UAE – Corporate – 100% Ownership of Companies

This morning, 21 May 2018, and as expected since few months, the UAE Federal Government Cabinet, executive branch of the UAE Federation in charge, among other duties, to draft and prepare federal laws and submit them to the Federal National Council, announced a still vague decision allowing 100% ownership of UAE-based enterprises for international investors. It seems that it relates to the current obligation for foreign companies to establish UAE companies with a UAE national holding a certain percentage of the shares in the concerned company.

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BOOK CONSULTATION

5 minutes with Dr Alexander Brexendorff, founder of Mena Legal

Over the two decades, Dr Alexander Brexendorff, has become an important figure in the Middle East legal and business landscape. Opening several offices and engaging with a diverse range of clients including government ministries and large international corporations. Despite a rigorous schedule, he took five minutes to share his thoughts on life in the UAE.

Why did you study for a law PhD?

The way laws guide society and instruct us in fair principles, is something I have always recognised as important. Plus, I had remarkable tutors in Germany and the UK who inspired my interest further.

What encouraged you to choose the UAE as your home in 2005?

I have been consulting international corporations on Middle Eastern legal aspects since the 1990s from Europe, but eventually realised that one needs to be close to the action for being able to advise clients in the best possible way. I have always been particularly curious about emerging markets because of the unpredictable challenges that make them interesting. Living here you meet people from around the world, who are like-minded and I would like my children growing up with the same international experience and mindset.

What make a business successful in the UAE?

Next to a good idea, it is essential to be part of a trusted and loyal team. Equally important is to make sure the basics, such as practical realities and legal compliance, are in place and managed by experts. This way the business can focus on what they know best.

What are you most passionate about?

My primary joy is of course my role as a father to three busy daughters and their younger brother. There’s incredible happiness in seeing your kids grow. But helping others in growing their business here in the Middle East I consider as my mission.

Association Partner

Offices:

Basel / Switzerland

Sven Röthlingshöfer is a German business attorney (Rechtsanwalt) by profession and a real estate and hospitality project development specialist with over 25 years of international experience. He has been practicing as a foreign Legal Consultant in the Emirate of Dubai since 1998.

Sven was involved in the development and delivery of several of Dubai’s well-known real estate and hospitality projects. 

During his initial 9 years in private practice at Ja’afar Alwan, Al Jaziri & Associates, one of Dubai’s leading National Law Firms, he advised European companies on their business ventures and investments throughout the Gulf Cooperation Council countries.

Key areas of specialty include foreign direct investments, cross-border joint-ventures, re-structuring, distribution and industrial projects, real estate projects, hospitality projects as well as international litigation and arbitration. 

Since the opening of the real estate market in Dubai to foreign investors, Sven has been advising international property developers on residential, commercial and hospitality projects in the Emirate of Dubai.

Sven also acted as an Arbitrator and Expert Witness and as a Board Member of an Owners’ Association of a large hybrid project. From 2007 until 2021 he accepted assignments as General Counsel of two privately owned property development companies in the Emirate of Dubai. Their project portfolio included the development, completion and hand-over of a large commercial property in Dubai Downtown, the Kempinski Residences & Hotel Apartments Palm Jumeirah and the hotels of EPG Hotels & Resorts, which are now rebranded as the “Raffles the Palm Dubai” and the “Hyde Hotel Business Bay”.

Areas of Expertise

  • Hospitality projects
  • Hotel management agreements
  • Restaurant operating and management agreements
  • Project development related cross-border joint ventures
  • Mixed-use real estate projects
  • Related fields
  • International litigation and arbitration

Bar Admission

Germany, since 1996

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