How to start a sports management company in Dubai, UAE


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Dubai is known worldwide as a work hard, play hard destination. And that is clearly evidenced by the emirate’s love of sports.

Over one million people are estimated to view sporting events every year in Dubai, with the Dubai Horse Racing World Cup attracting over 80,000 in-person spectators.

Dubai also hosts a wide range of other sporting events including football, tennis, and cricket. Nearby Abu Dhabi also hosts its own Formula 1 Grand Prix every year.

This love of sport translates to big business. Sports related expenditure is estimated to exceed USD 1.76m every year. It’s little surprise then that Dubai is home to fast growing sports business environment, with sports management at its heart – an industry worth over USD 50bn worldwide.

And joining this thriving marketplace doesn’t have to be a complicated process. When you work with a UAE company setup expert, you can start a sports management company in Dubai in just five easy steps.

How to set up a sports management company in Dubai

Step 1: Choosing your company name

The first step is to choose your company name. There are a few key things to keep in mind at this stage – many that would not apply anywhere else in the world.

Be aware that you must abide by a strict set of naming conventions. You should avoid any offensive or blasphemous language. Avoid names of well-known organisations and avoid abbreviations if naming your company after yourself – i.e. Dave Mann Consulting, rather than D Mann Consulting.

Your company setup agent will check that your chosen name is available before registering it for you.

Step 2: Choosing your ideal setup
A key step in the UAE company formation process is deciding whether to set up in the mainland or in a free zone.

If you decide on a Dubai mainland business setup, you’re free to trade directly with the UAE without the services of a third party. You can also set up anywhere in the emirate and pitch for government contracts.

Company setup in a Dubai free zone is usually the most cost-effective approach. And, if you’re really looking for the most affordable free zone setup, it’s a good idea to look outside Dubai.

Free zones such as Fujairah Creative City, for example, offer benefits including a quick and easy incorporation process, ongoing business support and financial incentives such as tax exemptions and zero currency restrictions.

Step 3: Applying for your license

Once you have decided where you are going to set up, you can apply for your trade license. If setting up on the mainland, you must make this application to Dubai Department of Development (DED) or local equivalent in another emirate.

You can also make your application directly to a free zone. In both cases, you should work with a company setup expert who can manage your application for you.

You will usually be required to submit:

  • Completed application form
  • Passport copy of the proposed owner or owners
  • Two colour passport size photos.


Step 4: Making your visa applications
You will require a visa to live and work in the UAE. Again, with the right guidance, the visa application process can be incredibly straightforward. Most company formation agents can help you with this step as well as with your license application.

As the holder of a UAE business license, you can sponsor others for their visas too. This could be a spouse, parent or child, or a domestic worker such as a housekeeper.

The maximum number of visas you can apply for will depend on the size of your company, your chosen setup and, for dependant visas, your personal earnings.

Step 5: Opening your corporate bank account
You will also require a corporate bank account to do business in the UAE.

Before making your application, you should first familiarise yourself with several financial institutions to find one that is best suited to your business needs and most likely to offer you corporate banking services. You company setup agent can help you with this process.
Keep in mind that:

  • You must have a UAE business license to open a corporate bank account.
  • Some banks require shareholders to have a residency visa.
  • Most accounts require a minimum balance of anywhere between AED 10,000 and AED 150,000.

If your application is successful, your account is usually opened within two to four weeks.

Dubai sports management license cost

When launching a sports management business in Dubai, UAE, there is much more to consider than just the cost of the license.

You must also factor in premises, employees, marketing and other administrative costs that may arise.

The license itself, however, is relatively inexpensive. You can expect to pay in the region of AED 10,000 to AED 20,000.

Are you ready to start your sports management business in Dubai, UAE?

Hopefully, this guide has made clear that if you’re armed with the right knowledge, setting up a sports management agency in Dubai doesn’t have to be overly complex.

That being said, it does require a level of prior knowledge of the process. What’s more, it is important to note that the application process is only straightforward if your license application is complete at the time of submission and free from errors.

To help you to ensure that this is the case, it’s a good idea to work with a company formation specialist such as Set Hub when establishing a new company in the UAE.

We are a team of company registration professionals who are passionate about bringing the dreams of aspiring entrepreneurs and SMEs to life.

As well as handling your license application, Set Hub can also assist with the opening of corporate bank accounts and advise on the most appropriate financial institution to suit your specific needs.

We also offer visa and immigration services and can handle all government formalities, permissions, work permits and visas applications that are required to trade in the UAE.

In short, our experts can establish your company on your behalf, make your license and visa applications, and take care of all the necessary admin – leaving you free to get on with running your business.