The Ultimate Guide to Forming a Holding Company in ADGM

The Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) is a premier international financial centre on Al Maryah Island in Abu Dhabi. Established in 2013 and operational since 2015, ADGM has rapidly become a hub for businesses looking to develop a strong foothold in the region. This article provides an in-depth look at the benefits, processes, and services available for companies interested in setting up ADGM companies. At NH Management, we specialize in assisting businesses with ADGM company formation, ensuring a seamless and efficient process.

The Ultimate Guide to Forming a Holding Company in ADGM

Understanding ADGM

ADGM free zone spans over 14.38 million square meters, making it one of the largest financial districts in the world. The financial centre comprises four independent authorities: the Registration Authority, the Financial Services Regulatory Authority (FSRA), ADGM Courts, and the ADGM Authority. These bodies work together to create a business-friendly environment that adheres to international business practices. This makes it a preferred destination for ADGM business setup across various sectors, including financial services, asset management, and professional services.

Benefits of Setting Up a Holding Company in ADGM

Setting up a holding company in ADGM offers many advantages. These benefits are designed to attract foreign investment and support business growth.

  • 100% Foreign Ownership: ADGM allows full foreign ownership of companies, providing international investors with complete control over their ventures.
  • Easy Setup Processes: The streamlined processes for ADGM company set up make it straightforward to establish a business. With a local service provider, the setup can be completed efficiently and effectively.
  • State-of-the-Art Infrastructure: ADGM boasts modern office spaces and world-class amenities, providing an ideal environment for business operations.
  • 0% Personal and Corporate Tax: Companies operating in ADGM enjoy a tax-free environment, significantly enhancing their profitability.
  • Unlimited Repatriation of Capital: Investors can repatriate their capital and profits without restrictions, ensuring financial flexibility.
  • No Currency and Employment Restrictions: ADGM’s flexible policies regarding currency and employment make it easier for companies to manage their operations.
  • Support for Diversity and Sustainable Finance: ADGM promotes a diverse and inclusive business environment and supports sustainable finance initiatives, aligning with global trends towards corporate responsibility.

Types of Companies in ADGM

When considering company formation in ADGM, it’s essential to understand the different types of entities available. ADGM offers a variety of legal structures to suit different business needs:

  • Public Company Limited by Shares: Suitable for businesses that plan to raise capital by offering shares to the public.
  • Private Company Limited by Shares: Ideal for small to medium-sized enterprises looking for limited liability protection.
  • Private Company Limited by Guarantee: Often used by non-profit organizations where liability is limited to the amount the members guarantee to contribute.
  • Restricted Scope Company: A private company with fewer disclosure requirements, suitable for family-owned businesses or joint ventures.
  • Private Company Unlimited with Shares: Allows for greater flexibility in financial arrangements, but members have unlimited liability.
  • Private Company Unlimited without Shares: Similar to Private Company Unlimited with Shares, but without share capital.
  • Branch of Foreign Company: Enables foreign companies to operate in ADGM without incorporating a separate legal entity.
  • Partnership Structures: Various partnership options are available, including Limited Liability Partnerships (LLP), General Partnerships (GP), and Limited Partnerships (LP).
  • Cell Companies: Includes Protected Cell Companies (PCC) and Incorporated Cell Companies (ICC), offering distinct legal and financial advantages for asset protection and segregation.
  • Investment Companies: Tailored for entities involved in investment activities, providing a robust regulatory framework.

Steps to Form a Holding Company in ADGM

Forming a holding company in ADGM involves several steps. With the experience of local vendors, businesses can ensure that the process is smooth and efficient. Here is a step-by-step guide to ADGM company formation:

  • Initial Consultation: Contact a vendor to schedule an initial consultation. The business consultants will understand your business activity, goals, and requirements.
  • Business Activity and Goals: Provide detailed information about your business activity and long-term goals. This helps in determining the best legal structure for your holding company.
  • Legal Advice: The experts will offer legal advice, explaining the advantages of ADGM over other free zones. They’ll help you understand the regulatory framework and compliance requirements.
  • Company Formation Process: The next step is to guide you through the ADGM company formation process. This includes selecting the appropriate legal structure, preparing the necessary documentation, and submitting applications.
  • Documentation Submission: You must submit various documents, including proof of identity, business plans, and other relevant paperwork. Choose a service provider that can ensure all documents are in order.
  • Approval: The ADGM authorities will review your application. The approval process typically takes 5-10 working days. 
  • Post-Setup Support: Once your company is approved, your service provider will continue to provide support. This includes helping with operational setup, compliance, and any other business needs.

Costs and Services Involved in ADGM Company Setup

The cost of setting up a company in ADGM varies depending on the services required and the type of company being established. NH Management offers various services to facilitate the ADGM business setup, ensuring a hassle-free experience.

  • License Packages: Depending on your business activity and requirements, different license packages are available. These packages include the necessary permits to operate in ADGM.
  • Visa Applications: We assist with visa applications for you and your employees, ensuring compliance with UAE immigration laws.
  • Establishment Card: An establishment card is required for company operations. NH Management handles the application and issuance process.
  • Flexi-Desks: We offer flexible office solutions to meet your business needs. We provide access to modern office spaces and facilities.
  • Bank Account Opening: Setting up a corporate bank account is crucial for business operations. NH Management assists with the bank account opening process, ensuring all necessary documents are in place.


Forming a holding company in ADGM free zone offers numerous advantages, including full foreign ownership, tax benefits, and a business-friendly environment. The process, though straightforward, requires careful planning and expert guidance. NH Management, with its extensive experience in ADGM company formation, is your trusted partner in this journey. We are committed to delivering high-quality consulting services that drive real impact. Whether you are looking to establish a new venture or expand your existing operations, NH Management is here to help. Contact us today to discuss your requirements and start your journey towards a successful ADGM business setup.

CTA: Contact NH Management today to start your successful ADGM company formation journey with expert guidance and comprehensive support.

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