Difference Between Branch and Subsidiary


Main Difference

The main difference between Branch and Subsidiary is that a Branch is not an isolated legal entity, but an expansion of the parental organization whereas, a Subsidiary is a separate legal entity from its parent.

Branch vs. Subsidiary

Branches are not a dissimilar corporation and are not separate from the parent corporation, and they do not have a legal entity of their own, although they must legally register in the economic register. Whereas the subsidiaries are separate from the parent company, and consequently have their legal entity and name, different from the lead firm.

In the branches, there is unlimited or unrestrained liability. Parent company compulsory expected the possible debts without limitation; it depends on the action of the branch while with subsidiaries, liability is limited for the parent company. It is so because they can perform actions themselves which are different from the actions performed by the parent company.


Branches will pay commercial tax or non-resident income tax; on the other hand, the subsidiaries are subject to the law of the state where they are. In branch, responsibilities extend to parent company while in subsidiary responsibilities are narrow.

Branches have combined the preservation of their financials, whereas subsidiaries preserve their isolated financials. Asset for a branch is 100% from the parent company whereas for a subsidiary it is entirely ownership more than 50%. If a branch is not making incomes, it can close off, whereas if a subsidiary is not making proposed profits, it can be sell out.

Comparison Chart

Branch involves a launching frame or establishment to by holding or parent business, to do the identical occupational processes, at a changed location.A subsidiary establishment understood as the business whose is complete or partial governing interest held by another establishment.
Branch brings equal business as a holding company.A subsidiary whether or not it carries the same business as a parent organization.
Reports To
Main officeHolding company
It prolongs to the parent company.It restricted to the subsidiary.
Proprietorship Interest
The parent association has a 100% proprietorship interest in the branch.The parent association has >50-100% proprietorship interest in the subsidiary.
Separate Legal Standing
Accounts Maintenance
Either individually or jointlyIndividually

What is Branch?

A branch is a site or place, other than the headquarters, where a business performed. Maximum branches are including smaller division of changed characteristics of the business, like personnel resources, publicizing, accounting, etc. A branch will typically have a controller who will be informed straight to and carry out orders from, an association part of or member of the central office.

Branches are beneficial in that they let many of the customer-specific managerial deliberations to conduct nearby to customers. Many clients may favor a resident representative they can call upon rather freely. A branch might include a particular descriptive, or it may team with many peoples based upon business requirement.

There’s no global model a branch format may adopt, but many are placed based on physical need. In more populated areas, it’s not surprising to see several branches surrounded by nearness to one another. Most of the banks, financial organizations, restaurant chain, and others have branches that are starting to play the organization role.

Creation of branches in several outlying areas growths the client portfolio, availability, and also assistance in time and efficient supply of belongings and services. Meanwhile, a branch is not a single legal entity, and its legal responsibility prolongs to the parent company.

What is a Subsidiary?

In the business community, a subsidiary is an establishment that refers to another company, which typically denoted to as the holding company. The holding corporation grasps a governing concern in the subsidiary, means that it has to control the rest of the stock or half of its reserve or inventory.

When a subsidiary is 100% endowed or in control of another firm, the subsidiary is known as a wholly-owned subsidiary. A parent or holding company buys or starts a subsidiary to deliver the parent company with definite collaborations, such as enlarged tax profits, varied risk, or resources in the form of incomes, equipment, or possessions.

Subsidiaries are isolated and separate legal entities from their holding companies, which imitates in the individuality of their accountability, taxes, and authority. If a holding undertaking keeps a subsidiary in a new state, the subsidiary must comply with the laws and norms of the state where it incorporated and workings. A subsidiary generally makes independent fiscal statements.

Key Differences

  1. A branch is an addition of the parent or holding company opened to perform the same business set-up as the parent company. On the other hand, a Subsidiary is a company where the parent company retains most shares, thus have a majority holding.
  2. The Branch may perform or execute the same business procedures as the Head office. On the contrary, the subsidiary may or may not carry out the same business procedures as the holding company.
  3. As regards, branches may have common or dissimilar care or maintenance of fiscal records, while the subsidiaries keep their isolated or separate fiscal records.
  4. A branch has no discrete legal or permitted entity, whereas a subsidiary is a discrete legal entity and has a means changed from its holding company.
  5. If a branch repetitively undergoes losses or damages, it sealed or shut down, while if a subsidiary is inclined to losses, it is finished or depleted to another corporation.
  6. Accountability or liabilities of the branch prolongs to the parent business, i.e., when the branch is incapable of performing accountability, it must be paid by the Head Office. On the contrary, the accountability of a subsidiary does not prolong to the holding company.


In short, fundamentally, branches are to expand client perception, while a subsidiary concern is for the extension of the business entity.