Canadian Immigration Business Plan: Importance in 2023

Canadian Immigration Business Plan: Importance in 2023

When moving to Canada through investment immigration, your business plan will play one of the most important roles. A clear, effective, and well-thought-out business plan can undoubtedly increase the success of your immigration application. On this page, you will learn all about the immigration business plans for Canada, who needs them, and their importance for immigration programs.

Do You Need an Immigration Business Plan in Canada?

Immigration business plans are a vital aspect of business immigration applications. The primary objective is to convince the assessing Canadian immigration officers that your business concept, or investment into a Canadian business, has a high likelihood of success. The business plan must describe how your venture will generate jobs for Canadians and contribute positively to the Canadian economy, alongside demonstrating consideration for the financial and economic environment of the chosen sector within Canada.

Canada Immigration Business Plan Graphic

Business Plan and Business Immigration Programs

As seen in the below table, for all Canadian business visa programs mentioned here, a compliant business plan must be produced for a viable application.

Business Immigration ProgramDescriptionIs a business plan required?
C11 Entrepreneur VisaThe C11 Entrepreneur visa allows foreign candidates to start a new Canadian company, invest in an existing one, and gain a work permit as a self-employed individual to operate the company. Recipients of this visa are typically eligible for permanent residency after 1 year of operating their business in Canada. Yes, it is an integral and mandatory part of the application process.
Start-Up Visa (SUV)The SUV program allows foreign entrepreneurs to build businesses in Canada while working toward obtaining permanent residency in 2+ years. This pathway has a preference for established start-ups that focus on fostering innovation. Up to 5 founding partners of the start-up could obtain Canadian residency. A crucial aspect of the Start-Up visa is that this program requires outside investment from designated Canadian organizations. However, the competition to gain support from these organizations can be extremely high. The IRCC website states that you may be asked to either present your business concept or submit a detailed business plan to the investors. A detailed business plan is recommended to the potential investors as it gives a greater level of detail and calculated perspective compared to a presentation exclusively. This could be the difference between securing funding or not and consequently immigrating or not.

In summary, yes!
Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) VisaFor those with a well-established company outside of Canada looking to expand into, and move to, Canada. This visa grants the applicant a work permit, and after 1 year of operations in Canada, there are multiple pathways to permanent residency. The applicant’s spouse and children may also be eligible for an open work permit and study permits, respectively. Yes, it is an integral and mandatory part of the application process.
PNP Canada PathwaysThere are various provincial immigration programs for business immigration. These programs are usually tailored to specific industries and are used to promote the economic development of a particular Canadian province.Yes, it is an integral and mandatory part of the application process.
Owner-Operator LMIA ProgramThe LMIA pathway allowed Canadian business owners and majority shareholders to receive a work permit and permanent residency after 2 years of employment in Canada. This immigration pathway was very popular and required a business plan to be submitted. This program was abolished by the government of Canada and removed from the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) in April of 2021.Yes, it was an integral and mandatory part of the application process.

If you are interested in finding the perfect program or want to explore your options, you can learn about your immigration options using our free instant assessment.

Sample Outline of an Immigration Business Plan

As the business plan is the most important part of your business immigration application, it must be well-researched and carefully composed. When collating your plan, ensure a high level of relevant detail throughout as any gaps could be detrimental to your application. It is worth noting that different Canadian immigration programs have different requirements for the submitted business plan, so understanding requirements specific to your situation is also necessary. Comprehensive immigration business plans could include, but are not limited to, the following sections:

  • Business model description: description of products and/or services;
  • Profit and loss analysis;
  • Marketing strategy, perhaps with measurable objectives;
  • Personnel and staffing plan, such as a human resources setup plan;
  • Market research;
  • SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis;
  • PEST (Political, Economic, Social, and Technological) assessment;
  • Financial forecast for a determined number of years;
  • Value proposition;
  • Competitive Landscape Analysis;
  • Monetization strategy;
  • Long-term vision; and
  • Short-term execution strategy.

However, any business venture should not be an owner-operator business that produces income exclusively for you or your partner. It should not be a “passive investment” type of business, such as buying real estate property and collecting profit from rent. The business should require your active involvement and hands-on management to operate.


Immigration Business Plan Canada vs Ordinary Business Plan Comparison Chart

Why are Business Plans so Important for Immigration?

The Canadian government is well aware of the need for foreign entrepreneurs and investors to achieve the country’s short and long-term economic goals. To acquire the best outcome regarding economic growth and job production for Canadian citizens, the IRCC needs to select candidates who appear to have the best chance of success in creating/ investing in a business. Alternatively, if you choose the Start-Up visa route, investors need to be certain that their capital is in competent hands and they will see a good investment return. In each case, business plans give the IRCC/investors something tangible to assess and should be detailed enough to allow them to come to a verdict.

Again, the business plan is the most crucial part of your business immigration application. If the business plan is executed poorly, the chances of successfully acquiring a Canadian business visa and successfully immigrating to Canada are low, accompanied by a loss of time and money by the applicant. Understanding this, it is clear why hiring a company with specific expertise in writing immigration business plans is an invaluable asset toward your immigration goals.

A frequently asked question is, ‘why can’t I write my own business plan?’ as many applicants likely have experience writing business plans. However, immigration business plans are a specific type of business plan with many precise requirements, so applicants will likely need specialist advice. In most cases, an immigration law firm will enlist the services of a third-party provider to write the plan for their client. At Sobirovs, we not only have in-house lawyers to guide you through your immigration journey but also dedicated writers who exclusively work with immigration business plans. To discuss your business immigration options and the associated business plan, you can speak to our business immigration lawyers during a 60-minute strategy meeting for more comprehensive, personalized advice.