Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188C) – Significant Investor stream

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Important information about seeking migration advice

The Office of Migration Agents Registration Authority (OMARA) regulates registered migration agents (RMAs) and publishes a list of agents that have been disciplined.

The OMARA has a register of RMAs that you can visit at

Investment NSW advises that all applicants considering engaging migration advisory services check whether the person handling your application has been disciplined at

It is important that all applicant’s check their own eligibility for NSW’s migration nomination programs.

If you’re a consumer, stay up-to-date with the latest information on Australia’s Migration Programs at

Eligibility criteria

Visa criteria

You must meet the Home Affairs requirements for the Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) – Significant Investor stream.


There is no age limit for this visa stream and you are not required to meet the Home Affairs points test.

Complying investments

You must make a complying significant investment of at least A$5,000,000 and have a genuine intention to hold that investment for the life of your provisional visa.

It must be invested in the following proportions:

  • at least A$1,000,000 in venture capital and growth private equity funds which invest in start-ups and small private companies
  • at least A$1,500,000 in approved managed funds. The managed funds must invest in emerging companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange
  • a ‘balancing investment’ of at least A$2,500,000 in managed funds

Investing in NSW

To qualify for NSW nomination, you must show that your complying investments will make a contribution to the NSW economy.

NSW will refuse your nomination application for a permanent visa (subclass 888) if you cannot show your complying investments meet the following criteria:

Venture Capital and Growth Private Equity investment

At least 50% of your venture capital component must be invested in: 

  • a venture capital fund that makes eligible investments in businesses headquartered in NSW; and  

  • the general partner of the venture capital fund maintains an office in NSW  

Emerging companies

At least 50% of the emerging companies component must be invested in securities issued by a company or trustee headquartered in NSW, that are either: 

  • quoted on ASX Limited; or  

  • securities (Australian non-ASX quoted securities) quoted on an Australian securities exchange other than ASX limited 

Balancing investment

At least 50% of your balancing investments must bring benefits to NSW. This can be shown where:

  • the funds have an office in NSW; or
  • the business of underlying investment is headquartered in NSW; or
  • the business activities of underlying investment are of economic benefit to NSW

NSW defines 'headquartered in NSW' as:

  • having an ABN registration address in NSW; and

  • a sufficiently significant proportion of the company’s overall activities are in NSW as to merit it being described as a NSW company; and

  • the company’s activities are substantial in NSW and are not merely peripheral activity of the company 

Living in NSW

You must have a genuine commitment to reside in NSW and contribute to NSW through your investment activity.

How to apply

You must apply for NSW nomination before you can apply to Home Affairs for this visa.

To apply for NSW nomination you must:

Submit an EOI in SkillSelect

Submit an EOI in SkillSelect selecting NSW as your preferred state. 

Apply for NSW nomination

Apply to NSW for nomination using our online form.

See our Guide to supporting documents for information about what supporting evidence you need to supply at the time you apply to NSW. 

Pay application fee

A payment link is sent to the email address provided in your application immediately after you submit the form. This payment link is valid for 30 minutes only.

To ensure the timely assessment of your application, you must complete payment within the 30 minute timeframe.

Application fees for NSW nomination are:

  • A$902 if applying from within Australia (includes GST)
  • A$820 if applying from outside Australia

Applications that remain unpaid will be closed by our office after 14 days. 

Application fees are non-refundable.

Application processing

You will receive an application outcome (or request for further information) within one week of your application payment.

Please do not ask for an update on your application during this time. 

Applications closed

We cannot accept applications for the Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) visa (subclass 188) at this time. Keep an eye on our website and newsletter for updates. 

We cannot provide a timeframe when applications will reopen at this time.

Important information

Incomplete applications

You must submit a complete application, including all relevant evidence to support your eligibility claims when you apply to NSW.

Respond to requests for further information

If we require further information to assess your application:

  • you will have two weeks to provide the requested information
  • if you do not respond within two weeks, we may refuse your application

Do not ask for an update on your application

Please do not ask for an update on your application. 

Our application assessment team is also responsible for responding to enquiries. Unnecessary enquiries significantly slows down our application processing times.

Apply using our online form

You must apply and submit all documents through our online form. We will not accept any applications by email or post.

Withdrawing your application

You can withdraw your application at any stage. Please Contact us to withdraw your application.

Providing false or misleading information

If you provide false or misleading information when you apply to NSW, you will be refused. NSW may also report you to Home Affairs to conduct their own investigation.

NSW conducts verification checks on many of the documents you provide.


NSW will not renominate applicants where:

  • you do not apply to Home Affairs for the visa within 60 days, or
  • your EOI was incorrect when NSW nominated you
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