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International companies looking to establish a presence in the UAE have several paths open to them. Choosing the right path, however, means knowing what each one offers – and what kind of business it works best for.
With extensive local knowledge and a wealth of skills and experience, the team at Fusion Middle East is there to provide you with all the advice and support your business needs to set up and succeed in its new home in the UAE.
Offering creative solutions that allow you to thrive in your new environment, Fusion Middle East is on hand to ensure you choose the correct company structure for your needs, while providing you with essential services to ensure your business stays on track and on the right side of the law.
In terms of company structures, your main options in the UAE include:
The limited liability company is one of the most common business structures for foreign investors setting up business in the UAE. By law, most LLCs require a UAE national to own at least a 51% stake in the company.
The foreign investor still retains control over the day-to-day running of the business, and that 51% stake does not need to reflect the partner’s share of the profits.
Find out more about the Limited Liability Company – and what Fusion Middle East provides as your trusted local partner in the UAE.
As an extension of its parent company, a foreign branch office must have a specified business activity, which is approved in advance by the relevant local authorities.
Branches are not allowed to physically deal or trade in goods within the UAE, apart from goods manufactured by its parent or its parent’s group. It may offer maintenance and repair services to customers of its parent company.
As it is wholly-owned by its parent company, there is no requirement for a UAE national to own a share of the business. However, the branch must engage a UAE national to act as a local service agent, employed to handle sponsorship and government paperwork.
Find out more about setting up a Foreign Branch Office – and what Fusion Middle East will do to help.
A representative office is like a Foreign Branch Office; in that it is an extension of its parent company. However, the scope of its activities is much more limited.
A representative office is only allowed to promote its parent company’s activities, and is not allowed to undertake any income earning activities. It does not require UAE ownership, but it is required to recruit the services of a UAE national as a local service agent or sponsor.
Find out more about whether a representative office is right for you – and what services Fusion Middle East will offer you.
Designed for businesses that encompass work based on investing mental talents and acquired information, a professional service license is for professionals in recognised fields such as lawyers, engineers, doctors and accountants.
This license allows business owners to undertake activities related to their qualifications and area of expertise within the UAE, permitting 100% ownership of the business, however, a local sponsor is required.
Find out more about the Professional Service License – and how Fusion Middle East will assist in obtaining it.
Dubai is home to a vast array of free zones, set up to encourage direct foreign investment. Setting up within a free zone provides businesses an “offshore” presence, where they are not constrained by same restrictions as “onshore” businesses within the rest of the UAE.
Free zones are governed by their own regulatory authorities, which means free trade entities are not required to have a local partner. Other incentives mean they can import and export goods free from custom duties, they don’t pay corporate or personal income tax, and they can repatriate 100% of their capital and profits.
However, free zones are often industry specific, with the added restriction that most free zones only allow for trade internationally or within the free zone itself. To conduct business onshore within the UAE requires a local agent.
Find out more about free zones in Dubai, and what they could mean for your business. Fusion Middle East does not assist in establishing free zone entities, but we will put you in touch with a trusted company that does.
When establishing a business in Dubai, the right support from the right source goes a long way. After assessing your business needs and determining the nature of your business in Dubai, you should understand the most appropriate structure for your company.
If that happens to be an LLC, you will need a UAE business partner as a 51% shareholder in your company. In order to find business partners and compare your options, you will need to consider what that partner should offer to allow you to succeed.
Understanding that there are many local business partners for foreign investors to choose from, Fusion Middle East works tirelessly to set itself apart from the competition. How do we do this?
As your local partner in Dubai, Fusion Middle East ensures your company abides by all local processes and procedures, providing flexible solutions and invaluable support and advice.
Allowing you to focus on the day-to-day running of your business, we provide a service that is transparent and trustworthy, giving you every opportunity to flourish in the dynamic and exciting hub of Dubai.
We provide a range of services essential to starting a business in Dubai – to then keep it running year after year. Our PRO services include Corporate Services , such as obtaining permits and licenses, as well as Visa Services for you, your family and your employees.
Whatever structure you decide on for your business in Dubai, you will need someone at your side who has local knowledge and an abundance of skills. Contact us today to see what Fusion Middle East will do for you, and to arrange your free, no-obligation consultation.