July 26, 2019

Canada Investor Visa

Canada is one of the richest countries in natural resources, highly skilled labour and a politically stable government. Contributing to these factors Canada is the best investor friendly country. Canada offers different streams of investor programs to encourage the versatile and experienced businessmen to contribute positively to its economy. For the same purpose the federal as well as provincial government of Canada offers the business immigration programs like Start-up Visa and the Provincial Nominee Program for investors. On a successful application the investor as well as their close family can move to Canada permanently.

The Startup visa Stream

The investor category of Start-up Visa enables an applicant to immigrate and to start a business in any Canadian location. For this the applicant as well as the proposed business must meet certain criteria’s set by the Canadian Immigration. Generally, the Canadian government sees innovative business which results in the job creation for Canadian will be more successful. During the application processing time, the applicant can also apply for temporary work permit for performing work during the application processing time.

Maximum number of individuals who may apply as partners of the proposed business is five.

Requirements of Startup business

In order to apply under the Start-up, visa the proposed business shall meet the below mentioned conditions of the Canada immigration.

  • The proposed business should qualify under the norms of Canada;
  • letter of support provided by a designated organization
  • language ability requirements shall be met;
  • should have enough settlement funds.

Qualifying Business

The proposed start up business shall meet the below conditions in order to become a Qualifying business.

  • To receive support or commitment from a designated organization
  • If there are more than one partners in the business each person should hold 10% or more of the voting rights applicable to all shares of the corporation outstanding at that time and
  • The partners and the designated organization should hold more than 50% of the total voting rights applicable to all shares of the corporation due at that time;
  • Next is at the time of receiving permanent residence;
    1. The business shall be incorporated in Canada;
    2. The business shall be active and running in Canada;
    3. The important operation of the business should happen in Canada;

Get support from a designated organization

The business shall get a letter of support from the business investors like venture capital fund, angel investor etc, that have committed to invest or support the start-up. Such investor groups are known as designated organization.

The business groups that are pre-approved investor in Start-up business to aid the new business effectively establish in Canada is the— designated organization

For the purpose of getting the support, the applicant shall contact the designated organization and should derive the steps of getting the support, the designated organization shall be convinced that the business idea is innovative and is worth supporting. Also, the organization shall provide a letter of support to the start-up business initiative.

To convince the designated organization, presentation of idea is the key factor. For this

  • a detailed business plan or
  • concept presentations can be provided

Being approved of the idea the designated organization will issue a letter stating their support to the start-up. The letter should mention the support offered by the venture capital fund, business incubators or angel investor group shall support and fund the proposed business in Canada.

The commitment certificate will be directly and separately mailed to the Canada immigration by the designated organization. The application will be assed by Immigration, Refugee and Citizenship Canada based on the proof of support offered by the designated organization.

  • letter of support and
  • the organization's commitment certificate
  • For angel investor the commitment amount of investment is a minimum $25,000CAD
  • For a venture capitalist the investment amount must be a minimum of $75,000CAD.

Language Ability

The language ability proves the ease of communications in Canada’s official languages—English and French.

Assessment of Language Ability

Canada immigration has different approved Language test for their immigration purposes.

For the start-up visa stream the language ability is measured by the following results in the IRCC approved language test.

  • Canadian Language Benchmarks (CLB) for English
  • Niveaux de compétence linguistique canadiens (NCLC) for French

Earning a CLB 5 or NCLC 5 minimum for either of the first official language (English or French) in all the four modules of the language—Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening.

The approved test in English

  • CELPIP: Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program
  • IELTS: International English Language Testing System

The approved test in French

  • TEF Canada : Test d’évaluation de français
  • TCF Canada : Test de connaissance du français

Settlement funds

As the Canadian government does not provide financial assistance to start-up visa immigrant investor in Canada, the personal funds required to support the applicant as well their family members livelihood and other related expenses shall be borne by the applicant itself. For this, once applying the applicant shall demonstrate that enough funds are available to support the applicant and the dependent family members in Canada during the stay in Canada.

The funds required are based on the family size of the family.

Number of family members (in Canadian dollars)
1 $12,669
2 $15,772
3 $19,390
4 $23,542
5 $26,701
6 $30,114
7 $33,528
For each additional family member $3,414

Once the above criteria’s are met the application package is made for the start-up visa and based on the further processing from the Canada immigration a decision on the permanent residence also takes place.

Canada Immigrant Investor Visa (Currently closed category)

This category primarily targeted the businessperson or individuals of high-net worth who could be a potential investor in Canada. Currently the program is closed.

The criteria required to apply under this program were:

  • Personal net worth of at least $1,600,000 CAD.
  • Minimum business experience of 2 years in a five-year period prior to application submission or
  • The person should have managed at least five full-time employees in the past 2 years or
  • Either one year of business managing experience or one year of people managing experience as indicated above;
  • Minimum investment required was $800,000 CAD
  • Also provide enough funds to settle themselves and the family in Canada.
  • While calculating the net worth assets may be included like—real estate, bank accounts, stocks and bonds, and personal funds.

Quebec investor Program

Like federal Canada, the province of Quebec also offers investor programs attracting the investment to the province to create more job opportunities in the labour market and therefore promoting the economic growth.

  • Initial Investment funds of $200,000cad for a business outside the metropolitan area of Montreal, or
  • Initial Investment funds of $300,000cadfor a business located in the metropolitan area of Montreal.
  • Guaranteed deposit of $200,000cad minimum
  • A net worth of $900,000 cad legally acquired, alone or with their spouse if applicable.

International investors who are interested in investment immigration opportunities can consult Pelican Migration Consultants for assistance with the correct investor programs. Due to the temporary suspension of many of the investor programs, it is advisable to contact a professional IRCC registered consultant like Pelican Migration Consultant regarding the business investment options in Canada and permanent residency.

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