Being an entrepreneur in UAE is easier than assumed. Entrepreneurs just need a little common sense, forward thinking approach and a holistic view. Here’s a checklist to help:

1.         Get a License

Do not perform any commercial activity without a license. Identify the correct type of license and structure required for the intended business activity and ensure shareholders’ liability is limited under all circumstances (i.e. limited liability company). If its not limited, its unlimited.

2.         Understand Applicable Laws

Research the laws applicable to the business and ensure the business is compliant with them. Check if the business can function all through the UAE or if any additional special permits or regulatory approvals are required.

4.         Have an Online Presence

Being present online helps business branding and customer awareness, whether or not the business is related to technology.

5.         Definitely have a Business Plan

A business with a plan knows its objectives, has budgets and forecasts, understands its worst case scenarios and sets remedial measures.

6.         Get insurance!

Insurance is a great way of addressing risks that cannot be foreseen or addressed in contracts. Having a chat with an advisor to check what insurances apply to your business, also comes at no cost.

7.         Create a Contingency Plan

A critical part of a business is having a contingency plan. Understanding alternate streams of revenue who your collaborative business partners could be

8.         Maintain a Contingency Fund and Reserve Fund

A reserve fund (10% of net profits) is provided for under the UAE Companies Law. Having a contingency fund is just added measure to ensure you are really covered for those rainy days.

9.         Employees

Anybody hired must have a labour card or employment contract or a license to provide services. Do not work with individuals that are not complying with laws because if they cause business harm, there are limited remedies since they were not legitimately hired to begin with.

It is also equally quite important to have employees, interns and consultants sign non disclosure agreements to protect company secrets and to have their confirmation that all inventions and creations are assigned to the business whilst they work there.

10.       Registering IP

Ideas that are innovative and can be registered as intellectual property innovations, should be. Lack of registration can lead to it being replicated or shared after which it may not be registered as it may no longer be innovative.