Start Up Visa Program

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Start Up Visa Program

Canada’s Startup Visa Program is a federal immigration program that was launched as a pilot program in 2013 and has since become a permanent business immigration program as of 2018.

The Startup Visa Program aims to attract high potential entrepreneurs with innovative startups to Canada to establish their operations and grow whilst providing jobs to Canadians and stimulating the economy. Additionally, the Startup Visa Program empowers immigrant entrepreneurs to create their own opportunities in Canada and provides one of the fastest ways to Canadian permanent residency.

The program encourages any entrepreneurs who are innovative, can create jobs for Canadians and can compete on a global scale to apply for support from a designated organization to get their Letter of Support. With the Letter of Support in hand, the entrepreneurs become eligible to apply for a work permit and permanent residency in Canada under the Startup Visa Program.

The purpose of this program is to recruit innovative foreign national entrepreneurs who will create new jobs and drive economic growth.

To be eligible, applicants for a Start-Up Visa must meet the following requirements:

  • Obtain a Letter of Support from a Designated Organization (Venture Capital, Angel Investor, Business Incubator) Supporting your Business Idea
  • Show your business meets ownership requirements (10% Minimum Ownership/Person)
  • Meet minimum language requirements in English or French (CLB 5 in all abilities);
  • Have sufficient funds to settle in Canada
  • Plan to settle in a province other than the Province of Quebec
  • Pass Canadian security and medical clearances