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  • January 28, 2016

What is an Entrepreneur Visa?

New Zealand Entrepreneur Visas are a temporary visa allowing non-residents to be self-employed in a business they have purchased or started in the country. The Entrepreneur Work Visa may be leveraged to eventually apply for a residence visa.


The Entrepreneur Work Visa is a three year visa designed to allow adequate time for a non-resident investor to come to New Zealand, take steps to establish or purchase a business, and then begin operations.


The suitability of an applicant for an Entrepreneur Work Visa is assessed on several separate factors: minimum capital to be invested in the business; a suitable business plan; attaining the required number of points on the Immigration New Zealand point scale; and health and character requirements.

Investment Capital

All New Zealand Entrepreneur Visa applicants are required to invest at least NZD 100 000 into the new business, unless specific exemption is granted to the applicant.

Business Plan

The business plan is the most vital piece of information required for the New Zealand Entrepreneur Visa, and is used to demonstrate that the applicant can fulfil the claims he has made about the growth and expansion of the new business; that the applicant holds enough personal capital to support the business and finance their own personal settlement and life in the country; that the applicant is suitable experienced and qualified to operate the business, that the applicant has researched the market conditions for the proposed business; that the applicant has or can obtain the necessary registrations or licenses for the business; that the business will be of credible benefit to the country; and that the applicant has not been bankrupt or committed of any crimes prohibiting from operating a business in New Zealand.


The minimum number of points required to be attained for the New Zealand Entrepreneur Visa is 120. The points are awarded on a sliding scale based on self-employment in the same industry as the new business; self-employment in other industries; senior management experience; the number of new full time employment positions created by the business; export turnover; unique or new products created/provided by the business; the amount of capital invested; age of the applicant; and bonus points for businesses located outside of Auckland.

Health and Character

The health and character requirements for a New Zealand Entrepreneur Visa are matched to the same requirements for a New Zealand Residence, and consist of a clean criminal record and no indication that the applicant will pose undue costs on the national health care system.

Next Steps

The New Zealand Entrepreneur Visa application may be a long process requiring a significant dedication of capital, time, and effort, and should be undertaken with the help of experts in not only immigration but business migration, accounting, and New Zealand business practices. AMG Immigration is perfectly situated to offer this entire range of services through its working partners, ensuring that potential migrants are supported in every element of their business migration, visa application, business planning, business maintenance, and regulatory compliance. AMG immigration is one of the only New Zealand immigration firms with the resources to offer assistance in each aspect of a business migration without outsourcing works to other parties. Any potential applicant for a New Zealand Entrepreneur Visa is strongly encouraged to contact us or book an appointment with our Wellington immigration adviser to discuss their business proposal and compile a comprehensive plan to maximise the chances of a successful business and visa application.


None of the above is intended or offered as personalized immigration advice.

If you require any immigration advice or consultation, please contact our Wellington immigration adviser as soon as possible.

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