Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur

One of the biggest concerns of any student is what they will do after obtaining their degree. This concern is no different whether the student is a national of their country or an overseas migrant on a student visa. Those in the United Kingdom who hold Tier 4 (Adult) visas have several options available to them from continuing their studies by extending their Tier 4 status, making an application as a Tier 1 migrant, or if they are fortunate enough, beginning work as a Tier 2 (General) Migrant. However, for those who travelled to the United Kingdom with the hopes of starting their own business or company, the prospect of switching to a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa, has always been somewhat daunting, given the overwhelming financial requirement of either £50,000.00 or £200,000.00.

However, there is a shining light in the guise of the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa, which allows those who, whilst holding a Tier 4 (Adult) visa, having completed a Bachelor degree or above in the United Kingdom, to then make an application to apply the skills they have learnt and acquired and start a business of their own, without a financial requirement, aside from a minimum maintained requirement of £945.00 personal savings and a further £630.00 for any family members wishing to them.

Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur

However, to qualify for the visa, the applicant must be from a UK V&I approved UK Higher Education Institution who has been identified as having developed world-class innovative ideas or entrepreneurial skills to stay in the UK after graduation to establish one of more business in the UK.

It is therefore essential that the applicant demonstrate that they are a genuine entrepreneur with knowledge and/or access to the following:

  • in-depth knowledge of the business they have in mind
  • market research of establishing and growing that business in the UK
  • service/product research
  • manufacturer agreements
  • future or current service contracts
  • secured investment and/or investment procedure
  • research into potential premises lettings
  • relevant accreditations

The above however is a non-exhaustive list, which of course can be varied and added to dependant on the applicant’s business.


Once the above has been confirmed, and the endorsement has been given, the applicant will need to demonstrate they meet the following requirements:

(1) Endorsement (maximum 75 points required)

(a) 25 points for:

(i) endorsement from High Education Institution (HEI); and

(ii) with HEI having an established process for competence, identifying, nurturing and developing entrepreneurs

(2) 25 points for:

(a) applicant’s previous leave was as a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur; or

(b) the endorsement confirming that within 12 months before the date of th endorsement.

(3) 25 points for:

(a) endorsement confirms that:

(i) applicant has a genuine and credible business idea

(ii) applicant will spend the majority of his working time on the business venture

(iii) if the applicant’s previous grant of leave was as a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur, they demonstrate enough advancements in their business that they can switch into the Tier 1 Entrepreneur route i.e. £50,000 or £200,000 investment route

(4) English language

(5) Maintenance

If you are interested in making an application to remain in the United Kingdom as a Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur, please feel free to book either a free or full consultation on the booking page, or any further other queries, please contact us at [email protected]

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