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New Zealand has become a popular destination for entrepreneurs, investors, and others seeking business opportunities. This comes as no surprise given the country’s friendly business environment, stable legal framework, quality of life, and welcoming culture. 

Moving to New Zealand to live and operate a business requires a special immigration visa, called an Entrepreneur Work Visa. While not the only type of visa available, it is by far the most common way to open the door to starting a new business venture there. 

In this post, we will give you an overview of the Entrepreneur Work Visa along with an explanation of the role of a strong business plan. 

What the Entrepreneur Work Visa offers and how to qualify

New Zealand authorises foreign entrepreneurs to live in the country, start a new business or buy an existing one through its Entrepreneur Work Visa programme. Successful applicants for the Entrepreneur Work Visa have the right to:

  • Start or buy a business in New Zealand
  • Work in that business for up to three years
  • Bring a partner and dependent children aged 19 and under

You can find more complete details on the website of the New Zealand government. 

The visa has three primary requirements: 

  • Applicants must make an investment of NZD $100,000, along with a detailed business plan for their proposed venture (see the website for details)
  • Applicants must claim at least 120 points on the government’s ‘scale’ (you can check this on the website, but remember that it’s not an official count until an immigration officer reviews it, it’s just to give applicants an idea of approximately where they stand and the areas in which they can gain more points)
  • Applicants must supply documentation attesting to their good health, character, lack of criminal background and English language ability

It’s important to remember that meeting the requirements does not automatically make an applicant eligible for the Entrepreneur Work Visa. The process can include subjective judgement and some applications can be considered stronger than others for a number of reasons, like being better aligned with the economic goals of New Zealand or targeting a gap in the market. 

Business immigration to New Zealand

The value of a strong business plan

As noted above, a business plan is among the required documents for an Entrepreneur Work Visa. While there are no guarantees of success, a strong, persuasive business plan can make a visa application more compelling and differentiate one applicant from another. 

Any convincing business plan must do the following: 

  • Include industry and market research. Conducting statistical analysis on market size, competition, current trends, etc. shows that an applicant understands the value of data in establishing a business and has taken the time to carefully analyse their idea from a numbers perspective. 
  • Highlight the unique value proposition of the proposed venture. Show that the business idea has a high chance of success because of the problem it is solving or the pain point it addresses.
  • Provide detailed financial projections. Any good business plan should include financial projections showing the viability and growth path of the business. These projections should cover a period of at least five years and should include revenue and expense projections.
  • Show the applicant’s qualifications and experience. The business plan should highlight the applicant’s abilities, qualifications, certifications or other proof of ability. It should include relevant education, work experience, and achievements.
  • Focus on the benefit of the proposed business for New Zealand. The business plan should clearly demonstrate how granting the visa will result in concrete benefits for New  Zealand. 

A solid business plan is more than just a required component of an application for an Entrepreneur Work Visa. A business plan that covers the points above and more serves as a roadmap for conducting a business after it’s set up and running, helping to ensure its continued success. 

A persuasive business plan can make the difference in a successful visa application but its true value lasts beyond the early stages and can support entrepreneurs as they continue to grow and develop. 

Business immigration to New Zealand

Opportunities await in New Zealand!

New Zealand has appeared on the radar of many entrepreneurs over the last decade and it offers all the conditions necessary to build a successful business. 

The Entrepreneur Work Visa has reasonable requirements, a transparent application process and offers a range of attractive options for successful applicants. 

The business plan requirement for the Entrepreneur Work Visa gives applicants an opportunity to describe their plans in detail and demonstrate why their application is worthy of support. This means that the business plan plays a crucial role in the process and deserves extra care and consideration. 

If you or your client is considering applying for a visa to start a business in New Zealand, Joorney can help by crafting a high-quality, custom business plan to support the application. 

Reach out to us today to learn more.


Disclaimer: Joorney Business Plans is not a law firm nor an immigration consulting firm, and all information provided in this document should not be considered as legal advice or any advice or recommendation on any immigration application program. All information provided in this document should be verified by a licensed or certified immigration professional before the reader can act on this information. As such, it is understood that Joorney Business Plans Inc. shall not be liable for any loss or damage of whatever nature (direct, indirect, consequential, or other), whether arising in contract, tort, or otherwise, which may arise as a result of your use of (or inability to use) this document, or from your use of (or failure to use) the information on this document.

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