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This visa is for people who have a successful business or investment career, and have a genuine and realistic commitment to be involved in investing or business in Australia.

This visa is also the first step towards being granted a permanent Business Skills visa.

You must pay a non-refundable visa charge when you lodge the Expression of Interest (EOI).


Who is eligible for a Business Innovation and Investment Visa (Subclass188)?

This visa is for significant investors/business people from overseas who are willing to invest funds in a business and/or designated investment in Australia (including NSW and Victoria) for four (4) years.

You must lodge the Expression of Interest (EOI) before you can be invited to apply.

You must be less than 55 years of age, although a state or territory can waive this requirement if your proposed business will be of exceptional economic benefit to the relevant region.

You must score at least 65 on the Innovation Points test. Points are awarded for:

  • age
  • English language ability
  • qualifications
  • experience in business or investments
  • net personal and business assets
  • business turnover
  • innovation.

On rare occasions, the nominating state or territory government (NSW, Victoria, etc.) can award you 10 points towards the test because they think your proposed business is of exceptional economic benefit to them. Link to Innovation Points test. 


Other Requirements for a Business Innovation and Investment Visa (Subclass188)

Depend on whether you apply for the Business Innovation stream or the Investor stream, you need to satisfy the following requirements:-

Business Innovation stream

If you apply for the Business Innovation stream, you (or your partner, or you and your partner combined) must have:

  • significant total assets of at least AUD800 000
  • significant total annual turnover of at least AUD500 000 in at least two of the four fiscal years immediately before you are invited to apply
  • owned at least:
    • 51 per cent of a business with turnover of less than AUD400 000 per annum, or
    • 30 per cent of a business with turnover of more than AUD400 000 per annum, or
    • 10 per cent of a publicly-listed company
  • an overall successful business career with no involvement in unacceptable business activities
  • managed a business, in which you spent less than half your time on professional, technical or trade services
  • a strong desire to own and maintain a management role in a business in Australia.

Investor stream

If you apply for the Investor stream, you (or your partner, or you and your partner combined) must:

  • have a net value of at least AUD2.25 million for the two fiscal years immediately before you are invited to apply
  • have an overall successful record of eligible investment or qualifying business activity with no involvement in unacceptable activities
  • have a high level of management skill in relation to eligible investments and/or qualifying business activity
  • have at least three years' experience of direct involvement in managing one or more qualifying businesses or eligible investments
  • make your government-approved designated investment before a visa can be granted
  • have a genuine and realistic commitment to continuing your business and investment activity in Australia after the original investment has matured.

You (or your partner, or you and your partner combined) must also have had one of the following:

  • direct involvement, for at least one of the five fiscal years you are invited to apply, in managing your eligible investments that total at least AUD1.5 million, or
  • direct involvement, for at least one of the five fiscal years before you are invited to apply, in managing a qualifying business in which you owned at least 10 per cent of the total value of the business.

Benefits of the Business Innovation and Investment Visa (Subclass188)

With this visa you can travel in and out of Australia (NSW, Vic, QLD, every state and territory) any number of times as long as the visa is valid, have your family accompany you to Australia (they will have access to work and study rights) and establish a pathway to permanent residence.

If you are in the Business Innovation stream, you can renew your visa for an additional two years, a renewal application must be lodged online and your state or territory government must confirm, in writing, that they continue to support you.


Visa Charges

  • 1st instalment is payable at the time of invitation (Current charges can be found at http://www.immi.gov.au/fees-charges/_pdf/visa-pricing-table.pdf).
  • 2nd instalment must be paid before the visa is granted if you have dependant 18 years of age or older who have less than functional English.

Looking for a Different Business Visa?

There are several other business visas available: