FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS/The corporate name: what is it? How to choose it?/

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The corporate name: what is it? How to choose it?

The corporate name, “dénomination sociale” in French, simply designates the name of your company. The name of your company is important because it will be the first point of contact with your customer. Its purposes is to make your company stand out from competitors and it also helps to avoid being confused.

There are three ways to choose the name of your company:

  • First of all, you can choose a name related to your company's activity. The limit in the possibility of freely choosing this name will be confusion: two companies can't have the same corporate name, so you'll have to make sure no company has already taken the name you have chosen when you incorporate your company.
  • You can invent a name: in this case, the limits are the same: you cannot give the same corporate name as that of another company.
  • Last option: you can refer to your last name for the name of your company. There is, however, the limit of confusion with a famous name.


It should also be recalled that if a company has several shareholders, and if the corporate name is one of the shareholder's family name, the latter will not be able to request that his family name shall no longer be used as the corporate name, if one day he decides to leave the company. Indeed, it appears from the case-law that the company has a property right over the family name that has become the corporate name: the company can therefore sell the corporate name, it can also register a trademark, etc.


There is one exception to this rule: if a partner's name is used as a company name and that name is known before the company is incorporated, the partner will not be able to prevent the company from keeping its name as a company name, but the company will nevertheless have limited rights over that name: it will not be able to sell the name or register a trademark, for example. The name will only be used as the corporate name.

Changing your company name requires an amendment to your company's articles of association. alf takes care of all the steps allowing you to change your corporate name in less than 24 hours! This includes checking your documents, holding the General Assembly of Amendment, amending the Articles of Association and sending your amended Kbis upon receipt.


Read more:

When to register your trademark

The difference between your company name, brand and trade name

The utility of the corporate purpose for your company

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