Dubai is one of the best locales in the world to decide to open a business due to the tax benefits, the vibrant economy, and the broad, global market. However, there is plenty of competition, which means you are going to have to offer an exceptional product, thoroughly understand your target market, and also learn how business is done in this part of the world.

To assist you, here are three essential steps to build a successful startup in Dubai.

1. Work smartly with your bank.

No matter what niche your startup is in, there is one thing that is guaranteed — you are going to need capital to launch it. Whether you are going to remain a small company or are envisioning building a global empire, you want to ensure that you are working with a bank that you can count on to be with you for the long haul.

In fact, the bank that you opt to work with and how you go about nurturing that relationship is going to play a significant role in determining how successful your startup can be.

If you play your cards right, you can use your bank to obtain necessary financing (both now and in the future), to procure a business credit card, to stay organized concerning finances, to protect your business, and to know that you have a financial institution that is on your side and is looking out for your best interests.

2. Recruit the right people.

Your start-up is only going to be as good as the people you have working in it; but, you probably know that already. As most startups operate with a small group of employees (perhaps only you!) for a notable period, when you do start to hire new people it is essential that you recruit the appropriate ones who are going to aid you in moving your business in the direction you want it to go.

Often, in startups, it can be challenging to know when it is the right time to start recruiting. While every company’s needs are different, generally, if you are frequently noticing a deficiency in requisite knowledge in a particular area or don’t have enough employees to be able to finish important work, then you definitely need to analyze whether or not recruitments needs to be done.

Although as the founder of a startup, it can be hard to relinquish control and pass responsibilities onto another person, you need to be realistic and know you cannot do everything alone.

Remember that some areas of your business are not going to be your specialty and by regularly engaging with these areas, you are taking your focus off of what you are an expert in — growing your company.

Specifically, as a startup in Dubai, you want to make sure that you have people on the team who know how to start a business in a Dubai free zone and who are committed to taking advantage of the benefits that this location can bring.

3. Get the appropriate legal experts.

There is nothing more important than ensuring you are going to have the kind of expertise required should your company run into any legal trouble.

While no business owner wants to imagine that happening, the truth is that every area of your business can develop a potential issue. Generally, it is suggested that you have a corporate lawyer working on your business before anything goes wrong, rather than calling in someone to fix a mess — prevention is way better than cure.

To keep yourself in the clear, opt to hire the services of one of the top law firms in Dubai that has years of expertise and experience in this particular area. It is always preferable to have a local law firm working with you, as they are going to be much more acquainted with the specific laws of the land.

Keep in mind, laws are challenging to decipher, and they undergo modifications every now and then, so this is an aspect that is best handled by the professionals.

Start your business on the right foot

Building a business is always challenging, but you can make it a little easier by having the key success ingredients and the right people onboard. So, if you are keen on realizing your dream enterprise in Dubai, be sure to keep the above considerations in mind.

Have you ever considered opening up a start-up in Dubai? Why or why not? What challenges do you think you would encounter along the way?

Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!


Sharon Danso-Missah is the Head of Marketing  at  Al Tamimi & Company, the largest law firm in the Middle East, with 17 offices across nine countries. Established in 1989, they are a full service commercial firm combining knowledge, experience and expertise to ensure all clients have access to the best legal solutions that are commercially sound and cost effective.