Canadians in favour of a strong tech start-up visa

Curated content – frst published by Eric Brooke, Startup Visa Canada

When polled 72% of Canadians stated that Canada needs to stay ahead of the US in attracting entrepreneurial talent and two-thirds of Canadians (66%) think the US have the right idea with the Start-up Visa Bill. *

The Canadian start-up visa campaign wants to upgrade the immigration program to make it easier for people who want to create science and technology companies in Canada by reducing the funding needed to enter the country on the conditions that they have Canadian investors and create new jobs within a couple of years.

Eric Brooke, a campaign spokesperson “The end result should be more jobs for Canadians, stronger economic growth and a larger number of science and technology companies in Canada both large and small”

“There is a opportunity here for Canada to get ahead of the game, as the US political system does not seem to have the collective will to take this issue by the throat and encourage technology or science entrepreneurs from other countries to create businesses and jobs in the US.

Boris Wertz, an investor and co-founder of GrowLab “ Its worth remembering that 52.3%** of start-ups in the Silicon Valley are founded by immigrants, with an effective start-up-visa program maybe we can convince foreign entrepreneurs and job creators to build their companies here in Canada instead of the US. We are already falling behind countries like Chile, Singapore and Britain who have already upgraded their programs, but I believe we can learn from their programs and make ours better.”

One of Canada’s’ leading venture capital associations (CVCA) is onboard with the idea. “The direct experience of a number of our member funds that have been launched by immigrants in Canada; these funds have made enormous contributions to our industry as well as to portfolio companies and to the economic well-being of Canada” said Chris Arsenault, Director at CVCA. “Our belief that we must promote a culture of entrepreneurship in order to successfully compete in the new global economy; Canada can become a beacon, attracting the best and the brightest from across the globe”

Danny Robinson, BC Innovation Council member, Entrepreneur and investor believes there is an opportunity for the provinces to step up. “It seems to me there is a possibility for one of the provinces to create a pilot using their Provincial Nominee Program (PnP). I believe the province that upgrades their PnP first will be able to pick the best entrepreneurs. ”


In a poll conducted by Vision Critical conducted on the Angus Reid Forum, earlier this year the following results were found:-

A large majority of Canadians believe Canada could become a real hub of entrepreneurial activity in North America with the right policies in place (86%) and 72% think Canada needs to stay ahead of the US in attracting entrepreneurial talent.

Two-thirds of Canadians (66%) think the US have the right idea with the Start-up Visa Bill being introduced, with 72% agreeing that it will attract entrepreneurs to the States and 70% seeing that there could even be a risk of attracting Canadian talent as a result.

Just over two-thirds (68%) would support a Start-up Visa being introduced in Canada. (Almost three-quarters of those with University upwards education, 74%)

The majority of Canadians agree that securing Canadian investment is a reasonable alternative to requiring large sums of money in personal funs, and approaching half, 44%, realise that most start-up entrepreneurs would not have $300,000 in personal funds as per current requirements.

Half of those with university education upward agree that current processing times are too long.

Three-quarters of Canadians believe that the entrepreneur should retain at least a third of the equity in the business.

** 52.3% is from the following report page 10 table 4

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