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The UK Start-up visa is a replacement for the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa. This immigration route focuses on new entrepreneurs who strive to start a business in the UK for the first time, with the business idea being useful to the UK’s economy.

Eligibility criteria

  • Applicant must be at least 18 years old.
    The business idea must be Innovative, Viable, and Scalable.
  • Applicants have to get their business plan assessed by a Home Office-approved endorsing body in the UK.
  • Knowledge of the English language – B2 level.
    Ability to sustain in the UK without accessing public funds.

Role of an Endorsing Body

Endorsing bodies are organisations that have been approved by the UK government to assess the UK Start-Up visa applications and determine which business plan has the greatest potential to thrive in Britain’s market.

A successful UK Start-Up visa application will have checkpoints listed by the endorsing body to keep a tab on the business progress every 6, 12, and 24 months.

The endorsing bodies will need to see the sustained interest in the company’s venture. They can withdraw their endorsement if they see negligence to the business and the UK Start-Up visa, leading to the end of the applicant’s residency in the UK.

Getting an endorsement for the business plan

To get an endorsement from an approved endorsing body, they will need to run a thorough check that the business idea/business meets all the following criteria:

  • Innovation: Innovative, an original business plan that meets new or existing market needs and/or creates a competitive advantage.
  • Viability: The entrepreneur must take an active part in developing the business in the UK and other markets, grow the business, and create revenue and jobs. He/she should possess the necessary skills, knowledge, experience, and market awareness to run the business successfully.
  • Scalability: The business plan has the potential to create employment (jobs) for the citizens of the UK and a development edge for the country.

Benefits of a UK Start-up visa

  • Foreign entrepreneurs can start a business in the UK with ZERO investments.
  • Applicants can run the business as a partnership firm or as a sole proprietor.
    The UK has a very low Corporate Tax.
  • Bring a partner and/or children (under 18 years) to the UK.
  • Exposure to the international market.
    Access the UK’s best-in-class healthcare and educational facilities.

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