Shams Free Zone Company Setup

  • Affordable business license
  • Combine business activities
  • Close to Dubai and Sharjah airports

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About Sharjah Media City

Sharjah Media City (Shams) is a free zone offering one of the cheapest company registration in the UAE, and has been around for since the year 2017 and is rapidly growing. Shams is a leading hub for companies providing media services. In fact, Shams has designed and centred the operation of its free zone to facilitate the growth of media and creative companies. Shams not only allows new business setup in the UAE in media and creative space but provides an entire ecosystem for such companies to grow. This is done by allowing incorporation of companies whose businesses aid and assist the operation of the media and creative businesses. This give and take relationship helps each company of the Shams free zone to flourish and prosper.

Shams is also a very competitively priced free zone, and offers one of the lowest cost for setting up a company in the UAE. In fact, it is one of the few free zones that are both easily affordable and renowned at the same time. There are various benefits of incorporating a company with Shams free zone. Some of them are listed below:

  • One of the cheapest free zone licenses in UAE.
  • Quick registration.
  • Do various business activities on a single license.
  • Shams is located in a tax-free jurisdiction.
  • Zero corporate tax.
  • Zero personal tax.
  • The entire capital and profits can be repatriated.
  • 100% foreign ownership is permissible.
  • Hassle free and streamlined procedures.
  • Shams hosts regular workshops and business community sessions for its companies to gain more exposure.
  • Shareholders are not required to be physically present in the UAE to incorporate a new company.
  • Free training sessions.
  • Free space at exhibitions such as GITEX Expo and Seamless Middle East.

Client Testimonials

“Fantastic service, all queries answered quickly and efficiently and in an easy to read manner so I could understand what was required every step of the way. Highly recommend this service.”

Pricing Packages

Get in touch with us to know about Shams free zone company setup cost.

Other Free Zones you may be interested in

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Creative City Fujairah
  • Free zone based in Fujairah
  • Up to 5 shareholders
  • Commercial, freelancer, and other types of licenses
  • Free zone based in Ras Al Khaimah
  • Up to 50 shareholders
  • E-commerce, professional, media, and other types of licenses


The procedure for setting up a Shams free zone company is below


Step 1 – Application submission

You will sign and submit your application for Shams free zone company registration.


Step 2 – Submission of documents and signing of application forms

Based on the package you select for company setup at Shams free zone, we will ask you to submit your basic documents. We will also request for your signature on the applications forms.


Step 3 – Shams company registration and formation

We will put together the final application and documents for Shams free zone. Shams free zone issues one of the cheapest trade licenses in the UAE.

Types of Shams Licenses and Companies

Shams issues one of the cheapest free zone licenses in the UAE for the following activities:

  • Services and consultancy license: This involves production, re-production and distribution of services.
  • Trading license: This license allows a company to sell, import and export goods. On this license, a company can wholesale or retail sale goods and can even provide services related to sale of the concerned goods.
  • Industrial license: Shams grants this license to permit companies to produce, re-produce, transform and manufacture goods.

Under the above licenses, a company can carry out different business activities. Shams usually groups the various authorized business activities under the main heads of media, wholesale and retail, and services and consultancy. The business activities permitted under each head are listed below:


  • Printing and reproduction of recorded media
  • Publishing activities of books, journals, and software
  • Sound recording and music publishing
  • Motion picture, video and television programme activities
  • Radio broadcasting
  • Television programming and broadcasting activities
  • Telecommunications
  • Computer programming, consultancy and related activities
  • Information service activities
  • Web portals
  • Data processing and hosting
  • Professional, scientific, and technical activities
  • Advertising and market research for professional, scientific, and technical activities
  • Photography and specialised design
  • Creative arts and entertainments
  • Digital marketing
  • Event organising
  • Production
  • Web Portals
  • Graphic design
  • Fashion design
  • Interior design
  • Translation services

Wholesale and Retail

  • Wholesale trade
  • General trading
  • Wholesale of agricultural raw material and live animals.
  • Wholesale of household goods.
  • Wholesale of machinery and equipment.
  • Wholesale on a fee or contract basis.
  • Retail sale in non- specialised zone.
  • Retail sale of automotive fuel.
  • Retail sale of cultural and recreational goods.
  • Retail sale of food and beverages.
  • Retail sale of information and communication equipment.
  • Retail sale of household equipment.
  • Retail sale via stalls and markets.
  • Retail trade in stores, stalls and markets.
  • Wholesale, retail and repair of vehicles and motorcycles.

Services and Consultancy

  • Repair and installation of machinery, equipment and metal products
  • Installation of industrial machinery and equipment
  • Construction
  • Electrical, plumbing and other construction installation activities
  • Warehousing and support activities for transportation
  • Postal and courier services
  • Restaurant and mobile food services activities
  • Event catering and other food services activities
  • Holding company activities
  • Financial service activities
  • Insurance and reinsurance
  • Activities aiding financial services, insurance, and pension funding
  • Real estate activities
  • Legal
  • Accounting and bookkeeping
  • Auditing and tax consulting
  • Head office activities
  • Management consultancy activities
  • Architectural and engineering activities
  • Technical testing and analysis
  • Scientific research and development
  • Rental and leasing activities
  • Leasing of intellectual property
  • Employment activities
  • Travel and tour operators
  • Building cleaning services
  • Combined facilities support activities
  • Landscape care and maintenance service activities
  • Call centres
  • Business support services
  • Office administrative and support activities
  • Organisation of conventions and trade shows
  • Educational support activities
  • Sports and recreation
  • Activities of membership organisations
  • Activities of business, employers and professional membership organisations
  • Repair of computers
  • Repair of personal and household goods
  • Other personal service activities

Shams recognizes incorporation of the following types of companies:

Limited Liability Company (LLC)

This is a legal form wherein the liabilities of the company are restricted to the company itself. These liabilities of a company do not become the personal liabilities of the company’s shareholder(s). The liability of the shareholder is only to the extent of his investment in the company. On the flipside, the assets owned by the company are company’s assets and do not become the personal assets of the shareholders. An LLC incorporated with Shams entitles the shareholders to open a bank account and sponsor employees.


Shams allows pre-existing companies to open a branch in the free zone. For the purposes of profits, gains, returns, expenses, debts and liabilities the identity of the branch is considered unified with the identity of the parent company. A parent company after opening a branch office with the Shams free zone can open a bank account and sponsor employees.

Office Space for a Shams Free Zone Company

Companies incorporated with the Shams free zone must lease a workspace that is situated on the free zone. Shams free zone provides multiple avenues for workspaces. Company owners normally choose a workspace based on their staff strength, visa requirement and extent of the company operations. A Shams free zone company can pick a workplace from the following choices:

Dedicated Desk

A dedicated desk is a committed workspace of your company and is located in a co-working space. With a dedicated desk, you will get access to WiFi, printer and a meeting room.

Shared Desk

This is a space that can be flexibly shared with other business owner. The shared desk already has pre-installed WiFi and printer. Similar to a dedicated desk, one also gets access to a meeting room. A shared desk is handy for small business owners looking to simultaneously grow their professional network while running a business.

Dedicated Office

This is an office that is reserved for your Shams free zone company. These offices are private and can also be locked when not in use. Dedicated office has flexible sitting arrangement. Depending on the company’s needs, dedicated offices can contain a single desk or group desks. WiFi and printers are already installed in a dedicated office. Business owners can also use the common meeting room situated at the facility.

How are Media Businesses Expanding in the UAE?

There are two broad options for new company registration in the UAE. One is to open an onshore or mainland company in partnership with a UAE local national. The limitation in this case is the cost of setting up a company in UAE mainland, and that it invites multiple regulations, and foreign nationals cannot fully own the company. The other and the more preferred choice is free zone company setup in UAE. This option gives the benefit of a low cost of setting up a company in the UAE, requires minimal compliances, and foreign nationals can enjoy 100 % ownership.

There are multiple free zones in the UAE allowing a host of business activities on different business licenses. While choosing a free zone, business owners consider the cost of setting up a company in the UAE, reputation of the free zone, as well as the focus and objective of the free zone. It is always beneficial if the objective of the free zone is aligned with the focus of a company. It is difficult for many companies to find such a free zone. Interestingly, media companies have it easy. There is a whole free zone in the UAE that is designed to facilitate the set-up, operation and growth of media companies. It is the Shams Free Zone, and it is the favourite jurisdiction of media business owners for free zone company setup in the UAE and expansion of their businesses.

Below are some ways the focused approach of Shams Free Zone can boost the growth of any media company:

1. One of the lowest UAE free zone company formation cost

Although Shams Free Zone offers one of the cheapest company registrations in UAE, it is even cheaper for companies intending to carry out media activities. Shams free zone offers a company set up for a media license, which happens to be one of the cheapest free zone licenses in the UAE.

2. Freelance Business Set-up

Shams free zone offers special packages at subsidised rates for freelancers intending to conduct media activities. These special packages include cost of free zone company set up and license, leasing of office space, one (1) visa allocation, immigration card and e-channel registration etc.

3. Company Form

Shams Free Zone allows setup of new media business and expansion of already existing media business.

If you plan to set up a new business in the Shams Free Zone, then you can incorporate a limited liability company (LLC). The good thing about this is that your liability towards the company will only be limited to your investment in the company and not beyond.

Media companies that already enjoy presence inside or outside of the UAE and wish to expand in the UAE can open a branch office at the Shams Free Zone. This, in our opinion, is the easiest way for media companies to expand, especially in a jurisdiction that is media friendly.

4. Special Facilities and Film Commission

Shams Free Zone is deploying special facilities that will cater to media businesses by creating an atmosphere that tickles the creative nerve. Shams Free Zone is also launching an ‘influencers platform’ aimed to open digital marketplace and amplify interactions between companies and social media influencers for promotional campaigns.

Shams Free Zone is focused on becoming the go to destinations for film shooting by opening its very own Shams Film Commission. This way Shams Free Zone will be able to harness the picturesque landscape of Sharjah into camera friendly views.

5. Workshops and Seminars

Shams Free Zone is known to host workshops, seminars and exhibitions for its companies. This enhances the horizons of company owners by augmenting their knowledge to conduct business at the free zone. There are special workshops designed for media companies. These include workshops for photography, film, cinematograph. Seminars with media industry experts are also conducted regularly. Shams Free Zone companies also get free invitations to business community sessions, wherein company owners can network and collaborate.

In case you are looking to set up a Sharjah free zone company or a branch for your media business, then do consider Shams Free Zone and all the benefits it has to offer.

Shams Free Zone – Easing Out the Challenges of New Business Setup in UAE

We live in a world of start-up companies where everyday new businesses are being setup all over the world. More and more people are taking the routes of entrepreneurship to start something that they can call their own. These businesses include everything under the sky from scientific research to opening a small delivery outlet for home cooked food. Every day we get to know of some new company, and we discuss about how that company is filling in a market gap. Astonishingly, never in history have so many small companies come up and operated successfully.

However, there is a flipside to this. A side that consists of people who potentially have the most amazing business ideas but are not executing them. Executors of such ideas have the potential of becoming happy and successful business owners. Then why is that such people do not go ahead with their business ideas?

Well, the general answer is that implementing a business idea requires a company, and it is a general perception that running a company is a tedious and challenging task. A company requires initial investment, maintaining balance sheets and invoices, holding audits, paying taxes etc. An entrepreneur may forget his or her million-dollar idea while managing the affairs of a company.   Normally, we may agree with this thought process, but we do feel that there is a solution in the UAE. It is called ‘Shams Free Zone’. To prove our point, below we have identified the major challenges faced with new business setup in UAE and how Shams Free Zone solves them:

Initial Investment

Forming a company requires initial investment in the form of setting up cost, government fees, share capital requirement. Since the company is being set up and there are no profits, entrepreneurs are compelled to dig into their own pockets to put the cash on the table. Therefore, company owners prefer a minimum initial investment. Shams Free Zone in the UAE addresses this problem of new business owners by offering one of the cheapest free zone company setups in UAE. You can form a company for as low as AED 5,750. This is inclusive of everything. The minimum share capital of AED 10,000 is also the lowest when compared to other company formation jurisdictions in the UAE and the world. This share capital is not required to be paid into a bank account.

Office Space

You need a space to operate from, but you may be uncomfortable thinking about the exorbitant prices of commercial spaces. It could also be a case where you are unsure about the size of your office. It could happen that your office space far exceeds your company’s requirements, or the office space becomes redundant because the operations of your company outgrow the size of your office. Shams Free Zone offers to its companies flexible office options in the form of shared desks, dedicated desk, shared offices, and dedicated offices. These options are both affordable and flexible. You can always add more desks or office space based on the growth of your company.


You may be a creative head, but you are no financial wizard. You know nothing about the financial compliances that you will have to maintain. Since you are just starting, it is reasonable that you do not want to hire and pay professionals. But then what is the way out? Again, the way out is forming a company with Shams Free Zone, which asks for minimal financial compliances. You do not have to file lengthy financial statements, there are no internal or external audit requirements, and there are no complex standards of bookkeeping. All you must do is to incorporate your company and run your business.


Taxes are a big concern for any company earning profits. It is even a bigger problem for companies that are new around the block. This is because the little money these companies earn during their initial years might evaporate in form of taxes. It is like you do not reap all the benefits of your hard work. This dissuades people from giving wings to their entrepreneurial dreams. Well to your shock and surprise, Shams Free Zone is located in the UAE which is a tax-free jurisdiction. There is zero (0) tax on corporate income and personal income. In fact, the tax incentives of the UAE government are aimed to facilitate businesses. The government also allows 100% repatriation of capital and profits. This means that whether you are a UAE national or a foreign national, the profits of your Shams Free Zone company are solely yours. It is safe to say that you reap the entire benefits of the hard work you put in a Shams Free Zone company.


Training shapes companies. A trained leadership and staff can make a company soar on the highest skies. Contrastingly, an untrained workforce can sink a company in the deepest oceans. Shams Free Zone is cognizant of this, and that is why it hosts regular training sessions for the owners and staff of its companies. You just do not train; you even get the opportunity to flaunt your new skills. Shams Free Zone gives its companies the opportunity to showcase their businesses at various exhibitions such as the GITEX Expo and Seamless Middle East. You no longer have to worry about enhancing your business skills, as Shams Free Zone lets you learn on the job.

We are confident that above solutions have written off all your worries about starting you own business. It is time that you kick start your entrepreneurial dream by opening your company in the UAE. If you feel confident as well as motivated and aim for free zone company setup in UAE, then do contact our consultants. Our consultants are experts in incorporations of Shams Free Zone companies. We offer company formation solutions that are tailor fit for your needs.

Key Features

Below are main reasons for forming a Shams free zone company

AffordableShams free zone is the most cost-effective free zone of UAE.
Instils GrowthCompanies can participate in various workshops relating to business management. Business owners can network through these workshops.
Tax FreeEnjoy the benefits of zero (0) personal and corporate tax.
Repatriation of FundsYour capital and profits are your own, as they can be repatriated without any deductions.
OwnershipNon-UAE nationals can fully own a Shams free zone company.
Time ZoneConvenient world time zone; GMT+04:00
Paid Up Capital RequirementNo minimum requirement for paid up capital
LocationDo business in Sharjah - Dubai’s next-door emirate.
Shams free zone is the most cost-effective free zone of UAE.
Instils Growth
Companies can participate in various workshops relating to business management. Business owners can network through these workshops.
Tax Free
Enjoy the benefits of zero (0) personal and corporate tax.
Repatriation of Funds
Your capital and profits are your own, as they can be repatriated without any deductions.
Non-UAE nationals can fully own a Shams free zone company.
Time Zone
Convenient world time zone; GMT+04:00
Paid Up Capital Requirement
No minimum requirement for paid up capital
Do business in Sharjah - Dubai’s next-door emirate.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some answers to some of the most common questions related to Shams Free Zone company setup in Sharjah.

Shams offers one of the most reasonable costs to open a company in UAE. View details of various packages available by scrolling up this page.

You do not necessarily need to be in the UAE to set up your company. You will be required to have visited the UAE at least once for the Shams company formation packages with residence visa. If you wish to only obtain a trade license for your company, you can still form the company even if you have not visited the UAE at all.

There are certain nationalities that Shams would require pre-approval before proceeding with the company formation. Once this pre-approval is obtained, the chances of any visa rejection are reduced significantly.

No, you do not need a local sponsor to set up a company in Shams. One of the many benefits in setting up a company in Shams is having 100% ownership of the company.

The timeframe in setting up a company in Shams is 2-3 working days after you have signed and submitted the application forms and the required documents. Any further process for the visa issuance is outlined in our Timelines section above.

Shams offers number of activities relating to media, broadcasting, public relations, consultancy and advertising. There are a variety of sub-sectors of these activities which you can choose from when finalizing the activity for your company set up.

You do not necessarily need an office space for you to set up a company in Shams. This is one of the main advantages of setting up a company in Shams. A flexi desk option is available in packages with visas.

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