How To Start an LLC in Dubai? (A Complete Guide)

Jon Morgan
Published by Jon Morgan | Co-Founder & Chief Editor
Last updated: August 17, 2023
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Dubai is one of the world's most popular business destinations, best known for its profit-sharing agreement.

With years of expertise in business formation, backed by a seasoned team of legal experts and attorneys, I guarantee that profit-sharing agreements offer invaluable benefits for determined LLC founders.

With extensive expertise and in-depth research on Dubai LLC formation, my team and I confirm that 51% legal equity held by a local partner in Dubai provides international investors a significant advantage, sharing a 50% stake in both businesses.

We have tested and listed the pros and cons of opening an LLC in Dubai. Here are our findings.

Quick Summary

  • Starting an LLC in Dubai involves several steps, from choosing the business activity, registering with the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, to getting a business visa
  • Forming an LLC offers benefits such as raising capital by selling shares to new investors
  • It is recommended to open a bank account at any of the major banks in Dubai for straightforward steps and fast document handling

7 Steps to Start an LLC Company in Dubai

A discussion between two people in an office

There are seven steps that you must follow to proceed with an LLC company formation in Dubai. Here is a guide to setting up a Limited Liability Company in Dubai.

1. Choose the business activities:

It is important to choose the business activities that you want to pursue before starting the Limited Liability Company in Dubai.

Discover how to determine the ideal business type for you by conducting thorough research and registering with the Department of Economic Development in the emirate where you plan to establish business.

2. Select a trading name:

The next step is to choose a name for your LLC company and register it with the Dubai Economic Department.

The name of the Limited Liability Company company must be in Arabic and English and it should not be similar to any existing LLC company. Ensure compliance and avoid conflicts by checking LLC name availability.

3. Apply for a Trade license:

Register through the relevant authorities in Dubai to obtain the necessary licenses for your LLC, based on your chosen business activity.

The type of business license can be found on the website of the Department of Economic Development.

You can also make a deal with a local sponsor.

4. Register with the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry:

The next step is the company registration with the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry to receive the initial approval [1].

This is a requirement for all businesses in Dubai.

Registration can be done online or at one of the local branches. Obtain MoA or LSA Agreement because they will be required later on. Get the initial approval from the Department of Economic Development to issue visas.

5. Open a corporate bank account:

The next step is to open a corporate bank account in the name of your LLC company. This can be done at any of the major banks in Dubai.

Here are three major banks in Dubai that are often listed as beneficial for opening a bank account for an LLC:

  • Emirates NBD
  • Dubai Islamic Bank
  • Mashreq Bank

6. Get a business visa:

After your company has been registered and has received initial approval, you will need to get a business visa to start operating.

This can be done by applying for a work permit through the Department of Economic Development.

After you have received the work permit, you can apply for a business visa at the Immigration Department.

These are the steps you need to follow for the LLC company formation in Dubai.

By following these steps, you will be able to establish a successful business.

Advantages of an LLC Company Setup in Dubai

The advantages of a limited liability company set up in Dubai are best seen in the limited liability of the shareholders. Compared to a partnership, where the partners are responsible for any losses the company suffers, this is a big advantage.

Additionally, compared to a partnership, an LLC offers its members more legal protection for business activities.

An LLC also can raise money by selling shares to new investors. In a partnership, when the partners are only those who have made the original investment in the company, this is not conceivable.

An LLC is more flexible in terms of profit sharing. LLC members can determine their share of profits. This is not possible in a partnership where profits must be shared equally among the partners.

Disadvantages of an LLC Company Setup in Dubai

The disadvantages of an LLC company formation in Dubai are money-related. One of the main disadvantages here is that forming an LLC in Dubai is more expensive to set up than a partnership.

This is because the minimum capital requirements are higher for an LLC. In addition, an LLC must have a legal advisor and accountant, which also adds to the Dubai LLC formation cost.

Another bottleneck that Dubai-based LLC owners face is a bureaucratic nature.

From our experience, there are many steps and procedures to follow to set up and operate an LLC, alongside searching for a local sponsor.

Another factor is that a limited liability company is less popular than a partnership, so it may be challenging to find investors.

Despite these disadvantages, the LLC remains the most popular form of business in Dubai due to its limited liability and profit-sharing features. If you want to set up a business in Dubai, an LLC is the best option.


Can I Do LLC in Dubai Without a Company?

You cannot do business activities in Dubai without a company; you must get licenses to start a business there.

What Type of LLC Should I Form in Dubai?

The best type of company to form in Dubai is a Limited Liability Company due to its limited liability and profit-sharing.

What Is the Minimum Capital Need for an LLC Company Formation in Dubai?

The minimum capital you need for an LLC formation in Dubai is AED 50,000. This sum should get you the trade license.

How Many Shareholders Must A Limited Liability Company In Dubai Have?

A Limited Liability Company in Dubai must have a minimum of two members. However, there is no maximum number of members.

Can a Dubai LLC Have a Foreign Investor?

A Dubai LLC can have foreign members as long as they are legal residents of UAE.

Is a Registered Agent Required For an LLC in Dubai?

A registered Agent is not required for an LLC in Dubai.

What Is the LLC Company Formation Duration in Dubai?

The duration for forming an LLC company in Dubai is approximately 2-3 weeks.

Which Licenses Can an LLC In Dubai Possess?

An LLC can hold the following licenses in Dubai: commercial, professional, industrial, and tourism.

Starting an LLC In Dubai

LLC company formation in Dubai is quite easy, however, you will need to follow the steps outlined in this article. By following these steps, you will be able to establish a successful business in Dubai.

To get the most out of your LLC business, make sure that you think about both advantages and disadvantages of running it. This way, you will be better prepared for possible challenges, such as looking for a local sponsor.

To streamline this process, consider using trusted and tested LLC formation services, which can guarantee you a seamless and lawful procedure for establishing an LLC.



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