In Canada, a special immigration program called Startup Visa (hereinafter referred to as the start-up visa) has been developed and has been operating since April 2013, which allows any foreign citizen to go through an accelerated procedure for entering the country to work on a new startup.
The procedure is quite simple and consists of the following steps:
- You must receive support from one of the authorized business accelerators or angels. Investment support from the accelerator must be provided in the amount of at least 200 thousand Canadian dollars (hereinafter – CAD), and from the business angel – in the amount of at least 75 thousand CAD.
- Those. A business project must be approved by authorized organizations (of which there are a lot) and a letter of support for a startup for these amounts has been received.
- You must pass an IELTS test in English or French in all areas (reading, listening, writing and speaking), not lower than the average level of 5 points (out of 9 possible);
- After that, the form of the enterprise is selected and a company is registered in Canada, in which the startup founder must have at least 10% of the capital. In one project, you can involve 5 founders – non-Canadian citizens. That is, you can apply several members of your foreign team at once to one project and all of them receive the status of permanent residents of Canada.
Apply for a start-up visa. To do this, you must also demonstrate the following:
- Means of living for the first time in Canada. The calculation goes for about 3-6 months and is up to 13 thousand CAD per person (it depends on the city where your startup will be registered).
- If you have a family of 2 people, then you will need to demonstrate already 16 thousand CAD. If you are moving with children, then you need to add about another 3.5 thousand CAD for each;
- A medical certificate of your health, as well as of all members of your family (instructions for passing medical tests will be sent to you after submitting an application;
- That you have not been prosecuted in your country (certificate from the internal affairs authorities about the absence of a criminal record).
- All documents must be completed in a timely manner when applying for a start-up visa.
- You must be prepared to submit additional documents and interview with the immigration officer who will prepare the final decision on your application.
- Usually, it takes from 6 to 12 months to obtain and apply for a start-up visa.
- Once approved, you will need to prepare to move to Canada. This means finding an apartment or house to rent for your first stay in Canada, packing your things and booking tickets.
- Next, you will need to deal with the issues of the device at the new place of residence and, of course, the development of your project.
What does Startup Visa give?
The status of a permanent resident of Canada for a period of 1-2 years. Next, you either extend your start-up visa or renew it to another type of visa in case your project was not successful, but you remain in Canada on a work or student visa Canada.
As you understand, venture projects are not always successful, and therefore, in terms of a start-up visa, there is no hard link to the success of your new project. You must demonstrate that you have done everything that was agreed with your investment partners. This will be enough.
Great if the project is successful. But if not, then no big deal. You can organize a new, more successful startup based on the experience you already have. Or get a job in any company and get already approved for one of the professional immigration programs.
Access to one of the largest talent markets in the world. Canada is simply replete with the best specialists from around the world. Moreover, these can be both residents and citizens of Canada, and foreigners whom you can invite to work with you and apply for professional visas from your Canadian startup. If you find a genius in your field, somewhere in India or China, great. You can safely invite him to work in Canada. And you won’t have any problems with it.
Canada is filled with investment money. If you have a great and tested business idea for the Canadian, US or any country in the world market, then it is difficult to find a place that would be better suited to finance it.
Canadian companies are great for bringing new interested investors into your project. Moreover, there are many qualified investors who will bring not only finances, but also their experience and connections, which are often much more important than money.
It is very close to the United States, whose investors is very fond of and appreciates startups from their northern neighbor. Moreover, with the status of a permanent resident of Canada, you can easily get an American visa at any US embassy in Canada. You will only need to inform that you are meeting with potential investors for your project – this will be enough to obtain a US visa.
It is very difficult to find a similar combination of successful factors for the development of your startup in other countries.
Especially given that:
a) The standard of living in Canada is lower than in San Francisco or New York. This means that it will simply be more profitable for you to live here;
b) There are significant tax benefits (compared to the same California) for companies that have just started their activities. For example, until you reach an annual income of 2 million CAD, then you do not even have to file an annual tax return. Moreover, if your income is generated outside of Canada, then you will not have to pay corporate tax, because. Here the territorial principle of taxation applies. That is why global companies are very fond of registering their companies in the form of limited partnerships or extra-provincial companies in Canada, and conduct their main activities outside of it, leaving only the necessary costs here.
You can work in Canada, both in your own startup and in any other company while your startup is developing. This will allow you to provide yourself with the necessary level of income for a while until your project starts to make a profit.
After 5 years of your stay in Canada, three of which you must spend in Canada, you can apply for Canada citizenship consultant.