Business Entrepreneur Startup Visa Ireland

Business, Entrepreneur, Startup Visa

The Start-up Entrepreneur Programme allows non-EU nationals with new innovative business ideas for a high potential start-up in Ireland to apply for residence permission based on this concept. Unlike the Investor Visa Programme that requires the applicant to make a substantial investment and have a high net worth, the criteria used under the business visa programme is different and much more reasonable for many investors. For you to qualify for a business / entrepreneur visa, you only need to have 50,000 euros – the amount needed to start the business. Here are the primary criteria used for you to obtain the visa:

  • You must have a high potential start-up venture
  • That venture will introduce a new innovative product or service to the global market
  • The business can create about 10 jobs and can also turn over one million euros in sales in four years since its establishment.
  • The management team running the business has to be competent and experienced.
  • The business must be controlled and headquartered in Ireland
  • And that the business has to be less than 6 years old.  

It is important to note that the Irish business visa isn’t intended for general or retail businesses such as catering and hospitality businesses, and it is only applicable to start-ups in sectors such as engineering, science, mathematics, technology, and communications.

While submitting your application, you have to attach a detailed business plan describing your potential business, and must also submit a certificate of good conduct.

The 50,000 euros amount can come from your personal financial resources, venture capital funding, a business loan, or maybe a grant from a state agency in Ireland. Whichever way you plan to obtain the funds, you will have to prove that those funds are there and that you can access them, in your application. The department of Justice charges 350 euros to process the application.

Your application is reviewed by the evaluation committee and approved by the Ministry of Justice and Equality. Before the final letter of approval is issued, the funds will need to be transferred to an Irish bank account. Also, if your application is successful, you will be granted residence for 2 years, and subject to complying with the grant of the initial permission, the residence period can be renewed for another 3 years. For your visa to be renewed, you have to prove, beyond any reasonable doubt that:

  • The business was established as per the business plan you submitted, assuming that it has remained in place throughout.
  • You have worked on the venture on a full-time basis
  • You are not a burden, financially, to the state
  • You maintained a clean criminal record throughout the first 2 years


The evaluation committee will be the one to assess the feasibility and success of the business to determine if you are eligible for renewal, and in case you have failed to follow the initial agreement, the Department of justice can, at any point in time, withdraw the residency status.

You will be allowed to bring your immediate family, including your spouse or civil partner and dependants children under 18 years, and 24 if they are in school.

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