The UK Innovator Visa, UK Start-up Visa and Start-up Canada Visa – all these visas are for entrepreneurs who wish to immigrate to foreign lands and start a business there. However, the three visa categories have a few differences. If you’re hoping to immigrate to these countries (the UK and Canada), you must choose the right visa category. It’s not just UK Innovator Visa vs. UK Start-up Visa vs. Canada Start-up Visa; it’s more about which route is the best fit for your business plans and experience.
What is an Innovator Visa UK?
The Innovator Visa replaced the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa. This visa category aims to attract entrepreneurs with considerable business experience and/or an innovative business idea to start a business in the UK.
What is UK Start-up Visa?
The UK Start-up Visa is for people who are entrepreneurs or may be new to entrepreneurship and want to establish a business in the UK for the first time. The business idea has to be innovative, scalable and viable for it to be approved by a UK Government appointed endorsing body.
What is the Start-up Canada Visa Program?
The Canada Start-Up Visa allows foreign entrepreneurs to get permanent residency by building a business in Canada. It’s an easier and more assured way to get permanent residency if you have proven business skills and meet the other requirements. This visa program connects innovative entrepreneurs to private sector investors who are willing to help establish their businesses. It gives the option to settle anywhere in Canada (except Quebec) and get a work permit while waiting for a permanent residency.
UK Innovator Visa vs UK Start-up Visa vs Canada Start-up Visa
The table below outlines the difference between these three visa types:
|Features||UK Innovator Visa||UK Start-up Visa||Canada Start-up Visa|
|Availability||Only for established investors and entrepreneurs||For amateur entrepreneurs and startup enthusiasts||Only foreign nationals with a Commitment Certificate and Letter of Support issued by a designated entity are considered for a short-term work permit.|
|Type of Visa||Residency Visa for 3 years||Residency Visa for 2 years||Permanent Residency in as little as 12 months|
|Residency & Citizenship||Permanent Residency after 5 years of continuous stay||Does not lead to Permanent Residency. If permanent residency is required, switch to Innovator Visa is required||It leads to permanent residency|
|Visa Extension||Can be extended multiple times in 3 years||Cannot be extended. After the expiry of the Start-up Visa, a switch to Innovator visa can be made.||–|
|Investment||Min. £50,000||No minimum investment||Three types of investment agencies can invest:
-Angel investors: Min. CAD 75,000
-Venture capital funds: Min. CAD 200,000
-Business incubators: No investment is needed
|Type of Business||Invest in both new and existing business||Set up and develop a new business only||You need to have a qualifying business where you hold 10% or more voting rights for your shares|
|Partnership||Can apply with other partners with each partner investing £50,000||Can apply with other partners with each partner getting endorsed for their idea||A total of 5 people can apply as partners of the business, each with 10% voting rights|
|Processing Timing||3 months||3 months||12 to 16 months|
|Endorsement||The approved endorsement body has to endorse the business idea||The business idea has to be scalable, innovative, and viable with endorsement from the approved endorsement body||Your business idea needs to be supported by a designated Canadian investment agency or incubator|
Canada or the UK? Innovator Visa, UK Start-up Visa or Canada Start-up Visa? Whichever route you take to establish your business in a foreign country, Nysa Global can help you explore your options. Contact us now!
Want to learn more about the UK immigration?