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Business Programs

When seeking to immigrate to Canada there are various programs available depending on your education, work experience and entrepreneurial history.

Canada divides their immigration programs into Federal programs and Provincial programs.

Federal programs are run by the Canadian Federal Government and allow an individual to live and work anywhere in Canada, with the exception of Quebec as they have their own immigration programs. Provincial programs are run by each province / territory individually and are tailored to their specific needs. These programs were created to allow the provinces to bring in new immigrants to fit their specific needs.

There are currently over 40 different provincial programs in existence. Many of them require previous work or study experience in a specific province/territory or a job offer from a Canadian employer in a specific province/ employer.

There are several programs however, which will allow applicants to apply based on their entrepreneurial experience. Each program has its own requirements on the amount of personal net worth that you require, years of experience and amount available to invest in the new/existing business in Canada.

The following is a brief overview of those programs available for entrepreneurs and looking to immigrate to Canada. Additional requirements may be required.
British-Columbia

This is a points based system and those with the higher scores will be selected.

  • Intention to reside in British Columbia
  • Minimum net worth of $600,000 Canadian Dollars
  • Minimum of $200,000 Canadian Dollar Investment into the business
  • Create more than one job for Canadians
  • 5 Years of Senior Managerial Experience/Business Owner Experience
  • Active and ongoing management of the day-to-day business operations in British Columbia
  • Their key areas of business are:
    • Agrifoods, Technology and Green Economy,
    • Forestry
    • Transportation
    • International Education
    • Biomedical
    • Mining & Energy or Natural Gas Sector
    • Destination Tourism
    • Value-Added Manufacturing
    • Aboriginal Peoples and First Nations
  • For this program you would enter into a Pool of applicants and would be assigned a score. You will only be allowed to proceed if your score is selected.
Alberta
  • Intention to reside in Alberta
  • Farm management skillsshown by:
    • Financial documentation of your existing farm business
    • Documentation of your education, training and work experience related to farming
    • Proposed business plan
    • Proof that a Canadian financial institution is willing to finance your proposed farming business
  • Minimum investment of $500,000 Canadian Dollars in a farming businessin Alberta
  • Minimum net worth of $500,000 Canadian Dollars or confirmation that you have access to a similar amount of funds from other sources.
  • You must invest in a primary production farming business in Alberta.
Saskatchewan

This is a points based system and those with the higher scores will be selected.

  • Intention to reside in Saskatchewan
  • Minimum net worth of $500,000 Canadian Dollars
  • Minimum three years entrepreneurial or relevant business management experience.
  • Invest a minimum of $300,000 Canadian Dollars if operating a business in Regina and Saskatoon or a minimum of $200,000 Canadian Dollars if operating a business in all other areas of Saskatchewan
  • Own at least one third of the equity of a business in Saskatchewan unless your total investment is $1,000,000 Canadian Dollars or more
  • Active and on-going participation in the day to day management and direction of the business in Saskatchewan
  • If establishing a new business in Regina or Saskatoon, you must create two or more employment opportunities for Canadians or permanent residents in Saskatchewan. These workers cannot be related to you.
  • For this program you would enter into a Pool of applicants and would be assigned a score. You would be allowed to proceed if your score was selected.
  • Intention to reside in Saskatchewan
  • Net worth of $500,000 Canadian Dollars
  • You will be required to sign a Performance Agreement committing to purchase and actively operating a farm operation in Saskatchewan.
  • Make a “good faith” deposit of $75,000 Canadian Dollars in trust. The cash deposit will be returned to you when you’ve met the terms of the Performance Agreement. If you don’t meet the terms within two years of landing in Saskatchewan, the deposit will be forfeited to the Province of Saskatchewan.
  • Make a exploratory visit to Saskatchewan for at least five working days where you must meet with a provincial representative on your visit.
  • Documentation that proves you’re an experienced farm operator. 
  • Business Plan
Manitoba
  • Intention to work reside in Manitoba
  • Minimum Net Worth of $350,000 Canadian Dollars
  • Minimum of three years of business ownership and management experience or a minimum of three years of executive-level experience as a senior manager of a business
  • Minimum score of 60 points or higher on the Manitoba Adaptability Assessment Matrix
  • Willingness to conduct an exploratory visit to Manitoba
  • Minimum investment of $150,000 Canadian Dollars
  • Intention to work reside in Manitoba
  • Minimum net worth of $350,000 Canadian Dollars
  • Minimum of three years of experience in farm management or farm ownership and operation experience
  • Demonstrate adaptability, specifically relating to practical farming skills, technical knowledge and experience in technology based farming practices that will transfer directly to Manitoba’s current primary farm production industry
  • Conduct an exploratory visit to Manitoba
  • Intend to work and reside in Manitoba
  • Minimum investment of $150,000 Canadian Dollars
Ontario

This is a points based system and those with the higher scores will be selected.

 

  • Intention to reside in Ontario
  • Minimum investment of $1,000,000 Canadian Dollars if operating a business in the Greater Toronto Area OR $500,000 Canadian Dollars if operating a business outside of the Greater Toronto Area
  • Minimum net worth of $1,500,000 Canadian Dollars if operating a business in the Greater Toronto Area OR $ 800,000 Canadian Dollars if operating a business outside of the Greater Toronto Area
  • May identify a business partner for nomination to assist in the establishment of the business in Ontario
  • Create at least two full-time, permanent jobs for Canadian citizens or permanent residents
  • Have at least 36 months worth of full time business experience in the past 60 months as a business owner or senior manager
  • If purchasing a business in Canada you will need to make an exploratory visit to Ontario within the 12 months preceding the submission of your application
  • For this program you would enter into a Pool of applicants and would be assigned a score. You would be allowed to proceed if your score is selected.
  • Intention to reside in Ontario
  • Have a viable business activity that will bring significant economic benefit to Ontario.
  • Corporation must invest a minimum of $5,000,000 Canadian Dollars in a new or existing business in Ontario
  • Corporation must create five full-time, permanent positions for Canadian citizens or permanent residents per key staff member
New-Brunswick
  • Intention to reside in New Brunswick and operate a business in New Brunswick
  • Be between 22 and 55 years of age
  • Have an ability in English and or French sufficient to actively manage a business in New Brunswick.
  • Assume day-to-day management of the business.
  • Have relevant and proven management experience in three of the last five years.
  • Demonstrate prior management experience in the private sector which relates to your proposed business in New Brunswick.
  • Proof of previous significant decision-making responsibility in business.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the business environment in New Brunswick.
  • Exploratory business trip to New Brunswick.
  • Prepare a business plan showing your business’s economic benefit to New Brunswick.
  • Personal net worth of at least $300,000 Canadian Dollars
  • Sign a Deposit Agreement and a submit conditionally refundable deposit of $75,000 Canadian Dollars, prior to nomination
  • Score a minimum of 50 points in the New Brunswick selection factors.
Prince-Edward-Island
  • Minimum net worth of $600,000 Canadian Dollars ($150,000 Canadian Dollars must be in cash/liquid assets)
  • High School Degree
  • Be between 21 and 59 years of age
  • Have transferable management skills and past employment.
  • Provide active and on-going management of the business from within Prince Edward Island.
  • Provide a deposit of $200,000 Canadian Dollars which will be held by the Province until terms of their agreement have been met.
  • Minimum investment of $150,000 Canadian Dollars into a new or existing Prince Edward Island owned and operated business.
Nova-Scotia
  • Intention to reside in Nova Scotia
  • Minimum net worth of $600,000 Canadian Dollars
  • Minimum of three years of business ownership experience OR greater than five years of experience in a senior business manager role in the past 10 years
  • Minimum investment of $150,000 Canadian Dollars in the business
  • High School Degree
  • Business must have potential to create economic benefit for Nova Scotia
  • Create at least 1 job for a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident
  • Businesses which are not eligible for this program include:
    • Businesses that are conducted remotely (from another Canadian jurisdiction or from another country).
    • Property rental, investment, and leasing activities.
    • Real estate construction/development/brokerage, insurance brokerage or business brokerage; unless the applicant can demonstrate that their business will provide a compelling benefit to the Province.
    • Professional services or self-employed business operators requiring licensing or accreditation.
    • Pay day loan, cheque cashing, money changing and cash machines.
    • Credit unions.
    • Home-based businesses; unless the applicant can demonstrate that their business will provide a compelling benefit to the Province.
    • Co-operatives.
    • Investments into a business operated primarily for the purposes of deriving passive investment income.
    • Businesses involved in the production, distribution or sale of pornographic or sexually 5 explicit products or services, or in the provision of sexually-oriented services.
    • Joint ventures between NSNP program applicants.
    • Any other type of business that by association could bring the NSNP or the Government of Nova Scotia into disrepute.
  • At least one year of continuous experience actively managing and owning their own current Nova Scotia business (100% ownership)
  • Completed a degree or diploma after at least 2 academic years of full-time, in-person study at a university in Nova Scotia or Nova Scotia Community College
  • Possess a valid post-graduation work permit
  • Score of at least a CLB 7 in speaking, listening, reading and writing on an approved English or French test
  • Complete an onlineExpression of Interest
Ontario
  • Intent to live in Quebec
  • Net assets of at least $300,000 Canadian Dollars
  • Have at least two years of experience running abusiness that you manage, alone or with your accompanying spouse or common-law spouse (which you control at least 25% of the capital equity) during the five years preceding the date you submit your application to Quebec
  • Qualify in one of the two following programs:
    • Business project: Submit a business project with the purpose of creating or acquiring a business (agricultural, industrial or commercial) in Québec that you will manage yourself or that you will participate in as management and operations partner on a daily basis. You must control, alone or with your accompanying spouse or common-law spouse, at least 25% of the capital equity with a value of at least $100,000 Canadian Dollars
    • Acquisition of businessin Québec: Have acquired in Québec, alone or with your accompanying spouse or common-law spouse, at least 25% of capital equity in a business (agricultural, commercial or industrial) with a value of at least $100,000 Canadian Dollars. You must manage the business yourself or participate in it as management and operations partner on a daily basis.
Northwest-Territories
  • Intention to reside in the North West Territories
  • Invest a minimum of $300,000 Canadian Dollars of equity into starting or buying an existing business within the corporate boundaries of Yellowknife ORinvest a minimum of $150,000 Canadian Dollars of equity into starting or buying an existing business outside of the corporate boundaries of Yellowknife
  • Personal net worth of $500,000 Canadian Dollars if starting or buying an existing business within the corporate boundaries of Yellowknife OR a net worth of at least $250,000 Canadian Dollars if starting or buying a business outside the corporate boundaries of Yellowknife
  • Deposit of $75,000 Canadian Dollars which will be kept in a trust account and released upon completion of a Performance Agreement
  • Ability to communicate in English or French
  • Experience and education required to to successfully implement your business plan.
Yukon-Territory
  • Intention to reside in the Yukon Territories
  • Minimum score of 56 points on the Yukon Nominee Assessment Grid
  • Minimum score of a CLB 6 on the IELTS test OR a minimum score of a CLB 4 on the TEF
  • Relevant entrepreneurial or business management experience to your proposed business
  • Minimum net worth of $250,000 Canadian Dollars (minimum of $150,000 Canadian Dollars must be in liquid assets)
  • Business plan that outlines how you will establish a successful business venture in one of the industries listed on the Strategic Sector List.
    • Minimum $150,000 Canadian Dollar investment in the business OR an equity investment of at least $1,000,000 Canadian Dollars
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