New registry system and electronic signature process


Like many other trade registries, the İstanbul Trade Registry recently started using a new electronic system called “Mersis,” and currently all kinds of registration applications, except for company and branch incorporation registrations, for companies registered with the İstanbul Trade Registry should be filed via the Mersis system.

In order to be able to carry out any kind of registration process for a company, especially after its incorporation with the İstanbul Trade Registry, the company should be registered with the Mersis system and a Mersis number should be given to the company. In addition, one of the authorized signatories of the company should be registered with the Mersis system as the so-called “registration representative,” and an electronic signature (elektronik imza) should be obtained for him/her so that he/she can represent the company before the İstanbul Trade Registry in registration processes other than company and branch incorporation registrations.

In order to file an application to obtain an electronic signature for the registration representative mentioned above, the following documents are required.

a) An application letter and letter of undertaking to be signed by the registration representative (if the registration representative is a foreigner, the details of the registration representative should be filled out, and both documents will then have to be signed by the registration representative with the Turkish Consulate. Also, at the Turkish Consulate, Consulate officials will confirm the registration. However, on the other hand, if a Turkish citizen is to be appointed as the registration representative, the application letter should only filled out and signed, and the undertaking should be signed before a public notary.

b) A bank statement showing payment of the electronic signature fee (which is, for example, TL 119 for one year, TL 169 for two years and TL 199 for three years).

c) A copy of the registration representative’s passport or Turkish ID.

Once the application is filed, an electronic signature will be produced in one to two days and will be couriered to the address of the registration representative. It is very important to note that the registration representative should be present at his/her address to take receipt of the courier with the envelope holding the electronic signature, as this is confidential and cannot be delivered to any other person on his behalf. However, it is also possible to collect the electronic signature of the registration representative in person by visiting the premises of the electronic signature provider with an authorization certificate issued by the registration representative. Following the obtainment of the electronic signature, the registration representative should register with the Mersis system to complete the process. Since the Mersis system is in Turkish, the registration representative cannot carry out registration transactions after incorporation without the assistance of a Turkish-speaking person. In order to solve this problem, the system permits the authorization of someone, i.e. an attorney of the company, by the registration representative. Authorization will be granted via the electronic signature of the registration representative.

Please let me know via e-mail if you have any questions on this matter and company registration or company establishment in Turkey.