Experienced foreign entrepreneurs and senior managers who wish to establish or purchase a business in British Columbia (BC) have a reason to smile. They can apply for nomination for Canada permanent residence through the BC Provincial Nominee Program for entrepreneurs. Candidates who register for this category are allocated points out of 200 based on relevant selection criteria.
The highest-scoring candidates who meet the point cut-off for this category are invited to apply for nomination through regular invitation rounds. The cut-off changes with every invitation round. Invited candidates must apply for nomination within 120 days of receiving the invitation. If nominated by the province, they can apply for business immigration to Canada to the federal government.
Points are allocated based on two broad parameters:
SELF-DECLARED – Maximum 120 points
This information is provided by the applicant and needs to be validated by supporting documents.
Experience and Ownership – Maximum 24 points
To qualify, candidates must score at least 8 points under this factor.
You can claim points for both senior management and business ownership experience (more than 10% share), as long as they do not overlap. A maximum of 20 points can be claimed for both ownership and management experience combined.
Business Ownership-Management Experience
|12 to 24 months||4 points|
|25 to 36 months||6 points|
|37 to 48 months||12 points|
|49 to 59 months||15 points|
|60 or more months||20 points|
Senior Management Experience
|25 to 48 months||4 points|
|49 to 59 months||8 points|
|60 or more months||12 points|
Those who have owned 100% of a business (solely or shared with spouse/partner/children) can gain four additional points
Business Ownership Experience
- 100% business ownership for less than 3 of the preceding five years – 0 points
- 100% business ownership for at least 3 of the preceding five years – 4 points
Net Worth – Maximum 12 points
To qualify for the BC PNP, candidates must have a total personal net worth of at least $600,000. Points are allotted for current assets (cash and liquid) as well as net worth.
Total Current Assets
|$50,000 to $199,999||2 points|
|$200,000 to $399,999||3 points|
Total Personal Net Worth
|$600,000 to $799,999||5 points|
|$800,000 to $1,999,999||6 points|
|$2,000,000 to $4,999,999||7 points|
|$5,000,000 or higher||8 points|
Total Personal Investment – Maximum 20 points
Candidates are required to make an investment of at least $200,000 in the proposed business.
|$200,000 to $399,999||8 points|
|$400,000 to $599,999||10 points|
|$600,000 to $999,999||11 points|
|$1,000,000 to $1,999,999||12 points|
|$2,000,000 to $3,999,999||14 points|
|$4,000,000 to $7,999,999||16 points|
|$8,000,000 or higher||20 points|
Job Creation – Maximum 20 points
The proposed business must create at least one full-time job for a Canadian permanent resident or citizen.
|One job||8 points|
|Two jobs||9 points|
|Three jobs||10 points|
|Four jobs||11 points|
|Five jobs||12 points|
|Six jobs||13 points|
|7-9 jobs||14 points|
|10-19 jobs||16 points|
|20 jobs or more||20 points|
Investment in Regional District – Maximum 12 points
BC encourages investment in regional areas with a smaller population and awards additional points to those who decide to conduct business in these communities and reside within 100 km of the business location. However, this is not a mandatory requirement. Points are awarded depending on the population size of the region where the proposed business will be located.
- 500,000 or more people (Greater Vancouver) – 0 points
- 200,000 to 499,999 people (Capital, Fraser Valley) – 1 point
- 100,000 to 199,999 people (Nanaimo, Thompson-Nicola, Central Okanagan) – 3 points
- 70,000 to 99,999 people (North Okanagan, Okanagan-Similkameen, Fraser-Fort George, Cowichan Valley) – 6 points
- 60,000 to 69,999 people (Peace River, Cariboo, Comox, Central Kootenay) – 8 points
- 35,000 to 59,999 people (Kitimat-Stikine, Strathcona, Columbia-Shuswap, Bulkley-Nechako, East Kootenay, Squamish-Lillooet) – 10 points
- Less than 35,000 people (Sunshine Coast, Stikine, Skeena-Queen Charlotte, Central Coast, Mount Waddington, Powell River, Northern Rockies, Kootenay-Boundary, Alberni-Clayoquot) – 12 points
Adaptability – Maximum 32 points
Adaptability factors are not mandatory requirements but indicate a candidate’s potential for cultural assimilation and business success, based on:
English/French Language proficiency – Maximum 4 points
- Canadian Language Benchmark 4 – 2 points
- Canadian Language Benchmark 5 or higher – 4 points
Level of Education – Maximum 8 points
- Associate degree or a trade/non-trade certificate or diploma – 2 points
- Bachelor’s degree, PG diploma or certificate – 5 points
- Master’s degree or Ph.D./Doctorate – 8 points
Previous Visit to BC – Maximum 4 points
- Visited BC 1 to 3 years ago – 1 point
- Visited BC less than a year ago, but not the region where you plan to conduct business – 2 points
- Visited the region where you planned to conduct business in BC less than a year ago – 4 points
Age – Maximum 8 points
|25 to 34 years||4 points|
|35 to 44 years||8 points|
|45 to 54 years||6 points|
|55 to 64 years||4 points|
Prior business, work, or academic experience in Canada (at least 12 months) will earn 8 points.
BUSINESS CONCEPT: Maximum 80 points
These evaluation factors summarize information about the proposed business plan. A detailed business plan is required later when the candidate receives an invitation to apply.
Commercial Viability – Maximum 30 points
The commercial viability of the proposed business is assessed based on several factors:
Business Model – Maximum 10 points
Candidates must describe the profit generation model and the sustainability of the company. Points will be awarded based on the assessment of this model.
|Unsatisfactory or unclear||1 point|
|Good or fair||5 points|
Market and products or services – Maximum 4 points
Candidates must create an effective strategy for market entry or business growth and describe how unique the products/services are. It is important to demonstrate at least one of the following factors:
- The competitive edge of the product/service
- High-value, differentiated product/service
- A product/service that is new to the local market or the world
- Competitive advantages of the business and effective strategy for entering the market
- Not satisfactorily addressing any of these factors – 1 point
- Satisfactorily addressing at least one of these factors in consistence with the business model – 4 points
Eligible Personal Investment – Maximum 4 points
Points are assigned based on the eligibility of the proposed personal investment. The minimum investment requirement is $200,000 for a new business or $50,000 for improving an existing business.
|$200,000 to $399,999||1 point|
|$400,000 to $599,999||2 points|
|$600,000 to $799,999||3 points|
|$800,000 or more||4 points|
Assessment of the Proposed Investment – Maximum 6 points
The authorities will assess if the investment amount and plan aligns with the scale and type of business, the market, business model, industry standards, and the proposed product/service.
- If the proposed investment is unsubstantiated – 0 points
- If the proposed investment is substantiated – 4 points
- If the proposed investment is well-researched and substantiated – 6 points
Ownership Percentage – Maximum 4 points
The candidate must showcase that they will own at least one-third of the BC business – or invest at least $1,000,000 in the business in the form of equity purchase. Points are awarded for the percentage of the business owned by the applicant.
- 33 1/3% to 50% ownership – 2 points
- Above 50% but under 100% ownership – 3 points
- 100% ownership – 4 points
Risk Factors – Maximum 2 points
Potential business risks and the candidate’s ability to address these risks are considered.
- If the candidates propose external financing, investment of more than 50% of personal net worth, or partnership with a co-registrant – 0 points
- If the candidate does not propose any of the above – 2 points
Skill Transferability – Maximum 20 points
The authorities consider the industry’s similarity in which the candidate has business/work experience to the industry in which their proposed business will operate in BC. Points are awarded based on the candidate’s direct or related industry experience within the past ten years. Candidates can only claim a total of 20 points based on all factors combined.
Business Ownership-Management Experience only – Maximum 20 points
- More than 12 months of experience in an industry that is not related to the proposed business – 2 points
- 12 or fewer months of direct experience or 12-36 months of related experience – 5 points
- 13-24 months of direct experience or at least 37 months of related experience – 8 points
- 13-24 months of direct experience and at least 37 months of related experience – 10 points
- 25-36 months of direct experience – 12 points
- 25-36 months of direct experience and at least 37 months of related experience – 14 points
- 37-60 months of direct experience – 16 points
- 37-60 months of direct experience and at least 37 months of related experience – 18 points
- More than 60 months of direct experience – 20 points
Senior Management Experience only – Maximum 14 points
- More than 12 months of experience in an industry that is not related to the proposed business – 2 points
- 12 or fewer months of direct experience or 12-36 months of related experience – 4 points
- 13-36 months of direct experience or at least 37 months of related experience – 6 points
- 13-36 months of direct experience and at least 37 months of related experience – 8 points
- 37-60 months of direct experience – 10 points
- 37-60 months of direct experience and at least 37 months of related experience – 12 points
- More than 60 months of direct experience – 14 points
English/French Language Ability – Maximum 2 points
Points are awarded based on the test results of an approved English/French language proficiency test.
|Canadian Language Benchmark 4||1 point|
|Canadian Language Benchmark 5 or higher||2 points|
Economic Benefits – Maximum 30 points
The financial benefit that the proposed business will add to BC is assessed based on several factors:
Key Sector and Significant Economic Benefit – Maximum 12 points
If the company operates in a critical economic sector and adds significant financial benefit to BC, additional points can be claimed.
- If the business doesn’t substantiate/identify a key sector or a significant economic benefit – 3 points
- If the business confirms a key sector or a significant economic benefit – 8 points
- If the business substantiates a key sector and a significant economic benefit – 12 points
Jobs Assessment – 6 points
These points can be claimed if the proposed business’s job creation plan corresponds with the type and scale of the business, proposed products/services, market, industry standards, and business model.
- If the job creation plan doesn’t correspond with the business type and scale – 1 point
- If the job creation plan corresponds with the business type and scale – 6 points
Creation of High-Skilled Jobs – Maximum 4 points
If the proposed business can create or maintain full-time jobs for workers in occupations listed under National Occupational Classification Skill Type 0 or Skill Level A or B – offering wages consistent with the industry norms – points will be added.
- If the business concept can substantiate creating or maintaining one high-skilled job – 1 point
- If the business concept can substantiate creating or maintaining two or more high-skilled jobs – 4 points
Development Region – Maximum 8 points
Additional points can be claimed based on the location of the proposed business in BC.
|Lower Mainland or Southwest||2 points|
|Vancouver Island & Coast||4 points|
|Okanagan or Thompson||4 points|
|North Coast||8 points|
To maximize your score and increase the chances of receiving an invitation to apply, candidates can opt for several options:
- If you have extensive experience, you can rely on business ownership and/or senior management experience to enhance your score.
- If possible, choose to run your business in a low-population area.
- Try to direct the largest possible investment funds to the business.
- Aim for your business to generate as much employment as it can support – preferably for occupations listed under National Occupational Classification Skill Type 0 or Skill Level A or B.
- If you have not yet achieved Canadian Language Benchmark 5, improve your English or French language skills.
- Visit the region where you plan to conduct business before registration.
- Study or work in Canada for one year before enrollment.
- Focus on developing the company in a critical sector, preferably one that provides an economic benefit to BC.
- Develop a detailed description of your business model.
- Conduct thorough market research relevant to your business concept.
Entrepreneurs who do not meet the requirements for the Base Category may be eligible to apply for BC PNP’s Entrepreneur Immigration Regional Pilot. To select the ideal Canada Entrepreneur Visa pathway, and pursue the application process with expert support at every step, seek the guidance of India’s most experienced global relocation consultants at Business Immigration Visas.