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Content Creators Should Setup Their Business in Dubai

MEDIA / Articles / Become a Digital Content Creator in Dubai

Get Involved in a Thriving New Digital Community, Increase Your Income, and Enjoy Low Taxes!

If you are a content creator looking to setup your company in Dubai, or just looking for the best location for influencers and content creators to set-up their company, then look no further!

Wait... what do you mean by Content Creator?

Content creators are individuals or companies that create content through social mediums e.g. YouTube, Facebook, and LinkedIn etc. They have their own audience, which follow them and watch their content.

Example? Our personal favourite is Nas Daily! He travelled around the world for 1.000 days and posted 1-minute videos of each of his 1.000 days. Quite a task; but he pulled it through...

The popularity of content creators exploded even further during the COVID-19 pandemic. People staying at home and spending more time on their laptops and smartphones increased the demand for content. Modern content creators engage with their audience, and provide unique content in a creative manner. Traditional media cannot compete!

Are content creators restricted to a certain subject?

No there is no certain subject or mode. It could range from viewing the life of an otter in Japan, to a frequent traveller reviewing airlines. Moreover, there are different mediums that can be used too: Youtube, Instagram, Facebook. If there is a market for it, the Views are there.

If you create unique content and post it online then you are a content creator as well!


Ok then, why would a content creator setup in Dubai?

Many Internet content providers have set up their businesses in Dubai, and the United Arab Emirates. Remember Nas Daily mentioned earlier? That’s exactly what he did.

Now why did he setup a content creation company in Dubai? Maybe he wanted setting up in a place where modern tech is embraced! Furthermore, it has a favourable time zone and minimal corporate taxes and no income taxes for individuals.

But Dubai is more for digital content creators than low taxes!

The digital landscape of the UAE offers diverse opportunities to online entrepreneurs. Dubai is a highly connected and digitally literate society; the internet and social media is a big part of the daily lives of residents.

As per Speed test Global Index, in March 2020, the UAE had the quickest mobile internet speed in the world. In addition, Dubai’s booming young population coupled with wide acceptance for various forms of digital content offers lucrative opportunities to content providers.

Travel and food blogs and videos are gaining popularity across generations and more people are turning to digital media for entertainment and news. The UAE offers you easy access to the international labour market and a location on the major trade route between East and West.

Wait... I am not a tax and corporate expert! How do I streamline my revenues and affairs?

As a content creator you can get different revenue streams. Revenue from Subscriptions, revenue from Endorsements and Ads that you place. You will need a corporate Structure and a reliable bank account for your Company and yourself. Maybe you need a Credit card service linked to your site or streaming.

The main structure that Internet Content Providers setup in the UAE is a Freezone company since most of their revenue originates from out of Dubai. There are a number of different freezones in the UAE. The ideal freezone for your publishing business depends on the nature of your Channel or Blog.

The main advantages of setting up in a FZ in the UAE are a friendly tax regime on corporation tax, salaries and dividends, 100% foreign ownership, no capital restrictions and no restrictions on hiring expatriates.

And additional benefit of a freezone company in Dubai is that it allows you to get  a residence permit in Dubai. If you move to Dubai, and become a resident there, your personal income will be tax free as well. Dubai is now one of the main travel hubs in the world and a great base for a content creator with a global market.

Special note for for content creators paid in royalties

Often, digital content creators are paid in royalties. This is important to know for sure, because royalties are taxed differently from regular income. Royalties are normally taxed at source, which in practice often is the State where the platform that pays the royalties is located.

Most platforms used by content creators are in the United States. The United States has a 30% tax on all outgoing royalty payments. The only way to avoid this by having special tax cooperation called a tax treaty. The UAE, where Dubai is part of, does not have a tax treaty with the US.

Cyprus payment agent for your digital content

A way to deal with this is setting up a Cyprus daughter company as a payments facilitator. Cyprus has a tax treaty with the US, reducing this 30% to 0%. The Cyprus Company is owned by the Dubai entity and takes advantage of the Cyprus UAE DTT of zero royalties.

Now regarding the Tax of Freezone entities then the Freezone would not be taxable under UAE Corporation Tax if the income is not derived from UAE. Since the Cyprus company will be acting as a payment processor for the Dubai entity then most of the income transferred to Dubai and so minimal corporation tax in Cyprus. For any content creator this setup is the best of both worlds!

Summary: the best setup for content providers in the UAE

In summary, digital content creators should setup their business in a freezone in the UAE to benefit from the central and dynamic location and low taxation. They can become resident to have no personal taxation. And finally, if their business relies heavily on income from royalties paid by foreign (American) sources, they should consider setting up a Cyprus subsidiary to facilitate such payments.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you are interested in setting up such a structure...

Do you wish to stay informed?

Thank you for your interest in Freemont Group, the specialists in company formation, asset protection and legal and advisory . Feel free to contact us with any inquiry you might have. We will provide you with a free initial consultation, and a customized solution for your personal situation.