The Canadian Federal Start-up Visa was launched by Canada's immigration department on March, 2013. The main purpose of the program is to attract innovative entrepreneurs to immigrate to Canada, establish companies to create jobs and stimulate economic growth. On July 2017, Canada's immigration department announced that the Start-up Visa program became permanent.
The Start-up Visa program is designed for immigrant entrepreneurs with the skills and potential to build businesses in Canada:
- Be innovative
- Can create jobs for Canadian citizens and permanent residents
- Be competitive in the global market
Your business ideas or enterprise must be supported by one or more of the following designated organizations:
- Venture capital fund
- Angel investor group
- Business incubator
The start-up must be a new business designed to operate in Canada. In line with business standards, the start-ups must make the following commitments:
- Through the designated business incubator, confirm that it is accepting applicants to its business incubator program and obtain approval.
- Investment is defined as “the purchase of shares or other forms of equity in the applicant’s business” and, therefore, convertible bonds are not permitted.
- A company is registered and run on business in Canada.
- Each applicant holds 10% or more of the voting rights attached to all shares of the company at the time.
- The applicant and the designated entity hold more than 50% of the total voting rights attached to all shares of the company.
- The start-up must run business in Canada, and the qualification of the start-up is the prerequisite for the applicant to become a permanent resident.
- The applicant becomes a permanent resident in one step.
- No individual income tax is required.
- There are no strict restrictions on the applicant’s professional background, any relevant occupation is qualified.
- Up to 5 applicants (families) can participate in one program.
- The amount of money invested in each project is different, depending on incubator requirements and actual business value.
- The incubator provides necessary training and guidance for the establishment and operation of the business after funding the incubator.