After taking the decision to establish and invest in business in this city, you must discuss with your accountant â€“ and possibly your lawyer â€“ the implications for your existing company formation. A branch of the existing entity in your home country may make your balance sheet look better, but also has "reach across" capabilities for any legal or tax issues should the operation get into difficulties. Most businesses choose to have a "stand alone" limited company that is autonomous and responsible for its own tax affairs and regulatory obligations.
Similarly, meeting an accountant and/or lawyer to get the local perspective on your proposed set-up and business incorporation in Hong Kong should in most cases make it possible to choose the best option for your particular business model. You may want access the Mainland China market using your Hong Kong operation, which is possible, but there are certain things to consider.
Setting up a bank account is a straightforward process as long as you have the necessary documents relating to the new business. You need to decide if the company is going to use a "chop" or not, signatories, and any limits or conditions imposed on them. But generally the whole thing can be put into place in one meeting.
Having a registered office and company secretary is an integral part of your company registration. For a physical office space there are a number of business centers that can give you a virtual or serviced facility at very short notice, and without requiring a long-term commitment.
If you're considering operating more than a shell company, any foreign national based in Hong Kong is going to need an employment visa. For new businesses the documentation required from either the overseas company or investor along with those for the Hong Kong operation is quite extensive.
Generally people don't appreciate the amount of time required to become operational when you invest in business in Hong Kong. Check what documents you have to bring with you. There is more information available now than there was in previous years, but don't underestimate what may be involved in company incorporation depending on your particular circumstances.