Ensuring the success of Wisconsin’s economy relies on creating a vibrant and supportive entrepreneurial environment. That’s why WEDC and its network of statewide partners are committed to helping startups reach success.

Wisconsin early-stage companies that are certified as Qualified New Business Ventures (QNBV) and incorporated as C corporations in other states will no longer have to pay additional assessment fees under a new state law.

Under the new law, Wisconsin Act 156,  the additional fees are eliminated for foreign corporations (in this case, defined as companies incorporated in other states, but still headquartered in Wisconsin) that are certified as a QNBV by WEDC. Those firms will be required only to pay a flat fee with the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions (DFI).

“It is common practice for companies raising outside capital and addressing national or global markets to incorporate outside of their home state,” said Aaron Hagar, vice president of entrepreneurship and innovation at WEDC. “This change will benefit Wisconsin tech startups regardless of the location of their legal incorporation.”

WEDC estimates that under current law, the typical out-of-state company certified under the QNBV program pays about $7,500 in additional fees to the State of Wisconsin. The new law enables startups to spend that money on things like equipment or personnel to help grow their business.

The new law isn’t the only change in the QNBV Program this year. Wisconsin Act 234 raises the lifetime ceiling on angel and venture capital investments under the program from $8 million to $12 million for taxable years beginning Jan. 1, 2018.

The QNBV Program is established under Wis. Stat. §238.15 to help tech-based companies attract the capital necessary to fuel their growth and close a critical gap in their development. QNBV certification is available to early-stage businesses developing innovative products, processes or services. The QNBV Program provides mutually beneficial outcomes for investors, startups and Wisconsin’s economy. By supporting investment in cutting-edge companies, the QNBV Program sets the stage for Wisconsin’s future success in a globally competitive environment.

Forms and filing instructions for QNBV certification are available on the DFI’s website. Additional information about the QNBV program can also be found on WEDC’s website.