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Are there any PEOs for countries in Europe?

international professional employer organizationsWhen expanding in Europe (say sales, support, or maybe R&D of less than 5 employees in any one country), I've been faced with trades-off between 1) local incorporation/employee hire, 2) branch office/employee hire, or 3) independent contractor. These three options all have pros/cons. Might there be a fourth option of a PEO (Professional Employer Organization) that could cover Europe (say some of the key countries including UK, France, Germany, etc.)? Thanks.


Topic Expert
Malak Kazan
Title: VP, Special Projects
Company: ERI Economic Research Institute
(VP, Special Projects, ERI Economic Research Institute) |

You may want to check out They have Europe locations for PEO. Good luck.

Shawn Parandeh
Title: Director of Finance
Company: Netuitive
(Director of Finance, Netuitive) |

We have been using a reputable firm in UK to outsource all accounting, payroll and related taxes, corporate tax, legal, HR and benefits for EMEA sector in UK, Germany and Denmark. You may contact me for further details. Also, I will be glad to setup an introduction call.

Mario Pinho
Title: CFO
Company: Rakuten USA
(CFO, Rakuten USA) |

Hello Shawn,
I am looking for a PEO for London, Denmark, Germany and Ireland. Can you help me with a referral to your source please?
Thanks so much.
Angela Hitzman

Scott Cadora
Title: Vice President
Company: Pinnacle Business Solutions, Inc.
LinkedIn Profile
(Vice President, Pinnacle Business Solutions, Inc.) |

Bob, the technical answer is no because the PEO business model is unique to the US and without getting too deep into the weeds is a product of the US tax code. The PEO model does not directly translate to Europe due to key differences in health insurance, pensions and taxes. However, there are several ways to achieve PEO-like results in Europe.

One option is to use a service firm to administer the HR functions in Europe, similar to Shawn's suggestion. This option does require you to have a European corporate entity but there are firms that make this process relatively convenient.

Another option is to use a firm that provides PEO like services but is technically a staffing company. This reduces (I won't say eliminates) the need to start a European corporate entity but you do lose some control since the employees work for the staffing company.

The right answer for you obviously depends on your specific needs and goals. We've helped several clients using both models. Contact me if I can assist you or answer any more detailed questions.

Topic Expert
Keith Perry
Title: Director of Global Accounting
Company: Agrinos, Inc.
(Director of Global Accounting, Agrinos, Inc.) |


One twist I've tried is to simply have someone local incorporate; they can go from being your employee to owner of a company. You then contract directly with them...they become your PEO. It is like doing (3) independent contractor, but gives you the ability to help them give themselves more structure.

Malak; Mauve group is a good one; I had not heard of them yet. Cheers.

Topic Expert
Bob Stenz
Title: Controller
Company: Silicon Valley start-up
(Controller, Silicon Valley start-up) |

All...thanks for your helpful replies!

Topic Expert
Stephen Wares
Title: International Expansion Expert
Company: CCW Business Solutions
(International Expansion Expert, CCW Business Solutions) |

I would also strongly advise that you consider the potential issues that could arise upon termination of these employees hired through the PEO.

(Director of Finance) |

Angela - I did forward the contact info to your linkedin account via inMail.


Tim Burgess
Title: Director
Company: Shield GEO Services Limited
(Director , Shield GEO Services Limited) |

If anyone is still looking for this service in Europe or elsewhere you can now also utilise a GEO (global employment organization) provider.

As Scott has pointed out this is a bit different to the US PEO model of co-employment as your employees will be fully fledged employees of the host country provider. The GEO provider is wholly responsible for in-country compliance unlike in the PEO model where this responsibility is shared. We coined the GEO term to illustrate this difference.

The GEO provider holds all necessary licenses, registrations and insurances to operate in the host country. GEO providers may cover just one country or many. They may operate through their own company entirely or, as we do, aggregate services from specialist local partners. In my experience you get the best knowledge from a single country specialist but if you require services in many countries then reducing the number of providers makes life alot easier.

- Workers become direct employees of the GEO provider and are issued with local employment contracts. They are paid and taxed as employees. There is no risk of misclassification.
- GEO provider invoices the client monthly in advance for the Total Cost of Employment (TCE) and their fee. TCE includes base salary, allowances, bonus, employers social security contributions, other statutory contributions, taxes if applicable.
- Workers are payrolled within the host country and GEO provider makes statutory income tax and social security / withholding deductions.
- GEO provider can process expense reimbursements to the employees.
- GEO provider supplies payslips and reporting.

The GEO service can still normally operate with the 5 most common ways to structure employment contracts for international assignees. For example shadow payrolls and dual employment contracts are possible, although this is always pendant on host country regulations.

Stephen raises a good point about termination. Even if the employee is relocating back to the home country and maintaining employment with head office they should still have their host country employment terminated according to local regulations. The corollary is of course that companies who do incorporate locally or register locally should also consider the cost and time required to deregister and wind down those entities in future.

Topic Expert
Bob Stenz
Title: Controller
Company: Silicon Valley start-up
(Controller, Silicon Valley start-up) |

Since my original post, I've found a UK outfit which acts as a PEO by employing contractors and acting as a reseller (for a small commission %). When a company is ready for an entity they do all of the entity formation and accounting. Been using them for nearly two years with success. Their name is They also have a sales and marketing arm that they offer to companies who want a turnkey sales and marketing presence in the UK.

Matte Capital GES
Title: Business Development
Company: Capital GES
(Business Development, Capital GES) |

Hello everybody,

If you are still looking for PEO / EOR services, the company that I am working for offers EOR (Employer of Record) solutions in several countries in Europe, South America and South Africa.

Have a look at the website and feel free to contact me if you need further information

Natali Oprya
Title: Chief Marketing Officer
Company: Acumen International, Global PEO
LinkedIn Profile
(Chief Marketing Officer, Acumen International, Global PEO) |

Hi everyone,

Check out our innovatrive Express Global Employer of Record solution to see how it helps you expand your operations in Europe in record time.


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