Public and Private Limited Companies:

Public limited Companies

A Public Limited Company is usually abbreviated as PLC or plc, is a company which is under United Kingdom Company law, Commonwealth Jurisdictions and the Republic of Ireland. These companies liabilities are limited and it's shares can be sold freely  and traded to the public with the letters PLC under it's name and a minimum share capital of  £50,000. These companies have their own legal identity.

On the Security Exchanges or bourse, these companies may be Listed or Unlisted. In the United Kingdom, it is necessary to have Public limited Companies written at the end or can easily be abbreviated as plc so as to make the company name legal. Welsh companies may have it abbreviated as ccc, an abbreviation for Cwmni Cyfyngedig Cyhoeddus(Companies Act 2006). 

Whereas, some incorporated Public Limited Companies under special legislations are exempted from using these suffixes (mostly nationalised Concerns). 

PLC was first used in 1981, prior to this most companies still use .ltd suffix. 


A new company when incorporated in Scotland, England or Wales, it must be registered by an executive agency of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial agency, named as Companies House. Prior to October 2009 companies in Northern Ireland were registered with the Northern Ireland Executive's Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment, but since then Northern Irish company registrations are also handled by Companies House along with the rest of the United Kingdom.

Company Directors:

Public limited Companies requires two directors and one secretary, which differs from country to country, as there are three directors in India. 

  • In England, Wales (Company Act 2006, as of October 2008) and also in Scotland, the person should be under 16 years.
  • The person should be free from any kind of Bankruptcy Restrictions Order (BRO) or Bankruptcy Restrictions Undertaking (BRU), otherwise he/she would be disqualified.
  • In the case of PLCs or their subsidiaries, the person is over 70 years of age or reaches 70 years of age while in office, unless they are appointed or re-appointed by resolution of the company in general meeting of which special notice has been given.

Share Capital:

Subscribers are those members who agrees to take some, or all of the shares when the company is registered. The Association must show the names of the people who agreed to take the shares and the number of shares each will take, as this is the Memorandum of startup.

The minimum Share Capital for Public Limited Companies before it could start its business is at least £50,000, whereas a quarter of it i.e. £12,500 must be paid up. 

Each allotted share must be paid up to its one quarter as of the complete nominal value. 

Share Types:

Generally there can be as many share types a company can have, the most common categories of it are:

  • Ordinary: As per the name suggests, this shares are ordinary with no restrictions and can be divided into class of different values.
  • Preference: These shares usually carries a right that the value on these  annual dividend shares are paid preferentially before any other class.
  • Cumulative Preference: These shares carries a right that if the dividend won't get paid within an year, the amount would get increased as per the successive years.
  • Redeemable: These shares get issued with a kind of agreement, which states that the company would buy the shares back after a certain period of time or as per the given date.

Steps of Company Formation:

  • Paper Process
  • Memorandum of Association
  • Articles Association
  • Form 1
  • Form 12
  • Electronic Process
  • Annual Returns
Private Limited Companies

A business entity with a private ownership which is used in many jurisdictions, which have some differences as compare to the Public Limited  Company which varies from country to country. 

It is difficult to liquidate such types of company, because the shares can be sold only to the shareholders in the business.

Some Abbreviation related to Private Limited Companies as per the countries are:

United States: LLC, PVT, PHC

United Kingdom, Ireland, Kenya: Ltd.

India, Nepal, Bangladesh: Pvt. Ltd.

Azerbaijan: MMC

Russia: OOO

And many more!!!!


Private Limited Company to a Public Limited Company:

A private  company limited by shares and an Unlimited Company with a share capital have the right to re-register as a Public Limited Company, but the company which does not have any share capital cannot do so.

A special resolution with an application form must be issued from from registrar office so that the company gets re-registered to a plc:

  • The company's memorandum must be altered which states that the company is to be a Public Limited Company
  • The company shares must be increased to a minimum value of £50,000 with almost 25% part paid.
  • Any other alterations can be made to the memorandum which conforms that the company is to be a public limited company
  • Any required alterations can be made to the articles of association of the company

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