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CÓMO HACER NEGOCIOS EN COLOMBIA CON LA VISA DE SOCIO/PROPIETARIO

BUSINESS OWNER / SHAREHOLDER VISA AND STARTING A BUSINESS IN COLOMBIA

Colombia, a land of rich culture, diverse landscapes, and full of economic opportunities, is increasingly becoming a hotspot for entrepreneurs and business investors. 

For those seeking to establish a presence in this dynamic market, understanding the process of obtaining a business owner/shareholder visa and navigating the intricacies of starting a business in Colombia is paramount. 

In this comprehensive text, we’ll delve into everything you need to know to embark on your business journey in Colombia.

A general Overview of the business market in Colombia

There’s a rising attractive business culture in Colombia, driven by several key factors. 

Firstly, the country boasts robust economic growth and stability, with a GDP that strongly grew 1.2% in 2023, hence positioning it as one of the fastest-growing economies in Latin America, which provides a solid foundation for businesses seeking long-term sustainability and profitability.

Additionally, Colombia’s strategic geographic location and excellent connectivity serve as major advantages for international trade. Situated at the crossroads of North, Central, and South America, the country serves as a gateway to the region, facilitating access to a vast consumer market.

With modern infrastructure, well-connected airports, ports, and highways, Colombia offers seamless logistics and efficient supply chains.

Moreover, the government of Colombia has implemented favorable investment policies and incentives to attract foreign capital. 

These include tax incentives, free trade zones, and streamlined bureaucratic processes, making it easier for businesses to establish operations and navigate the regulatory landscape.

Do I need a visa to do business in Colombia?

If you are considering doing business in Colombia, one of the most essential aspects to consider is regarding your immigration status. 

Remember that not every Colombian visa or permit allows the holder to develop Business in Colombia.

The colombian visas that allow you to legally conduct business in Colombia are: 

The ones related to family ties like M – Marriage, M -Common law partnership and M- Parent of a Colombian National visa,

And for those who do not have family ties to the country, the options left could be: M – Mercosur, M – Migrante Andino and M – Business Owner/Shareholder visa. 

It is important to note that the M – Business/Shareholder visa allows the holder to do business in Colombia and work exclusively in the mentioned company, it does not allow the holder to work for a different company.

Visas/immigration for Foreigners Starting a Business

One of the most important aspects that you will have to keep in mind before doing  business in Colombia is to identify your specific goal and migratory situation within the country, so you might want to take a look first at our complete Colombian Visas Guide Video, just to get complete insight on where you currently stand and what the possibilities for your specific case are. 

As one of the many benefits offered by the Colombian Government to promote foreign investment in the country, you can choose from different Colombian visa types, according to your purpose, business and investment.  

In this case, we will be specifically talking about the M-Business owner/shareholder Colombian Visa

When considering starting your own company or investing in an existing company in Colombia, the Colombian Migrant Business Visa may be the ideal visa for your case.

To be eligible for the Colombian Migrant Business Visa you must invest 100 times the minimum salary into your company, that is $130’000.000 COP for 2024, this amount has to already be invested in participation or shares in the company. The M – Business owner/shareholder Colombian visa is granted for up to three years and allows you to apply for a Colombian Residency after holding it for five years.

What do I need to apply for the M-Business owner/shareholder Colombian Visa?

Understanding the Colombian Business owner/shareholder visa requirements is the crucial first step in making your business dreams a reality. 

After all, the most important part to start a business journey in Colombia is getting to know how you can actually reside in the country according to legal terms and knowing what you need in order to apply for the Colombian Business owner/shareholder visa.

Here’s a list of the requirements you will need to fulfill to make your colombian Business owner/shareholder visa application: 



Document size digital picture of the applicant on a photography shop (3x4 Cm White background).

Copy of your passports’ main page.

Copy of the last entry, exit or safe-conduct stamp (It depends on the location of the foreigner).

Copy of the last Colombian visa (if applicable).

Letter of application with the company name, address, and Tax Identification Number (NIT) of the commercial company incorporated, the main activity of the company and the number of direct jobs it generates.

Demonstrate that the commercial company maintains economic activity and solvency by means of bank statements of the last three (3) months prior to the visa application.

For joint stock companies, the participation in the company will be accredited with a certificate of shareholding subscribed by a public accountant, whose capital amount may not be less than the equivalent of one hundred (100) legal monthly minimum wages in force (SMMLV), that is $130’000.000 COP for 2024.

In the case of the incorporation of companies in the energy mining sector, the corresponding mining title must be provided.

Demonstrate the incorporation, participation, acquisition of paid-in capital of a commercial company, or registration of foreign investment, for an amount not less than one hundred (100) minimum salaries (SMMLV), that is $130’000.000 COP for 2024. It's important to note that the money you will invest must come from your own bank account.

Others requested at the time of acceptance.

It’s important to review the shareholding structure of the company you plan to invest in, to ensure that the investment meets the visa requirements

Also, If you already have an existing company and you are planning to apply for the Colombian business owner/shareholder visa, you must make the necessary modifications according to the previous requirements that we stated.

When tackling the intricacies of Colombian visa requirements, enlisting the support of a legal representative is essential, so remember that we can help you at any time of the process if you get confused at some point.  

 

Visa Costs 

Administrative Study Rate Fee $54 USD

Administrative Issuing Fee $270 USD

Cédula de Extranjería Issuing Fee $246,000 COP *$60 USD Approximately

doing your taxes in Colombia as a foreigner is a important part pf moving to colombia

Some Considerations

Now, we do advise you that If you do not plan to apply for the business owner/shareholder visa just yet and you need time to kind of think more about your decision to start your business journey in Colombia, keep in mind that in the future, and in order to apply for this specific type of visa (and actually, any Colombian visa that requires proof of income or an amount of investment), you must take into account the increase in the minimum wage. 

When you reapply for the visa too, you must meet the requirement of the minimum wage, which increases each year. 

For some enlightenment, the annual increase of the minimum wage in Colombia from 2022 to 2023, was 16%, and from 2023 to 2024, there was a 12% increase. 

Hence, our recommendation is to invest an amount higher than the minimum suggested, to ensure access to the visa. 

Also, at this point you may be left wondering: What happens with the money I invest in the company? and that’s a fair question.

The money that you invested can be used for the company’s expenses, in any operation inside the company. 

And also remember that for future applications, you must provide evidence that the company has been operating. 

Embarking on new business ventures in Colombia brings both excitement and challenges. 

But we can definitely help you navigate the complexities of your business owner/shareholder visa requirements!

You can confidently navigate the intricacies of Colombian visa regulations, ensuring a smooth and successful transition into the Colombian business landscape with us, so get in contact today! 

Comienza con una evaluación gratuita de tu caso

¿Qué va a pasar una vez llenes este formulario?

Después de llenar y enviar el formulario, tu caso pasa por una revisión integral por parte de nuestro equipo de especialistas para evaluar su viabilidad. Recuerda que proporcionar información clara y concisa sobre tus objetivos acelera este proceso.

Posteriormente, se asignará un especialista a tu caso, quien se comunicará contigo en un plazo de un día para aclarar detalles sobre tu caso particular y darte los próximos pasos para ayudarte a alcanzar tus objetivos.

Comienza con una evaluación gratuita de tu caso

¿Qué va a pasar una vez llenes este formulario?

Después de llenar y enviar el formulario, tu caso pasa por una revisión integral por parte de nuestro equipo de especialistas para evaluar su viabilidad. Recuerda que proporcionar información clara y concisa sobre tus objetivos acelera este proceso.

Posteriormente, se asignará un especialista a tu caso, quien se comunicará contigo en un plazo de un día para aclarar detalles sobre tu caso particular y darte los próximos pasos para ayudarte a alcanzar tus objetivos.

Contáctanos

Teléfono: (+57) 315 3354174

direccioncomercial@nexo.legal

Calle 11 no. 43b – 50,

Parque Empresarial Calle Once

Oficina 407

Medellín, Colombia

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