Dubai is famous for its thriving corporate environment. Local names and international conglomerates from the worlds of tech, finance, consulting, healthcare and more fill the office blocks and free zones that spread throughout the emirate.
But there are many more business sectors seeing success in this part of the world, too. In this article, we look at one that has generated over USD 1bn in revenues so far this year – footwear. We’ll run through the following points:
• Footwear business Dubai – an overview
• How to start a footwear or shoe business in Dubai
• Cost of starting a footwear trading business in Dubai
• Is footwear a profitable business?
• How to grow a footwear business in Dubai
• How Worldwide Formations can help
So, if you’re ready to step into the footwear business in the UAE, get in touch with the expert team at Worldwide Formations.
Footwear business Dubai – an overview
Dubai’s apparel and footwear sector has been a driving force behind its thriving retail industry for many years now. Revenues in the footwear market alone reached USD 1.19bn in 2022, with expected CAGR of 4.71% between now and 2027.
The outlook for the year ahead is even more positive, with volume growth expected at 6.2% in 2023.
Men’s footwear leads the way when it comes to sales value, and while many types and styles are popular out here, leather footwear accounts for the biggest segment in this growing market, with a share of just over USD 0.5bn.
Clearly, the demand is there for businesses with the skills and determination to enter the market with a new brand offering or source and resell footwear competitively.
How to start a footwear or shoe business in Dubai
Before embarking on the UAE company formation process, you should arrange a brief consultation with a local expert such as Worldwide Formations. Once we know a few details about your business and its requirements, we can manage the entire process below on your behalf.
Step 1: Outline your business activities
No matter what type of business you wish to set up in the UAE, you must first outline your intended activities.
This is fairly straightforward in the world of footwear, but you will still need to make it clear exactly how you intend to trade. For example, will you be manufacturing and selling your own footwear or importing goods for resale. Another key consideration is whether you wish to have physical premises or trade solely online.
The answers to these questions could have an impact on the license and setup type that you require. Worldwide Formations will work with you to find the most suitable option.
Step 2: Choose your company name
The next step is to choose a name for your business. There are a few considerations to keep in mind at this stage.
Your chosen name cannot be the same as one used by an existing business in the UAE. In addition, it should not contain any blasphemous or offensive language or have any religious connotations.
Step 3: Decide on a company location
Next, the location of the business must be finalised. Not only must you choose between free zone and mainland setups, but if you require a physical presence, you’ll also need to consider footfall, competition, infrastructure and other factors.
Step 4: Apply for your trade license
With these key decisions out of the way, you can now apply for your trade license. Depending on the type of setup you wish to start, you may also require additional approvals at this stage.
In any case, Worldwide Formations can manage this process for you, liaising with all government bodies and relevant authorities on your behalf.
Step 5: Apply for the required visas
You need to ensure all relevant visas are in place – yours, your family’s, your business partners’ and your employees’. If you need to apply for a visa, the process includes applying for an entry permit, passing a medical test, submitting your Emirates ID registration and ensuring your visa is stamped by the relevant authorities.
Step 6: Open a corporate bank account
You will need a corporate bank account to trade in the UAE. There are many options available, from local names to international brands. Once again, the team at Worldwide Formations will get to know your needs before advising on the most suitable financial institution.
Cost of starting a footwear or shoe trading business in Dubai
There are many costs to be considered when setting up a footwear business in Dubai, UAE. For starters, the trade license comes in somewhere between AED 10,000 and AED 40,000, depending on your requirements.
Other significant costs include buying or renting your premises and supplying fixtures and fittings. There are also staff, equipment and materials costs, and customs taxes if you are planning to import your products.
When you’re ready to start your footwear business in Dubai, UAE, get in touch with the team at Worldwide Formations for a full personalised breakdown of the costs involved.
Is footwear a profitable business?
It definitely can be. The average Dubai resident purchased 3.4 items of footwear last year, totalling USD 118.30 per person.
How to grow a footwear business in Dubai
Three main things make a footwear business stand out from the crowd – price, service and variety. If you can offer a service, product or price point not available elsewhere, you have a good chance of being competitive in the Dubai market.
How Worldwide Formations can help
As you can see, there are many great benefits to starting a footwear business in Dubai right now. As well as a large and demanding market, UAE businesses benefit from 0% tax on corporate and personal income, a fantastic global trading location, low operational costs and more.
However, while the process of setting up a business in Dubai can be fast and straightforward, it does require knowledge of the country and its working practices. When you work with the consultants at Worldwide Formations, we can help to manage this process and make it as smooth as possible.
For more information and a personalised quote, please contact us.