setup of a mobile app company in the UAE

With millions of apps available now in the different stores to help you track a trip, monitor your diet, sleep routine, diet, hail a cab, listen to music or read a book; the mobile industry has thrived massively around the world in the last decade. Similarly, the setup of a mobile app company in the UAE is the first step to start.

In this article, we will ensure you understand the entire mobile app business setup in the UAE and how can you carry it smoothly with us. Due to incorporation ease, most mobile app development organizations choose to set up in a free zone. As a result, they gain access to Flexi-desk services and several benefits.

  1. Where is the best location to set up your mobile app business?
  2. How can you set up a mobile app company in the UAE with more than one shareholder?
  3. What is the process for starting a mobile app business in the UAE?
  4. How can you benefit from starting a mobile app company?
  5. What is the cost to start a mobile app business?
  6. How can we assist you to set up a mobile app company in the UAE?

1. Where is the best location to set up your mobile app business?

There are important reasons why the United Arab Emirates is such a great option for those investors and entrepreneurs wishing to enter the mobile app market such as; how easy it is to set up a business in the market. If you are ready to start with the setup of a mobile app company in the UAE or any of the seven emirates, here is everything you should know.

Mainland or Free Zone?

Mobile app companies are normally seen as ‘virtual’ in the UAE. In addition, you can build and trade these apps from anywhere around the globe. There is not a mainland license in the UAE for this type of entity. As a result, you must register your company in a free zone.

1.1 Choosing a free zone

If you want to set up a mobile app company in the UAE, you must choose a free zone, this way you will receive many benefits such as:

  • No corporate or personal tax.
  • Full company ownership for foreign individuals.
  • 100% exemption on imports and exports.
  • Full repatriation of profits and capital.

However, while all UAE free zones offer plenty of advantages; some are a better option for mobile app businesses than others. For instance, due to its nature, Dubai Internet City (DIC) is one of the most suitable for this area. But in that free zone, costs tend to be quite high. For those companies looking to save valuable money, Fujairah Creative City is a cost-efficient option.

Whether you choose to set up in DIC or Fujairah Creative City, the entire process is straightforward. But Dubai Internet City does require extra documentation; this includes a certificate of incorporation and a detailed business plan as well as an application form and passport copies of the involved parties.

Fujairah Creative City, on the other hand, is lighter on bureaucracy and paperwork. In addition, it does not require annual audits, any share capital, or any formal bookkeeping. In addition, you should be careful about the new UAE tax law announced on January 31st. Do proper research on the key factors you should keep in mind regarding corporate tax.

1.2. Flexible office options

Both Fujairah and DIC offer flexible desk packages for new businesses. Therefore, these allow business owners to access office facilities such as meeting rooms, call screening, and desk spaces on an ad-hoc basis without committing to long-term contracts of physical office spaces.

Fujairah Creative City offers, single owner and freelancer packages; these provide entrepreneurs with a simple and easy way to start their business with:

  • No office space requirement.
  • No long-term commitment.
  • Minimum overhead and startup costs.

2. How can you set up a mobile app company in the UAE with more than one shareholder?

There are various free zones in the UAE that are popular among small and large companies. Why? Their flexible and outstanding shareholder criteria. In other words, these free zones allow business formation with more than one shareholder such as corporate entities and individuals.

These zones, in addition, allow you to apply for various visas through their Flexi-desk packages. For instance, Fujairah Creative City allows you to obtain up to six. However, for those individuals wishing to use physical premises as well as obtaining visas for your employees.

Further, DIC offers the opportunity to apply for one visa per 8 sq. mts. of office space.

Fujairah and DIC offer a straightforward and streamlined process for applying for your own visa. In addition, they also make it easy for you to obtain the required visas for your dependents. It does not matter if you need a visa for your child, driver, maid, or spouse; the step-by-step process consists of 4 stages such as:

  • Entry permit.
  • Status adjustment.
  • Medical screening test.
  • Emirates ID registration and visa stamping.

Since this is a critical process, on Connect Free Zone, we will provide you with the best guidance and counseling. In addition, we will ensure that even before starting the application, both you and your sponsored individuals meet all criteria. That is why you should know about the most thriving sectors for you to target.

3. What is the process for starting a mobile app business in the UAE?

As aforementioned, when setting up your business, free zones are more popular among foreign investors and entrepreneurs; they offer 100% business ownership, no currency restrictions, 0% corporate and personal tax, and full repatriation of profits and capital.

Here is the step-by-step process for the setup of a mobile app company in the UAE:

3.1. Determine your business activity

The first step in the company incorporation process and obtaining your license is to decide the nature of your venture. In the same vein, there are more than 2,000 business activities for you to choose from and they all fall into different groups such as:

  • Professional.
  • Commercial.
  • Industrial.
  • Tourism.
  • Freelancer, etc.

3.2. Choose a free zone

There is an extensive number of free zones across the UAE for you to choose from. However, the nature of your business will have a direct impact on which free zone you want to establish. Usually, it makes sense to set up near businesses in the same field of your expertise.

3.3. Decide your company name

When choosing your desired name, it is crucial it abides by the strong naming conventions of the UAE. Moreover, names containing offensive language, referring to political groups or the mafia, and may be perceived as offensive to any religion are strictly forbidden.

If you are naming your business after an individual, you must prove the individual is the owner or partner of your organization (no abbreviations or initials allowed).

Naming your business and abiding by the UAE conventions is a complex task. With us, you will save valuable effort and time; we will get your name approved so you will have no issues in the setup of a mobile app company in the UAE. However, you should be extremely aware when changing your company’s legal name.

3.4. Apply for initial approval

You must carry out the initial approval to ensure the Economic Department of your chosen emirate has no objections to the incorporation of your business. Therefore, we will take care of this process on your behalf to ensure your business is approved to start. For instance, the documents you need depend on the nature of your business, but they generally are:

  • Business licensing and registration form.
  • Copy of your ID or passport.
  • Viability study of the project.
  • Copy of your residence visa or permit.
  • Your business articles of association.

3.5. Open a corporate bank account

After you have been approved and received back the required documentation; you are free to open a corporate bank in the country. Moreover, the UAE has bank international and local banks for you to choose from. This list includes Citibank, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, HSBC, Citibank, Barclays, Commercial Bank of Dubai, and more.

To learn more about this, you can read our guide about the process of successfully opening a corporate bank account in the UAE.

3.6. Set up your office location

It is mandatory for some businesses in the UAE to have a physical address. That is why the setup of a mobile app company in the UAE will allow you to find an office space rapidly.

DMCC, for instance, offers a large range of business centers, office buildings, and commercial properties for you to rent, lease, or hire for your small, medium, and large-sized business. In addition, all our offices are well equipped with support services, access to meeting rooms, wi-fi, and all perks available.

On Connect Free Zone we will make sure to find the most suitable office space for your mobile app business if you require it. Setting up in a Dubai Free zone can be your best option for your mobile app company.

      3.7. Apply for final approval

We will prepare all your documents, legal information, and location addresses to submit for final approval. In some instances, you will need to apply for licensing approval from other government entities. After that, you need to submit:

  • Correctly attested service agent contracts (for companies and civil establishments owned 100% by non-GCC nationals.
  • The lease contract is provided by the RERA (Real Estate Regulatory Agency).
  • Initial approval receipt and all the submitted documents.
  • Approval from the rest of the government entities, if required.

After that, you need to pay the license fee through the approved payment channels. On the other hand, if you set up a mobile app company in the UAE you will enjoy outstanding benefits.

4. How can you benefit from starting a mobile app company?

There are many benefits of starting a software company in Dubai and the UAE. That is to say, with our assistance, the entire process will be cost-effective and fast. In addition, there are more benefits to setting up your business in Dubai than you may think.

We will take care of each step of the application process on your behalf; helping to determine your activities, choose a business name, and conduct the visa and license applications.

Most importantly, if you already have the right skills and computing requirements, you can set up a mobile app company in the UAE. There is also no need for physical office space and you will work hourly, meaning your time will be billable.

Start a mobile app company in the UAE and you will benefit from growing and large marketing. UAE consumers, in the same vein, except for a good app experience from their service providers. In addition, the food and grocery sector are good examples; there are several apps that highlight the massive demand for such services.

Other industries are following this trend including the benefit when it comes to customer loyalty, audience engagement, and brand awareness.

5. What is the cost to start a mobile app business?

When you start a business in the UAE, there are various costs you need to consider. As well as a visa and a business license, you must take into account employee insurance and wages, equipment, and premises (if required).

If you are starting from scratch, you will need to invest in software and a powerful computer. If you already have this, incorporation overheads are reasonably low. Likewise, you will only need an account for the cost of your visa and license.

6. How can we assist you to set up a mobile app company in the UAE?

The United Arab Emirates has an excellent environment as well as an abundance of smartphone owners, which makes it the perfect opportunity to set up your mobile app company.

All you need is mobile app knowledge and the will to incorporate your business in this market. The entire setup process is streamlined and with us, you can complete it in a matter of weeks. In some cases, it may be even possible to register your company without being present in the country.

On Connect Free Zone, we will offer you the best prices, discounts, and packages when you are trying to establish your business in the UAE; it does not matter if it is Mainland or Free Zone.

We will work hard so you can focus on what really matters, letting us take care of the entire setup process. In addition, we will communicate with the government entities regarding the extensive documentation and paperwork they require. We have more than 21 years of working with companies across all industries in the 7 emirates.

With us, you will only set up in the best free zones in the UAE. We will ensure you take advantage of the benefits the jurisdictions will offer you with our value-added services. In conclusion, we will compare free zones’ regulations, locations, services, and advantages.

Would you like to contact us so you can set up a mobile app company in the UAE? If you want to receive the best advice and counseling, or if you have extra inquiries. You can always email us via or call us at +971 43 316 688. You can even refer a friend and participate for a reward!

If you want to improve your career and get access to the best job opportunities you must go to We will not store any CV you send us to

Connect Freezone

Connect FreezoneConnect free Zone is the go to place when it comes to company set up services, you will find standard pricing, discounts and packages for the most popular free zones across the UAE as well as the ability for Connect FZ to sponsor your company and set up on mainland Dubai.

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