- Number of Tier 1 Investor and Entrepreneur visas granted nearly doubles since Brexit vote
- Number of Tier 1 visas granted in Q2 2019 highest since Q4 2014
- Surge despite tougher rules introduced 29 March 2019
The number of wealthy investors and entrepreneurs coming to the UK has surged despite concerns that Brexit is damaging the UK’s reputation as a leading global business destination, according to an analysis by Price Bailey, the Top 30 accountants.
According to data obtained from Home Office, 552 Tier 1 Investor and Entrepreneur visas were granted in Q2 2019, the highest number since Q4 2014, when 728 such visas were granted. In the first half of 2019, 1,011 Investor and Entrepreneur visas were granted, almost twice the number (536) in the two quarters (Q3 and Q4 2016) immediately after the Brexit vote.
Price Bailey says that the influx in wealthy investors and entrepreneurs to the UK is testimony to the robust business, legal and regulatory environment that the UK has created, together with its highly skilled workforce.
Anna Harvey, Partner at Price Bailey and Price Bailey Legal Services, comments: “The UK remains a highly attractive destination for wealthy foreign investors and entrepreneurs and at Price Bailey we are keen to encourage our clients and businesses to keep on investing in the UK. Despite uncertainty about the UK’s future relationship with the EU, the fundamental appeal of the UK as a leading global business destination is intact.”
“The depreciation in the pound has increased the purchasing power of foreign investors, making UK assets relatively more price competitive. Foreign investors and entrepreneurs coming to the UK will expect to realise value from their investments, which is dependent on the prospects for the UK economy post-Brexit. This influx therefore demonstrates a certain level of optimism.”
“It is possible that a growing number of wealthy investors are looking to move to and invest in the UK due to the political uncertainty surrounding investor visas in the U.S. It may also be the case that some of them have concerns that the government could further tighten visa rules after 31 October and are seeking to enter the UK before then.”
Price Bailey explains that tougher criteria for both Tier 1 Investor and Entrepreneur visas were introduced on 29 March 2019. For Investor visas the changes included enhanced due diligence checks and disqualifying investments in UK government bonds. The stricter criteria for Entrepreneur visa applicants included needing to gain approval from endorsing bodies in the UK, which assess start-up businesses for innovation, scalability and viability.
Anna Harvey says: “The Government has taken a tougher approach to Tier 1 visas on the basis that they were open to abuse for money laundering. It may be the case that the tougher rules deterred some applicants. In that context these numbers are even more surprising.”
Number of Tier 1 Entrepreneur and Investor visas granted since Brexit
NOTES TO EDITORS
About Price Bailey
Price Bailey is a top 30 accountancy practice specialising in providing accountancy, tax and business advice to enable the growth of regional, national and international businesses. In addition to traditional accounting services, the firm has a range of specialists in many areas which combine to provide a complete, integrated business offering. These include tax consultancy, corporate finance, strategic planning, insolvency & recovery, and legal services through its own law firm, Price Bailey Legal Services LLP. Price Bailey Legal Services LLP offers a unique offering to its clients being based in an accountancy firm, and its services of employment law, immigration and commercial disputes compliment those services offered by the accountancy practice – allowing for clients to receive invaluable services all under one roof.
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