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The Innovator Founder Visa: A New Immigration Route for Entrepreneurs

The UK Innovator Founder Visa is a new immigration route launched on 13 April 2023. It is aimed at overseas candidates who wish to establish innovative business in the UK. The visa replaces the Innovator and Start-up visas, offering several advantages over its predecessors.

One of the most significant changes is that the minimum investment requirement has been reduced from £50,000 to £20,000. This makes it much more attainable to entrepreneurs looking to grow a business in the UK. There is also no longer a requirement to have a job-offer before applying for the visa. This gives entrepreneurs more flexibility and lets them focus on getting their businesses off the ground.

Innovators can now take up secondary employment, provided the role is at a skill level equal to RQF level 3, equivalent to A-levels or high school leavers. This gives them more options to support themselves and their families while building their businesses.

Finally, there is no longer a limit on the number of Innovator visas issued yearly. This means entrepreneurs have more opportunities to start businesses in the UK.

Comparison of Innovator Visa and Innovator Founder Visa

Here is a comparison of the Innovator visa and the Innovator Founder visa:


Innovator visa

Innovator Founder visa

Minimum investment requirement



Job offer requirement



Secondary employment



Number of visas issued each year




Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for the Innovator Founder Visa, you must:

  • Be a national of a country outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland.

  • Be at least 18 years old.

  • Have an innovative, viable and scalable business idea.

  • Have a business plan to determine how you will achieve your business goals.

  • Have been endorsed by an endorsing body.

  • Meet the English language requirement.

  • You can prove you have enough personal savings to support yourself in the UK.


Application Process

The application process for the Innovator Founder Visa is as follows:

  1. You first create an account on the UK government website and register your interest in the Innovator Founder Visa.
  2. Once you have registered your interest, you must gather the required documents, including your passport, proof of English language skills, and your business plan.
  3. Then, you must make payment of the fee, and then submit an application via the internet.
  4. The UK Home Office will process your application.
  5. In the event that your request is accepted If your application will approved, you will receive an entry visa for a maximum of three years.

Benefits of Using

There are a variety of advantages to applying for an Innovator Founder Visa, including:

    • You could work and live in the UK while your company expands.

    • You might have access to the UK’s strong economy as well as an environment that is conducive to business.

    • You may apply for permanent residency in the UK within five years.

    • Bring your family to the UK along.


The fee for applying of the Innovator Founder Visa is £1,036. In addition, you must cover the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) that is currently at £1,872 (approx.) per year.

Processing Time

The processing time for the Innovator Founder Visa is typically around three weeks. However, this can vary depending on the time of year and the workload of the UK Home Office.

Family Members

Your spouse and dependent children under 18 can apply for a family visa to join you in the UK if you are granted the Innovator Founder Visa. They will need to meet the same eligibility requirements as you, and they will also need to pay the application fee and the IHS.


The Innovator founder Visa is an excellent choice for entrepreneurs wanting to begin or expand their company within the UK. The new visa requirements allow you to be more comfortable than ever before to start a business and also the UK is an excellent place to conduct business.
An Innovator’s Founder Visa can be a excellent option for an entrepreneur looking to start or expanding your company with a focus on the UK.


Here are some additional things to keep in mind if you are considering applying for the Innovator Founder Visa:

  • You must have a strong business plan demonstrating your business idea’s viability and scalability.
  • You must demonstrate the necessary skills and experience to make your business successful.
  • You will need to demonstrate that you have the financial resources to support yourself and your business while you are in the UK.

If you can meet all the eligibility requirements and demonstrate a strong business plan, the Innovator Founder Visa can be a great way to start or grow your business in the UK.


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