Is Business Start Up Possible in Dubai Mainland Without a Local Sponsor?

UAE and one of its bustling emirates Dubai has some unique laws when it comes to setting up local business vis-à-vis foreign nationals. Although these stipulations may seem overwhelming and unfriendly, the fact is there are ways and means to get around them legally. It also helps if aspiring business entities hire services of business consultant and setup professional like Business Link UAE. Before dwelling into some of these stringent business setup laws, let us first examine various setup options that Dubai offers to outsiders and how Dubai’s mainland company formation is done. At the very outset, Dubai offers three major licenses – Commercial, industrial and professional.  It also offers two distinct business landscapes. Read on to know more about them, especially mainland company setup dubai.

Company Formation in Dubai Mainland

Aspiring businessmen can set up shop in Dubai mainland under different legal structures such as Limited Liability Company or Partnership Company. One has to remember that in both cases a local sponsor is necessary– a UAE national who will typically own 51% share/s. This is simply not negotiable.

However, it does not mean you need to share half your profits. Local sponsor for business setup in Dubai is generally offered a yearly fee while the minority shareholder continues to run the business without any interference.

Setting up Business in Free Zone

Most of the GCC states offer specially developed free zones for new enterprises. Dubai too has its own set of free zones such as JAFZ, DAFZ, and DIC. So what are these free zones? These are unique, self-contain business landscapes to open a business in uae, but offer 100% ownership to foreign business entities.

There is absolutely no need for a local sponsor. However, there is a catch. Businesses set up in free zones cannot indulge in trade within the local markets. On the flip side, these FTZ’s offer 100% repatriation of profits and also boast several exemptions and rebates.

So, is it possible for a mainland company to setup Dubai without a local sponsor?

The answer is yes.

Aspiring entities can achieve this by forming a civil or a professional services company in Dubai Mainland. Company formation consultants in Dubai, such as Business Link UAE can obtain Professional Services License for aspiring business entities.

Professional Services License – The only way to own a 100% stake

The only way for ex-pats and foreign nationals to own a 100% stake in Dubai Mainland is to obtain a Dubai professional license. Doctors, lawyers, engineers, consultants, and accountants are some of the examples which fit into this kind of business setup. However, there are some requirements that must be fulfilled.

  • Businesses with professional licenses in Dubai Mainland need to indulge only in professional / consultancy activities.
  • Individuals or individual partners in the case of partnership firms should practice the same professional activities.
  • Individuals and partners must have the required professional qualifications.

This kind of business setup still requires a local agent in Dubai. Who will initiate the dialogue, file legal documents with various government departments and play the role of a mediator between a professional company and several Dubai legal entities?

Still, if you have any query about this discussion and want to start own business in Dubai Mainland with 100% ownership then contact us today +971 43215227 or Email us at for complete assistance and get free consultation also.

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