Business Set Up in Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM)

Setting up a business in the Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) offers numerous opportunities for local and international entrepreneurs. As an international financial center located in the heart of Abu Dhabi, ADGM provides a world-class platform for businesses to thrive and grow.

Why Choose ADGM for Business Setup

Strategic Location: Situated in the capital of the UAE, ADGM provides access to a rapidly growing market in the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia.

Regulatory Environment: ADGM offers a robust regulatory framework based on English common law, providing businesses with transparency and certainty.

Tax Benefits: Companies operating within ADGM are exempt from taxes on profits, capital gains, and other taxes for 50 years.

State-of-the-Art Infrastructure: Businesses can benefit from modern and efficient infrastructure, including office spaces, connectivity, and support services.

Key Steps in Setting Up Business in ADGM


  1. Define your business: Clearly outline your business activities, target market, and legal structure (e.g., limited liability company).
  2. Choose a license: ADGM offers various licenses depending on your activity. Use the ADGM website or consult with us to identify the right one.
  3. Gather documentation: Prepare required documents like business plan, Memorandum of Association, shareholder information, and identity proofs.


  1. Register online: Utilize the ADGM Registry Solution to register and submit your application electronically. Pay the applicable fees.
  2. Fulfill licensing requirements: Depending on your activity, additional approvals from specific ADGM authorities might be necessary.


  1. Open a corporate bank account: Choose a bank and fulfill their requirements to open a business account.
  2. Obtain visas: Apply for visas for yourself and employees through the relevant authorities.
  3. Meet ongoing obligations: Comply with ADGM’s reporting and regulatory requirements.

Business Setup Options:-

Free Zone Company

•         Allows 100% foreign ownership

•         No requirement for a local sponsor

•         Can operate within the free zone or internationally

Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs)

•         Ideal for structured financing, securitization, and asset holding

•         Can be established as a private or public company

Branch Office

•         Foreign companies can establish a branch in ADGM to conduct business within the free zone

Licensing and Permits

ADGM offers various types of licenses based on the nature of the business, including financial services, non-financial services, and retail. The process for obtaining these licenses is streamlined to facilitate business setup.

Support Services

Legal and Regulatory Support: Businesses can benefit from expert legal and regulatory advice to ensure compliance with ADGM regulations.

Administrative Support: ADGM provides administrative services to assist with visa processing, government liaison, and other administrative tasks.

Benefits of Setting Up Your Business in ADGM:

1. Strategic Location and Global Connectivity:

  • Located in Abu Dhabi, a major financial and commercial hub in the Middle East.
  • Excellent airport and seaport connections with access to key global markets.
  • World-class infrastructure and facilities.

2. Business-Friendly Ecosystem:

  • Streamlined and efficient business setup process.
  • 100% foreign ownership permitted.
  • No restrictions on capital repatriation or foreign employees.
  • Wide range of business licenses available.

3. Competitive Tax Regime:

  • 0% corporate tax for qualifying activities in free zones.
  • 9% competitive rate for mainland companies.
  • No personal income tax.
  • Attractive tax incentives for specific industries.

4. Regulatory Flexibility and Innovation:

  • Independent legal framework based on English common law.
  • Regulatory environment fosters innovation and entrepreneurship.
  • Special courts for efficient dispute resolution.

5. Access to Talent and Capital:

  • Growing talent pool with diverse skills and experience.
  • Easy access to regional and international investors.
  • Various funding options available, including venture capital and private equity.

6. High Quality of Life:

  • Safe and secure environment with a high standard of living.
  • Diverse cultural offerings and recreational activities.
  • Attractive housing options for individuals and families.

Additional Benefits:

  • Government support for startups and SMEs.
  • Strong intellectual property protection framework.
  • Advanced technology infrastructure and digital services.

How We Can Help

As a leading business consultancy firm, we specialize in assisting entrepreneurs and businesses in establishing their presence in ADGM. Our services include:

•         Business setup and registration

•         License application and renewal

•         Corporate structuring and governance

•         Compliance and regulatory advisory

Frequently Asked Question

  1. What is ADGM, and why is it a preferred business destination?

ADGM is a global financial center and free zone in Abu Dhabi. It is preferred for its strategic location, business-friendly environment, and regulatory framework that aligns with international standards.

2. What types of business structures can be established in ADGM?

Businesses can be set up as companies limited by shares, companies limited by guarantee, limited liability partnerships (LLPs), and branch offices.

3. What are the key advantages of setting up a business in ADGM compared to other jurisdictions in the region?

Key advantages include 100% foreign ownership, no currency restrictions, no personal income taxes, and a robust legal and regulatory framework.

4. What are the licensing requirements for different business activities in ADGM?

Licensing requirements vary based on the business activity. Businesses need to submit an application, provide necessary documentation, and pay the relevant fees.

5. Is there a minimum capital requirement for company formation in ADGM?

ADGM does not have a minimum capital requirement, providing flexibility for businesses to structure their capital based on their needs.

6. How long does the business setup process typically take in ADGM?

The setup process can take a few weeks, depending on the business structure and the completeness of the documentation submitted.

7. Are there any restrictions on foreign ownership in ADGM?

No, ADGM allows 100% foreign ownership across various business structures.

8. What are the tax implications for businesses operating in ADGM?

ADGM entities enjoy zero corporate and personal income taxes, providing a tax-efficient environment.

9. Can businesses registered in ADGM operate outside the free zone or in mainland Abu Dhabi?

Yes, businesses can operate within the free zone, throughout the UAE, and internationally.

Book a Free Consultation

Open chat
Hello 👋
Can we help you?