Why Starting an Event Management Company in Hong Kong is a Good Idea?

How to Start an Event Management Company in Hong KongWith its world-class infrastructure, strategic location and welcoming environment, Hong Kong have become a premier location for hosting events from all over the world. Everything from conventions, meetings, exhibitions, seminars, carnivals, festivals, conferences and more, Hong Kong’s booming event industry has brought forth the need for more event management companies in Hong Kong to cater to this demand.

Starting an event management company in Hong Kong is easier compared to a lot of other jurisdictions. The first major step of the process will involve your Hong Kong company incorporation process. This part of the process is easy, as all you would need to do is file a complete set of incorporation documents with the Hong Kong Companies Registry and obtain your Certificate of Incorporation.

Fortunately, there are no mandatory business licenses to secure when operating an event management company in Hong Kong. Still, you will need to apply for licenses depending on the kind of event or activity that you organise.

 

What Types of Licenses Do I Need for Events in Hong Kong?

The types of licenses you would require depends on the kind of event you intend to organise. Generally, the following types of licenses and permits are available for event management companies in Hong Kong for organising the following activities:

 

Organising Events in Public Areas

You will require a Place of Public Entertainment License to organise events which have public access, for both free and paid events. Events include a circus, open-air cinema, concerts, operas, musicals, amusement park rides, bazaars, markets, sporting exhibitions or contests. You can get this document from the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD). To apply for this license, you must submit the following documents a minimum of 42 days prior to the event:

  • Block plans of the premise location in relation to any adjacent buildings, lots and public thoroughfares.
  • A complete scaled metric layout plans which display the elevated sections of the premises.
  • The location of all Fire Service Installations.
  • Diagrams of any installation involving lighting, cooling, electrical, ventilation or mechanical apparatus.

 

Corporate Events

For corporations, you need to submit the following documents to obtain the license:

  • Copies of the following documents:
    • Articles of Association of the Company
    • Business Registration Certificate
    • Company’s Certificate of Incorporation
    • Notice of Situation of the Registered Office
    • Copies of the company’s most recent annual returns
    • Notice of Acceptance of Authorisation which has been signed by an authorised representative
    • Written resolution from the Board of Directors that authorizes a person to act on behalf of the company to deal with licensing matters with FEHD

 

Once you have fulfilled all the criteria, you must submit a compliance report to the FEHD for verification purposes. Once the FEHD has received this report, they will then conduct a final inspection of the premise and if deemed satisfactory, you will be issued with the license for your event management company in Hong Kong.

The Place of Public Entertainment License can be valid for 1 month, 3 months, 6 months or 12 months. If it is a Temporary Place of Public Entertainment License, the validity period would be for 1 month or less. Depending on your validity period, the licensing fee you will be required to pay will vary from HK$1,790 to HK$17,830.

 

Games and Amusement Parks

If your event management company in Hong Kong intends to organise amusement games which involve prize rewards such as fetes, fun fairs or bazaars, you must apply for an Amusement with Prizes License in Hong Kong. This license is issued by the Television and Entertainment Licensing Authority (TELA). You must also have a Place of Public Entertainment License for the premise where you conduct these games.

To apply for this license, you must to submit a complete prescribed application form together with the required supporting documents. The details of these documents include details of your game lists. The lists must show the number and name of prize giving games and a description of the mode of playing the games.

You will receive the license once TELA deems your application satisfactory, and you have paid the prescribe licensing fee of HK$3,200.

 

Selling Pre-Cooked Food at Events

If your event management company in Hong Kong intends to sell pre-cooked food at your event, you will be required to obtain a Temporary Food Factory License. This is used by the FEHD too.

To apply for a Temporary Food Factory License, you must submit a complete prescribed application form together with copies of the proposed layout plan of your intended premises. If you are a corporation that is applying for the license, you must submit the following documentation:

  • Copies of the following documents:
    • Articles of Association of the Company
    • Business Registration Certificate
    • Company’s Certificate of Incorporation (certified true copy)
    • Notice of Situation of the Registered Office (certified true copy)
    • Copies of the company’s most recent annual returns (certified true copy)
    • Notice of Acceptance of Authorisation which has been signed by an authorised representative (certified true copy)
    • Written resolution passed by the Board of Directors to authorize a person to act on behalf of the company to deal with licensing matters with FEHD

 

If your application is satisfactory, you will receive the license which will generally be valid for 1 week.

 

Selling, Preparing, Manufacturing, Further Process of Pack Food for Sale

You will require a Food Factory license if your event management company in Hong Kong intends to prepare, further process, manufacture or pack food for sale for human consumption. Moreover, you can obtain a license from the FEHD.

To apply for this license, you must submit a complete prescribed application form together with 3 certified true copies of your scaled metric layout plans of the premise. If you are a corporation that’s applying for these documents, you will be required to submit the following documents:

  • Copies of the following documents:
    • Articles of Association of the Company
    • Business Registration Certificate
    • Company’s Certificate of Incorporation (certified true copy)
    • Notice of Situation of the Registered Office (certified true copy)
    • Copies of the company’s most recent annual returns (certified true copy)
    • Notice of Acceptance of Authorisation which has been signed by an authorised representative (certified true copy)
    • Written resolution passed by the Board of Directors to authorize a person to act on behalf of the company to deal with licensing matters with FEHD

 
Once you have fulfilled all the criteria required, you must submit a compliance report to the FEHD for verification purposes. Once the FEHD has received this report, they will then conduct a final inspection of the premise. If the result is satisfactory, you will get the license for your event management company in Hong Kong.

Once the FEHD deems your premise satisfactory, you will have the license once you have made the payment for the prescribed license application fee. Your Food Factory License fee will depend on the gross floor area of the food factory.

 

Conducting A Lottery at the Premise Event

If your event company in Hong Kong intends to organise a lottery on the premise, you need to apply for a Lottery License. The Gambling Ordinance defines a lottery as a raffle, sweet stake or any competition involving money, any game, method, device or scheme which distributes or allotting prizes by lot or chance. To apply for this license, you must submit a complete prescribed application form along with a sample ticket and a copy of your Hong Kong Identity Card.

If you are a corporation that is applying for this license, you must submit the following documents:

  • Copies of the following documents:
    • Articles of Association of the Company
    • Business Registration Certificate
    • Company’s Certificate of Incorporation (certified true copy)
    • Notice of Situation of the Registered Office (certified true copy)
    • Copies of the company’s most recent annual returns (certified true copy)
    • Notice of Acceptance of Authorisation which has been signed by an authorised representative (certified true copy)
    • A written resolution passed by the Board of Directors to authorize a person to act on behalf of the company to deal with licensing matters with TELA

 
If your application is satisfactory, you will get the license from TELA within 10 days. You will then give the payment of HK$3,165.

 

Organising Trade Promotion Competition

Any event management company in Hong Kong which intends to promote a business or sale of a product through lucky draws must obtain a Trade Promotion Competition License from TELA. You must submit a complete application form together with a copy of your Hong Kong Identity Card and your particulars to TELA as supporting documents.

If you are a corporation that is applying for this license, you must submit the following documents:

  • Copies of the following documents:
    • Articles of Association of the Company
    • Business Registration Certificate
    • Company’s Certificate of Incorporation (certified true copy)
    • Notice of Situation of the Registered Office (certified true copy)
    • Copies of the company’s most recent annual returns (certified true copy)
    • Notice of Acceptance of Authorisation with a signature from an authorised representative (certified true copy)
    • A written resolution passed by the Board of Directors to authorize a person to act on behalf of the company to deal with licensing matters with TELA

 
If TELA is content with the details of your application, you will be issued with the Trade Promotion Competition License within 7-days of your application. However, you need to pay HK$1,590 for the licensing fee.

How to Start an Event Management Company in Hong Kong

 

Other Permits and Licenses Required in Hong Kong

An event management company in Hong Kong may require other types of licenses and permits too depending on the activities they organise:

  • Permit to Use and Operate Amusement Rides is essential if you intend to operate amusement park rides. You can obtain this from the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD).
  • Lion Dance Permit or Dragon Dance Permit is necessary to organise a lion or dragon dance at a public event. Further, you can obtain this license from the Hong Kong Police Force.
  • Special Effects License or Discharge Permit is necessary if you intend to use pyrotechnics or non-pyrotechnics special effects material during stage performance events. You can get this document from the Film Services Office (FSO).
  • Animal Exhibition Permit is essential if your event intends to exhibit animals or birds. Get this license from the Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department.
  • Public Exhibition of Films in Hong Kong must obtain approval from TELA, according to the Film Censorship Ordinance.
  • Private Mobile Radio Systems License is mandatory if you intend to operate portable transceivers during your event. You can have this license by applying at the Telecommunications Department of Hong Kong.