Dubai’s industrial growth has set very high benchmarks for other business hubs. Today, company formation in the UAE, especially a mainland company set up in Dubai, holds the potential to deliver exponential dividends in the future.
This has surely grabbed the attention of the new-age investors and entrepreneurs in the UK who are also willing to tap into Dubai’s lucrative marketplace. But what makes a mainland company so special? We’ll answer that and quite a lot more in the blog.
What is Dubai mainland?
A mainland company (also referred to as an onshore company) is a business venture registered in Dubai. Additionally, these firms are regulated directly by the Department of Economic Development (DED).
Onshore companies enjoy hassle-free trading in Dubai, all across the UAE, and internationally too. Furthermore, the latest amendments made to the Companies Law have allowed expatriates to enjoy complete business ownership of their mainland companies.
Earlier, mainland businesses had to collaborate with a UAE national (called local sponsor) who’d have 51% shareholding of the foreign company. However, more than 1000 business activities have now been approved by the government to become eligible for 100% expat ownership.
Benefits of Establishing a mainland business in Dubai
Here’s a list of benefits you can enjoy after setting up a mainland company in the UAE:
1. No minimum capital requirement
You don’t have to meet any minimum capital requirements when you launch a business in Dubai mainland. Therefore, you can spend your money on other growth-related operational activities without worrying about settling the capital demands.
2. Diverse business opportunities
A mainland company setup in Dubai provides diverse business opportunities to the investors. You can indulge in various business activities (as approved under your trading license) without any legal restrictions. This sets onshore business incorporation apart from a free zone establishment.
For instance, a company set up in the DMC (Dubai media city) free zone must conduct business activities only related to media and entertainment. However, mainland companies enjoy increased freedom in this regard.
3. Tax exemptions
The best part about establishing a company in the mainland region is the exemption from various taxes and charges. Business formation in the UAE is well-organised, completely transparent, and easy to comprehend. Likewise, the laws for taxation are also lucid and easy to follow.
The UK’s investors and other business owners don’t have to pay any corporate or personal taxes when they launch a mainland venture. In addition, there’s no taxation on capital gains and you can repatriate 100% of your profits too.
4. No geographic boundation
Mainland businesses can trade freely within Dubai and all across the UAE. On the other hand, free zone companies have several geographic restrictions as they can’t trade in the mainland region or any other free zone.
Therefore, you get the opportunity to address a wider target market. This, in turn, can become the game-changer for your mainland enterprise in the Emirates.
5. Preference for government projects
Mainland ventures get the opportunity to bid for various government consignments. These projects shape the future of work, lifestyle, tourism, etc., in the UAE. Therefore, it’s a lucrative opportunity that you should look to grab with both hands.
Working on these prestigious projects also helps you strengthen your business network. Today, we all know the importance of networking in the corporate world.
Steps to Establish Your Company in the UAE Mainland
You need to follow the steps discussed below to establish a mainland company in Dubai:
1. Define your business activities & legal form
What would be the day-to-day business activities of your mainland company once it’s up and running? Pen them down, curate the list further with the help of business consultants at the Shuraa UK branch, and share this list with the DED.
Moreover, define the legal structure of your onshore business venture in Dubai. It can be a sole proprietorship, LLC (limited liability company), joint venture, etc.
2. Register a trading name for your mainland company
The next step is to reserve a trading name for your venture. The name you select must not contain prohibited words (like any reference to a God or deity, name of regions, etc.).
In addition, the trading name shouldn’t have any controversial terms or words that derogate someone’s religious or sentimental beliefs. You should also be aware that mainland companies need to pay an additional fee for leveraging a foreign trading name.
3. Rent office space
Mainland companies must have an official office location for their venture in Dubai. However, this doesn’t mean you need to invest hefty sums of money in real estate. The best option is to rent office space for your company.
Advanced solutions like flexi-desks, virtual offices, and more are available for company formation in the mainland region. You can sign a sustainability contract with Shuraa to launch your company remotely in this business zone.
4. Apply for a license
The next step for mainland company setup in Dubai is applying for a trading license. You can obtain a commercial, professional, tourism, and agricultural license in Dubai. Note that the DED issues and regulates the Dubai mainland license.
The business experts at the Shuraa UK branch help you apply for the desired trading license by managing the license application, paperwork, and more. In addition, we also provide assistance to secure additional approvals from external authorities in the Emirates.
The Dubai mainland license cost 2023 is around AED 10,000 for a commercial license. On the other hand, the fee for a professional license is around AED 6,000.
5. Open a bank account
You must have a corporate bank account to manage all your monetary transactions. Therefore, choose a reliable local or international bank (as per your requirements) that offers long-term benefits.
The financial advisors at the Shuraa UK branch share a curated list of banks with our clients after analysing their business requirements. Therefore, you don’t need to take the burden of finding the ideal bank for your mainland company.
Cost of setting up a company in Dubai mainland
The payments made for initial approvals, trading name registration, and working license can help in estimating a ballpark figure for the overall cost of a Dubai mainland business setup.
Investors have to pay AED 120 (one time) for initial approval and AED 620 (also one time) for trademark registration. The fee for a commercial license is AED 10,000 for a commercial license and around AED 6,000 for a professional business license.
Moreover, the business license has to be renewed annually, and it’s critical to have a valid trading license at any moment. Other payments involved in mainland business incorporation include the charges for notarisation of MoA that amounts to approx. AED 1,500 (one-time fee).
Translation charges, administrative services fee (if applicable), etc., also add up in the overall Dubai mainland business setup cost.
Launch your mainland company in Dubai!
A mainland company setup in Dubai offers numerous benefits to business owners. Moreover, setting up such a company is not a tedious task anymore.
All you need to do is connect with the company formation experts at the Shuraa UK branch, and we’ll handle the rest. We have an array of business packages and assure you that there’s one for your dream mainland venture too!