If you are a sophisticated entrepreneur with good English language skills and access to sufficient capital to buy a business in Canada, you may be eligible to get permanent residence in Canada as an owner-operator of a business in Canada.

Read the story of Mr. Pham, who arrived in Canada in November 2020 as a new owner of a Canadian business in Calgary, Alberta. He and his family were recently approved to stay in Canada as permanent residents. It took the IRCC 1.5 months to approve Mr. Pham's application for permanent residence even though Mr. Pham did not have sufficient CRS points to be selected under the Express Entry program. Read the details of his immigration journey below.


Our client, Mr. Pham, is an accomplished professional from Vietnam. Before coming to Canada as a business owner, he held a senior executive position at a prominent bank in Vietnam. In 2020, Mr. Pham invested capital to acquire controlling shares of an active business in the Province of Alberta. The company has been providing granite stone and quart installation services in Calgary, Alberta and generating $800,000+ in gross revenue. Mr. Pham assumed the role of a General Manager in November 2020 and relied on all employees and the former owner of the business to run the company during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Business Operations in Canada

Upon arrival to Canada, Mr. Pham worked diligently on improving his company's financial performance and overall operations in Canada. Under his management and strict financial oversight, his company's gross profits increased to $1.5 million by the end of 2021, providing jobs to 19 part-time and full-time Canadians. As a sophisticated professional with a solid background in finance and management, Mr. Pham continuously focused on increasing cash flow and profit margins for his business in Canada.

Application for Permanent Residence with a Challange

Since our client was working as an owner of a business in Canada, we advised our client to use the Express Entry program Federal Skilled Worker stream to transition to permanent residence. By February 2022, our client had completed all the eligibility requirements for this program and obtained his English language test results and all the necessary documents. His application details can be found below:

  • Express Entry profile completed: February 2022
  • Express Entry score: 443 (with additional 200 points he received for the job offer from his company in Canada).

Unfortunately, Mr. Pham was disadvantaged in the Express Entry pool, losing significant points due to his age and limited language skills. Even though his company in Canada offered him a permanent, full-time job in Canada, adding 200 points to his CRS score, the score was not enough to receive an invitation to apply for permanent residence.

Our team had to take a creative approach and try multiple strategies for Mr. Pham so that he could transition to permanent residency as a business owner in Canada. We developed and tried 3 strategies to help Mr. Pham to transition to permanent residence. One of the strategies we tried was to request the IRCC to grant Mr. Pham an exception from the general rule and consider his establishment in Canada and economic contribution through his business.

We submitted our request to the IRCC in late February of 2023, and Mr. Pham's application for permanent residence was approved in early May 2023. It took the IRCC 1.5 months to consider our request and grant Mr. Pham and his family permanent status in Canada. Thank you, IRCC!

Thus, Canada gained another successful entrepreneur who has been working hard to contribute to our country's economic prosperity. We know how stressful and intimidating this final journey was for our client, and we are happy that the IRCC approved his application in a relatively short period of time.

Mr. Pham is an incredible professional and a very kind human being. We are happy that he chose Canada as his permanent home. We are also grateful for this opportunity to serve him and be a part of his immigration journey. Congratulations to our client! We wish him tremendous success in Canada!

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