Starting a Business in Dubai

Dubai, the illustrious Gold City, stands tall as one of the world’s most sought-after business destinations. Renowned for its business-friendly regulations, state-of-the-art infrastructure, and cosmopolitan lifestyle, Dubai has become the ultimate choice for corporations and entrepreneurs. This thriving city offers abundant opportunities for business expansion.

As affirmed by the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Economy, the UAE has secured the top position in the Global Entrepreneurship Index for both 2021 and 2022 (Source).

Now, let’s navigate through the intricacies of establishing a Dubai Mainland company, examining the crucial factors and considerations involved in the process.

1) Business Ideation & Market Research

Initiate the process by identifying a niche business idea that resonates with your skills, experience, and interests. Conduct a thorough market study to gauge product viability and financial feasibility, laying a solid foundation for your Dubai Mainland company.

2) Comprehensive Business Planning

Develop a detailed business plan, serving as both your entrepreneurial GPS and a tool to secure finances. This plan should delineate goals, types of products or services, sales and marketing strategies, and financial projections. Undertake a competition analysis to gain insights into current market conditions.

3) Selecting the Right Business Structure

Dubai Mainland provides various legal forms for business setup, including sole proprietorship, partnership, or limited liability company (LLC), each offering unique features, benefits, and requirements.

Ensure your Dubai Mainland company’s name adheres to naming guidelines and reflects its brand identity.

4) Business Registration & Licensing

Register your business with the Department of Economic Development (DED) and acquire the necessary licenses to commence operations. Licensing requirements vary based on business type and location, with Dubai Mainland offering a conducive environment and incentives for foreign investors.

5) Obtaining Local Sponsorship

For businesses outside free zones, enlist a local sponsor or partner—UAE citizens or companies who hold a majority share. Clearly define terms and conditions in an explicit agreement. Good news is as per the new regulations for most of the business local sponsor isn’t a mandatory requirement and an expat fully own the company in Dubai mainland.

6) Opening a Bank Account

Establish a corporate bank account with local or international banks like Commercial Bank of Dubai, HSBC, Citibank, or Standard Chartered, facilitating seamless financial transactions for your Dubai Mainland company.

7) Choosing the Right Location

Select a strategic location with essential infrastructure, ideally close to your target market, ensuring smooth business operations. Additionally, build a robust online presence through a professional website and active social media profiles.

Final Note

Upon completing all legal requirements and securing office space, initiate networking for your Dubai Mainland company by attending industry events and joining professional associations and local business groups. Seek guidance from legal professionals and business consultants for specific insights.

Embark on your Dubai Mainland company journey with this comprehensive guide, setting the stage for a successful establishment and growth in the dynamic business landscape of Dubai.


Limited offer
Gold coin




20% Discount on multi-year license

Your solution is a form away! Complete it, and we’ll respond within 4 business hours!

    It is crucial to comprehend the distinction between obtaining a license with a visa quota and acquiring residency in the UAE. A license with a visa quota solely covers the expenses related to a business license and visa quota, with the possibility of including a Flexi office lease in certain Freezones. However, possessing a visa quota does not automatically grant you UAE residency; additional steps must be completed. If you wish to apply for a partner/investor visa, there are supplementary costs involved. These include obtaining an immigration card, registering for E-channel (NE Only), and paying fees for visa, visa processing, medical examination and Emirates ID typing. To effectively plan your business expenses, it is imperative to ask the right questions from the beginning to avoid surprises and hidden costs.