Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) Visa (Subclass 188)

This visa allows you to own and manage a business in Australia, conduct business and investment activity in Australia or undertake an entrepreneurial activity in Australia.

  • ​​​You must operate a new or existing business in Australia.
  • You must be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency.

Business Innovation Stream

This provisional visa is for people with business skills. It lets you operate a new or existing business in Australia.

Basic Eligibility

  • Submit expression of interest (EOI) in SkillSelect
  • Nominated by a State or Territory government agency or Austrade
  • Invited to apply for the visa

With this visa, you can

  • operate a new or existing business in Australia
  • stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • bring eligible members of your family with you
  • apply for a permanent Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Business Innovation stream if certain requirements are met.

How long you can stay

This is a provisional visa. You can stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months. If you applied before 1 July 2015, you can stay up to 4 years.

The visa is granted with multiple entry. You can leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you want while the visa is valid.

The visa starts on the date it is granted.

Stay longer

This is a provisional visa. You must apply for a new visa if you want to stay longer. Once you have this visa, you can apply for permanent residence through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Business Innovation stream if certain requirements are met. Explore your visa options.

If you applied for a Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) in the Business Innovation stream prior to 1 July 2015, you will be eligible to apply for a subclass 888 permanent Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) in the Business Innovation stream after 3 years and 11 months.

If you need more time to apply for permanent residence, you can apply for a new Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) in the Significant Investor Business Innovation Extension stream. If granted, you will be able to travel to, enter and remain in Australia for 6 years after the date of the grant of the original Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) in the Business Innovation stream. You can only extend it once apply for and be granted this visa once.

Include family

You can include members of the family unit in your application when you apply. You can also add dependent children to your application at any time before we decide on your application.

Family members who apply for the visa must meet health and character requirements

 

In order for the primary applicant to be granted the visa, family members who are not coming to Australia must meet our character requirements, and might have to meet our health requirements.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Be nominated – You must be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency, before being invited to apply for this visa. The State or Territory government agency that nominates you must not withdraw their nomination after you apply, or we will be unable to grant you a visa.

 

  • Have business ownership

For 2 out of 4 fiscal years immediately before you receive an invitation to apply, you must have had an ownership stake in 1 or 2 businesses that had at least AUD500,000 turnover in each of those 2 years.

Whether you have 1 or 2 businesses, you must own at least:

  • 51%, of the total value of the business if the business has a turnover of less than AUD400,000 per year
  • 30%, of the total value of the business if the business has a turnover of AUD400,000 or more per year, or
  • 10%, of the total value of the business if the business is operated by a publicly listed company

If your business provides professional, technical or trade services, you must have spent less than half your time providing those services, rather than general management of the business.

  • Own personal and business assets of at least AUD 800,000 – When you are invited to apply for this visa, you, your partner, or you and your partner combined must have total net business and personal assets of at least AUD800,000. Your funds must be available to transfer to Australia within 2 years of us granting the visa.
  • Score at least 65 on the points test –

You must score at least 65 points on the points test.

You can get points for many reasons, including your:

  • age
  • English language ability
  • qualifications
  • business experience
  • net personal and business assets
  • business turnover
  • innovation
  • special endorsement
  • Have a successful business career – You must have a successful business career and a genuine desire to continuously own and manage a business in Australia.
  • Be under 55 – You will not receive an invitation if you are aged 55 or older at the time of the invitation to apply for the visa.  If you are older, a State or Territory might invite you to apply for this visa if your business will be of exceptional economic benefit.
  • Not have a history of involvement in unacceptable activities – You and your partnermust have had no history of involvement in business or investment activities that are of a nature that is not generally acceptable in Australia.
  • Have functional English
  • Meet health and character requirement
  • Sign the Australian values statement
  • Have no debt to the Australian government – If you or any family members owe the Australian Government money, you or they must have paid it back or have an approved arrangement in place to pay it back.
  • Not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused – You might not be eligible for this visa if you have had a visa cancelled or refused while you were in Australia.

Investor Stream

This provisional visa requires you to invest at least AUD1.5 million in an Australian State or Territory and maintain business or investment activity in Australia.

  • ​​You must invest AUD1.5 million in an Australian State or Territory.
  • You must be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency.

With this visa, you can

  • carry out business and investment activity in Australia
  • stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • bring eligible members of your family unit with you
  • apply for a permanent Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Investor stream if certain requirements are met

How long you can stay

This is a provisional visa. You can stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months. If you applied before 1 July 2015, you can stay up to 4 years.

The visa is granted with multiple entry. You can leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you want while the visa is valid.

The visa is valid from the date it is granted.

Stay longer

This is a provisional visa. You must apply for a new visa if you want to stay longer.

Once you have this visa, you can apply for permanent residence through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Investor stream if certain requirements are met.

If you applied for a Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) in the Investor stream prior to 1 July 2015, you will be eligible to apply for a Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) in the Investor stream after 3 years and 11 months.

Include family

You can include members of the family unit in your application when you apply. You can also add your dependent child to your application at any time before we decide on your application.

Family members who apply for the visa must meet our health and character requirements.

In order for the main applicant to be granted the visa, family members who are not coming to Australia must meet our character requirements, and might have to meet our health requirements.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Be nominated – You must be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency, before being invited to apply for this visa. The State or Territory government agency that nominates you must not withdraw their nomination after you apply, or we will be unable to grant you a visa.
  • Own and manage business and personal assets and investments –

You must:

Have managed a qualifying business or investments to the value of at least AUD1.5million.

For at least 1 of the 5 fiscal years immediately before we invite you to apply, have directly managed one of the following:

  • a qualifying business in which you, your partner or you and your partner combined had at least 10% ownership interest, or
  • a eligible investment of at least AUD1.5 million owned by you, your partner or you and your partner combined.

Have assets of AUD2.25 million

For the 2 fiscal years immediately before we invite you to apply, you, your partner, or you and your partner together, have business and personal assets with a net value of at least AUD2.25 million. These assets must have been lawfully acquired and be available for transfer to Australia within 2 years of the visa being granted.

Make an investment of AUD1.5 million in your nominating State or Territory

After you lodge your application, you must make a designated investment of at least AUD1.5 million in the State or Territory in which the nominating State or Territory government agency is located. This investment must be in your name or in your name and your partner’s name. The investment must be made from unencumbered funds generated from qualifying businesses or eligible investments. To be eligible for the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Investor stream, you must hold the designated investment for at least 4 years from the date the investment certificate is issued by your nominating State or Territory.

  • Have the right experience –

You must:

  • have at least 3 years’ experience managing one or more qualifying businesses or eligible investments
  • have a successful record of eligible investment or qualifying business activity
  • have demonstrated a high level of management skill in relation to the eligible investment or qualifying business activity
  • Score at least 65 on the points test
  • Intend to live in a specific State or Territory
  • Be under 55 years – You will not receive an invitation if you are aged 55 or older at the time of the invitation to apply for the visa, unless the State or Territory government agency has determined your investment will be of exceptional economic benefit.
  • Not have a history of involvement in unacceptable activities – You and your partnermust have had no history of involvement in business or investment activities that are of a nature that is not generally acceptable in Australia.
  • Have functional English
  • Meet health and character requirement
  • Sign the Australian values statement
  • Have no debt to the Australian government – If you or any family members owe the Australian Government money, you or they must have paid it back or have an approved arrangement in place to pay it back.
  • Not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused – You might not be eligible for this visa if you have had a visa cancelled or refused while you were in Australia.

Significant Investor Stream

This provisional visa is for people who invest at least AUD5 million in Australian investments that meet certain requirements and maintain investment activity in Australia.

  • ​​You must invest at least AUD5 million in complying significant investments in Australia.
  • You must be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency or Austrade.

With this visa, you can

  • carry out investment activity in Australia
  • stay in Australia for up to 4 years and 3 months
  • bring eligible members of your family with you
  • apply for a permanent Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Significant Investor stream if certain requirements are met

How long you can stay

 

This is a provisional visa. You can stay in Australia for 4 years and 3 months. If you applied for this visa prior to July 2015, you can stay in Australia for 4 years.

 

The visa is granted with multiple entry. You can leave and re-enter Australia as many times as you want while the visa is valid.

 

The visa starts on the date it is granted.

 

Stay longer

This is a provisional visa. You must apply for a new visa if you want to stay longer. Once you have this visa, you can apply for permanent residence through the Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) Significant Investor stream, if certain requirements are met. Explore your visa options.

If you applied for a Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) in the Significant Investor stream prior to 1 July 2015, you will be eligible to apply for a Business Innovation and Investment (Permanent) visa (subclass 888) in the Significant Investor stream after 3 years and 11 months.

If you need more time to apply for permanent residence, you can apply for a new Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) in the Significant Investor stream.

If granted, you will be able to travel to, enter and remain in Australia for 6 years after the date of the grant of the original Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) in the Significant Investor stream.

You can also apply for a second Significant Investor Extension stream visa. If granted, you will be able to travel to, enter and remain in Australia for 8 years after the date of the grant of the original Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) in the Significant Investor stream.

Include family

You can include members of the family unit in your application when you apply. You can also add dependent children to your application at any time before we decide on your application.

Family members who apply for the visa must meet health and character requirements.

In order for the main applicant to be granted the visa, family members who are not coming to Australia must meet our character requirements, and might have to meet our health requirements.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Be nominated – You must be nominated by an Australian State or Territory government agency, before being invited to apply for this visa. The State or Territory government agency that nominates you must not withdraw their nomination after you apply, or we will be unable to grant you a visa.
  • Be able to invest at least AUD 5 million –

To be granted this visa, you must make (on or after the time of application for this visa), a complying significant investment of at least AUD5 million when we invite you to, and have a genuine intention to hold that investment for at least 4 years. It must be invested in the following proportions:

  • 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. The managed funds must invest in emerging companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange
  • a ‘balancing investment’ of at least AUD3 million in managed funds

The managed funds can invest in a range of assets, including companies listed on the Australian stock exchange, Australian corporate bonds or notes, annuities and commercial real estate.

We prohibit direct investment in residential real estate. We strictly limit indirect investment in residential property through managed funds.

You must not use investments as security or collateral for a loan.

  • Not have a history of involvement in unacceptable activities – You and your partner must have had no history of involvement in business or investment activities that are of a nature that is not generally acceptable in Australia.
  • Have functional English
  • Meet health and character requirement
  • Sign the Australian values statement
  • Have no debt to the Australian government – If you or any family members owe the Australian Government money, you or they must have paid it back or have an approved arrangement in place to pay it back.

Not have had a visa cancelled or a previous application refused – You might not be eligible for this visa if you have had a visa cancelled or refused while you were in Australia.