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How To Start a Small Business in Dubai? 5 Easy Steps

start small business in dubai

Starting a small business in Dubai is straightforward if you partner with a Dubai company formation expert who understands the local rules and regulations.

Dubai is a bustling place with over three million residents and lots of visitors, making it a great spot for small businesses. When you hear “startup,” you might picture a trendy office with young employees and perks like a foosball table and a fancy kitchen. However, there are many options when it comes to starting a small business in Dubai.

Starting small could mean offering your expertise through consultations from a desk, setting up a tea stall near a parking lot, or even selling groceries. The possibilities for small businesses in Dubai are endless. But before you dive in, there are some important things to keep in mind when starting a small business in the UAE.

The Advantages of Starting a Small Business in Dubai

Are you thinking about starting your own business in Dubai but have a limited budget? This guide will cover important aspects to keep in mind when setting up a business in Dubai with minimal or no money. The key takeaway is to plan meticulously and understand the necessary steps for legal operation. By doing so, you can prevent costly issues in the future and look forward to successfully launching your own brand!

How to Open a Small Business in Dubai: Step-by-Step Guide”

If you want personalized assistance and tailored guidance for starting your business in Dubai, reach out to us today. We’re experts in helping businesses through the necessary application processes to trade officially in the UAE. With our support, you could be up and running within a couple of weeks.

Here’s a simplified checklist to get you started:

Step.1 Apply for a Commercial License in Dubai

There are different types of licenses in the UAE, but we’ll focus on applying for a commercial license. This involves several steps, and while they aren’t overly complex individually, it’s important to understand how business incorporation works in the UAE. We strongly recommend seeking expert advice to navigate this process.

Step2. Specify Your Business Activity

To obtain a business license in Dubai, you must list all your business activities. You can choose from a predefined list of over 2000 options that cover various industries. It’s crucial to include all your business activities to avoid fines or the risk of losing your license.

Step3. Select Your Company Name

Your company name should be catchy, memorable, and comply with the UAE’s naming rules. Avoid using offensive language, the names of well-known institutions, or abbreviations of your name. Using your full name is generally allowed. Ensure your business name has a legal entity like FZE or LLC. These are some naming criteria; consult us for a comprehensive list.

Step4. Documents Needed for a Commercial License in Dubai

You’ll need to decide between a free zone and mainland setup, each with its advantages and limitations. Seek expert advice to choose the best option for you. Afterward, you can apply for your commercial license, requiring:

  • A completed application form
  • Passport copies of the proposed owner(s)
  • Two color passport-size photos

Step5. Apply for Your Visa

The final step has four stages, including a medical examination, but it typically takes less than a week. Once completed, you and your business will be ready to start selling in the UAE and beyond.

Cost of Opening a Small Business in Dubai

Getting a commercial license in Dubai doesn’t have to be a headache, but it can be tricky if you’re not familiar with all the steps involved. Plus, it might end up being pricier than you anticipate.

While many businesses include this expense in their initial budget, there are other expenses beyond just the license itself. The license alone costs AED 10,000, but there are additional fees for things like registrations, visas, and more that could push your total to AED 30,000 or even higher. If you’re not ready to cover these costs yet, it’s a good idea to think about whether you can secure additional funds before you start.

Gathering the Right Documents to Start a Small Business in Dubai

Here’s a list of documents you’ll need to start a small business in Dubai:

  1. A detailed business plan document
  2. A completed application form
  3. MoA (Memorandum of Association) and LSA (Local Service Agent) agreements
  4. Proof of payment for trade name registration
  5. Passport copies of all company shareholders (if applicable)
  6. NOC (No Objection Certificate) from your service agent
  7. A valid rental contract for your business location

Start Your Business in Dubai with Companysetup

This guide has hopefully shown that setting up a business in Dubai as a foreigner or non-resident doesn’t have to be overly complicated. However, it does require some prior knowledge of the process. It’s important to remember that the application process is straightforward only if your license application is complete and error-free when submitted.

To ensure your application meets these criteria, it’s a smart move to collaborate with a Dubai business setup specialist like Company Setup Consultants when establishing a new company in the UAE. They can provide the expertise needed to make the process smoother and error-free.

If You want to Start a Small Business in Dubai, UAE? Look no further! contact us our expert consultants.  Feel free to drop by or call us at +971 43827700. Send a WhatsApp Message for Chat Query on +971 557012754 or email us at

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