There are many incredible reasons to start a business in the UAE. Its amazing location in the heart of the Middle East. Direct links via land, sea and air to the biggest markets in the world. A thriving and diverse economy. Welcoming and supportive business environment. The list goes on and on.
But there’s another great reason to set up in Dubai that doesn’t get as much attention as the others. And that’s the country’s rich community of company formation experts. Thanks to the UAE’s longstanding popularity with expatriates, the processes involved in relocating and launching a business out here are robust and time-tested.
That said, not all company setup services are alike. Some are purely transactional – you pay for your license and away you go. Others, such as Business Incorporation Zone, offer a personal and supportive service long after the launch of your business.
So, if you’re looking to get started in the UAE, here are a few things to look out for when selecting a business setup partner.
How to find the best business setup consultants in Dubai, UAE
1. Company history and reputation
As with every decision in business, credibility is key. There are many pretenders in all fields, and company formation is no different.
That’s why it pays to do your research on any potential partner. Look into the history of the business. How long has it been running? How big is its client base? Does it have any reviews or references available?
You should only enter into a contract or package once you are sure that you are dealing with a reputable and trusted service provider.
2. Do they have options for all jurisdictions?
Location is key when setting up in the UAE. Do you wish to be based in Dubai or a more cost-effective jurisdiction such as Fujairah? Will you set up in the mainland or in a UAE free zone?
Not only should your company formation partner help you make this decision, but they should also be able to facilitate company incorporation in your chosen jurisdiction. So, before you enter into a relationship, be sure to double-check the scope of your chosen provider.
3. Check for hidden fees
Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for company formation companies to lure customers in with low prices before revealing hidden fees down the line.
A reputable provider should also outline a simple and transparent pricing structure right from the beginning of discussions. This should include the cost of cancellation and renewals, as well as initial startup costs.
If your chosen partner cannot do this, it is a good idea to look elsewhere.
4. Is your partner well-connected?
Setting up in Dubai involves liaising with numerous industry and government bodies. To the untrained eye, this process can seem daunting, even confusing. When you work with a knowledgeable partner, you get an expert on your side.
For quick and easy incorporation and licensing, your company formation partner should have close contacts with all relevant bodies, including:
- The Department of Economic Development (DED)
- Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM)
- Dubai Land Department (DLD)
- Dubai Health Authority (DHA)
- Ministry of Economy
- Municipalities across all emirates
5. Look for flexible payment plans
Money can be tight in the early days of startup. So, it’s vital that you keep a close eye on your cash flow and don’t overspend too much up front.
If your company setup partner will only expect an upfront payment for your license and visa services, it may be a good idea to look for another.
A reputable provider will be able to set up with a monthly payment plan to spread the costs into manageable chunks over a long period.
How to start your mainland or free zone company in Dubai, UAE
When working with BIZ, business setup in Dubai is fast, affordable and straightforward. We’ll guide you through the following process.
1. Selecting your business activities
The first step is to decide on your business activities. While this may seem a simple undertaking, it does require some prior knowledge.
All permitted business activities are outlined by the local Department of Economic Development (DED) or municipality. There are thousands to choose from – from consultancy to trading.
2. Choosing your company name
When choosing a company name in the UAE, you must abide by a strict set of naming conventions.
In short, you should avoid any offensive or blasphemous language. Avoid names of well-known organisations and avoid abbreviations if naming your company after yourself – i.e., Dave Mann Consulting, rather than D Mann Consulting. You must also check that your chosen name is available to register.
3. Making your license application
With the formalities out of the way, we come to the most important step of all – applying for your trade license.
Whether applying to form a company in the mainland or in a free zone, you are usually only required to provide a few details and some basic documentation, including:
- Completed application form
- Passport copy of the proposed owner or owners
- Two colour passport-size photos
4. Making your visa applications
You’ll also need a visa to work in the UAE – as will your employees, should you have any.
Again, the most reputable company formation agents can help you with this step.
As the holder of a UAE business license, you can also sponsor others for their visas too. This could be a spouse, parent or child, or a domestic worker such as a housekeeper.
5. Opening a corporate bank account
The final step is opening your UAE corporate bank account. Once again, a company formation specialist can handle all applications for you, liaising with relevant authorities on your behalf.
Why BIZ provides the best business setup consultants in Dubai
Hopefully, this guide has made clear that if you’re armed with the right knowledge, company formation in the UAE doesn’t have to be overly complex.
That being said, it does require a level of prior knowledge of the process. What’s more, it is important to note that the application process is only straightforward if your license application is complete at the time of submission and free from errors.
To help you ensure that this is the case, it’s a good idea to work with a company formation specialist such as BIZ when establishing a new company in the UAE.
We are a team of company registration professionals who are passionate about bringing the dreams of aspiring entrepreneurs and SMEs to life.
As well as handling your license application, BIZ can also assist with the opening of corporate bank accounts and advise on the most appropriate financial institution to suit your specific needs.
We also offer visa and immigration services and can handle all government formalities, permissions, work permits and visa applications that are required to trade in the UAE.
In short, our experts can establish your company on your behalf, make your license and visa applications, and take care of all the necessary admin – leaving you free to get on with running your business.