Entrepreneurs and VCs are in Washington DC this week to promote the StartUp Visa Act. The Act, introduced February 24th by Senators John Kerry (D-Mass.) and Richard Lugar (R-Ind.), would make it easier for foreign entrepreneurs
to start their business in the U.S.
The Act would create a new visa, the EB-6, which would grant a two-year green card to foreign entrepreneurs who can secure $250,000 in U.S. VC funding.
The EB-6 Visa is a modified version of the current EB-5 Visa, with requirements that are easier to meet than the current one. The EB-5 grants a green card to foreign nationals who invest $1 million in the U.S. and create ten jobs here.
Under the EB-6 Visa, after the initial two-year green card, entrepreneurs would become permanent U.S. residents if they have either created five full-time jobs in the U.S., raised an additional $1 million from investors or have earned $1 million in revenue.
The Act's goal is to keep U.S. startup activity globally competitive.
“I think this is mandatory for the U.S.,” said Stéphane Delbecque, CEO and co-founder of Footbalistic, a French startup based in San Francisco. “If you rely on only local people that’s great, but if you bring people in from around the world, that’s better.”
“It’s one of the best ideas of the last ten years,” Delbecque said.