How to start a e-learning business in Saudi Arabia | PRO Partner Group

How to start a e-learning business in Saudi Arabia | PRO Partner Group


How to start an online tutoring business in Saudi Arabia

As part of Saudi Arabia’s ‘Vision 2030’ governmental programme and a growing national demand for workers who can navigate a digitised workplace, Saudi Arabia is aiming to rapidly develop its education sector, both in size and quality. Among the G20 countries, it is set to be the first in population growth for the coming five years. These factors are contributing to opening a wide range of opportunities for foreign investors in the field of education.

Education is given huge importance in Saudi Arabia and parents spend large sums of money on private tuition to ensure a high quality of education for their children. E-learning delivery methods have also developed greater acceptance and are becoming more widely adopted, creating great scope for an online tutoring business in what is a relatively new and untapped market.

A Range of Growth Drivers for E-learning

With a Nominal GDP of $700 BN (in 2020), Saudi Arabia represents the largest economy in the MENA region. The Kingdom is also home to 8.4 million students (K-12 as well as university students), making it the largest education market in the Gulf Cooperation Council.

The country is witnessing a steady rise in the number of Internet users and experiencing a growing Smartphone penetration while the Higher Education system and schools have increasingly been adopting LMS, online conferencing platforms, as well as other educational technologies such as interactive whiteboards. The COVID-19 pandemic and the need for education to go ‘online’ has also resulted in a greater popularity of ‘online tutoring’ amongst users. As a result, the e-learning market is forecast to reach a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 23.9% for the period of 2020-2025 (information collected from the ‘Saudi Arabia E-Learning Market Outlook to 2025 - Rising initiatives by Government and Growing K-12 Enrolments to Boost E-Learning Market’ report).

Business ownership in Saudi Arabia

In 2017, important regulatory changes in the private business sector happened in the country. It is now possible to run a company with 100% foreign ownership through the Ministry of Investment of Saudi Arabia (MISA) investor licence service.

The following categories are recognised by MISA Licence:

- Limited Liability One-person Company

- Limited Liability Company (LLC)

- Joint Stock Company

- Foreign Company Branch

- Solidarity Professional Company

What documents will I need to start a company in Saudi Arabia?

As part of the initial approval process to set up an LLC and to receive a licence from MISA, you will be required to submit the following documents. All of these will need to be legalised, attested and certified at the Saudi consulate or embassy in your country:

- 1. Articles of Association / Memorandum of Association

- 2. Trade Licence (Commercial Registration)

- 3. Certificate of Incumbency

- 4. Audited financial statement for the last financial year

- 5. Passport copy of the assigned General Manager of the Saudi entity

All of these will need to be submitted online with the due payment.

How to set up a company in Saudi Arabia

A 3-stage Process to setting up a Company

The first stage establishes the foundation of the legal entity and provides an official permission to have a business in Saudi Arabia. It includes the following five steps:

- 1. Legalisation and attestation of required documents at the Saudi consulate or embassy of the business creator’s company

- 2. Applying for MISA licence and company name registration

- 3. Drafting of the Local Articles of Association (AoA)

- 4. Issuance of the Commercial Registration (CR)

- 5. Registration with the Chamber of Commerce (CoC) and activation of the CoC account

The second stage gives the legal entity the authorisation to hire staff and is comprised of the following stages:

- 6. Registration with the Ministry of Labour

- 7. Registration with the General Organisation for Social Insurance (GOSI)

- 8. Registration of a suitable physical office address

- 9. Registration with the General Authority of Tax and Zakat (GAZT)

The final stage of the process allows the General Manager to acquire residency and open a bank account. It also involves the GM completing a health check, obtaining health insurance, and registering on the MHRSD portal.

How long does it take to set up an online tutoring business in Saudi Arabia?

MISA licence issuance, commercial registration and Chamber of Commerce certification can all be achieved in approximately 2-3 weeks. A company can usually be fully established within 3 months, with all authorisations in place.

How can PRO partner Group help?

Having an expert on your side can help you avoid any challenges and streamline the application process. Sovereign PRO Partner Group have connections with key government agencies in Saudi Arabia and can guide you through the process of business incorporation and liaise with all parties involved on your behalf.

If you need assistance with setting up an online tutoring business in Saudi Arabia or any other company setup, restructuring, local partner or PRO support matter in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, the wider UAE, Oman, Qatar or Saudi Arabia, then please do get in touch with us on +971 (0)4 456 1761 for Dubai or +971 (0)2 448 5120 for Abu Dhabi, email us at or complete the contact form below and we will be delighted to assist you.

Set up an online tutoring business in Saudi Arabia

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