Jamie Taylor

Library of Best Practice

Start-up Entrepreneur Programme

The Start-up Entrepreneur Programme enables non-EEA nationals and their families who commit to a high potential start up business in Ireland to acquire a secure residency status in Ireland.  The Start-up Entrepreneur Programme provides that migrants with a proposal for a high potential start-up in the innovation economy and funding of €50,000 can be given residency in this State for the purposes of developing their business.  The scheme is not intended for retail, personal services, catering or other businesses of this nature; it is only intended for highly innovative new businesses as the scheme is designed to tap into the highly innovative entrepreneurial potential that exist among migrants in Ireland.

Type of Best Practice


Methodology used in the Best Practice

This Programme was established by the Irish Government in 2012 to stimulate productive investment in Ireland and to offer residency to non-EEA migrant entrepreneurs who in turn will establish diverse, dynamic and innovative businesses in Ireland to the benefit of the Irish economy. This entrepreneurial start up scheme recognises the need to foster start-up enterprises in priority innovation sectors of the economy.  Successful applicants and their family members will initially be granted residence in Ireland for two years, which will be renewable for a further three years. 

To qualify for this programme, migrant entrepreneurs must satisfy the following requirements:

  • A business idea for a high potential start-up business which they would like to base in Ireland;
  • Secured funding of a minimum of €50,000 to support the business;

At application stage these migrant entrepreneurs have to pitch their business idea for the innovation sector that is capable of creating 10 jobs and returning €1 million to the economy in four years.

Results of the Beset Practice

After 5 years residence, participants under the programme will be eligible for long term residence in the State. Since the inception of the scheme in 2012, 63 migrant entrepreneurs have been accepted onto the programme and have established their innovative businesses in Ireland, with a further 30 applications being assessed for 2016/2017 so far

Access to the Best Practice

Information this initiative can be accessed at: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/New%20Programmes%20for%20Investors%20and%20Entrepreneurs

Guidelines for accessing support from this initiative can be found here: