What does the Greek business register offer?
In Greece, the business register is called the General Electronic Commercial Registry (Γενικό Εμπορικό Μητρώο, Γ.Ε.ΜΗ., GEMI). It is governed by Law No 3419/2005 (Government Gazette, Series I, No 297/06-12-2005). It records all disclosures of business documents and information. The General Electronic Commercial Registry's website is the national gazette designated for the purpose of disclosure of commercial information. Persons or associations of persons of the kind referred to in Article 1(1) of Law No 3419/2005 must be entered in the Registry.
On the website you can search for information disclosed by the following types of business:
a. Natural persons who are traders and who have a place of business or establishment or who trade through a main or secondary establishment in Greece.
b. Associations of individuals trading through a main or secondary establishment in Greece, and all commercial companies, provided that they were established under Greek law — general and limited partnerships, cooperatives governed by civil law (which include mutual insurance associations and credit cooperatives), and private and public limited companies — and individuals with an obligation to report pursuant to Article 39 of the Presidential Decree of 27.11/14.12.1926.
c. European economic interest groupings, as provided for by Regulation 2137/1985/EEC (OJ L199, corrigendum L. 247), which have their registered office in Greece.
d. European companies, as provided for by Regulation 2157/2001/EC (OJ L 294), which have their registered office in Greece.
e. European cooperative societies, as provided for by Regulation 1435/2003/EC (OJ L 207), which have their registered office in Greece.
f. Parties referred to above that have their principal place of business or their registered office in Greece must also register any branches they have in Greece.
g. Foreign companies of the kind referred to in Article 1 of Directive 68/151/EEC (OJ L 65) as amended by Article 1 of Directive 2003/58/EC (OJ L 221) which have their registered office in an EU Member State must register any branches or agencies they have in Greece.
h. Foreign companies based in a non-EU country which have a legal form similar to one of the foreign companies referred to in (g) above must register any branches or agencies they have in Greece.
i. Other natural or legal persons or associations of persons which have their principal place of business or their registered office abroad and which do not fall within points (g) and (h) must register any branches or agencies through which they trade in Greece.
j. Joint ventures.
k. Companies governed by civil law referred to in Article 784 of the Civil Code.
l. Natural or legal persons or associations of persons pursuing or intending to pursue an economic or professional activity without thereby becoming traders.
What documents and information are recorded in the Greek business register?
The entry for a business that is required to register must include the following information:
a. The registry number of the company, branch or agency.
b. The registry office or department which carried out the initial registration or subsequent registration and the full name of the official responsible.
c. The reference number of the registration application and the registration code.
d. Where under the legislation in force a trader's licence, professional authorisation or establishment and operating permit is required in order to set up a business or begin trading, details of the decision taken by the authority or department competent to grant it.
e. Court decisions declaring the company insolvent or placing it in a conciliation or other collective procedure to meet the claims of its creditors. The entry also includes the full name, parents' full names, identity card or passport numbers, place and date of birth, nationality and home address of the company's liquidators, compulsory administrators, trustees and insolvency practitioners.
f. Details of court decisions terminating, suspending or annulling the legal situations referred to in point (e) above.
g. Information that has to be published in accordance with insolvency law.
h. Details of pending applications for insolvency or conciliation or other collective procedures.
i. The number of branches or agencies that the company has in Greece, and the address and registration number of each of these.
j. The number, address and details of the branches or agencies that the company has abroad.
I. The following information is registered and published in respect of companies based in Greece:
a) the instrument of constitution or statutes;
b) amendments to the instrument of constitution or statutes, which include any extension of the duration of the company, and any subsequent amendment to the instrument of constitution or statutes, showing the complete text as amended to date;
c) the appointment, termination of office and particulars of the persons who either as a body constituted pursuant to law or as members of any such body:
aa) are authorised to represent the company in dealings with third parties; in the event that this concerns more than one person, the relevant entry must state whether these persons can act alone or whether they must act jointly;
bb) represent the company before a court;
cc) take part in the administration, supervision or control of the company;
d) at least once a year, the amount of the capital subscribed, where the instrument of constitution or statutes instrument of constitution or the statutes mention an authorised capital, unless any increase in the capital subscribed necessitates an amendment of the statutes;
e) the accounting documents for each financial year which are required to be published in accordance with Council Directives 78/660/EEC (OJ L 222 14.8.1978), 83/349/EEC (OJ L 193 18.7.1983), 86/635/EEC (OJ L 372 31.12.1986) and 91/674/EEC (OJ L 374 31.12.1991);
f) any change of registered office,
g) the winding-up of the company;
h) any declaration of nullity of the company by the courts;
i) the appointment and particulars of liquidators;
j) termination of the liquidation and striking off the register.
II. The following information is registered and published in relation to the foreign companies referred to in Article 1 of Directive 68/151/EEC (OJ L 65) as amended by Article 1 of Directive 2003/58/EC (OJ L 221) which have their head office in an EU Member State:
a) the address of the branch;
b) a reference to the subject of the branch's activities;
c) the Member State register in which the company's file is kept and company's registration number in that register.
d) the name and legal form of the company, and the name of the branch if different from the name of the company;
e) the appointment, termination of office and particulars of the persons who are authorised to represent the company in dealings with third parties and in legal proceedings:
aa) if they are considered a company management body pursuant to law or members of any such body, in accordance with the disclosure by the company as provided for in Article 2(1) of Directive 2009/101/EC (OJ L 258, 1.10.2009);
bb) as permanent representatives of the company for the activities of the branch, with an indication of the extent of their powers;
f) the winding-up of the company, the appointment and particulars of the liquidators and their powers and the finalisation of the winding up, including a reference to the Member State register, insolvency proceedings, arrangements, compositions, or any analogous proceedings to which the company is subject;
g) the accounting documents of the company as drawn up, audited and disclosed pursuant to the law of the Member State by which the company is governed in accordance with Directives 78/660/EEC (OJ L 222 14.8.1978), 83/349/EEC (OJ L 193 18.7.1983) and 84/253/EEC (OJ L 126/20 12.5/1984)
h) the closure of the branch.
How do you perform a search in the Greek business register?
You can search for any commercial disclosures on the website of the General Electronic Commercial Registry using just one of the following pieces of information relating to the company:
- tax identification number (Α.Φ.Μ.) or
- registry (Γ.Ε.ΜΗ.) number or
- company name or
- short name.
Is access to the Greek business register free?
All members of the public can access the entry of a company in the Registry free of charge. They may also digitally store on their own electronic device and print or otherwise reproduce any document, information or notice posted on the Registry website for public consultation either by the Registry or by the persons required to do so. If a member of the public wishes to obtain official (authentic) certificates or copies of documents or data recorded in a company's entry in the Registry, they may register free of charge with the Registry's transparency department.
In order to obtain official certificates or copies of documents and data, a fee must be paid via the relevant online application. Certificates or copies of the relevant documents or data are delivered in two different ways: digitally through the Registry's transparency application, or by post to the addressee, anywhere in the world.
How is the authenticity of the official certificates or copies issued by the Greek business register verified?
The authenticity of the relevant official certificates or copies is verified through the Greek General Electronic Commercial Registry.
If the person concerned fills in the reference number of the certificate or copy, the company's registry number and the registry department that issued the document, the body of the document will appear.
To what extent can the documents in the register be relied upon?
The documents listed in businesses' entries can be relied upon, because the Register is the only site available for commercial disclosure and constitutes 'the national gazette designated' for the purpose of publication of commercial information within the meaning of Article 3(5) of Directive 2009/101/EC. The General Electronic Commercial Registry is linked to the registers of the other Member States referred to in that legislation(national registers) through a centralised set of IT tools (the European central platform) as part of the system of interconnection of registers under Directive 2012/17/EU. Documents and data are registered in the General Electronic Commercial Register following a check carried out by the staff of the Register on their legality, accuracy, clarity and completeness and whether all the relevant fees provided for by current legislation have been paid. Provided that this check does not reveal anything which could impede registration, the responsible Registry department will enter the relevant information for the business in the register. If the application, the attached documents and any other supporting documents do not meet the conditions of the law or they are not accurate and complete, the responsible Registry department will call on the person concerned, in writing or by fax or email, to make the necessary clarifications, corrections or additions to the application, the support documentation or the attached documents, within a deadline of five working days. The deadline may be extended up to one month if this is dictated by the circumstances and the type of information that needs to be registered. A deadline of this kind extends any other legal deadline for registering information. If there is no response within the five-day deadline or any extension granted, or if the person concern submits information which is not considered to meet the legal requirements or which is not accurate and complete, the application for registration will be rejected by a reasoned decision of the department and the relevant registration fees will be forfeited for the benefit of the Register. For general partnerships and limited partnerships, public and private limited liability companies, cooperatives governed by civil law, European economic interest groupings provided for by Regulation 2137/1985/EEC (OJ L199, corrigendum . 247) based in Greece, European companies provided for by Regulation 2157/2001/EC (OJ L 294) based in Greece, European cooperative societies provided for by Regulation 1435/2003/EC (OJ L 207) based in Greece, and civil law companies referred to in Article 784 of the Civil Code, the registration of facts, statements, documents and other information in the General Electronic Commercial Register will produce the following effects:
a. Legal persons of the kinds referred to above which are in the course of being set up will acquire legal personality.
b. Subject to the specific provisions of current legislation governing the conversion of companies, businesses registering conversion will thereby be converted into public limited liability companies, private limited liability companies, cooperatives governed by civil law, European economic interest groupings, European companies or European cooperatives as the case may be.
c. The enterprise's instrument of constitution or statutes will be amended.
d. A merger or division will take place, subject only to registration and prior to the striking-off the register of the company that is absorbed or divided.
e. An enterprise will be wound up, following a decision by the partners or the issuing of the relevant administrative act.
f. A business will be revived.
Lastly, according to the express provision of paragraph 4 of Law No 3419/2005, the relevant entries in the Register are presumed to be legal and correct.
Is there anything specific I need to know about the Greek business register?
The General Electronic Commercial Registry website is the 'national gazette designated' for the purpose of publication within the meaning of Article 3(5) of Directive 2009/101/EC of 16 September 2009 (OJ L 258). The general directory of company names, the entry and all other information necessary for the public use of the Registry are published on the Registry website. All members of the public can access the register free of charge. They may also digitally store on their own electronic device and print or otherwise reproduce any document, data or notice posted on the GECR website for public consultation either by the Registry department or by the persons required to do so.
As part of the system of interconnection of registers, the General Electronic Commercial Registry : a) communicates by email with the other national registers and aa) receives information on data stored in another national register concerning companies which have their registered office in one EU Member State and branches in another EU Member State and bb) provides information on the data referred to in Article 6(2a) and (2b) of Law No 3419/2005 on companies which have their registered office or branches in Greece as referred to under point (g) of paragraph 1 of the same law; and b) replies to questions submitted by individual users to the single European electronic access point of the system of interconnection of registers (the portal) as regards the information under point (a)(bb).
The Companies and Registry Department of the Directorate-General for Markets (Secretariat‑General for Trade and Consumer Protection, Ministry of the Economy, Development and Tourism) is responsible for replying to questions submitted via the European electronic portal concerning the documents and information referred to in Article 6(2a) and (2b) of Law No 3419/2005 for companies whose shares are quoted on the Athens Stock Exchange, banks and branches of banks in EU Member States and third countries, public limited liability insurance companies and branches of insurance companies in EU Member States and third countries, public limited liability investment funds, public limited liability mutual fund management companies, public limited liability mutual fund management companies for immovable property, public limited liability investment funds for immovable property, public limited liability assets and liabilities management companies, public limited liability investment firms and public limited liability sports (football and basketball) companies.
In addition, a department of the Registry operates for each chamber of commerce in Greece, and is responsible, among other things, for replying to questions submitted via the European electronic portal concerning the documents and information referred to in Article 6(2a) and (2b) of Law No 3419/2005 regarding all legal forms of company other than those referred to above.
NB: The information provided above is merely an overview designed to inform interested parties of the interconnection between the Greek business register and the other national registers of EU Member States. More detailed information on the legal framework can be found on the website of the General Electronic Commercial Registry.
The national language version of this page is maintained by the respective Member State. The translations have been done by the European Commission service. Possible changes introduced in the original by the competent national authority may not be yet reflected in the translations. The European Commission accepts no responsibility or liability whatsoever with regard to any information or data contained or referred to in this document. Please refer to the legal notice to see copyright rules for the Member State responsible for this page.
Last update: 25/06/2018