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Complete Guide to business and investor visa australia

Investor Visa Australia

If you are fortunate enough to have a talent for business and substantial funds to invest, and have a genuine and realistic commitment to business and investment activity in Australia, then the business innovation and investment visa is definitely worth your consideration. This visa has a direct pathway to a permanent residence visa. There are a number of streams available under this visa categorised by Australian business talent and activity, or complying investment in the range of AUD2.5 million to AUD15 million.


Business Innovation and Investment visa

An initial Business Innovation and Investment visa grant places you on a temporary visa dubbed provisional visa subclass 188. This also mean you are a temporary residence visa holder. Once you meet the requirements of the stream and prove provisional visa validity you have chosen under this visa categories, you can then apply for a permanent visa. This will then lead to the issuance of an Australian citizenship by the Australian Government for the primary visa holders and their family members.

If you are interested in investing in the Australian markets, then the investor stream and significant investor visa allow you the opportunity to place your money in complying significant investments that cover a myriad of options potentially including emerging companies listed, small private companies, residential real estate, commercial real estate, approved managed funds, venture capital, australian stock exchange, growth private equity funds and Australian corporate bonds. It is important to note that direct investment in many of these markets such as residential real estate is not allowed. Indirect investment in residential property through managed funds is strictly limited.


Investment Visa Streams

Investor Stream

If you have a knack for investment, a direct investment of at least AUD2.5 million in Australian-complying investments will allow you to carry out business and investment activity in Australia for up to 5 years. Eligible members of your family can stay with you, and you will all be able to apply for permanent residence within 4 years under the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Investor stream.

To apply, you need to be nominated by a State or Territory government agency to invest at least AUD2.5 million that meets certain requirements if you were invited to apply on or after 1 July 2021 OR AUD1.5 million in an Australian State or Territory if you were invited to apply before 1 July 2021, score at least 65 on the points test and have net assets including business, investment and personal assets of at least AUD2.5 million, and have a genuine intention to meet the residence requirement.

In addition to the general entry requirements of having functional English, a genuine intention to invest in the state or territory, meeting health requirements, meeting the character requirement and not having a history of involvement in unacceptable activities, the eligibility requirements for this specific visa include:

  • having the right experience and owning and managing a business,

  • personal assets and investments,

  • a points test score of at least 65,

  • be under 55.


Significant Investor stream

Whilst the significant investor stream requires a complying significant investment commitment of AUD5 million, the eligibility requirement at this level of investment no longer includes a points test, age limits and proof of history/personal assets and investments. Processing timeframes are more than twice as fast meaning your pathway to a permanent residence visa may very well be quicker under this stream than the investor stream.


Premium Investor stream

This provisional investor visa is for people who are nominated by Austrade and who invest at least AUD15 million in Australian investments and/or philanthropic contributions. Under this investment program, you can carry out business and investment activity in Australia, stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months and apply for a permanent Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Premium Investor stream if certain requirements are met. Again the eligibility criteria remain similar to that under the Significant investor visa through an additional condition to agree not to bring action against the Commonwealth is required.


Business Visa Streams

Entrepreneur stream

A State or Territory may choose to endorse entrepreneurs to develop their concepts. Under this stream, you can stay up to 5 years to run your complying entrepreneur activity that will lead to the commercialisation of a product or develop an enterprise or business in Australia. For this visa, you will need to show at least competent English and have no debt to the Australian government.


Business innovation stream

As the name suggests, this stream lets you operate a new or existing business in Australia for up to 5 years, during which you can apply for PR under subclass 888.


Application process for Business Innovation and Investment (provisional) visa (subclass 188)


  • Confer with you and obtain instructions

  • Provide advice in relation to the investment streams available 

  • Introduce you to a financial advisor to advise on an Australian investment portfolio that is compliant with legislative requirements

  • Liaise with your financial advisor regarding investment preferences and State/Territory nomination investment requirements

  • Collate, review and advise regarding your supporting documentation

  • Advise regarding business visa programme requirements and process/timeframes

Expression of Interest (EOI)

  • Liaise with financial advisor regarding drafting investment portfolio

  • Advise regarding EOI

  • Prepare and lodge EOI

Nomination application

  • Monitor and advise regarding changing State/Territory changing requirements for nomination 

  • Prepare and lodge an application for State/Territory nomination

Visa Application

  • Collate, review and advise on required supporting visa documentation;

  • Prepare and complete required forms for the application;

  • Lodge Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional)(Significant Investor Stream) sc 188 visa application;

  • Maintain correspondence with the department of home affairs until a decision is made on your application, including but not limited to, the department’s invitation to invest;

  • Respond to requests for further information, including but not limited to, financial documentation, medical examinations and police clearance;

  • Advise on visa entitlements;

  • Advise on visa conditions (if applicable);

  • Update you on the progress of your application;

  • Notify you of any decision made by the department of home affairs

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes, you can include immediate family on this visa application. Be careful, that some visa applications require both you and your partner to be in Australia at the time of application and at the time of the visa grant.

If you have a permanent business visa you can travel for five years without any restrictions. Afterward, you must apply for a resident return visa. If you have a temporary business visa, you can travel freely for the duration of your visa.

You need to submit the following:

  • Identification including passport, national identity card or drivers licence.

  • Two recent identity photographs which can be taken at an Australia Post shop

  • Character documents including any statements

  • Financial statements.

  • Proof of personal and business assets.

  • Six photographs of your business establishment.

  • A one-page organisational chart of your business.

  • Proof of English Language Skills.

  • Outline your business activities.

  • Proof that you own your business.

  • Evidence that you purchased your business (if applicable).

  • Business Activity Statements (BAS).

  • Australian Business Number (ABN).

  • Evidence of having employed full-time employees.

  • Proof of your managerial position within the business.

  • Documentation of the points test.

  • For your family members you will also need to include these documents:

    • Passports

    • Marriage certificate

    • Divorce papers

    • Birth certificates

    • Adoption papers

    • Dependency evidence

    • Relationship proof

  • Include the following forms for your business visa application:

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