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Start-up Visa

Before you apply for the Start-up visa, you must convince a designated angel investor group or venture capital fund to invest in your business idea. If the investor organization decides to fund your business idea; they will give you a letter of support.

You must include your letter of support with your application as proof that an angel investor group or venture capital fund supports your business idea.

To obtain a letter of support, you must convince one of the organizations listed below that you have a business idea that is worth investing in. Each organization has different requirements in terms of what documents (for example, a business plan) they require in order to consider investing in a business idea.

You must secure a minimum investment of $200,000 if the investment comes from a designated Canadian venture capital fund.

  • 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 L.P.
  • Celtic House Venture Partners Fund IV LP
  • DRI Capital Inc.
  • Golden Opportunities Fund Inc.
  • iNovia Capital Inc.
  • New Brunswick Innovation Foundation Inc. / Fondation de l’innovation du Nouveau-Brunswick Inc.
  • Northwater Intellectual Property Fund
  • OMERS Ventures Management Inc.
  • Pangaea Ventures Fund III, LP
  • PRIVEQ Capital Funds
  • PRIVEQ III Limited Partnership
  • PRIVEQ IV Limited Partnership
  • Quorum Group
  • Advantage Growth (No.2) L.P.
  • Ontario SME Capital Corporation
  • Quorum Investment Pool Limited Partnership
  • Quorum Secured Equity Trust
  • Rho Canada Ventures
  • Summerhill Venture Partners Management Inc.
  • Tandem Expansion Management Inc.
  • Vanedge Capital Limited Partnership
  • Version One Ventures
  • Wellington Financial LP
  • Westcap Mgt. Ltd.
  • Yaletown Venture Partners Inc.

Or you must secure a minimum investment of $75,000 if the investment comes from a designated Canadian angel investor group.

  • Angel One Network Inc.
  • First Angel Network Association
  • Golden Triangle Angel Network

Start-Up Language Requirements

Being able to communicate and work in English, French or both will help your business in Canada.

You must prove your ability in English or French in these four areas:

  • speaking,
  • reading,
  • listening, and
  • writing.

You must meet the minimum level of CLB 5 in either English or French for all four language abilities.

If you do not meet the minimum language skills, we will refuse your application.

You must take a language test from an agency approved by CIC and include the results when you apply. If you do not, we will not process your application and we will return your fees.

You will not have another chance to prove your language proficiency. The visa officer will only use the test results that you provide when you apply.

Acceptable documents for language requirements

You must send us proof that you meet the language requirement for the Start-up Visa (Canadian Language Benchmark/Niveau de compétence linguistique canadien
5). An original of any of the following documents showing that you meet the language requirement will be accepted as proof:

  1. Designated third-party test results that you already sent to CIC for a previous application as a Federal Skilled Worker or for the Canadian Experience
    Class, if the results are dated no earlier than two years before you apply.
  2. New third-party test results, including:
    1.  CELPIP General (Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program General test); or
    2. b. IELTS – General Training (International English Language Testing System); or
    3. c. Test d’Évaluation de Français (TEF) (in French only).

Start-Up Educational and Financial Requirements

Education requirements

You must provide proof of your education with your application. Specifically, you will need:

  • proof of having completed at least one year of post-secondary education
  • proof that you were in good standing during at least one year while you were attending a post‑secondary institution

Your proof of education may be in the form of transcripts and a letter of good standing or certificate or diploma or degree.

Have sufficient settlement funds

The Government of Canada does not provide financial support to new start-up business visa immigrants.

You must show that you have enough money to support yourself and your dependents after you arrive in Canada. You cannot borrow this money from another person. You must be able to use this money to support the costs of living for your family.

You will need to provide proof of your funds when you submit your application for immigration.

The amount of money you need to support your family is determined by the size of your family. These amounts are updated every year.

Number of Family MembersFunds Required (in Canadian dollars)
7 or more$29,414

Start-Up Visa Inception

Since its inception, the Startup Visa initiative has achieved several milestones, from increasing awareness of the need for entrepreneurial immigration
reform to changing entrepreneurial immigration policies on Parliament Hill. After a few years of hard work, the Startup Visa Canada initiative was
successful in convincing the Canadian Government that creating a new Startup Visa program was the right way to go. This year on January 24th, Minister
Kenny announced Canada’s new Startup Visa program would officially commence in April 2013.

Since Minister Kenny’s welcomed announcement, there have been a lot of questions floating around regarding what the startup ecosystems in Canada look like.
To keep you informed, we’ve summarized the Startup Visa Canada Initiative’s live event below.

The first of its kind in the world, Canada’s new Start-Up Visa Program is available to international entrepreneurs who meet specific requirements laid out
by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). This new visa program aims to connect immigrant entrepreneurs to experienced private sector organizations that
have expertise in working with start-ups.

Benefits of the Program (Start-up Visa)

  • The Start-up Visa Program will enable immigrant entrepreneurs to launch innovative companies that will create jobs in Canada and eventually, compete globally.
  • The Program will provide entrepreneurs with valuable assistance in navigating the Canadian business environment which can sometimes prove challenging for
  • The Program will provide private sector firms with access to a broader range of entrepreneurs, including the best and the brightest minds from around the

Contact Us

For further information with respect to your Canadian immigration, we invite you to contact our experienced immigration representatives.

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assist you with your matter. Book Now!
Book a Consultation

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more Information

Write Us (Online Form)

Complete our form and one of our
Representatives will contact you.
Immigration inquiries

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