Canada is a G7 country, with a fast growing economy, and is consistently voted as one of the best countries to live in. Canada welcomes hundreds of thousands of people as new permanent residents each year.
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Canada Start-Up Visa (SUV)
Canada’s start-up visa program allows entrepreneurs with an innovative business idea to become a Canadian permanent resident by starting a business that will develop the nation’s economy and create new job opportunities in Canada. Business owners and entrepreneurs seeking to benefit from the permanent residency status can use this as a means of expanding into the Canadian market and compete on a global scale.
1. Qualifying Business Requirements
- -A designated organization must commit to your company
- -All candidates (a maximum of 5 owners can apply) must hold a minimum of 10% voting rights of all shares connected to the company
- -Inclusive of the designated organization, the applicant must hold a minimum of 50% voting rights of all the shares connected to the company
2. Letter of Support
Successful applicants should receive a letter of support from a designated organization that shows they are willing to provide support and invest resources into the Start-Up idea. These organizations include:
- -Venture Capital Firms ($200,000 investment);
- -Angel Investor Groups ($75,000 investment); and
- -Business Incubators
3. Language requirements
The applicant must take a language test from one of the designated testing agencies. They must meet the minimum score of Canadian Language Benchmark 5 (CLB 5) for each language ability (reading, speaking, listening and writing) for at least one of the official languages of Canada, i.e. English and French.
4. Proof of Fund
Candidate must show that they have enough money to settle in Canada. This is not needed if they currently are able to legally work or have a valid job offer from an employer.
Start-Up visa applicants are required to submit a letter of support obtained from a designated organization:
Venture Capital Fund
- - 7 Gate Ventures
- - BCF Ventures
- - BDC Venture Capital
- - Celtic House Venture Partners
- - Extreme Venture Partners LLP
- - Golden Venture Partners Fund, LP
- - Impression Ventures
- - Innovation Platform Capital International LP
- - iNovia Capital Inc.
- - Lumira Ventures
- - Nova Scotia Innovation Corporation (o/a Innovacorp)
- - Pangaea Ventures Ltd.
- - PRIVEQ Capital Funds
- - Real Ventures
- - Relay Ventures
- - ScaleUp Venture Partners, Inc.
- - Top Renergy Inc.
- - Vanedge Capital Limited Partnership
- - Version One Ventures
- - Westcap Management Ltd.
- - Yaletown Venture Partners Inc.
- - York Entrepreneurship Development Institute (YEDI) VC Fund
Angel Investor Groups
- - Alacrity Foundation
- - Alberta Agriculture and Forestry
- - Biomedical Commercialization Canada Inc. (operating as Manitoba Technology Accelerator)
- - Creative Destruction Lab
- - Empowered Startups Ltd.
- - Extreme Innovations
- - Genesis Centre
- - Highline BETA Inc.
- - Innovacorp
- - 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 Technology Exchange
- - Platform Calgary
- - Real Investment Fund III L.P. o/a FounderFuel
- - Ryerson Futures Inc.
- - Spark Commercialization and Innovation Centre
- - Spring Activator
- - The DMZ at Ryerson University
- - Toronto Business Development Centre (TBDC)
- - TSRV Canada Inc. (operating as Techstars Canada)
- - VIATEC
- - Waterloo Accelerator Centre
- - York Entrepreneurship Development Institute
Process & Timeline
A designated organization must support the business idea of the foreign applicant, applying for the PR through the SUV route. The processing time for the Canadian Start- Up visa is between 12 and 16 months.