The Canadian Startup Visa programme allows foreign entrepreneurs to establish innovative businesses in Canada and apply for permanent residence.
It is also intended for active investors in companies and growing businesses looking to establish a presence in Canada.
Canada is one of the world’s wealthiest countries, with a high per capita income and is a leading trade market. The country is frequently ranked as one of the best places to live in the world. It is well-known for its high living standards, clean environment, low crime rate, and excellent infrastructure.
One benefit of residence by investment in Canada is that your family is included in the application and there is no age restriction or net worth requirement. As a resident, you will have a high standard of living with affordable healthcare and many other benefits.
To crown it all, after three years (or 1,095 days) of physical presence out of five years, the startup visa allows for citizenship.
Requirements of the Programme: To obtain permanent residence in Canada, foreign entrepreneurs must propose an innovative start-up business, approved by a designated organization.
One of the following options must be chosen:
- Business incubation: No minimum investment is required
- Angel investment: Raise CAD 75,000 from an angel investment group, depending on a certain stage of the business
- Venture capital fund: Raise CAD 200,000 from a venture capital fund, depending on a certain stage of the business
For all three options, additional fees apply for optional consulting, government fees, business structure, document processing, and immigration filing.
Investors are also required to:
- Have English or French language proficiency at the CLB/IELTS 5 level
- Be in good health
- Have no criminal record
The procedures and time frame: To start an application, the client needs to draft and submit a business proposal for review and approval by a designated government business organization.
Thereafter, the client will receive a letter of support enabling them and their family to apply for permanent residency once they have received approval from a business incubator, an angel investment group, or a venture capital fund (depending on the investment option selected).
A physical presence will be needed for two out of every five years (or 730 days) in Canada necessary to keep permanent resident status. The procedure takes between 12 and 31 months.
How to Apply
To apply for the Start-up Visa Program, your business idea or venture must get the support of one or more of the designated organizations listed below:
- Venture capital funds
- Angel investor groups
- Business incubators
These designated organizations are business groups that have been approved by the Start-up Visa Program to invest in or support potential start-ups.
These organizations decide which business proposals to review through their proposal process and evaluation criteria. You may be asked to present your business concept in person or to submit a detailed business plan, for example.
If an organization decides to review your business idea, it will evaluate its potential and whether or not it will succeed. A Letter of Support. will be sent if the organization backs your business idea.
Designated Venture capital organizations: You must get at least one of these groups to agree to invest a minimum of $200,000-
- 7 Gate Ventures
- Apex Innovative Investments Ventures
- Arete Pacific Tech Ventures (VCC) Corp
- BCF Ventures
- BDC Venture Capital
- Celtic House Venture Partners
- Extreme Venture Partners LLP
- First Fund
- Golden Venture Partners Fund, LP
- iNovia Capital Inc.
- Intrinsic Venture Capital
- Lumira Ventures
- Invest Nova Scotia
- PRIVEQ Capital Funds
- Real Ventures
- Red Leaf Capital Corp
- Relay Ventures
- ScaleUp Venture Partners, Inc.
- Tangentia Ventures
- Top Renergy Inc.
- Vanedge Capital Limited Partnership
- Version One Ventures
- WhiteHaven Venture
- Westcap Management Ltd.
- Yaletown Venture Partners Inc.
- York Entrepreneurship Development Institute (YEDI) VC Fund
Angel investor groups: You must get one or more investors connected to these groups to agree to invest a minimum of $75,000-
- Canadian International Angel Investors
- Ekagrata Inc.
- Golden Triangle Angel Network
- Keiretsu Forum Canada
- Oak Mason Investments Inc.
- TenX Angel Investors Inc.
- VANTEC Angel Network Inc.
- York Angel Investors Inc.
Business incubators: You must be accepted into one of these programs-
- Alacrity Foundation
- Alberta Agriculture and Forestry
- Agrivalue Processing Business Incubator
- Food Processing Development Centre
- Alberta IoT Association
- Biomedical Commercialization Canada Inc. (operating as Manitoba Technology Accelerator)
- Brilliant Catalyst
- Creative Destruction Lab
- DMZ Ventures
- Empowered Startups Ltd.
- Extreme Innovations
- Genesis Centre
- Highline BETA Inc.
- Invest Nova Scotia
- Innovation Cluster – Peterborough and the Kawarthas
- Innovation Factory
- Interactive Niagara Media Cluster o/a Innovate Niagara
- Invest Ottawa
- Knowledge Park o/a Planet Hatch
- LatAm Startups
- Launch Academy – Vancouver
- LaunchPad PEI Inc.
- Millworks Centre for Entrepreneurship
- NEXT Canada
- North Forge East Ltd.
- North Forge Technology Exchange
- Pacific Technology Ventures
- Platform Calgary
- Pycap Inc (o/a Pycap Venture Partners)
- Real Investment Fund III L.P. o/a FounderFuel
- Roseview Global Incubator
- Spark Commercialization and Innovation Centre
- Spring Activator
- The DMZ at Ryerson University
- Think8 Global Institute
- Toronto Business Development Centre (TBDC)
- TSRV Canada Inc. (operating as Techstars Canada)
- University of Toronto Entrepreneurship Hatchery
- Waterloo Accelerator Centre
- York Entrepreneurship Development Institute
- More details on how to apply here