Sharjah is one of the most business-friendly and rapidly growing economic hubs of the UAE. It’s responsible for contributing over 40% of the UAE’s GDP making it the most preferred Emirate for investors and entrepreneurs. Sharjah is the only state in the UAE with modern ports bordering the Arabian Gulf and the Indian Ocean with an instant sea route to North Africa.
Sharjah Mainland business setup leverages the perks of skyrocketing UAE’s economy and Sharjah’s business ecosystem. Oversees investors are increasingly preferring Sharjah over other Emirates due to the said reasons. From creating an SMB venture to setting up enterprise scale Sharjah mainland business setup, foreign and local investors foresee a promising business future in Sharjah.
This blog post will shed light on why Sharjah’s mainland business setup is a promising venture for anyone interested in company formation in Sharjah mainland. We’ll also talk about how to create a Sharjah mainland business setup to leverage the remarkable privileges of Sharjah’s geostrategic position. Let’s discuss this in detail.
What is Sharjah Mainland?
Sharjah Mainland is the geographical jurisdiction in Sharjah which is not part of free zone areas and comes under the regulations of the Department of Economic Development – DED. Sharjah’s DED offers all three types of trading licenses including Professional Licence, Commercial Licence, and Industrial Licence.
Sharjah mainland attracts foreign investors who are eager to open the LLC branch of their Free Zone company, or offshore branch of their foreign business to scale their market exposure. A recent amendment in UAE’s trade laws in 2021 has made it possible for foreign investors to hold 100% ownership of their businesses without any need to partner with a local sponsor. Foreign investors can now choose from more than 2000 business activities to create a business setup in Sharjah Mainland with 100% ownership of their overseas business.
Benefits of Company Formation in Sharjah Mainland
Creating a business setup in Sharjah comes amidst some remarkable perks in terms of scalability, flexibility, and liberty for overseas investors. Some of these notable perks and privileges include:
- Company formation in Sharjah Mainland is a smooth and hassle-free process with minimum documentation and paperwork. You can simply outsource any trusted business formation service or consultant and create your business setup in Sharjah Mainland without any hassle.
- Foreign investors and entrepreneurs can hold 100% ownership of their overseas venture in Sharjah Mainland with the liberty to choose from over 2000 business activities.
- You don’t need any local sponsor to start your business setup in Sharjah Mainland. It means you can leverage more freedom and scale your business on your own terms without any restrictions or limitations.
- One thing that differentiates Sharjah Mainland business setup from those of Free Zone businesses is the open choice for collaboration. With the Sharjah Mainland trading license, you are free to collaborate and work with other Mainland businesses, local companies, and state institutions.
- Sharjah Mainland business setup offers you the freedom for cross-border trading to scale your business by capturing a vast UAE market as well as a global market.
- Sharjah Mainland business setup license allows you to apply for unlimited employee visas and bring global talent onboard for maximum efficiency. The number of employee visas you can apply based on your office space or warehouse space. Numerically, you can apply for one visa for 100 square feet of office or inventory space.
- Sharjah Mainland trading license allows you to open your branch offices in other UAE states and grow your business by accessing the high-potential market of the entire UAE.
- You have fewer restrictions and limitations in your Sharjah Mainland business setup compared to any Free Zone.
Facilities in Sharjah Mainland
Sharjah’s geographical and business framework is known for providing the following facilities.
- Office spaces of all scales – Whether you are an SMB or Enterprise-grade organization, you can easily find the right office space that well suits your operational needs. You can buy or rent furnished or non-furnished office spaces for your business setup in Sharjah Mainland. Furnished offices can be of basic level and advanced level with all the necessary corporate equipment like work desks, chairs, electricity backup, lifts, well-equipped meeting rooms, projectors, screens, photocopy machines, scanners, etc.
- Warehouse & Inventory – Warehouses and inventory locations for business setup in Sharjah Mainland are equipped with all the modern facilities required for quick logistics and supply chain operations. Unlike other mega cities, Warehouse locations in Sharjah are not much remote and share instant access with signal-free highways and motorways.
- Quick access to the modern ports – Sharjah’s state-of-the-art ports with modern logistics and shipping facilities provide instant access to North Africa, Arabian Gulf, and the Indian Ocean. It makes the import/export of goods fairly simple and seamless for smooth and fast business operations.
Best Businesses to Start in Sharjah Mainland
The following businesses are known to provide maximum ROI and growth opportunities in Sharjah Mainland.
- Food Services
- Travel & Tourism
- Real Estate
- Outsourcing agency
- Day Care Facility
- Cleaning services
- Gifts and Stationary Shop
- Tax & Accounting Consultancy
- Hair Dressing, Grooming, SPA services
- Construction Services
- Trading of household items
- IT services, etc
How to Setup Business in Sharjah Mainland?
You need to go through each of the following steps for company formation in Sharjah Mainland.
Step#1 – Choose your business activity
The niche of your Sharjah Mainland business setup and the type of trading license you apply for is based on your business activities. You can include more than one business activity under the same business from 2000+ business activities permitted in Sharjah Mainland.
The legal form or structure of your business like LCC, GCC, etc is also destined by the business activities you include in your Sharjah Mainland business setup. On the nature and legal structure of the business activities you choose, the regulatory compliances for business setup in Sharjah Mainland may vary significantly. For instance, you need additional approvals and submit extra documents for financial & tax consultancy compared to the tourism services business.
Step#2 – Decide & register your business name
Your business name or trade name is the unique identity of your company as it differentiates your business from other Mainland businesses. Therefore it is mandatory to choose the right trade name that clearly interprets the nature and niche of your business setup in Sharjah Mainland. You can apply online for a trade name registration with Sharjah’s Economic Development Department.
Below are some crucial aspects that you must consider before applying for your trade name registration:
- Your trade name is followed by the acronym of your business’s legal form like LLC or GCC.
- Your trade name is aligned with the religious, ethical, and moral values of the UAE.
- It must be unique and not contain words or names from any governmental bodies or religious entities.
Step#3 – Get initial approval
Once you get the initial approval for your Sharjah Mainland business setup it means the UAE government and Sharjah state laws allow you company formation in Sharjah Mainland. The initial approval doesn’t mean you are allowed to start your business operations now but is a green signal for further processes.
For business setup in Sharjah Mainland, expats are required to apply for the approval of setting up a business in Sharjah with UAE’s foreign ministry as the initial approval.
Step#4 – Finalize an office location
To register your business in Sharjah Mainland, you need to choose a physical office space in Sharjah Mainland’s geographic limits and jurisdiction as directed by Sharjah’s Department of Economic Development. In Sharjah Mainland, you can rent or buy furnished or non-furnished office spaces and vast warehouse locations to continue your business operations seamlessly.
Keep in mind, the size of your office or warehouse space determines the number of employee visas you can apply for under the same trade license.
Step#5 – Get additional government approvals
Some of the other approvals and clearances are solely based on the legal form of your business, trade license type, and the nature of your business activities as we discussed earlier.
The general roadmap to setting up a business in Sharjah Mainland is the same but the specific requirements and approvals depend on your business activities. For instance, you need additional approval from local health departments to begin healthcare services in Sharjah Mainland.
Step#6 – Get your trade license
After getting all the documentation and approvals done, the final step is to get your trade license from Sharjah Economic Development Department’s website. Your trade license is your gateway to start operations for your Sharjah Mainland business setup and capture the UAE’s high potential market for maximum growth. Refrain from drifting away from the legal foundations and framework as defined and directed by relevant state bodies to avoid any trouble.
Sharjah Mainland Company Formation Requirements
Throughout the aforementioned process to get a trade license, you need to fulfill the following documents required for company formation in Sharjah Mainland.
- License Application
- Attested agreement the reflects the legal form of your company (LLC, GCC, etc).
- Business Name reservation & initial approval documents
- Rental agreement (for office space)
- Copy of Passport with a valid visa for all stakeholders and employees
- SCCI (Sharjah Chamber of Commerce & Industry) Registration
License Options & Cost in Sharjah Mainland
You can choose from 5 main types of trade licenses for your business setup in Sharjah Mainland namely:
- Industrial license
- Commercial license
- Professional/Service license
- Agriculture license
- Tourism license
The trading license cost in Sharjah Mainland is from AED 5000 to AED 30,000+. The cost varies depending on the scale of your business and the nature of your business activities. For instance, it is less expensive for eCommerce startups compared to industrial manufacturing.
Cost to Setup Business in Sharjah Mainland
Apart from trading license cost that ranges from AED 5000 to AED 30,000, the cost of business setup in Sharjah Mainland is purely subjective. It further depends on the number of employee visas you are going to apply for and the rent of office space you acquire as a prerequisite to company formation in Sharjah Mainland.
Business Activities Allowed & Restricted in Sharjah Mainland
You are allowed to choose from 2000+ business activities permitted in Sharjah Mainland and most of them lack any requirement to onboard local sponsors. Some of the notable business activities you can opt from include:
- Tourism & Travel
- Financial and Tax consultancy
- Manufacturing of household items
- General Trading, etc
But the buying and selling of ammunition, alcoholic beverages, and Gambling activities like Casinos, betting centers, and others that do not align with the religious and moral codes of UAE are strictly prohibited in Sharjah and the rest of the UAE.
How Airzone can help you Setup your Business in Sharjah Mainland?
Airzone can help you find the right information and resources for company formation in Sharjah or elsewhere in the UAE. We can help you find the right and trusted business consultancy and company formation service providers in Sharjah, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and other UAE states. Our trusted partners and consultancy services providers have a proven record of serving SMBs and enterprise-grade foreign entities to create their business setups in UAE’s free zones and mainland areas.
If you want to make your Sharjah Mainland business setup journey seamless and hassle-free, feel free to connect with Airzone.
Undoubtedly, the contribution of Sharjah to the UAE’s skyrocketing economy is remarkable. With a perfect geostrategic location, state-of-the-art seaports, hassle-free logistics framework, and an ideal business ecosystem, Sharjah has been found to be a haven for overseas investors.
If you want to leverage the huge market of Sharjah and UAE along with the freedom to open multiple offices in different UAE states, the Sharjah Mainland business setup offers you all the required avenues and flexibility.
So that’s it. This wraps up our guide. Before we conclude, we have a comprehensive guide for you if you want to learn more about how to setup a business in UAE. You should be well prepared to establish a company in the UAE if you have a thorough understanding of the country’s business scene. We have detailed articles on various free zones in the UAE if you need more information.