Business Visa Pathways

There is a range of Australian business visas available. Each of them has different eligibility requirements.

Some of them offer permanent residency immediately upon the visa grant. Other visas are granted on a temporary basis in the first instance but then lead to permanent residency after further requirements are satisfied.

Provisional Business Visas (subclass 188)

There are four types of subclass 188 visas, pursuant to the Australian government’s Business Innovation and Investment Program.

Generally, you need to hold the provisional visa for 4 years and, if you have complied with the investment or business activity, you can apply for a permanent visa (subclass 888). 

Please see different streams below.

Permanent Business Visa – Significant Business History (subclass 132)

In order to be eligible for the subclass 132 visa, you must:

  • Be younger than 55, unless the proposed business will be of exceptional benefit to a part of Australia where you will settle
  • Own a business for two of the four years preceding the application with a turnover of AUD 3 million per year
  • Own net business and personal assets of AUD 1.5 million
  • Plan to start a business in Australia

Business Visa Streams

Business Innovation

This visa is for people with business skills who want to establish, develop and manage a new or existing business in Australia.

You must:

  • be under 55 years of age (although this can be waived if your proposed business will be of exceptional economic benefit)
  • score at least 65 on the points test
  • for two out of the four fiscal years immediately before you are invited to apply, have had an ownership interest in an established business or businesses that had at least AUD 500,000 turnover in each of those years
  • own at least one of the following percentage of your nominated main business:
    1. 51 per cent, if the business has a turnover of less than AUD 400,000 per year
    2. 30 per cent if the business has a turnover of AUD 400,000 or more per year
    3. 10 per cent if the business is a publicly listed company
  • have an overall successful business career
  • have a genuine desire to continuously own and maintain a management role in a business in Australia.

At the time you are invited to apply for the visa, you or your partner (or both of you combined) must have total net business and personal assets of at least AUD800 000 that are lawfully acquired and available for legal transfer to Australia within two years of the visa being granted

Investor

You must make a designated investment of at least AUD 1.5 million in an Australian state or territory security, using unencumbered funds from qualifying businesses, over four years.

You must also:

  • be under 55 years of age (although this can be waived if your proposed investment will be of exceptional economic benefit)
  • score at least 65 on the points test
  • have a high level of management skill in relation to the eligible investment or qualifying business activity
  • have at least three years’ experience of direct involvement in managing one or more qualifying businesses or eligible investments
  • have an overall successful record of eligible investment or qualifying business activity • have a genuine and realistic commitment to continuing your business and investment activity in Australia after the original investment has matured
  • have a genuine intention to live for at least two years in the state or territory in which you have made a designated investment
  • during the two fiscal years immediately before you are invited to apply, have legally acquired net business, investment and personal assets of at least AUD2.25 million that are available for legal transfer to Australia within two years of the visa being granted.

Significant Investor

You must make a complying investment of at least AUD 5 million over four years, as follows:

  • At least AUD500 000 in venture capital and growth private equity funds which invest in start-ups and small private companies;
  • At least AUD1.5 million in approved managed funds investing in emerging companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange; and
  • A ‘balancing investment’ of at least AUD3 million in managed funds that may invest in a range of assets, including ASX-listed companies, Australian corporate bonds or notes, annuities and commercial real estate.

You must also:

  • Reside in the state or territory whose government agency nominated you 
  • Continue your business and investment activity in Australia after the conclusion of your provisional visa
  • Live in Australia for at least 40 days per year (calculated cumulatively) for the duration of your provisional visa, or your spouse to live for at least 180 days per year (calculated cumulatively) for the duration of your provisional visa.

There is no age limit and no English test.

Premium Investor

The Premium Investor stream is by the nomination of Austrade on behalf of the Australian government only.

You must make a complying investment of at least AUD 15 million in any of the following options for 12 months:

  • Australian securities exchange listed assets 
  • Australian government or semi-government bonds or notes 
  • Corporate bonds or notes issued by an Australian exchange listed entity (or a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Australian listed entity) or investment grade rated Australian corporate bonds or notes rated by an AFS licenced debt rating agency
  • Australian proprietary limited companies
  • Real property in Australia excluding residential property 
  • Deferred annuities issued by Australian registered life companies 
  • State or territory government approved philanthropic contribution.

You must also have a genuine and realistic commitment to continue your business and investment activity in Australia after the conclusion of your provisional visa.

There is no age limit, no English test and no residency requirement in Australia.

Costs

The Australian government application costs are typically between $4000 and $8000 per visa applicant, with reduced fees for spouses and dependent children or relatives.
Higher fees may apply for dependents who do not have functional English.

Putt Legal will quote fees depending on the visa you wish to apply for and after an assessment of your personal circumstances and the complexity of the application.

You must receive correct and clear-cut advice for your specific situation. To find out if you are eligible for a business visa, please complete our online assessment and attach your business history resume. Our Migration Specialist will check your eligibility and then contact you to arrange a full migration consultation. During your consultation with your Migration Agent, you will advise which visa option or pathway is best for you.

Looking to buy a business in Australia?

WHY PUTT LEGAL?

Putt Legal are your specialists in Immigration Law. We can assist you in making your migration to Australia seamless.

The Australian visa process can be complex and confusing; our lawyers work with you to guide you through every step of the way.

We are highly qualified and experienced in immigration law matters and are committed to providing expert advice in every individual case.

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