Doing business in Tamilnadu, India

Recently I received a report on the vision of Tamil Nadu Government for how the business climate should be in year 2025 in the state. The report was a joint work by CII (Confederation of Indian Industries) and Tamil Nadu Government (TN Gov).


I saw one interesting statistics that stood out among the report’s many pages. It was the number of days it takes to start a business in Tamilnadu (to a large extend it is same across India) – it is currently a whooping “41” days. I was not surprised, since I run my own business for last 10 years and have been through these hurdles of bureaucracy many times.

Most recently I had to do this (starting a business) once more, this time for my family business and it took me nearly 5 to 6 weeks. At this time we still we have VAT registration pending. To be fair, few days out of this was due to my end delays as well.

  1. We started with registering the new “Private Limited” (Limited Liability Company)  with Registrar of Companies (RoC). For this the first step is to get name clearance (name of the company shouldn’t be conflicting with the said/unsaid guidelines or with other existing businesses). This took some time.
  2. Then comes the actual registration which involved multiple iterations of submission of our MoA and AoA (Memorandum of Articles and Article of Association). Each time we had to take a print, sign the paper, scan it, then digitally sign it and then upload it as a PDF file to the site. Once approved, you need to follow this by a hard-copy submission(sometimes they may ask for the hard-copy for each iteration as well) of the documents.  Once this is done.
  3. First board meeting and resolutions to be passed
  4. Followed by getting an Income Tax PAN Number
  5. Then comes opening of a Bank Account
  6. Then comes applying for Service Tax Number or TIN (Tamilnadu VAT Number) and CST (Central Sales Tax). The choice between Service Tax and Sales Tax registration is depending on the nature of your business.

After all this only you can start your functioning. There will be more steps if you are involved in manufacturing, which depending on the industry has various other registration formalities. Compare all this is the time it took to open a business in USA – we opened our 100% subsidiary sitting from India in less than few days through the help of a CPA locally in India – everything happened through online. I remember reading that New Zealand, Canada and Australia with USA tops for the shortest days required to open a business. For information on doing businesses around the world, see this world bank funded site.

With the above experience I should say it is definitely commendable of Tamil Nadu Government to even dream a “2” day timescale for this by 2025.

Update 1/June/2015: I learned about this site deAsra which gives step by step instructions and spreadsheet templates for common businesses.


  • Babu N

    Hi Venkat,

    Felt lucky to read your blog. Am Babu N working in a private industry and wish to start a business shortly. It is a product manufactured in Coimbatore and we planning to start an outlet for it in Chennai. It is purely an eatable one. Now we are in searching for a shop in good location around chennai. Can you please guide us like how we should market it. Its a very high quality product and famous one in Coimbatore. Each coimbatore people knows it and in fact i am the regular customer for it from my childhood. So the strategy behind it is we need to make the people to taste it once. If anyone had it once for sure they will become our regular customer. What kind of marketing strategy we need to follow to promote our product?? Please post back your valuable tips for us..

    Thanks in advance.

    Babu N

  • p.srinivasan

    sir I am srinivasan Now I am Running one company 15 years. now my work powder coating and spary painting. give me any idea for my improvement.

  • Vinoth

    Hi Sir;
    I am Vinoth,working as a Electronics service engineer.I want to start a hardware course and service center.what are the procedures are there to start this business.please guide me.

  • srijith

    sir i am srijith . i am student of BE-MECHANICAL FINAL YR . i am not intrested in my engineering field . i want to do business like real estate , export vegetables & animals breeds, agriculture like that field only .. i thought that i am not completing my BE courses. i have lot of arrears . but i am a self confident person . i can sign in my business. so you give a better idea for my feature .
    thank you…

    • venkatarangan

      Hi Srijith, the three businesses you are mentioning are all businesses with good potential and long term potential. I can understand your frustration on your studies and arrears. For all three businesses you need technology to innovate and to do that you need to invest in engineering. For that you need to lead a strong engineering talent and people. It will greatly help in you to lead them if you have a good degree. In future for you to raise money as well your degree will give you the credentials. Push yourself and get the degree. Its not difficult to clear the arrears. All the best.

  • SKumar

    Hello Venkat,

    Recently we have decided to start a small manufacturing plant in Covai area. Seen your blog and found lot of interesting information.
    Since our plans are in the initial stages, we are talking to lot of people to get information.

    You had listed few steps in registration process and other actions – which all takes about 4 to 8 weeks.
    Do you have a kind of guidelines or detail steps to consider while starting a business. This will help to minimize the iterations, also be aware ahead in time of what is required at what stage especially while coordinating with various agencies of the government.

    Appreciate if some references are provided.

    Thanks a lot for your help.

    Best Regards

    • venkatarangan

      Glad to hear on your startup. All the best for success.

      I don’t have any readymade list. I will suggest best route will be for you to consult a local agency of repute who can guide you on these, you should be able to easily identify one through industry bodies in Kovai like CII or Rotary clubs. Another source will be to get the help of a local Chartered Accountant (Auditors), local forum of should be able to help you in identifying one.

  • Deva

    Dear Sir,

    I would like to start a Electronic and home appliances shop in tirunelveli area. Please advise me how much will be the investment and how to get products from distributors.

    Thank you,

  • Sharanyaa

    Hi Venkat,
    I am currently working as an end – end – recruiter in a concern,but however my passion is always towards cooking,Is there any blog or sites that could give me brief insights on how to start working it out.

    Thanks in advance

  • K.Venkatesan

    sir iam venkatesan from Srirangam Trichy . I want to start to new manufacturer business , But i need small investment only. So please given in new ideas to expect thanking you


    Dear sir,

    i am forty years old .my education is DME., BBA., i am working past 20 years. selling of tata buses , target vs achievement of automobile dealer job is very torture.

    i want to start business with 25000 to 30000 monthly income with peaceful life. my interest field is purchase agri products like vegetables from one place and selling large quantity i.e brokarage business. second one interest is export our agri products, mooligai,spices etc., to various countries.

    kindly advise me to do brokarage business of vegetables to export business can do, is there any governemnt training centre is there

    thanks and regards

  • priya

    hi i am completed BE., i need some small business idea . it is relevant to my profession., or education oriented

  • Nithya

    sir,am a divorced woman,with no alimony and have started a home business of selling sarees and dress materials .We are from Hosur ,Tamilnadu. The income is below 2.50lac per annum. Kindly guide me how to register the business and what needs to be done if I can improve it online shop.How to get govt subsidy if any. how to and under what name should i open banck account etc,
    please guide me sir, it would be of great help for me.
    thank you

    • venkatarangan

      Glad to hear your are doing something on your own, all the best. even the biggest successful businesses started small. If you like reading books try these two books – one called “Made in America” by Sam Walton which is on the path of world’s largest supermarket Walmart. Second book “It happened in India” is closer home by Kishore Biyani on Big Bazaar.

      Till the business grows to size I don’t see a need for you to register the business. You can stay as a proprietorship firm itself. This will keep the government/tax paperwork to the minimum. Ask advice on these with a local chartered accountant or Commerce Student. For more help contact local Women Self Empowerment chapter or local Rotary/Lions club.

      For opening a bank account, which is a good idea, do it in your own name. Easiest option. I will suggest you open the account with the nearest branch of any public sector or cooperative bank. You will also want to file Income Tax returns every year, so that when you want to expand your business you have a financial history and credibility.

      Once again, all the best.

  • பாலச்சந்தர்

    நண்பர்களே ‘உண்மையாக’ (hard to say ….really) நீங்கள் தொழில். செய்ய. விரும்பினால் .என்ன தொழில் செய்வது என கேட்காதீர்கள்.அதை நீஙகள் தான் முடிவு செய்ய வேண்டும் .முடிவு எடுக்க குழப்பமா ..நான் ஒரு சிம்பிள். ஐடியா சொலலட்டுமா
    உங்களுக்கு பிடித்த,உங்கள் உள் மனம் எப்பொழுதும் சிந்திக்கும் விசயம் ,நீங்களே field la இறங்கி செய்யும் வேலை எதை சார்ந்தது அதனை தொழிலாக. முடிவு செய்க.அதில்தான். நீங்கள் வெற்றி பெற முடியும்

  • Rajesh K

    I am a assistant professor i did complete ME .
    Now i Want start a business in Erode or Coimbatore area
    will you please give me an idea for which business suitable for the above mentioned areas and minimum 2 laksh investment.

  • S.Kavitha

    Hi Sir,

    Greetings from Salem, Tamil Nadu.

    I’m a working women for an automobile dealer in customer care. Now, iam having some plans to do some business from home. So, please suggest me some ideas for the same.


  • Dinesh

    Hi Sir,
    I’m a B.E Graduate in Computer Science and working as a Software Engineer for past two years in Coimbatore. Now I have an Idea a new business(Except software and Computer related business) in the anyone of the area like Coimbatore, Tiruppur and Erode. Please suggest me a some ideas to start it will really helpful for me.

  • senthilkumar P

    I am senthilkumar from salem ( tamilnadu ) and i m planning to
    start corn /maize powder manufacturing new unit in my place.
    so I need some information regarding the plant and prospects in
    India. so i need some help from u for about the project.
    so if you r interested to help me
    pls give me your suggestion from u ,
    because i am 37 years old, post graduate and unemployed
    and in our surrounding area have lot of maize growth
    so i want start an agricultural oriented product business
    because i am having a small flour mill and rice mill and
    6500 sqr feet gudown and 75 HP power supply
    so pls give some guidance and idea for me .

    thank u

    [Blog Author: Contact details including mobile number removed]

    • G. Jambulingam

      Dear Senthil

      As of my knowledge you can check with Agriculture university in Kovai about plant and prospects, even some team working kovai Agri university and they are making own food brands and its selling in local market. Please contact like that people

      Hope it will helpfull

      All the best

      G. Jambulingam

  • sashiprasad

    Are there any consultancies that help in getting the necessary legal processes like registering, getting NOC’s from pollution control board etc in Tamilnadu. I have business idea in mind but the start procedure is mind boggling.

    thank you

  • vivekanandan

    i have finished MBA [Hr and Marketing] in 2013 batch now i’m planning to start a new business
    (small scale business) through bank loan. pl. give me ideas how to start? what all are the formalities and which business i can choose in coimbatore city, tamil nadu .

    Thanks & Regards,

  • radha.p

    Sir, iam working as a teacher in a matriculation school having 18 yrs of experience. my qualification is M.A.,M.Ed.,M.Phil., .But now iam totally not interested in teaching areas, i got opportunity for the administration level in schools but then i was not satisfied with certain things. Now my very humble request is as iam not having any experience in business, what kind of business can i take up. iam very fluent in english tamil and hindi. pls suggest with low investment or as a working partner in madurai.

  • mohamed yunus

    dear sir,,

    now i am working in kuwait.i wanted to start a small scale business or own sole business. can u please tell me ideas for start or own a business in tamilnadu. i am from kumbakonam in india.pls advice the rate of strat a business. awaiting for your reply.

    thanks ,

    yunus. kuwait

  • satheeshkumar

    I’m a civil engineer and I’ve been working for various construction companies. I want to start a ready mix concrete business in , Tamilnadu,India.

    Kindly give your valuable suggestion,
    1.It will cover under small scale business?
    2.Can i get any subsidies?

    Thanks & Regards,

  • suresh

    Dear sir
    i’m completed M.A History and Tourism Management in a distance m working as a sales ambition is became a successful businessman.i request u sir pls suggest me some new business opportunities with low investments.

  • santhosh kumar

    Dear sir,

    I want to start a new renewable power based company, investment around Rs 2lacs to 5 lacs please let me know if you have any ideas on the above.

  • Naresh

    Dear sir
    i did engineering i wish to start business in vellore or around vellore city so give some ideas to start a business

  • arun

    sir, I wish to start a business. I heard about spirullina production and i wish to do it. Is there enough scope for spirullina plantation and marketing. please guide me with references.

  • Rajeswari.v

    sir, this is rajeswari i need to do business, but now i am blind please sir help me to start a business.i am a diploma holder (diploma in handloom technology)living in a agricultural area i can grossp anything easily and quickly

  • vijayaraj

    hi, I m Vijayraj from Cuddalore.and I returned from Dubai after company closed due to financial stress. I am 50 years old and like to start small investment business in Cuddalore area.I have more knoledge in company administration and I have been worked related to ship reparing and Steel Fabrication works. kindly advise me what type of work I can start and I dont have more local contact in my home town.

  • Satheesh Subramanian

    Hi Venkat sir,

    I am satheesh S from Tamilnadu, working in bangalore. currently i am working with Infosys but in future i want to do some business in my native. i checked the CII website and joined Youth india also today. Will it help me to start a business? or else kindly advise me what i can do better?

    Am waiting for your reply………

    Thanks in advance!
    Satheesh S

  • Kannan.P

    .i did complete with computer application and MBA.
    Now i start a business in Madurai area
    will you please give me an idea for which business suitable for the above mentioned areas and also my carrier.

    P Kannan

  • karthik

    Hi sir
    I am karthik, from kallakurichi ,villupuram dist. I did BE (CSE).
    I am interested to start a bussiness. I dont have good ideas about what kind of bussiness
    can be started. The investment should be less. Can you suggest me some bussiness ideas?
    sir pls provide me an idea of business which is suitable for me in my area pls pls pls sir…..


    I am ramesh,i want to start a new business in tiruvannamalai, tamilnadu . please give me some business ideas in 2 lakh to 3 lakh invesment. I am already running a computer centre

  • Ganesan

    Dear sir,
    I am Engineering graduate and i plan to start own business..
    which business suitable for CUDDALORE district??
    Pls give me your idea…

    South Africa

  • Abubacker M.A.

    dear sir,
    i am return from gulf country after 16 years of job as building planing and designing.
    i would like to start a business in tirunelveli .i feel to start a business out of my feild. please give me some idea.


  • Madhu

    i am madhu,i will start a new business in nagercoil, tamilnadu.please give the any business ideas in low investment(30,000 or 50,000)

  • Jagatheesh

    I am planning to start hardware store selling construction materials in villupuram,tamilnadu. What about the prospects and capital required to start this business

  • ram kumar

    i am doing my final year MBA after finishing this i would like to start a business in Madurai can u give some idea

  • kathirvel

    hi sir, i am very much interested to do business,as i have finished BBA & MBA for my future plans and i am presently working in pvt company in accounts payable and planning to start business .so i request you to give good business plans in nearby
    (thiruttani,my place is in nagari and nearby market segments).i has my father support(in financial and with his guidance)i want to succeed in good please suggest me a good business ideas


  • Gopi

    Hello sir,
    I’m Gopi, I’m a computer science Engineer, i planned to start a new business, but i dint have any idea to start over. so can u help me to start a business.

  • Pradeep

    Dear Sir,

    I am Pradeep, done my MSc Biotechnology with Bio Business from UK. I am planning to set up my own food processing unit. I am planning to start my business in Juice bottling. can you please suggest me the right place in Tamilnadu to start the business. I am thinking of starting it in chennai but a bit concerned regarding the rents and the power issues. Also with the effect of FSSAI Act initial would be a high if I am right.

    Your advice is appreciated.


  • Hariharan

    Hi Venkat,
    i need to start my textile trading business in salem.
    Please give me idea to get dealership for polyester yarn.


    dear sir
    . I am ravindran from neyeli ,i completed BE computer science , I am interested to start a bussiness. I dont have good ideas about what kind of bussiness
    can be started. The investment should be less. Can you suggest me some bussiness ideas?

    Thanks a lot.

  • Tamil amuthan

    I’ve completed electronics & communication engg. But i want to do construction business. it means i want to take government contracts. is it good? please give me some idea!!

  • Anand Sundaram

    I’m Anand from Tamilnadu, Coimbatore. I have 30cent land in Main road base at near SULUR, COIMBATORE with water facility. Pls. advise which business suitable for this area…i want start different type of business..please give us yr suggestion.. Thanks, AnandSundaram.


    i’m Mahesh from Tamilnadu .i have interest in start a business in Tamilnadu, i will invest 50,000 to 1,50,000lacs, but i don’t know what kind of business to start, So Please give me a idea sir, Thanking you

  • arul

    dear sir
    My name is Arul.j,iam working in private mnc company i am planing to start a new type of business in new trend can you please give me some new suggestion & my native place thiruvarur (i want start in my own city )

    thanks & regards

  • sathish

    Dear Sir,

    This is sathish from tirupur…now am working in garment field….i want start new business in this area…but i don’t know which business suite for this area…i want start different type of business..please give us yr suggestion..

  • R.kishore

    Hello sir my name is kishore,i completed my electronics&Communication engineering i am into my family business in coimbatore i am planing to start a new type of business in new trend can you please give me some new suggestion

  • Prakash

    Dear Sir,

    I am working software engineer..But I always interst do business . Now my friends and myself we are plaining to do plastic materials prduction like covers and plastic items product manufacturing company..

    Can you please suggest me is’t ok? and give me some tips for business..

    Thanks & Regards,

  • Ram

    Hi this is ram. I looking for new business. I want to do new business. I am from Nagai dt. I have no ideas. Kindly give me suggestions to start business in and around Nagai district.

  • M. Jayaprakash

    Sir am working in Abudhabi, i have interest in start a business in India, i will invest maximum 2 lacs, but i don’t know what kind of business, Please give me a idea sir, Thanking you

  • Senthil

    Dear Sir,

    Its glad to get Suggestions from you sir.Now i am doing HR Consultancy with my friends as Partnership.we are having 3 offices in covai,erode and karur.But my long term business aim is Real Estate and Finance.I want to do this little bit hitech.I am thinking to do the real Estate business as like consultancy (like, the local markets.I required your valuable suggestion.


  • Mukundhan

    We are Providing Accounting Services, Auditing Services, E-filing Services(TDS, VAT, Incometax, Services tax etc) and Registration Services(TAN, PAN, Firm, Business, Company etc.) etc. For Further details,

    Contact: Mr. Mukundhan
    (prop. B2M Services)
    20/33, Ayaloor Muthiah Street,
    Chennai – 600079
    Mobile: 9171060058

  • Ramesh

    Hi Venkat!

    I read this informatic page and it was nice information.
    Moreover i would like introduce me to you. I am Sampath, from Salem. I did Dip (EEE).
    I am interested to start a bussiness. I dont have good ideas about what kind of bussiness
    can be started. The investment should be less. Can you suggest me some bussiness ideas?

    Thanks a lot.

    Hava a nice time

  • Gaurav

    Dear Mr Venkatarangan

    I am thinking to start a new venture and heard of some special benefits from TN govt for starting in TN.
    Whether Hosur also is a major station where all business related works like Registration, Applying for CST etc could be done.
    Are you a CA or a tax consultant?


  • Balaji

    Dear Sir.
    Iam Balaji finished MCA. now i want to start business,now i plan to start Small type of Womens Saree and Fancy dresss Showroom. plz kindly help what i have to do.i want any type of business which make to get the loan from banking sector. contact no:9789425738

  • Sampath

    Hi Venkat!

    Hope you are fine.

    I read this informatic page and it was nice information.
    Moreover i would like introduce me to you. I am Sampath, from Salem. I did BE (EEE).
    I am interested to start a bussiness. I dont have good ideas about what kind of bussiness
    can be started. The investment should be less. Can you suggest me some bussiness ideas?

    Thanks a lot.

    Hava a nice time

  • k.n.suresh kumar

    Dear sir,
    I am sureshkumar from erode i complete my MCA .i am very interesting to do past year i am doing transport business but not satisfied in that so i need to start an new business but i wont get idea to make an new business .so please give some idea to start new bussiness
    With Regards

  • k.n.suresh kumar

    Dear sir,
    I am sureshkumar from erode i complete my MCA .i am very interesting to do past year i am doing transport business but not satisfied in that so i need to start an new business but i wont get idea to make an new business .so please give some idea to start new bussiness
    With Regards


    i am completed my MBA, 2009 pass out i want to start a business in my place my ideas are travels,hotel,minibus,petrol bunks,,,,,,, i know this business is very risk and high investment.. my mind is there…. wt can i do all persons disc rage me including my home also…. i will decide after your answer you got lot of experience in business field,so,,, i am waiting,,,,,,,,,,,,

  • Madhu

    Dear Sir,
    This is Madhu, i am interested to do the business, my friends are also with me, we are interested to do some thing to create an new Opportunity.We are completed our BE, now we are in our native place(Madurai) & we would like to start our business in our native place, could you give some ideas to start business.

    With Regards


    Im studing in MBA 1st year…my future plan to start a new business….give me some ideas to start new busines..

  • Venkatarangan TNC

    Dear Soundra Rajan, Good Luck with your efforts. Think of possibilities in Manufacturing for Automobile or Construction industries. Both seem to be doing well in recent years inspite of temporary setbacks due to recession. Being closer to Chennai Auto-Ancilliary is a time tested avenue. Do good home work on the demand and read to familiriaze yourself with the dynamics. Refer sites like for industry reports, etc.

  • r. soundra rajan

    i have finished M.A., now i’m planning to start a new business through bank loan. pl. give me ideas manufacturing type business (not service type like school and others) in and around vellore, the city just 140 km away from chennai capital of tamil nadu

  • Venkatarangan TNC

    Dear Philomi & Natarajan,
    Happy to note you are reading my blog. Thanks.

    The idea for a new business basically has to come from you. Think of areas where you have interest or expertise. In my experience I have seen that some areas you won’t be knowing much, may be scared but once you start working or exposed you will start liking it. Keep an open mind. There are tons of materials on the Internet now for new budding entrepreneurs, check them out.

    I will suggest some reading materials, Cybermedia’s DARE Magazine ( and a book by Mr.Subroto Bagchi (Co-Founder of MindTree) "The high performance entrepreneur". Mr.Bagchi goes into detail on every stage of a business from Idea, Founding and the book is very much written with an Indian context – this is not the typical American style management book you will find in all book store shelves (though I love some of the American Management books written by excellent authors).

  • philomi

    i have finished MBA. now i planning to start a new business. please give some ideas to start a business in tamil nadu.

  • A.Natarajan


    I am a engineer.i did complete BE with MBA.
    Now i start a business in salem or coimbatore area
    will you please give me an idea for which business suitable for the above mentioned areas and also my carrier.


    • Bramagiri

      Dear sir,

      What’s ur major in BE
      If u r a mech, then u can star a Manufacturing unit in cbe.

  • N.Usha

    Iam a home maker i did BBA .sir i want an to start a business ,will u pls give me an idea what to do.
    your’s truly

    • sudhakaran

      Hai sir , I am a graduate and I am more than happy to help you sir please do as the following and mail me back ill provide the most suitable idea possible
      *The most interested area that you are willing to do such business
      * which kind of people are you targeting the most ?
      *what is your investment and that of your options?
      *what kind of monthly turn over do you expect?
      —–That’s all sir please rply if u wish——–