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Business and Investor Visas

Migration options for business owners and investors include the following:

Business Talent (Permanent) visa (subclass 132)

Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) which consists of:

  • Business Innovation stream
  • Investor stream
  • Significant Investor stream
  • Premium Investor stream
  • Entrepreneur stream

The subclass 188 business and investment visas are temporary residence visas. You will need to meet specified requirements according to your stream and apply for the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) to obtain permanent residence.

Business Skills (provisional) visas (subclasses 160-165), include:

  • the Business Owner (Provisional) visa (subclass 160)
  • the Senior Executive (Provisional) visa (subclass 161)
  • the Investor (Provisional) visa (subclass 162)
  • the State/Territory Sponsored Business Owner (Provisional) visa (subclass 163)
  • the State/Territory Sponsored Senior Executive (Provisional) visa (subclass 164)
  • the State/Territory Sponsored Investor (Provisional) visa (subclass 165)

Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188)

The subclass 188 Business Innovation and Investment visa is a temporary residence visa which allows overseas business owners and investors to stay in Australia for four years to manage a business or investment.

There are FIVE streams to the subclass 188 Business Innovation and Investment visa:

  • Business Innovation stream
  • Investor stream
  • Significant Investor stream
  • Premium Investor stream
  • Entrepreneur stream

Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888)

Holders of the provisional Business Innovation and Investment visa (subclass 188) will need to apply for the permanent subclass 888 visa upon fulfilling the required conditions for the respective streams.

The permanent subclass 888 visa will grant permanent residency status to its applicants when granted.

To be eligible to apply you will need to meet the requirements and obligations of the subclass 188 visa stream which you have held. The subclass 188 visa streams include:

  • Business Innovation – 888A
  • Investor – 888B
  • Significant Investor (SIV) – 888C
  • Premium Investor (PIV)
  • Entrepreneur

How do I apply for the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888)?

  • Check and ensure that you have met all the requirements for your subclass 188 visa stream
  • Submit an online application using the ImmiAccount system from the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP)
  • After you have submitted your application online, prepare and send in supporting documents using courier to the Adelaide Business Skills Processing Centre, South Australia

Business Investment – Entrepreneur Visa

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 commercialize their innovative ideas in Australia.

Key facts and main requirements for the Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (Subclass 188), Entrepreneur Stream is 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.

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