Exceptional promise as a failed founder

Hi to everyone,

A special warm thanks to Shreeniwas and Francisca for your assistance here on this platform.

I want to apply under the “exceptional promise” as a product manager. I was a founder of a fintech company +2 years ago. It was a digital savings platform using local mobile payment technologies, not bank cards. But I didn’t have enough traction with our customers and with a lack of funding I closed. However, I had a free session with a consultant to know if I was eligible for this visa. And she told me Yes, but I would have to well craft my story.

How can I add this experience as a failed founder for my OC1 (at least 2 examples of innovation)? She told me during this session that I can add 2 screenshots of 2 features of the product, and other pieces of evidence of the work I’ve been involved in the product development process (Miro board etc…), and add links to articles and screenshots highlighting the name of the project in the final stage of national and Panafrican competitions, for “prove proof of recognition”. (1)

Also, I want to add a letter of support from one of the customers who use our product to realize their personal projects, and a screenshot of her different savings accounts. But since we were B2C, she is an individual and she will not have a letterhead. Is it a problem with a support letter? (2)

I am gathering the other pieces of evidence LORs from the Head of well-known Tech accelerators I’ve been through etc…

I am wondering if it will be strong enough since the word “impact” came a lot on some rejections I saw here. Thanks for your feedback.

Is there a reason you are choosing OC1 instead of OC3 for your work? What do you have to show for MC1 and do you have evidence to show for a second option criteria. What you have listed may not be sufficient for me to comment on the strength of you application. While the consultant may be right about your chances based on what you said, the question is do you have solid evince to bank this?

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Thanks for your feedback Francisca.

1- I have chosen the OC1 instead of the OC3 because the OC1 is mostly focused on innovation while the OC3 highlights the significance of the contribution and impact as it is said in the guide:

" 3) How do I demonstrate that I have made a significant…Please note that the term ‘significant contribution’ in this criteria requires you to demonstrate impact, not necessarily innovation. This is different from Optional Criteria 1 where you are required to demonstrate high levels of innovation, not necessarily impact."

2- For the MC1 I will show a certificate of company registration with my name on it.

Then you have to show commercial success. good luck with you application.

Thank you Francisca.

Have you considered engaging her on paid basis? You might also benefit from professional advice here.

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Hi Shreeniwas, I am thinking about it. Though those I’ve seen are very expensive. It might worth the investment. I’ll see. Thanks.

I’d check with a lawyer, not a consultant. Tech Nation recommended Fragomen.

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There is a difference between a lawyer and consultant. Some lawyers are not tech experts, consultants are mostly Tech Nation recipients or tech experts who understand the technical application process. Tech Nation recommended Fragomen, last year they had another partner both charge high fees, but there are other law firms offering cheaper fees. Those who can afford Fragomen 8,000 GBP fee can go for it but i think the most important part is answering the honest questions, am I eligible for Tech Nation Visa? Do i have evidence to prove my eligibility? if you can’t answer these questions no Lawyer or consultant can help you.


I don’t know where you got those £8000 fees from but I do know Fragomen and other law firms charge by the hours they work (in the low hundreds).

The idea of hiring non-professionals for immigration matters is crazy to me. You can get free advice in forums like this. Why would anyone pay for non-professional opinions when there are firms specializing in cases like this?

I also think lawyers do know how do define (and how TN) defines selection criteria. What does “product led digital tech company” mean? They have much better understanding where that boundary lies than most of us.

You are entitled to your opinion. How is applying for endorsement an immigration matter? Fragomen has a document that details their fees and 8,000 is what they charge for the full application service is Fixed fees: £8,000 + VAT. While consultation/ review is between £1,750 - £3,200 + VAT. I am not going to argue whether a lawyer or a consultant is better, people should choose what they think is best for them.