Entrepreneur Work and Resident Visa

Entrepreneur work and resident visa will suit you if you are an aspiring kind who has accumulated sufficient business experience in your field.

Entrepreneur Work Visa 

A special work visa allowing self-employment – a perfect match if you want to buy, start and run a business 

To be eligible, you should 


  • meet the specified investment threshold
    (usually $100,000, though it may be waived at the discretion of a Business Migration team at INZ for high value, export-oriented sectors such as information and communications technology and others, which are able to produce high yield within the shortest time possible, or prosper in a highly innovative environment).
  • score at least 120 points for certain factors (business experience; benefit to New Zealand; capital investment; age; bonus points for businesses outside Auckland)

Business Plan

  • have a business plan which meets the requirements

    A fit-for-purpose business plan would 
    • have high specificity for the business, 
    • be realistic
    • demonstrate to a Business Migration Team at INZ that the applicant has extensive knowledge and experience in the proposed area of entrepreneurial activity, has done sufficient marketing research into the field and has a genuine intent to establish the business described in the business plan
    • satisfy at least one of the criteria of
      • high growth
      • being innovative, or
      • showing export potential
Important! The need to show that your business plan meets the above is often underestimated by the entrepreneur visa seekers. We are committed to making sure these mistakes never happen and preparing your application with the necessary supporting documents from the outset. Book your free 30-minute consultation with our licensed immigration adviser to find out more.

Other expectations

  • if required, obtain professional or occupational registration

you should

  • have not been involved in business fraud or financial impropriety
  • have not been involved in bankruptcy or business failure within the 5 years before their application was made
  • provide evidence of sufficient funds (apart from the investment) to finance your business and maintain yourself and your family for the period of the Entrepreneur Work Visa
  • meet character and English language requirements.
  • The proposed business must not create an unacceptable risk to New Zealand laws and policies

Entrepreneur Resident Visa

While the Entrepreneur Work Visa gives you a chance to put out feelers and make up your mind, there is a further, Entrepreneur Resident Visa, which may see you settle in Aotearoa. Just like in the case of most other resident visas, some boxes must be ticked before going into specific, business details of the application.

Having established, or bought, and run your business successfully you may apply and be granted a resident visa, provided, of course, you are compliant with both general and specific requirements below.

General requirements for Residence categories

The applicants must

  • meet English language requirements 
    • usually IELTS 4.0 overall score; Investor 2 – no less than IELTS 3.0 overall score; Investor 1 category applicants are exempt. 
  • meet health and character requirements 
  • meet fit and proper person requirements
    • all the businesses they influenced had a history of compliance with law
    • they have never been convicted of an offence related to business dealings
    • they have never been convicted of an offence involving dishonesty
    • they have never been involved in business fraud or financial impropriety
  • agree to take part in an evaluation of the category under which they were approved for up to 5 years after their approval

Specific requirements for Entrepreneur Resident Visa

  • The applicants must have successfully established their business in New Zealand and demonstrated the benefits in their business plan had been met. Then they will have 2 avenues open, depending on how long they will have run the business:
    • 2 years or
    • 6 months (this express lane puts more demands on the capital investment to make, at least $500,000, and on creating employment for New Zealanders, at least 3 full-time jobs)
  • The business must be benefitting New Zealand significantly and
  • All the laws must have been complied with.

New Shores Migration uses extensive business expertise of the adviser and the team to suggest a viable path to follow, zooming in on crucial nuances in business paperwork which may lead to frustrating declines if overlooked or underestimated.

Book your free 30-minute consultation today to talk to the professionals.