Business Immigration Service

Save arrival: Business Immigration Service

The red sofas in the waiting room are inviting, the rooms are bright and the employees greet their clients with a smile; at the new Business Immigration Service (BIS) at the Ludwig Erhard Haus, everyone is made to feel welcome right away. People from all over the world come here: IT professionals from India and Korea, young founders from the United States and university professors from Brazil with their partners and children. Between these people and their new job lies what feels like a mountain of application forms. But there’s no need to worry or complain, the BIS makes it possible for international talent from non-EU countries to finish all the annoying paperwork within five days and have their visa and work permit in their pocket in no time.

Qick and painless visa process

One of these people is Matthew Kim, CPO at the Berlin fintech company builder FinLeap. Up until a few months ago, he worked as the founder and CTO of a data company in Toronto, Canada. After receiving an attractive offer from FinLeap to live and work in Berlin, he made the decision to leave Canada and move to Germany. “I decided to come to Berlin since it’s becoming a hotbed for startups in Europe.” Matthew’s new employer contacted Berlin Partner, who examined his case and sent a letter to the “Ausländerbehörde” (Foreign Persons Office) on behalf of the young Canadian. Matthew’s visa process is already history, and nothing more than a pleasant memory: “The Business Immigration Service made the visa process quick and painless.”

Effecient co-operation between Berlin authorities

The fact that the service works so well is also due to the unique combination of Berlin authorities involved in facilitating the arrival international talent, including the Ausländerbehörde, Berlin Partner, the IHK Berlin, the Berlin Senate Department for Business, Energy and Enterprises and the District Office of Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf. After a satellite of the Ausländerbehörde moved into the Ludwig Erhard Haus in the summer, all bodies are now under one roof. Today, the service is becoming increasingly popular: more than 550 companies, universities and scientific institutes took regular advantage of the BIS in 2016. In the past two years, the number of companies receiving assistance from the Ausländerbehörde rose by roughly 60% and the number of applications increased by around 40%.

Facts, Figures, Statistics

Berlin Partner helps investors and companies acquire visas for international professionals as quickly as possible. In 2016, 230 companies used the service. In comparison to 2014, that’s an increase of roughly 110%. Most young talent are IT experts from North America (29%) followed by Asia (25%) and Europe (19%). The IHK Berlin assists founders from abroad who want to start a business in Berlin. They assist in the application process of foreign founders by checking business plans and providing expert assessments to the Ausländerbehörde. Individuals who find themselves on the red sofas can look forward to a quick visa application process: the District Office of Charlottenburg-Wilmersdorf is also represented here on the 6th floor of the Ludwig Erhard Haus. In other words, foreign professionals can also register their apartments here immediately, too.

More information: Business Location Center

Text: Christin Berges, Berlin Partner for magazine "Berlin to Go" | Image: (c) Berlin Partner/ Peter-Paul Weiler