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Getting an endorsement for an innovation visa

In order to gain an innovator visa, you will first need to get an endorsement. This will show that business leaders have faith in your enterprise and believe it is innovative, viable and scalable.
In this piece we go through the endorsement process and detail the endorsing bodies.

Gaining an endorsement can be a difficult and complex process. Often it requires a keen awareness of the demands of the Home Office as well as a variety of endorsing bodies. Westkin Associates has a proven track record of assisting a wide range of business gain endorsement; from those working on cutting edge technology to those bringing innovation the art and theatre.

We tailor our service to the specific demands and vision of our clients as well as working with leading business consultants and liaising with the Home Office. Our decades of experience have provided us a detailed and intricate knowledge of the endorsement process which we have used for the benefit of our clients. If you are interested in our services and how we may support your business, please contact us at 020 8038 7598 or via info@westkin.com.

What is the Innovation Visa?

The innovator visa opened on 29th March 2019, as a replacement to the Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa scheme.

In 2015 a review of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa route was commissioned in which the government-commissioned Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) raised concerns over Home Office caseworkers who had “limited business experience and knowledge”. The committee felt that such individuals were ill equipped to judge viable business proposals and ultimately to decide whether to grant a visa.

The innovator visa attempts to solve this issue by taking on board the MAC’s recommendations and allowing a group of government-appointed bodies to endorse the viability of the business proposition and the candidate’s business credentials, not Home Office caseworkers.

The Home Office has encouraged these bodies to endorse projects which show three key qualities; innovation, viability and creativity. They have requested bodies making the decisions to ask the following questions:

Innovation: Does the applicant have a genuine, original business plan that meets new or existing market needs and/or creates a competitive advantage?

Viability: Does the applicant have the necessary skills, knowledge, experience and market awareness to run the business successfully?

Scalability: With respects to scalability, the official guidance asks:

In asking these questions we tailor your business plan to demands of the Home Office and possible endorsers.

How do you get an endorsement?

There are two stages to obtaining an endorsement, the submission of documents and an interview.

With respects to submission you must submit:

  1. Your business plan, throughout which you should highlight the viability, scalability and innovation of your business.
  2. All relevant documents relating to your business.
  3. Relevant supporting letters from people in your business area.

Following this, there may be an interview during which officials will review your business plan and ask questions regarding potential weaknesses in your application.

This can be a daunting process, but our legal experts will work with you through every step of this process providing you with the best recommendations to strengthen your business plan.

To find out how we create you a successful business plan by clicking here. Alternatively, contact us at 020 7118 4546 or email us at info@westkin.com

List of Endorsing Bodies

• The Bakery
• Seed Camp
• Invest Northern Ireland
• Zinc
• Deep Science Ventures
• Wayra
• Ignite
• Bethnal Green Ventures
• Codebase
• Capital Enterprise
• Cylon
• Tech X
• Seed Haus’
• Med City
• Scottish Edge
• Royal Society Edinburgh
• Tech Nation
• NatWest Entrepreneur Accelerator
• Royal Bank of Scotland Entrepreneur Accelerator
• Ulster Bank Entrepreneur Accelerator
• Set Squared Bristol
• Set Squared Exeter
• Set Squared Southampton
• Set Squared Surrey

Need an endorsement?

Give us a call at: 020 7118 4546 or email us at info@westkin.com


We will work with you to not only create a high-quality business plan but to get the endorsement you need for business success.

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