The founder's guide to partner visas in Australia

The founder journey can be challenging as a visitor to Australia, but with the right support, it can be a rewarding career path.

Joel Cacciotti

Manager, Scouting
June 28, 2023
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Australia's thriving startup ecosystem offers a wealth of opportunities for ambitious individuals from around the globe. As a holder of any Partner visa, including the Partner (subclass 801), temporary Partner (subclass 820), Partner (Provisional) (subclass 309), Partner (Migrant) (subclass 100), or even the Prospective Marriage visa (subclass 300), you might be contemplating your next career move. Have you ever thought about entrepreneurship? This comprehensive guide will take you through the exciting opportunities that lie in Australia's dynamic startup scene and how Antler can support your entrepreneurial aspirations.

Why Choose Entrepreneurship in Australia?

Australia, particularly in its vibrant cities such as Sydney (Rated the second best city to travel to in the world by Airbnb) and Melbourne (Often ranked the friendliest city in the world), is a fertile ground for startups. With a multicultural environment, robust infrastructure, and a wealth of resources, these cities offer the ideal foundation for building a successful venture. As an entrepreneur, you'll have the chance to apply your unique skills and ideas, creating a business that contributes to the country's economic growth.

Antler: Turning Dreams into Reality

Antler, a global early-stage venture capital fund, is dedicated to helping talented individuals transform their entrepreneurial dreams into reality. By joining Antler, you'll gain access to a network of seasoned entrepreneurs, industry experts, and potential co-founders. Our program provides mentorship, resources, and funding opportunities, enabling you to build a successful business from scratch.

Partner Visa Options in Australia

Australia offers several visas for partners of Australian citizens, Australian permanent residents, or eligible New Zealand citizens:

1. Partner (Provisional) visa (subclass 309) and Partner (Migrant) visa (subclass 100) are designed for those outside Australia. The subclass 309 visa allows you to live in Australia until a decision is made about your subclass 100 visa.

2. Partner visa (subclass 801) and temporary Partner visa (subclass 820) are for individuals already in Australia. The subclass 820 visa is granted first, and then you are eligible to apply for the permanent subclass 801 visa.

3. Prospective Marriage visa (subclass 300) is for individuals engaged to an Australian citizen, Australian permanent resident, or eligible New Zealand citizen. This visa allows you to come to Australia to marry your prospective spouse and then apply for a Partner visa.

Each of these visas provides the holder with work rights in Australia, thus offering you the opportunity to explore a career in entrepreneurship.

However: You should note that Antler is a full-time commitment and you should still check with your immigration agent that your visa allows you to be the director of an Australian Company. 

The unique position of being on a Partner Visa 

It’s likely that as the holder of a Partner Visa, your partner will be holding full time work. This leaves you in the unique position to shoot for the stars as an entrepreneur. Starting a business can be difficult and you generally want to allow yourself at least 6 months of personal runway to navigate the difficulties of raising enough capital or generating enough revenue to start paying yourself a wage. 

Success Story: Elisabet and Anda

Among the many inspiring stories of entrepreneurs who have found success through Antler, Elisabet's journey stands out. As a holder of a Partner visa, Elísabet Ýr Sigurðardóttir joined the Antler program with a vision to create a groundbreaking health-tech solution. Her entrepreneurial journey led her to found Anda, a revolutionary wearable breath-tech device. Antler recognized the immense potential of her innovative idea and supported her venture through its early stages, helped her to find a co-founder and eventually led to successful fundraising. Today, Anda is a testament to what partner visa holders can achieve in Australia's vibrant startup ecosystem. Elisabet's story underscores the fact that with the right support and a driven mindset, entrepreneurs can create transformative solutions and thrive in Australia's dynamic business landscape.

Success Story: Aaron and Kidly

Aaron's entrepreneurial journey is another shining example of the transformative potential of the Antler program. As a driven entrepreneur, Aaron came to Australia on a Partner Visa and saw an opportunity to enhance the way families discover and engage with children’s activities. This led to the creation of Kidly, an intuitive platform that streamlines the discovery and booking process for children's activities. Functioning as a marketplace, Kidly brings families and small businesses closer together, fostering a vibrant community centred around the enrichment and development of children.

Antler recognised the potential impact of Aaron's idea and provided the necessary support to bring it to life. Through Antler's program, Aaron was able to secure funding and gain access to a network of industry experts and potential co-founders. Today, Kidly stands as a testament to the power of entrepreneurship and the positive impact that innovative startups can have on local communities. Aaron's story is a compelling reminder of the potential that awaits aspiring entrepreneurs in Australia's thriving startup ecosystem.

The journey to entrepreneurship can be challenging, but with the right support, it can be a rewarding career path. As a holder of any Partner visa, you're in a unique position to leverage the opportunities available in Australia's thriving startup ecosystem. At Antler, we're ready to support you every step of the way, providing you with the resources and network needed to build a transformative venture. If you're ready to explore the exciting world of entrepreneurship, consider joining the Antler family and start making a lasting impact in Australia's dynamic business landscape.

The most driven founders are joining Antler - the world's day zero investor - to solve important problems. Apply to join Antler in Australia, or sign up here to access insights and resources to help you on your founder journey.

Joel Cacciotti

Manager, Scouting

Joel is responsible for discovering exceptional founders to join Antler. As a successfully exited founder himself, Joel is a serial entrepreneur with his most notable startup, Hey Tom, which was acquired by Hometime. He has also advised various startups across a variety of industries. Previous to running his own businesses, he specialised in Sales and Sales Management for fast growing startups.

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