Canada’s Start-up Visa Program targets immigrant entrepreneurs with the skills and potential to build businesses in Canada that:
- are innovative
- can create jobs for Canadians
- can compete on a global scale
There are many reasons why Canada is the best place to build your business. Canada’s advantages include:
- a strong economy
- low taxes
- low business costs
- excellence in research and innovation
- a high quality of life
Eligibility to apply for Canada Start Up Visa
As an aspirant who is willing to apply for Canada CSV, you need to fulfil the following basic eligibility requirements.
Prove your business is supported by a designated organization – Designated organizations are business groups that have been approved to invest in or support possible start-ups.
To apply for the Start-up Visa Program, your business idea or venture must get the support of one of the designated organizations listed below.
Designated venture capital funds
You must get one or more of these groups to agree to invest a minimum of $200,000:
- BDC Venture Capital
- Blackberry Partners Fund II LP (doing business as Relay Ventures Fund II)
- Celtic House Venture Partners
- Celtic House Venture Partners Fund III LP
- Celtic House Venture Partners Fund IV LP
- Extreme Venture Partners LLP
- Golden Opportunities Fund Inc.
- iNovia Capital Inc.
- Lumira Capital
- New Brunswick Innovation Foundation Inc.
- OMERS Ventures Management Inc.
- Pangaea Ventures Fund III, LP
- PRIVEQ Capital Funds
- PRIVEQ III Limited Partnership
- PRIVEQ IV Limited Partnership
- Real Ventures
- Rho Canada Ventures
- Top Renergy Inc.
- Vanedge Capital Limited Partnership
- Version One Ventures
- Wellington Financial LP
- Westcap Mgt. Ltd.
- Canadian Accelerator Fund Ltd.
- Yaletown Venture Partners Inc.
Designated angel investor groups
You must get one or more investors connected to these groups to agree to invest a minimum of $75,000:
- Angel One Network Inc.
- Canadian International Angel Investors
- First Angel Network Association
- Golden Triangle Angel Network
- Oak Mason Investments Inc.
- Southwestern Ontario Angel Group
- TenX Angel Investors Inc.
- VANTEC Angel Network Inc.
Designated 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
- Creative Destruction Lab
- The DMZ at Ryerson University
- Empowered Startups Ltd.
- Extreme Innovations
- Genesis Centre
- Highline BETA Inc.
- INcubes Inc.
- Innovate Calgary
- Interactive Niagara Media Cluster o/a Innovate Niagara
- Invest Ottawa
- Istuary Idea Labs – suspended
- Knowledge Park o/a Planet Hatch
- Launch Academy
- LaunchPad PEI Inc.
- NEXT Canada
- Real Investment Fund III L.P. o/a FounderFuel
- Ryerson Futures Inc.
- Spark Centre
- Spring Activator
- TSRV Canada Inc. (operating as Techstars Canada)
- Waterloo Accelerator Centre
- York Entrepreneurship Development Institute
Show that your business meets the ownership requirements
Up to five people can apply for the Start-up Visa Program as owners of a single business. However, to meet the ownership requirements:
- each applicant must hold at least 10 percent of the voting rights in the business and
- the designated organization and the applicants must jointly hold more than 50 per cent of the voting rights in the business.
Meet the language requirements
The ability to communicate and work in English, French, or both will help your business succeed in Canada.
You must take a language test from an approved agency and include the results with your application, or we will not process it.
You must meet the minimum level of the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 in either English or French in all of these four areas:
Bring enough money to settle
The Government of Canada does not give financial support to new Start-up Visa immigrants.
You must show that you have enough money to support yourself and your dependants after you arrive in Canada. You cannot borrow this money from another person. You will need to give proof that you have the money when you apply.
The amount you will need depends on the size of your family. The amount is revised every year.
Number of family members
|Funds required (in Canadian Dollars)|
|For each additional family member||
Once your business is supported by a designated organization and you meet all eligibility criteria, you can file for the visa application.
Processing fee ($1050) and right of permanent residence fee ($490)
|Include your spouse or partner
Processing fee ($550) and right of permanent residence fee ($490)
Include a dependent child
150 per child