Once registered, an SE has legal personality. It must have a registered office and its head office must be in the same Member State.
Some Member States may require the registered office and the head office to be at the same address, not just in the same Member State. The UK does not.
An SE must have share capital and shareholders whose liability is limited in a similar manner to that of a PLC. As with a PLC, an SE may denominate its share capital in any currency it chooses provided that at least £50,000 is denominated in Sterling or €57,100 is denominated in Euros.
Regardless of the currency in which it is expressed, an SE is required to have a minimum amount of subscribed share capital equivalent to at least EUR €120,000.
As with a PLC, an SE may only allot shares which are paid up to at least ¼ of their nominal value and the whole of any premium (except as part of an employees’ share scheme).
For further information regarding the SE please contact RKG Consulting.