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Eligible Businesses Under Entrepreneur Category

To be eligible in the Entrepreneur Category, businesses must:

  • Meet the requirements under the Canada-Saskatchewan Immigration Agreement, 2005;
  • Have the potential to create economic benefit for Saskatchewan, as assessed by SINP immigration officers; and
  • Be the continued operation of an existing business or the establishment of a new business meeting economic needs in Saskatchewan. The SINP does not pre-approve or endorse any business proposals or projects.

Eligible businesses should also include the following:

  • They can be sole proprietorships, partnerships, or corporations but must meet the legal requirements of the community they operate in;
  • They must be for-profit entities with the primary purpose of earning profits through the sale of goods and/or services; and
  • They must be considered a "permanent establishment" as defined under subsection 400(2) of the Canadian Income Tax Regulations, 1985.

See the Entrepreneur Category page, for eligibility requirements applicants must meet.

Purchasing an Existing Business or Business Succession

There are additional points available if you're buying an existing business; however:

  • The Saskatchewan based business must have been in continuous operation by the same owner for the past three years;
  • You must complete an exploratory visit to meet the previous owners. This applies even if you're buying a business succession opportunity;
  • You must provide evidence that you made reasonable efforts to establish a fair market value for the business;
  • The succession buy-out must result in a complete change in ownership with you assuming full control of the business;
  • You must commit to maintaining employment for existing Canadian citizens or permanent residents above the minimum required; and,
  • You must commit to keeping the existing wages and employment terms.

Purchasing an Existing Business from an SINP Entrepreneur Nominee

If the previous owner of the business you want to buy is an SINP Entrepreneur nominee:

  • The business must have been in continuous operation by the previous owner for at least three years and demonstrate a net profit for at least two of the previous three years. This should be evident in the business registration and licence documents, financial statements, etc;
  • The previous owner must be either a Permanent Resident or a Canadian Citizen;
  • You must complete an exploratory visit to meet the current owners;
  • You must provide evidence that you made reasonable efforts to establish a fair market value for the business;
  • The succession buy-out must result in a complete change in ownership with you assuming full control of the business;
  • You must commit to maintaining employment for existing Canadian citizens or permanent residents; and,
  • You must commit to keeping the existing wages and employment terms.

Joint Ventures between SINP Program Applicants

  • If you're proposing a joint venture with another SINP applicant in:
  • The operation of a new business;
  • The purchase of an existing business; or
  • A partnership with a Permanent Resident or Canadian Citizen:
    • The Saskatchewan-based business must have been in continuous operation by the same owner for the past three years;
    • All applicants must complete an exploratory visit to meet the previous owners or business partners;
    • All applicants must provide evidence that you made reasonable efforts to establish a fair market value for the business or investment amount;
    • Any succession buy-out must result in a complete change in ownership with you (the applicants) assuming full control of the business;
    • When committing to maintain employment for existing Canadian citizens or permanent residents, you won't be required to create additional jobs;
    • When applying, all applicants must clearly indicate in their application forms that they're proposing a joint venture with a program applicant or a permanent resident or Canadian citizen, and identify their proposed business partners;
    • Each prospective applicant must submit their individual EOI simultaneously;
    • Each prospective applicant will be evaluated separately. They'll be selected based on whether they meet the eligibility criteria. They'll also earn points as individuals, not as part of a group or partnership;
    • If any partner is not selected from the EOI pool for processing, all remaining partners will have to update their business proposal. They'll need to make any required changes to ensure they continue to be eligible for the EOI points they previously earned;
    • If all partners are selected from the EOI pool and approved, each partner will be required to sign a separate Business Performance Agreement, and each partner must meet the agreement terms, to be approved for nomination; and
    • If the SINP concludes that one or more partners failed to meet the terms of their individual Business Performance Agreement for reasons beyond humanitarian and compassionate circumstances, all remaining partners will be required to update their performance agreement to ensure they continue to meet program criteria. This includes, but is not limited to changes to the required investment amount.

Ineligible Businesses

The following characteristics are primary forms of businesses that are not qualified for the SINP Entrepreneur category:

  • Property rental, investment, and leasing activities;
  • Real estate construction/development/brokerage, insurance brokerage or business brokerage;
  • Professional services or self-employed business operators requiring licensing or accreditation;
  • Pay day loan, cheque cashing, money changing and cash machines;
  • Credit unions;
  • Home-based businesses, including bed-and-breakfasts and lodging houses;
  • Co-operatives; and
  • Investments into a business operated primarily for the purposes of deriving passive investment income.

Minimum Investment Requirements

Investments are assessed based on whether or not they're vital to:

  • Starting and operating a new business; or
  • Purchasing, improving and operating an existing business.

Not all investments will be eligible, while others will be eligible within limitations.

Minimum investment requirements are:

  • The purchase of real estate (new businesses only): The SINP won't consider real estate as an eligible investment unless you can show that the real estate is vital to the business. If they are, we'll only consider up to 50 percent of the total minimum required investment as eligible.
  • The purchase of existing business assets or equity, including existing business inventory.
  • We may consider eligible operating expenses and start-up costs up to a maximum of the first six months for new businesses and a maximum of the first three months for existing businesses or new franchise locations.
    • The cost of goods sold (COGS): For the establishment of a new business, we may consider up to a maximum of three times the average monthly COGS over a six month period. If buying an existing business we may consider up to a maximum of one times the average monthly COGS over a six month period.
    • Operating Expenses and Start-Up Costs: Operating expenses refers to regular, recurring monthly expenses like rent, wages and utilities. Start-up costs refer to expenses associated with the initial establishment of the business, like marketing, insurance or supplies. We may consider eligible operating expenses and start-up costs up to a maximum of the first six months for new businesses and a maximum of the first three months for existing businesses or new franchise locations.
  • Cash and Receivables: We may consider cash or receivables that are reasonable and based on industry standards and the size and scope of the business as eligible investments. However, this will only be up to a maximum of 15 percent of the total required eligible investment.

Wages or salaries paid to you or your family members are not considered eligible expenses.

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