[popup_anything id="2399"]

Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) Explained

 

The Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) is a temporary visa that allows individuals who are looking to invest in or start a new business in Australia to do so. This visa is part of the Australian Government’s Business Innovation and Investment Program which aims to attract and retain high-caliber business people and entrepreneurs from around the world.

 

To be eligible for this visa applicants must be nominated by an Australian state or territory government agency or by Austrade (Australian Trade and Investment Commission).

 

There are five streams under the subclass 188 visa

 

Business Innovation Stream

 

This visa is for individuals who have a successful business career and are willing to invest in a new or existing business in Australia. To be eligible for this stream applicants must be nominated by an Australian state or territory government agency, have a net worth of at least AUD 800,000 and have a minimum of three years of business experience.

 

Investor Stream

 

This visa is for individuals who are willing to make a designated investment in Australia for a minimum of four years. To be eligible for this stream, applicants must be nominated by an Australian state or territory government agency, have a net worth of at least AUD 2.25 million and make a minimum investment of AUD 1.5 million in an Australian state or territory.

 

Significant Investor Stream

 

This visa is for individuals who are willing to make a significant investment in Australia for a minimum of four years. To be eligible for this stream applicants must make a minimum investment of AUD 5 million in complying investments which can include Australian securities, managed funds and bonds.

 

Premium Investor Stream

 

This visa is for individuals who are willing to make a significant investment in Australia for a minimum of four years. To be eligible for this stream visa applicants must make a minimum investment of AUD 15 million in complying investments.

 

Entrepreneur Stream

 

This visa is for individuals who have a funding agreement from a third party for at least AUD 200,000 to undertake a complying entrepreneur activity in Australia. To be eligible for this stream, applicants must be nominated by an Australian state or territory government agency and have a, “genuine and realistic commitment to continuing their entrepreneurial activity in Australia after the visa period.”

 

Benefits of the Business Innovation and Investment Visa

 

  • The visa allows the applicant and their family to stay in Australia for up to four years, with the option extend.

 

  • The visa holder and their family are entitled to access education and healthcare services in Australia.

 

  • After holding the visa for two years the holder is eligible to apply for permanent residency through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) Visa (subclass 888).

 

  • The visa holder can start or invest in a business in Australia.

 

  • The visa holder can use Australia as a base to access markets in the Asia-Pacific region.

 

  • Australia is known for its high standard of living making it an attractive destination for many migrants.

Step by step process for making Business Innovation and Investment Visa application

 

The Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) is designed for successful business people and entrepreneurs who are interested in investing in and operating a business in Australia. Here is a step-by-step guide to the application process:

 

Determine which stream you are eligible for

 

There are five streams under the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188): Business Innovation stream, Investor stream, Significant Investor stream, Premium Investor stream, and Entrepreneur stream.

 

Submit an Expression of Interest (EOI)

 

Once you have determined which stream you are eligible for you need to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) through the SkillSelect system. The EOI will ask you to provide information about your business experience, your net worth, your business history, your source of funds and your proposed business activity in Australia. Your EOI will be ranked based on the points you score and the business proposals you submit.

 

Receive an invitation to apply

 

If your EOI is successful you will receive an invitation to apply for the visa. The invitation will specify which stream you have been invited to apply for and provide you with a unique identifier number which you will need to include in your visa application.

 

Gather the necessary documents

 

Before you can apply for the visa you need to gather the necessary documents to support your application. These documents are:

 

  • Proof of identity

 

  • Business and financial records

 

  • Health and character assessments

 

  • Proof of English language proficiency

 

Lodge your visa application

 

Once you have gathered all of the necessary documents you can lodge your visa application online through the Department of Home Affairs website. You will need to provide the unique identifier number that you received in your invitation to apply.

 

Pay the visa application fee

 

As of March 2023, the visa application fees for each stream are as follows:

 

  • Business Innovation Stream: AUD 4,035
  • Investor Stream: AUD 4,035
  • Significant Investor Stream: AUD 7,310
  • Premium Investor Stream: AUD 13,720
  • Entrepreneur Stream: AUD 4,035

 

Visa grant

 

If your visa application is successful you will receive a letter of confirmation from the Department of Home Affairs. The letter will include your visa grant number and the conditions of your visa.

 

Activate your visa

 

Once your visa is granted you will need to activate it within a specified period. This will usually involve traveling to Australia and showing your visa grant letter to an immigration officer. Once you have activated your visa then you and your family can enter and leave Australia as many times as you like.

Questions asked on a Business Innovation and Investment Visa application

 

  • You will be asked to provide your full name, date of birth, nationality and contact information.

 

  • You will be asked to provide details of your business experience, including your position in the company, the industry you worked in and the nature of your responsibilities.

 

  • You will be asked to provide information about your educational qualifications including the name of the institution you attended, the degree you obtained.

 

  • You will be asked to provide evidence of your English language proficiency.

 

  • You will be asked to provide a detailed business proposal outlining your proposed business activity in Australia, including the nature of the business, the industry it will operate in and the proposed investment amount.

 

  • You will be asked to provide details of your personal and business assets including net worth and income.

 

  • You will be asked to provide evidence of your good health and character including medical certificates and police certificates.

Pros and Cons of the Business Innovation Investment Visa

 

Pros of the Business Investment Visa (subclass 188) application

 

  • Opportunity to start or invest in a business in Australia: The visa allows successful applicants to establish a new business or invest in an existing business in Australia.

 

  • Pathway to permanent residency: The subclass 188 visa is a pathway to permanent residency in Australia.

 

  • Access to quality education and healthcare: Australia has a high standard of education and healthcare.

 

  • Ability to sponsor family members: Successful visa holders can sponsor eligible family members for permanent residency in Australia.

 

  • Flexibility to travel: The visa allows for multiple entries into Australia providing flexibility to travel in and out of the country for business or personal reasons.

 

Cons of the Business Investment Visa application

 

  • High costs: The visa application fees and associated costs can be expensive.

 

  • Strict eligibility requirements: The eligibility requirements for the visa are strict and require a significant investment of time and resources to prepare a successful application.

 

  • Limited opportunities for some streams: The Entrepreneur stream is only available in certain states and territories.

 

  • Time-consuming application process: The application process for the visa can be lengthy and time-consuming.

 

  • Risk of business failure: Starting or investing in a business involves risk and there is a possibility that the business may not be successful.

FAQs Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)

 

Q: What is the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: The Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) is a temporary visa that allows individuals to start or invest in a business in Australia. It is a pathway to permanent residency in Australia for those who meet the requirements.

 

Q: What are the eligibility requirements for the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: The eligibility requirements vary depending on the stream you are applying for, but generally require a certain level of business experience, a minimum level of net worth and investment, and a successful track record in managing a business. You will also need to meet health and character requirements, as well as provide evidence of English language proficiency.

 

Q: How long is the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) valid for?

A: The visa is valid for up to four years and three months, depending on the stream you are applying for.

 

Q: Can I bring my family with me on the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: Yes, you can include eligible family members in your visa application, including your spouse, dependent children, and in some cases, parents.

 

Q: Can I work while on the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: Yes, you can work in Australia while on the visa, either in the business you have established or invested in, or in another business.

 

Q: Can I extend my Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: Yes, you can apply for an extension of your visa if you meet certain requirements, such as continuing to meet the criteria of the stream you are in, and demonstrating that your business activity is ongoing and of benefit to Australia.

 

Q: What is the difference between the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) and the Business Talent Visa (subclass 132)?

A: The Business Talent Visa (subclass 132) is a permanent visa that is available to high-caliber business people who have a proven track record of success in their industry. The Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) is a temporary visa that requires a lower level of business experience and investment, and is a pathway to permanent residency for those who meet the requirements.

 

Q: What is the processing time for the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: The processing time can vary depending on the stream you are applying for, as well as the complexity of your application. As of March 2023, the Department of Home Affairs states that the processing time for the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) is between 15 and 22 months.

 

Q: Can I apply for the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) if I don’t have a business background?

A: It is possible to apply for the visa if you don’t have a business background, but you will need to demonstrate that you have a successful track record in a related field, such as finance or management, and that you have the skills and experience necessary to successfully manage a business in Australia.

 

Q: What is the minimum investment required for the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: The minimum investment required varies depending on the stream you are applying for, but generally ranges from AUD200,000 to AUD1.5 million.

 

Q: Can I apply for permanent residency immediately after being granted the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: No, you must hold the visa for at least two years before you can apply for permanent residency. You must also meet the eligibility criteria for permanent residency at the time of application.

 

Q: Is there a minimum investment requirement for the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: Yes, there are minimum investment requirements for each stream of the visa. The Investor stream requires a minimum investment of AUD 1.5 million, the Significant Investor stream requires a minimum investment of AUD 5 million, and the Premium Investor stream requires a minimum investment of AUD 15 million. The Entrepreneur stream does not have a minimum investment requirement, but applicants must have funding of at least AUD 200,000 from an approved entity.

 

Q: Can I include my family members in my Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) application?

A: Yes, you can include your spouse or de facto partner, dependent children, and dependent relatives in your visa application. They will be included as secondary applicants and must meet the relevant visa requirements.

 

Q: Can I apply for permanent residency with the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: Yes, the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) is a pathway to permanent residency in Australia. After holding the visa for a certain period of time and meeting the relevant criteria, you may be eligible to apply for the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) Visa (subclass 888).

 

Q: Can I change my business or investment activities after receiving the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: Yes, you can change your business or investment activities after receiving the visa, but you must still meet the requirements of the stream you applied under. You must also notify the Department of Home Affairs of any changes to your business or investment activities.

 

Q: How long does it take to process a Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188)?

A: The processing time for a Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) varies depending on the stream and the complexity of the application. The processing time can range from several months to over a year. It is recommended that you check the current processing times on the Department of Home Affairs website.

 

Q: Can I apply for the Business Innovation Investment Visa (subclass 188) from within Australia?

A: Yes, you can apply for the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188) from within or outside of Australia. However, if you are in Australia on a temporary visa, you must hold a substantive visa or a bridging visa A, B or C to be eligible to apply for the subclass 188 visa.

Understanding the Role of Austrade

 

Austrade (Australian Trade and Investment Commission) is an Australian government agency that helps Australian businesses to succeed in international trade and investment. If you are a business person or entrepreneur interested in investing in and operating a business in Australia you may be eligible to apply for assistance from Austrade.

 

However, the process of applying to Austrade is separate from the process of applying for the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (subclass 188). Austrade does not handle visa applications or grant visas. Instead, their role is to assist eligible businesses to access the resources and networks they need to succeed in Australia.

 

You can apply to Austrade at any time during your business planning and development process. It is recommended that you do your research and gather as much information as possible about the Australian market and business environment before applying for Austrade’s assistance.

Subject Matter Expert at Migration Made Simple | Website | + posts

Jacqueline Chow is an international immigration and visa expert with over 15 years of experience in the field. With a background in law and a passion for helping people, Jacqueline has built a reputation as a trusted and reliable source of information and advice on all aspects of immigration and visas. She has worked with clients from all over the world, including high-net-worth individuals, professionals, skilled workers and families. As a sought-after speaker and commentator Jacqueline has been featured in various media outlets and has given talks on immigration and visas at conferences and events around the world.