Do You Qualify For a Business Investment – Entrepreneur Visa?

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The Entrepreneur visa is part of the Business Innovation and Investment visa programme which allows applicants to establish a new business or develop an existing business in Australia. The new Entrepreneur stream is available for entrepreneurs who wish to develop and commercialise their innovative ideas in Australia.

Key facts and main requirements for the Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (Subclass 188), Entrepreneur Stream are as follows:

  • Initially a temporary visa for up to 4 years
  • Entrepreneurs will require $200,000 in funding from a specified third party to grow a venture in Australia. One or more funding agreements must be in place for at least $200,000 between the entrepreneur or venture and a third party funding body or bodies. The funding agreement must involve the transfer of at least 10% of the funds within 12 months of commencing the activity in Australia.
  • Applicants must be under 55 years of age, although a state or territory can waive this requirement if you can prove that your proposed complying entrepreneur activity will be of exceptional economic benefit to the nominating state or territory
  • Applicants must be undertaking or proposing to undertake a complying entrepreneur activity in Australia and have a genuine intention to continue this activity
  • Applicants must hold at least 30 per cent interest in their entrepreneurial venture
  • Applicants must have competent English, the equivalent of an English IELTS score of 6 in each component *an exemption may apply in some cases
  • The applicant’s business must be nominated and sponsored by a state or territory government or Austrade on behalf of the Australian government
  • An expression of interest (EOI) will need to be submitted
  • Applicants must be invited to apply for the visa through the skillselect system
  • Applicants must provide a detailed business plan outlining their plans for the venture in Australia
  • There is no requirement to show a minimum amount of personal net assets or significant business background
  • Applicants may be required to provide evidence of business experience and/or qualifications
  • An Entrepreneur visa holder can progress to permanent residency (subclass 888) after four years and in some cases earlier if they can prove business success, this includes factors such as business turnover, employment of Australians and ability to obtain significant financial backing. To qualify for permanent residency, applicants must have also been in Australia on the 188 visa for one year in the two years immediately before lodging the permanent residency application

Most requirements outlined for the Entrepreneur stream apply also for other business investment streams such as the Business Innovation stream, Investor, Significant Investor and Premium Investor streams however applicants must be able to prove that they have at least $800,000 to invest in government shares. A points test also applies for some streams which is based on factors such as age, English language ability, qualifications, business experience, net personal and business assets, business turnover and innovation. Minimum residency requirements also apply in most cases in order to be granted permanent residency.

If you believe you can meet the main requirements outlined for the entrepreneur stream or other streams specified please contact us to arrange an in-depth migration assessment and confirm eligibility with our Business Investment visa Specialist.