Start-Up Visa Program
Regulations for the start-up visa business class as a permanent program came into effect on April 11, 2018. Start-up Visa was launched through Ministerial Instructions in April 2013 as a five-year pilot program that provides permanent residence to innovative entrepreneurs with the potential to build high-growth start-ups in Canada that can compete on a global scale.
Start-up Visa Program targets innovative immigrant entrepreneurs who can create jobs and compete on a global scale. Foreign entrepreneurs wishing to apply to the program must first secure support for their business from a designated organization. Designated organizations are business groups that are approved to invest in or support possible start-ups through the Start-up Visa Program. They must also, among other requirements, have a certain level of official language proficiency, business ownership shares and personal funds. Together, these criteria are tailored to entrepreneurs with potential for long-term success.
Entrepreneurs are not required to invest their own money. The minimum investment required can come from a Canadian venture capital fund or angel investor group that has been named as a participant in the program. For a designated Canadian venture capital fund the minimum investment is $200.000. For a designated Canadian angel investor group the minimum investment is $75.00. There is no need to secure any investment from a business incubator when accepted into a Canadian business incubator program.