The Manchester Enterprise Centre has been featured in a major new global report on attracting and integrating diverse entrepreneurial talent.
The Churchill Fellowship report ‘How do cities attract and integrate high skilled immigrant entrepreneurs’ interviewed more than 100 organisations and individuals from across the world, focusing on grassroots insights from those working to make entrepreneurial ecosystems more open, diverse and inclusive.
The report features an interview with Lynn Shepherd, Director of Manchester Enterprise Centre, who talks about how to apply for the Tier 1 graduate entrepreneur visa which is currently the main route to residency in the UK for entrepreneurs. Universities in the UK are given a specific Tier 1 allocation each year to award to international student entrepreneurs, and The University of Manchester currently receives 20 a year.
The report also features an interview with Manchester graduate Tanvi Bhardwaj, the co-founder and CTO of MishiPay, whose business recently won the digital category of the University’s Venture Further competition. She talks about her about her experience of the UK visa process as she built up her business, an award-winning payment technology company.
The report concludes that cities and economies which are likely to attract the best and brightest entrepreneurs in the long-run will have a balanced and fair immigration policy linked to economic needs. They will also implement innovative models which reflect a more nuanced understanding of the challenges faced by entrepreneurs.
It adds that more and more of our most valuable companies will originate at universities. However it also warns of the dangers of greater numbers of international students choosing to pursue entrepreneurship but having no route to stay in their country of choice to then grow their business. It says better structural incentives in all countries are needed to address the broken link between academia and immigration pathways for international graduate entrepreneurs.