IMPACT Startup Visa Accelerator

Next Cohort – April, 2020.

Applications deadline – Oct 31st, 2019.


Spring’s IMPACT Startup Visa Accelerator is Canada’s only impact-first Startup Visa Program. The Accelerator helps founders and companies to move to Canada to scale their businesses and maximize their impact.

Spring Alumni Community

About the Accelerator

Spring’s IMPACT Startup Visa Accelerator is a comprehensive 4-month program that combines a traditional acceleration program with the processes and support to help you settle into your new life in Vancouver. Limited to up to 10 companies per cohort, the program combines weekly training, access to our mentor community and the Spring team, guest speakers, and support from a wide range of partners to help you  unlock growth and crystalize your impact. It operates under the banner of Canada’s Startup-Visa (SUV) Program, which supports innovation and job-creation in the country.

Who is it for?

The Spring Impact Startup Visa Accelerator is for purpose-driven, for-profit businesses that are focused on changing the world and will permanently move to Canada to realize their vision.

Target Sectors
  • Cleantech
  • Progressive Food
  • Argi-tech
  • Healthcare
  • Arts
  • Sustainability
  • Education
Target Companies that can
  • Clearly articulate the problem and how your unique world-changing approach brings compelling value to the market.
  • Demonstrate measurable customer validation and progress.
  • Maximize your market opportunity and impact as a for-profit entity.
  • Can articulate the benefit of moving to Canada to realize your vision, and have the financial capital to support the effort.

More about the Accelerator

Space is limited to 8-10 companies

Program Focus
  • Pre-program support on moving to Canada and setting up the right foundations.
  • Intro to Canadian entrepreneur ecosystem, consumer and business culture.
  • Training and mentorship on all aspects of the business.
  • Impact & measurement: Maximizing your impact on the world.
  • Focus on Funding: Capital raising – process and tools.
What’s Not Included
  • Housing accommodation – we make recommendations but are unable to provide designated living spaces.
  • No financial investment made into the business by Spring.
  •  Cost of incorporating, business licenses, legal consultation fees and housing are your responsibility.
The Program Includes
  • 4 month in-person program with weekly learning sessions.
  • Pre-arrival business advisory (email & calls).
  • Access to the Spring team and Spring’s 200+ mentors, investors and other partners (legal firms, accounting firms, PR firms, hiring firms).
  • Workshops and sessions on Sales & Marketing, Growth-hacking, Team & Leadership, Legal, and Finance and more.
  • Access to relevant modular content stored on our learning management system (LMS).
  • Introductions to Spring’s ecosystem of partners.
  • Introductions to investors and funding opportunities (where applicable).
  • Introductions to business service partners including legal advisors and financial support
  • Program Graduation Pitch Event and celebration.
  • Ongoing access to the Spring global community.

About Spring

Spring exists to change the world through entrepreneurship. To learn more visit our About Page.

About the Canadian Startup Visa Program

The Canadian Government Startup-Visa (SUV) Program is designed to attract and support foreign entrepreneurs to Permanent Residency. The focus is on founders who wish to move their launched businesses in Canada, which will support innovation and job-creation in the country.

Being a Permanent Resident in Canada is the status you receive prior to full Canadian Citizenship. As a Permanent Resident, you gain most social benefits that Canadian citizens receive, such as health care coverage, and the freedom to live, work, or study anywhere in Canada.

The Spring Start-up Visa Accelerator provides permanent residency for you, one other team member, plus your spouse and children.

Unlike a Green Card or a Working Visa (such as the H1B) from other countries, you will not have your status revoked if you have a job change or card expiration. You can also apply for Canadian Citizenship after 4 years of living in Canada with your PR.

About Vancouver

Vancouver is the Canadian leader for impact entrepreneurship, and is the #1 ranked startup ecosystem in Canada and #15 ranked startup ecosystem in the world.

Vancouver is consistently ranked in the top 10 best and most liveable places in the world. It is also home of Canada’s most temperate climate and one of the most multicultural cities in Canada.

Our Team

Learn from Vancouver’s top entrepreneurs, investors, designers and developers. With a combined experience of over 30 years in entrepreneurship, lean methodologies, growth hacking strategies and impact entrepreneurship, the Spring team delivers the highest quality of startup education.

Tiffany Shen

Program Manager

Chin Hing Chang

Program Manager

Keith Ippel

Co-founder & CEO @ Spring

IMPACT Startup Visa
  • Accelerator Cost:
    $25,000 CAD plus GST for the 4-month program.
  • $7,000 CAD plus GST per additional applicant (PR + Program)
  • $3,000 CAD plus GST per additional applicant (PR only)
Upcoming Program Dates & Times
  • Start: April 2020.
  • Application deadline: October 31st, 2019
  • Location: Vancouver, BC.

Application Process Details

Step 1: Assess Start-up Visa Program eligibility requirements here.

Step 2: Apply for the Impact Start-up Visa Accelerator BELOW.

Step 3: Once accepted into the mpact Start-up Visa Program, Spring provides you with a Letter of Support.

Step 4: Please submit the Letter of Support  along with the rest of the Start-up Visa Program application. Find the to Start-up Visa application package here.

Things To Consider Before You Apply

For the Business
  • Receive a Letter of Support from a designated incubator (Spring).
  • Fully understand the program details (structure, duration, costs, outcomes etc).
  • Meet the ownership requirements for a qualifying business.
  • Coordination with the applicant’s local counsel and local advisors is necessary.
  • In 1 application, up to 2 team members of your company can apply.
  • The company’s base of production can remain in the home country.
For you, your team and your family
  • Fill in the immigration forms properly (with security checks, police clearance etc).
  • Submit Letter of Support with your application package.
  • Get scores of at least Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) 5 in all four categories for either English or French, and
  • Have an adequate amount of money to settle and provide for the cost of living prior to earning an income.
  • Proof of funds requirement- levels and $ based on the number of dependents.
  • Be subject to CIC’s admissibility criteria, including health, criminality and security.
  • The spouse, common-law partner and children of the applicant may also apply for a PR visa under the same application.
  • Spouses and common-law partners of Start-Up Business Class work permit holders may apply for an open work permit.
Other things to consider
  • As we are in a coworking space, you will have to arrange for office space for yourself.
  • It should be noted that the permanent resident visa, once granted, will not expire or be revoked should the applicant’s business fail.
  • Successful applicants may apply for Canadian citizenship after physically living in Canada for a period of four years (within a six year period) as a permanent resident.

Spring IMPACT Startup Visa Program Application

Next Cohort – April, 2020.

Applications deadline – Oct 31st, 2019.