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December 28, 2023

Unlocking Opportunities: A Guide to Ontario Business Immigration

Ontario’s vibrant economy and diverse opportunities have become a beacon for entrepreneurs seeking to establish or invest in a business. If you are considering the exciting prospect of Ontario business immigration, particularly through the Entrepreneur Stream, this comprehensive guide will navigate you through the process, requirements, and steps to unlock the potential that awaits you.

Ontario Business Immigration: The Entrepreneur Stream

Business Category Overview:

The Entrepreneur Stream is the sole pathway for business immigration in Ontario, targeting individuals aspiring to start a new business or acquire an existing one. This stream is part of the broader Business Category, and potential immigrants should note the specific details associated with this pathway.


Key Information:

  • Application Fee: CAD $3,500
  • Processing Time:
  • EOI Assessment: Less than 30 days
  • Application: Depends on the complexity of the application


Minimum Requirements:

To be eligible for the Entrepreneur Stream, applicants must meet the following criteria:

Business Experience: Possess a minimum of 24 months of business experience in the last 60 months.

Net Worth: Demonstrate a net worth of CAD $800,000 if the business is located in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) or CAD $400,000 if outside the GTA.

Personal Investment: Commit a minimum personal investment of CAD $600,000 for businesses in the GTA or CAD $200,000 for businesses outside the GTA.

Equity Control: Control at least one-third of the equity in the business.

Active Management: Actively participate in the management of the business.

Profit Motive: Ensure the primary purpose of the investment is for profit.

Job Creation: Create at least two permanent full-time jobs for Canadian citizens or permanent residents if the business is in the GTA; otherwise, one permanent full-time job is required. Different requirements apply to the information and communications sector.


Additional requirements may apply if purchasing an existing business.

Application Process:

  • Expression of Interest (EOI): Begin by submitting an EOI to the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP). Contact OINP via email to request a registration form, which must be completed and returned.
  • Ranking: Once in the pool, candidates are ranked against others. Regular draws invite the highest-ranked candidates to submit a formal application through the OINP e-Filing Portal.
  • Vendor Review: Applicants must hire a qualified vendor to review their net worth and legal accumulation of funds.


Steps Under the Ontario Entrepreneur Stream (OES):

  • Criteria Satisfaction: Ensure you meet all criteria and requirements for the Entrepreneur Stream.
  • Expression of Interest (EOI): Submit your EOI to OINP.
  • Invitation to Apply: If selected, you will be invited to apply for the Entrepreneur Stream.
  • Application Submission: Submit your application through the OINP e-Filing Portal.
  • Application Assessment: OINP will assess your application.
  • Performance Agreement: Sign a performance agreement with OINP.
  • Temporary Work Permit: Obtain a temporary work permit to arrive and establish your business.
  • Arrival and Business Establishment: Relocate to Ontario and establish your business.
  • Nomination and Permanent Residence: After meeting the conditions, you will be nominated for permanent residence.
  • Monitoring: Adhere to monitoring procedures to maintain compliance.



Embarking on the Ontario Entrepreneur Stream is a transformative journey filled with promise and opportunities. By understanding the requirements, following the application process diligently, and seeking professional guidance, you can unlock the doors to a new chapter in your entrepreneurial adventure. Ontario awaits, ready to embrace the innovative spirit of business immigrants seeking to contribute to its thriving economy.

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