Obtain Entrepreneur Visa in Italy

Updated on Thursday 14th January 2021

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Foreign entrepreneurs who want to immigrate to Italy have several choices, all very appealing and most of them easy to obtain. If until recently the government issued the entrepreneur visa through a lengthy and hard procedure, things have changed with the introduction of the Startup Visa program which is both efficient and easy to access.

Below, our immigration lawyers in Italy explain the procedure related to obtaining a business visa under various programs. We can also foreign citizens interested in relocating to Italy for entrepreneurship purposes. Through this visa, you can easily obtain a residence permit in Italy.

The main ways of obtaining a business visa in Italy

There are several types of visas that allow foreign investors to immigrate to Italy and obtain an entrepreneur visa. Among these are:
  1. the new Investor Visa program which gives foreign entrepreneurs three investment options;
  2. the self-employment visa, which is not hard to obtain, but it requires time and patience;
  3. the StartUp Visa program which addresses non-EU investors interested in immigration in Italy;
  4. the Italian business visa which is one of the quickest ways of immigrating to this country.

No matter the option you decide for becoming an entrepreneur in Italy, you can rely on our expat support services for obtaining a business visa in Italy. We can also help you apply for Italian citizenship.

We have also prepared an infographic showing how to obtain a business visa in Italy:
How to obtain a business visa in Italy

The Investor Visa as an entrepreneur visa in Italy

The Investor Visa Scheme was created as a response to foreign investors interested in immigration to Italy for economic reasons. This type of entrepreneur visa can be obtained by purchasing government bonds worth at least 2 million euros, or by investing 1 million euros in a company, or by means of donation (the applicant must donate 1 million euros for a philanthropic project to the benefit for the population).

The investor visa can be obtained through a fast-track procedure which is usually completed online. The main advantage of the investor visa is that the applicant is granted a 2-year validity residence permit which can be renewed for another 3 years upon expiration. After the 5-year period, the applicant will be granted permanent residence in Italy.

Holders of business visas in Italy can also obtain family reunification visas for close relatives who can then immigrate to Italy.

Our immigration lawyers in Italy can offer more information on this type of entrepreneur visa.

The self-employment visa for entrepreneurs in Italy

The self-employment permit allows foreign citizens to immigrate to Italy and complete various independent activities. Considering the self-employment visa is issued based on a specific quota every year, it can be harder to obtain.

Those interested in immigrating to Italy based on a business visa in Italy are invited to discuss with our lawyers.

The StartUp Visa for foreign investors in Italy

One of the most popular programs under which an entrepreneur visa can be obtained in Italy is the StartUp Visa Scheme. This program offers two options to those interested in immigrating to Italy as businesspeople, the key to the program being for the startup to be an innovative company.

The two options for foreign investors applying for entrepreneur visas for Italy this way are:
  • the creation of a new company in which the applicant must invest at least 50,000 euros;
  • investing at least 100,000 euros in an existing innovative company.

For the latter option, the applicant is required to submit a detailed business plan.

The government has even created a website for those interested in immigrating to Italy through the StartUp Visa scheme. You can read more about it here and we can help you obtain a business visa in Italy. 

The business visa comes with a residence permit in Italy.

Obtaining a business visa for Italy

One of the oldest ways in which a foreign citizen can obtain an entrepreneur visa for Italy to apply for a business visa. Under this permit, the applicant is required to buy an Italian company with economic activity of at least 3 years and become an employee in it.

The other way to obtain an entrepreneur visa this way is by setting up a branch office of a foreign company.

The program is destined for non-EU citizens, as EU citizens do not require a visa to immigrate to Italy.

For complete information on the business visa for Italy, you can rely on our immigration lawyers

If you have questions about Italian citizenship, please send them to us.

What is the best way of immigrating to Italy as an entrepreneur?

The method through which an Italian entrepreneur visa is obtained depends entirely on the applicant and money he or she is willing to invest.

Among the reasons why it is worth investing in Italy, we can mention the following:
  • Italy is the 2nd most important manufacturing country in the EU after Germany;
  • 60 million tourists visited Italy in 2017, making the country one of the most visited countries in Europe;
  • real estate is one of the most appealing industries in Italy with Milan alone attracting 4.2 billion euros invested in 2017;
  • new residents can be subject to a flat tax rate of 100,000 euros per year on their foreign-sourced incomes if they choose so.

For assistance in obtaining an entrepreneur visa in Italy, please contact us.