Start a Small Business in Dubai in Simple Step

The golden city of Dubai has been very kind and supportive towards foreign businesses, start-ups, and new-age investors. Not just international companies, but also local corporations have witnessed growth in the country’s business-friendly environment. Besides, there are many other reasons why entrepreneurs from all around the globe choose Dubai as their work platform. The favorable tax regime, strategic location, and complimentary business policies together make a perfect hub to conduct small business in Dubai. 

If the investors choose UAE freezones for their business setup, the advantages keep coming. For example, full ownership of the company, repatriation of UAE profits and capital, exemption from customs tariffs, etc. Finally, the UAE’s incredibly simple company formation process lowers the burden on investors’ shoulders and gives life to their business setup dream in UAE. 

This article discusses how to start a small business in Dubai including the significant aspects, benefits, and different phases of setting up a small business in UAE.

Best small businesses to start in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates 

  • Restaurant/Café/Bakery 
  • Take-away/Home cooked food delivery 
  • Event management
  • Healthcare and Pharma 
  • Real estate 
  • Construction 
  • Cleaning services 
  • Recruitment agency
  • Transport 
  • Web development 

Benefits of starting a small business in Dubai 

Starting a business in Dubai is very easy. Moreover, there are numerous other possibilities for development for an entrepreneur who wants to set up a small business in Dubai. 

  • Can be initiated at a small budget 
  • Incredible opportunities for growth 
  • Better networking with local as well as international market 
  • Easy access to existing corporations 
  • Extended support from the government
  • Simple company setup procedures

Read Also: What is RAK Free Zone License Cost?

Types of business licenses available in Dubai 

Based on the company’s operations and type, the investor can choose a license to conduct the business legitimately in Dubai. 

The licenses available in Dubai for small businesses are as follows: 

  • Industrial license 
  • Commercial license 
  • Professional license 
  • Tourism license 
  • Craftsmanship license
  • Agricultural license 

 Tips to start a small business in Dubai 

Dubai government immensely supports small businesses and start-up firms by laying down constructive policies and easy methods of establishment. Although planning a start-up can be a tedious task, considering the given tips can maximize the chances of making the business a success. 

  • Finding sponsorship
  • Preparing documents 
  • Understanding legal formalities 
  • Deciding the location for the business 
  • Hiring the right staff 
  • Marketing 

Steps to open a small business in Dubai/UAE 

The incorporation of a small business in Dubai can be completed in just a few simple steps. 

  • Determine the company’s legal structure 

Dubai offers a plethora of legal business structures for new businesses. Every structure has its own favorable and unfavorable factors. The business owner can choose a company structure as per their preference.  Local businesses can also open a digital venture, that too at an affordable cost. 

  • Choose the business activities 

The Dubai authorities have over 2000 permissible business activities, and the owner can choose ones that match their requirements. In order to apply for a relevant license, it is important to list down all the business activities that you want to operate in Dubai. Furthermore, performing a business activity that is not covered under the license can lead to legal penances. 

  • Select a suitable trading name 

Be it a small firm or an established enterprise, a unique trading name is a mandatory requirement while setting up a small business in Dubai. Moreover, the name must be corresponding with the activities of the company. The owner must also ensure that the name is not offensive or misleading in any sense. Thus, for that purpose, they must go through the naming convention protocols set by the UAE government. 

To get more details about the naming policies of the UAE, you can contact the business consultants at Shuraa and get guidance on the firm laws and regulations. 

  • Find an office space 

Dubai provides a convenient option of renting an office space, rather than spending loads on purchasing a property. Further, it also saves from the hassle of selling the property while winding up the business. So, the owner can just lease an office space as per their business needs and staff requirement. 

  • Apply for a business license 

A license is a mandate to run your business smoothly and legally in UAE. Once all the above steps are complete, the owner must soon apply for a business license for their small business in UAE. Dubai offers several license options to choose from, which the owner can select depending on their business activities. 

Since the license holds the record of the activities of the company, it is important to gain approvals for all the operations covered under the license. 

  • Obtain additional approvals 

Along with the approvals required during the license registration process, the applicant needs to gain additional external approvals if they want to add any further business activity to the license. These external approvals may include permissions from the local governing bodies, customs authority, regional transport facility, etc. 

  • Open a bank account for business purposes 

Once the company is all set to start, the owner must emphasize opening a corporate bank account to manage business transactions.  Therefore, the company must collaborate with a bank that can provide them with robust and reliable banking services, along with long-term business benefits. It is important to record that all the financial dealing is handled properly to avoid any financial frauds such as money laundering.  

  • Submit visa applications 

Once you receive your business license, the next step is to apply for a UAE residence visa, both for you and your employees. If the business owner is already a UAE resident, they have the right to sponsor their employee visas. Further, the introduction of new visa reforms by the UAE government empowers securing multiple visas. The visa quota depends on the size and type of the company. 

Documentation for starting a small business in UAE 

The list of documents that the owner must gather while registering for their small business includes the following: 

  • Business plan
  • Application form for registration of business 
  • MoA and LSA agreements 
  • Passport copies of the owner/shareholders 
  • Receipt of payment for trade name registration 
  • UAE visa/entry permit
  • Tenancy contract 


The whole discussion about setting up a small business winds up in UAE. The United Arab Emirates, especially Dubai, is the most preferred choice for many investors and entrepreneurs from all around the world. The healthy working environment, business-friendly laws, and a helpful government help all the small businesses in UAE to enjoy increased revenue and reap profits right from the beginning. 

It takes merely three to four weeks to launch a small business in Dubai if you follow the right procedure. Even though it isn’t rocket science, planning a small start-up can be a frustrating task. Therefore, it is better to seek help from the business consultants who provide end-to-end business assistance by taking care of all your business needs.

Shuraa Business setup will support you in making a name for your brand in the Dubai market. In simple words, we will take care of everything you need for setting up your small business. We handle all the necessary admin tasks such as documentation, banking, licensing, etc., so that you can focus on the core of your business. In addition, you get quick, consistent, and unbiased solutions for all your business queries. 

So, connect with Shuraa and book a free consultation with our advisors. 

Call +971 44081900 or email us at You can also share your queries through WhatsApp at +971 50 777 5554.


Sakina Burhan is a good experience writer, blogger and social media promoter by providing valuable information which helps readers to get more ideas.

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