Scale-Up Visa: What You Need to Know


The government has announced the introduction of the new Scale-up visa which will grant greater flexibility and power to high-growth companies based in the UK to attract the world’s top talent.

Companies that demonstrate impressive success in the UK can sponsor talented individuals, including scientists, engineers, architects, and programmers, to help them grow and boost their economy.

In contrast to other sponsored visas, the Scale-up visa allows companies to hire highly qualified employees and grant them two years’ leave to remain in the UK without having to obtain additional sponsorship or permission to remain past the first six months.

In addition, businesses will be able to hire eligible employees anywhere in the world through the government’s points-based immigration system. As well as giving them greater flexibility in hiring the highly skilled workers they need to scale up, the Scale-up visa will strengthen the UK’s pool of highly skilled workers.

Minister for Safe and Legal Migration, Kevin Foster, said:

“Rapidly growing  businesses, like small businesses, technology and financial services, need the right level of support to scale up. Through our Scale-up visa, we allow companies to focus on their growth and innovation by giving them more freedom to bring in the diverse skills and experiences they need, making them more attractive on the international stage.”

“By supporting our high-growth technologies, financial services and small businesses, we are ensuring the UK remains a global hub for emerging technologies and innovation while improving productivity across the economy, creating jobs, growth and prosperity across Britain.”

Irene Graham OBE, CEO of the ScaleUp Institute said:

“The ScaleUp Institute welcomes the launch of the Scale-up visa. It’s something we’ve recommended since our inception and should provide much-needed expedited service to give growing local businesses faster access to the talent they need.”

“Scaleups add over £1 trillion a year and over 3 million jobs to the UK economy, and are present in every community, hiring people from home and abroad as they drive growth in their local areas and beyond.”

“The visa should help with skill applications. We look forward to continuing to work with the government as this service evolves to ensure it fully meets business scaling needs and operates effectively.”

Through the Scale-up visa, companies that have grown by at least 20% in employment or turnover over the past three years and employed a minimum of 10 people at the start of the three years will be able to sponsor talented individuals. This includes small businesses and companies in the technology and financial services sectors.

The following types of highly skilled talent will be available to eligible businesses:

  • scientists
  • engineers
  • programmers
  • software developers
  • research and development professionals
  • economists
  • architects
  • technicians
  • financial and investment advisers

To find out further information about the UK Governments Scale-Up visa rules and more by visiting the website.

*Disclaimer: Please note the above is not legal advice


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