Entrepreneur Pass (EntrePass)

//Entrepreneur Pass (EntrePass)
Entrepreneur Pass (EntrePass)2018-10-12T15:07:04+00:00

All foreigners who intend to work in Singapore must have a valid pass, commonly known as a work visa, before they can start work.

An entrepreneur pass, also known as EntrePass in Singapore, is one of such passes that grants eligible foreigners validated permission to start and operate a new business in Singapore.

Eligibility criteria for obtaining an EntrePass

  • Application for an EntrePass is open to all nationalities.
  • Mandatory requirements for eligibility
    • Registration of your private limited company with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority. The company must be less than 6 months old on the date of application filing if already registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority.
    • Since a company needs to provide a bank statement that shows at least $50,000 in a Singapore-based bank account, therefore your company must have at least $50,000 in paid-up-capital.
    • The authority filing for the EntrePass must hold at least 30% of the shares in the company.
  • Additional requirements : A company in addition to the above requirements must also meet at least one of these following requirements :
    • Funding or investment from a Singapore government-accredited venture capitalist or business angel for your company. A business angel is an affluent individual who provides capital for a business startup, usually in exchange for convertible debt and ownership equity. Essentials to be kept in mind when receiving funding :
      • Monetary funding of at least $100,000 to the company.
      • Relevant documentation to support your application like a shareholder certificate.
    • An intellectual property (IP) that is registered with an approved national IP institution must be held by the company. Essentials to be kept in mind when registering the IP :
      • One of the shareholders must be the owner of the IP.
      • Even expired IPs can be considered if the inventor of the IP is one of the shareholders of the company.
      • The IP must be related to your proposed business.
    • Research collaboration with a university or A*STAR, the Agency for Science, Technology and Research in Singapore. Guidelines regarding the research collaboration:
      • The duration of the research collaboration is not essential.
      • A contact person must be provided by the research institution to verify the research collaboration details related to your proposed business.
      • The company must be involved in an ongoing research.
      • Contract of services is not considered to be research collaboration.
    • The company must be an incubatee at a Singapore government supported incubator. The incubatee work must be related to your proposed business.
  • Businesses that can not gain eligibility for an EntrePass:
    • Geomancy business
    • Employment agencies
    • Foot reflexology, massage parlours
    • Acupuncture, traditional Chinese medicine, herbal dispensing business
    • Coffee shops, hawker centres, food courts
    • Bars, night clubs, karaoke lounges

Important Note :

  1. Getting an EntrePass does not guarantee the approval of your business registration and licences.
  2. Acquiring an approval from the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) is still required for registering your business. Any licenses needed to start your business will require you to apply for separately.
  3. You will not be able to extend your Short Term Visit Pass if it expires before your application is approved since the processing time is around 6 weeks.

Title : Essentials of EntrePass

Key facts pertaining to an EntrePass:

  • Candidates can directly apply for an EntrePass
  • There is no stipulated minimum salary requirement
  • It is valid upto 1 year
  • It can be renewed upon meeting the renewable criteria
  • There are various passes available for certain family members of the pass holders
  • There is no requirement of a foreign worker levy and quota
  • Online services and forms for EntrePass can be accessed 4

Documents required for EntrePass

  • Copy of your passport’s personal particulars page
  • Testimonials of your past employments in English
  • A business plan, restricted to 10 paged, which must include
    • Business idea
    • Product and service offered
    • Market analysis
    • Market plan
    • Operation plan
    • Financial projections
    • Management team
    • Supporting documents such as licensing agreements, product certifications and endorsements.
  • The Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority registered businesses must provide:
    • Latest business profile and instant information of the company
    • A bank statement from a Singapore-based company bank account of at least $50,000

Renewal of an EntrePass

  • Key Points :
    • An EntrePass can start applying for renewal of the pass about 3 months before the pass expires when you receive the renewal form
    • The completed application must be mailed to the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) at least 2 months prior to the expiration of the pass
    • The pass holder has to renew the pass himself/herself
    • Like your first EntrePass, the duration of the renewed pass is also 1 year
    • It takes around 6 weeks to renew the pass
  • Criteria for renewal :
    • If you have held the EntrePass for 1 year, your minimum total business spending must be $100,000 in addition to the creation of 2 local jobs
    • If you have held the EntrePass for 2 years, your minimum total business spending must be $150,000 in addition to the creation of 4 local jobs
    • If you have held the EntrePass for 3 years, your minimum total business spending must be $200,000 in addition to the creation of 6 local jobs
    • If you have held the EntrePass for 4 years, your minimum total business spending must be $300,000 in addition to the creation of 8 local jobs
    • If you have held the EntrePass for 5 years and more, your minimum total business spending must be $400,000 in addition to the creation of 10 local jobs

Important note :

  • Companies who had applied for the EntrePass before 28 September 2009 need to meet all the renewal criteria starting from the first year. This applies to renewal of EntrePass from 1 September 2014 onwards.
  • Companies who had applied for the EntrePass on and after 28 September 2009 need to meet the renewal criteria based on the number of years they have held the pass
  • The Ministry of Manpower must be informed by the company regarding any deviation from their original business plan
  • Documents required :
    • Mandatory documents:
      • Latest audited accounts
      • Central Provident Fund statements for the employees
      • Agreement of the office tenancy
      • Latest company registration information from the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority
    • Optional Documents
      • Corporate bank statements of the past 3 months
      • Referral letters from customers
      • Recent invoices issued
      • Contracts awarded

Terminologies Used:

  • Local jobs refer to full-time employees who are Singapore citizens and permanent residents of Singapore. They need to have worked for at least 3 months, earned at least $1,000 and received Central Provident Fund contributions.
  • Total Business Spending (TBS) = Total operating expenses – {royalties/franchise fees/know how fees to overseas companies + work subcontracted to overseas companies + remuneration to applicant}