Start your business quickly and easily

Ready to be your own boss or start your freelance career? Partena Professional helps you get started and increases your chances of success. Get started right away via our digital one-stop shop for entrepreneurs or download our start-up guide!


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How can we help you?

Starting your own business or freelance career free from doubts? Partena Professional is always by your side. Our business is supporting your business.


Start at your own pace

Whether you want to register online straight away or prefer to make an appointment to ask your final questions, we support you to get going at your own pace.


Avoid risks from the start

Partena guides you through the first steps of your project. Backed by our expertise, you make the right decisions and increase your chances of success.


Keep things simple

We help you find your feet as a self-employed person and help you manage your business with ease. With the right practical tools and the right advice, every step gets easier.


Get (additional) support

Through our Dreamslab, we help you to make your dream come true, from refining your business idea to launching your business.

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Don't wait any longer and take advantage of Partena Professional's offer to make your dream come true.

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  • Registration at the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises
  • Necessary permit requests to get started
  • Membership with a social insurance fund as an entrepreneur
Any questions before you get started?
What are the requirements for becoming a self-employed entrepreneur in Belgium?

In Belgium, not just anyone can start up a business. By law, you need to meet a couple of requirements:  

  • You need to be of age 
  • You need to have the Belgian nationality or be an EU citizen. If you are a resident somewhere outside of the EU, you need a professional card for non-European nationals 
  • You still have all your civil rights. (you’ve never been convicted of serious misconduct or crimes) 
  • You have legal capacity (you are not led by a provisional administrator and haven’t been declared legally or judicially incompetent) 
  • (In Walloon and Brussels) You have the required professional knowledge to carry out your activities and can demonstrate your skills with a degree, specific professional knowledge or a basic knowledge of business management. 
Which company format do you need?

When you set up a business, you can decide to launch a sole proprietorship as a natural person or a company as a legal entity. 

If you’re setting up a sole proprietorship, there is no (legal) difference between you and your business (In other words: you are the business). There are fewer formalities to take care of and fewer start-up costs to pay, but you are solely liable for debt. 

If you start a company with a legal entity, your business is seen as its own legal entity (a separate “legal person” with its own rights and duties). With a company, you’re better protected personally (when it comes to debt). When founding a company, there are however more procedures and costs you need to take into account. 

What’s the difference between the company number and the VAT number?

The company number is the unique identification number you are assigned when you register your business with the Crossroads Bank for Enterprises (CBE).   

If your business is subject to VAT obligations, you need to activate your company number with the General Administration of Taxes, better known as the Tax Department. After you’ve done this, you will get your VAT number. This consists of the same 10 numbers as your company number but is preceded by the letters BE.  


CBE: 0123.456.789 

VAT: BE123.456.789 

How can I obtain my company number and VAT number?

You can easily request your company and VAT number via the Partena Professional experts, or our digital one-stop shop for entrepreneurs.  

The application procedure depends on the legal status of your company.    

In case of a sole proprietorship, liberal profession or intellectual property, the procedure is fairly straightforward. 

If you are setting up a company, the procedure takes a little longer. You must first set up your company before registering it with the ECB, and the company number must be issued by the Business Court.  

Ask Partena Professional to help you through the process

If your business is subject to VAT obligations, you need to activate your company number with the General Administration of Taxes, better known as the Tax Department. After you’ve done this, you will get your VAT number. This consists of the same 10 numbers as your company number but is preceded by the letters BE.  


CBE: 0123.456.789 

VAT: BE123.456.789 

Social security contributions: what are they and how do they work?

In exchange for paying your social security contributions, you and your family are entitled to basic social protection. As part of this protection, you’ll get family allowances, a statutory pension, bankruptcy insurance, health/disability insurance and birth allowance.  

The amount you have to pay is calculated based on your business’ net income. Given that this income isn’t known when you start your business, you’ll pay a (provisional) flat-rate contribution for the first three years.  

Partena Professional also offers you a Social Insurance Fund to make your life as a self-employed entrepreneur easier. 

How do you draft a business plan?

If you want to write a business plan, you can make it easier by using a business plan template.  

That template includes the most important elements you need to take into account. Examples of these elements are:  

  • The USP; what makes your business unique?   
  • On the left of the template, you have your partners, most important activities and resources 
  • On the right, you have all the elements connected to your target audiences (who are you selling to? How are you selling? What kind of relationship do you have with your customers?) 
  • At the bottom, you have everything to do with costs and income.  
Do I need additional insurance?

When you get started as a self-employed entrepreneur, you need to take out certain insurance policies. Some of these are mandatory, others are strongly recommended to protect yourself and your business.  

Examples of recommended insurance policies are: 

  • Fire insurance  
  • Business indemnity insurance  
  • Liability insurance 
  • Guaranteed income insurance 
  • Life insurance 
Should I start my business as primary or secondary activity?

The choice to become self-employed as a primary or secondary activity depends on your personal situation:  

  • Self-employed as a primary activity: you will only focus on your new activity and won’t be carrying out other activities.  
  • Self-employed as a secondary activity: you’re playing it safe and will gradually build your new activity. While you expand on your activities as a self-employed entrepreneur, you keep working your current job (at least part-time). 
  • Self-employed student: you're a student and you want to start your own business? Then this is the status you're looking for. 
What about my health insurance and family allowance?

If you become self-employed, you need to protect yourself so you can benefit from your social rights. That means that you need to join a child benefit fund and a health insurance fund that covers a part of your medical expenses. 

By combining your social security contributions with your health insurance, you can ensure that you get basic coverage. Additionally, you could take out an additional health insurance

How do I finance my business?

Start-up capital is only mandatory for some company formats. However, a start-up sum is always recommended, no matter the business you start. 

There are different ways to finance your business:  

  • Own resources 
  • Grants 
  • Loans 
  • Microcredit 
  • Investors (partners or shareholders) 
  • Participative financing (i.e. crowdfunding) 
Partena Professional supports you every step of the way
Still looking for a plan to launch your idea?
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Is entrepreneurship something for me?
Launch your business confidently thanks to our knowledge of entrepreneurship.
Want to become your own boss?
Find out what the statute of an entrepreneur means during an informational session with our experts.
Ready to take the leap?
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Partena Professional is here for you

Make your business dreams come true with Partena Professional. Optimise and guarantee your income with our solutions, developed by experts. Start your business and benefit from our support.


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