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Alberta Graduate Entrepreneur Stream (AGE)

Alberta Graduate Entrepreneur Stream

  • P.N.P: Provincial Nominee Programs
  • C.E: Canadian Experience
  • P.S: Point System
  • E.O.I: Expression of Interest

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Alberta Advantage Immigration Program (AAIP)

The Graduate Entrepreneur Stream is a path to permanent residence for qualified international graduates from Alberta post-secondary schools who desire to start or run a business in the province.
Application to this category is by invitation only. You should first complete the online Expression of Interest (EOI). Selected graduates from an Alberta Institution will be invited to apply for the program based on the information they enter online. You cannot apply directly to this program unless you are invited to apply.

Ready to take the next step towards your Canadian immigration journey? Fill out the form below and embark on your path to new opportunities.



The following requirements must be met if you are applying to Alberta Graduate Entrepreneur Stream:

1- Education

You must have completed at least two (2) years of full-time education at an Alberta Advanced Education publicly funded post-secondary institution, resulting in a degree or diploma. You must be eligible for a Post-Graduation Work Permit (➨Page).

2- Post-Graduation Work Permit

You must have a valid Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) for at least two (2) years when you submit your Expression of Interest (EOI).

3- Language Ability

You must have an approved test results taken within two (2) years prior to EOI being submitted. You must have obtained a minimum score of Canadian Language Benchmark CLB 7 in all for abilities in English or French (➨Appendix 5).

4- Work Experience

At the time of submission of EOI, you must have a least of six (6) months of full-time work experience, which can include active management, ownership, or equivalencies. Experience with a business incubator or accelerator, or completion of approved entrepreneurship program courses, are examples of equivalencies.
Work experience can be acquired from outside Canada or within Canada, before or after completing Alberta education.

5- Adaptability factors

In addition to the minimum requirements, the AAIP is more likely to select candidates with one or more of the following adaptability factors:
  • Have a minimum of 6 months of full-time work experience that can be a combination of actively managing or owning the business or equivalencies. 
  • Can provide economic benefit to Alberta through, job creation, economic sector, business location (for example, rural), business succession, investment, developed intellectual property or partnership or support from business incubator/accelerator, venture capital or angel investor
  • Age between 21 and 49
  • Spouse or common-law partner that has at least 1 year of full-time employment in Alberta, at least 2 years of full-time post-secondary study in Alberta or a minimum level of CLB5 in English or French
  • Parent, child, brother and/or sister who is a permanent resident living in Alberta, or a Canadian citizen living in Alberta (related to you or your spouse or common-law partner)

6- Ineligibility

You are not eligible to apply under the Alberta Self-Employed Farmer Stream if:
  • You have an active nomination which has not expired and/or is eligible for extension under another AAIP stream. Candidates are only eligible for one AAIP Nomination Certificate.
  • You are a refugee claimant in Canada, a failed refugee claimant, had a removal order, are prohibited from entering or being in Canada, do not have status in Canada or are living illegally in your country of residence.

Ready to take the next step towards your Canadian immigration journey? Fill out the form below and embark on your path to new opportunities.



In order to qualify as an eligible business under the Graduate Entrepreneur stream, you must buy or establish a business in Alberta that meets the following criteria:

1- Business Ownership / Management

You must own at least 34% of the equity of a business in Alberta and provide active and on-going participation in the day to day management of the business. You may not do this remotely, or from another Canadian province or territory or from another country and you are required to demonstrate residence in Alberta while on a work permit.

2- Type of Business

The business purpose must be to make a profit from active income through the sale of goods and/or services.
The following types of businesses are not eligible under Alberta Graduate Entrepreneur Stream:
  • Any business in contravention of the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations (for example, immigration-linked investment schemes or passive investment).
  • Businesses without a value-add economic component, including pay day loan, cheque cashing and related businesses and businesses trading in used goods
  • Businesses that would be considered passive investment and/or lack active management, including property rental, investment and leasing activities, real estate development/brokerage, insurance brokerage or business brokerage, coin-operated businesses, including laundromats and car wash operations
  • Project based or seasonal businesses
  • Home-based businesses, including businesses that are not zoned for commercial or industrial operations and bed-and-breakfasts and lodging houses
  • Businesses that are part of a succession plan. This includes businesses that are owned/operated by a close relative of the candidate, were previously owned/operated by a current or former AAIP entrepreneur stream candidates/nominees within the past 4 years, or have changed ownership in the past 3 years prior to IGEIS application
  • Businesses involved in producing, distributing or selling pornography or sexually explicit products or services, or providing sexually oriented services.
  • Any other type of business that by association would tend to bring the AAIP and the Government of Alberta into disrepute.

3- Active Management

You must provide active and on-going participation in the day to day management and direction of the business at the business site.


If you meet the minimum requirement, then you must calculate your total score based on the following selection factors (➨ There is no minimum required score. But you will be ranked based upon your points assessment score and placed in an Expression of Interest (EOI) pool.
Candidates will be ranked against each other and only top ranked candidates will be invited to apply. A draw will occur with only the top ranked candidates being selected and issued an invitation to apply.
The selection factors may be summarized as follows:
Selection Factor Maximum Points
Factor 1: Business Management / Ownership Experience 15
Factor 2: Economic Benefit 15
Factor 3: Business Succession 5
Factor 4: Number of Jobs 15
Factor 5: Business Location 5
Factor 6: Business Investment 20
Factor 7: Language Ability 15
Factor 8: Alberta Education 10
Factor 9: Age 5
Factor 10: Spouse Characteristics 10
Factor 11: Alberta Relatives 10

Factor 1: Business Management / Ownership Experience

You may claim points based on your business experience. The number of points is based on your past business ownership experience or senior management experience or equivalent (equivalencies include work experience with a business incubator or business accelerator or completion of entrepreneurship program courses).
Experience Points
More than 1 year 15
1 year 10
6 months 5
Less than 6 months Not Eligible

Factor 2: Economic Benefit

You can get 15 points for your business in Alberta Economic Development Sector (for example, energy; agriculture; technology/data/telecom/ aviation/aerospace; financial services/fintech)
Economic Benefit Points
Alberta Economic Development Sector 15

Factor 3: Business Succession

You may receive an additional 5 points if your business provides economic benefits to Alberta through business succession.
Business Succession Points
Yes 15

Factor 4: Jobs

You will receive up to 15 points based on your proposed full-time equivalent (FTE) job creation. Jobs must be created for Canadian Citizens or Permanent Residents (not including relatives) for a period of at least six (6) months.
Number of Full-time Jobs Points
3 or more 15
2 10
1 5
0 0

Factor 5: Business Location

You can get 5 points if your business is in the Alberta rural areas (outside Edmonton and Calgary Census Metropolitan Areas).
Location Points
Alberta Rural Areas 5
Edmonton or Calgary 0

Factor 6: Business Investment

Up to 20 points can be awarded for the amount of investment to establish or purchase a business in Alberta.

Factor 7: Language Ability

Investment Points
$75,001 CAD or more 20
$50,001 CAD to $75,000 15
$25,001 CAD to $50,000 10
$25,000 CAD or less 5
To be awarded point for language, you must have taken an approved test results. Test must be taken no more than two (2) years prior to submission of your EOI as well as your application. The lowest score achieved in the four (4) skills (Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening) is your score.
First Official Language (English or French)
First Official Language (Lowest score in any of 4 skills) Points
CLB 9 and higher 15
CLB 8 12
CLB 7 5
Below CLB 7 Not Eligible
To prove your language abilities you must take any of the following approved tests:
  • English: IELTS General or CELPIP General or PTE Core
  • French: TEF Canada or TCF Canada

To find out the equivalent CLB level for any of the above approved tests (➨Appendix 5).

Factor 8: Alberta Education

You can receive up to 10 points for your education in Alberta.
Level of Education Points
Master's degree or higher 10
Two or more post-secondary credentials 7
Bachelor’s degree or a 2-year Diploma 5
None of the above Not Eligible

Factor 9: Age

You’ll get points based on your age on the day you enter in your online Expression of Interest (EOI) profile.
Age Points
Under 21 0
21-49 5
Over 49 0

Factor 10: Spouse Characteristics

You can receive 10 points if your spouse or common-law partner has one or more of the following.
Spouse Characteristics Points
At least 1 year of continuous full-time employment in Alberta 10
Completed at least 2 years of full-time study at a post-secondary institution in Alberta
a minimum level CLB 5 in English or NCLC 5 in French in all 4 language abilities

Factor 11: Alberta Relatives

You can receive 10 point if you or your spouse or common-law partner, have one or more of the following relatives living full-time in Alberta: father, step-father, mother, step-mother, child, step-child, sister, step-sister, brother, step-brother.
Alberta Relative Points
Yes 10
Your Total Score




Step 1: Complete Your Studies in Alberta

In order to apply under the Graduate Entrepreneur Stream, the first step is to complete a full-time Alberta post-secondary diploma or degree of at least two (2) years in length from an eligible educational institution in Alberta.

You need a study permit (➨Page) in order to study in Canada. Before you apply for a study permit, you need an acceptance letter from one of the above institutions.

You must reside in Alberta during the academic program, so no distance-learning programs or compressed academic programs will be eligible.

Step 2: Apply for Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP)

After completion of studies in Alberta, in order to purchase or establish a business you need to apply for and obtain a Post Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) (➨Page).

Step 3: Submit an Online Expression of Interest (EOI)

If you meet all the criteria above, you can submit your Expression of Interest (EOI) by accessing the AAIP Portal (➨ The AAIP will review and score your EOI within 30 days of submission (➨ Highest-ranking candidates will be requested to submit a Business Application.

EOIs are placed in the pool of qualified candidates for a period of 12 months from the date of their original submission.

Step 4: Prepare Documents

In addition to the applications forms and supporting documents, before submission of complete application, you need to obtain a Business Plan evaluation report as well as a Qualified Service Provider Report (if requested).
1. Business Plan Evaluation Report
You will need to submit a Business Plan as part of your application. You must submit a business plan that demonstrates that the business will be viable and likely to provide material economic benefit to the economy of Alberta as a whole or to the local economy where the business will be located.
Your business plan will be reviewed by a Qualified Service Provider to ensure that it meets program requirements and the commitments made in your EOI. Thus, this document should be drafted as an essential component of your application.
List of Qualified Service Providers

Grant Thornton

(Not for Business Plan Report)

1701 Scotia Place 2, 10060 Jasper

Avenue NW

Edmonton, Alberta T5J 3R8

(780) 426-3208

[email protected]


3100, 2005 5 Avenue SW

Calgary, Alberta T2P 4B9

(416) 777-3887

[email protected]

2. Qualified Service Provider Report
The Qualified Service Provider may be required to appraise your net worth and company investment. You will be contacted by email if AAIP requires you to have your net worth and business investment assessed by the Qualified Service Provider.
List of AAIP Qualified Service Provider

Grant Thornton

(Not for Business Plan Report)

1701 Scotia Place 2, 10060 Jasper

Avenue NW

Edmonton, Alberta T5J 3R8

(780) 426-3208

[email protected]


3100, 2005 5 Avenue SW

Calgary, Alberta T2P 4B9

(416) 777-3887

[email protected]


Suite 1600, MNP Tower

10235 101 Street NW

Edmonton, Alberta T5J 3G1

(587) 441-6021

[email protected]

Step 5: Submit Application to AAIP

Your information will be assessed based on a Points Grid. Candidates with the highest-ranking points will be contacted directly by the AAIP and invited to submit a Business Application. If you receive the Invitation Letter, you will be able to access the AAIP Portal and start the application process.
Once the Business Application and supporting documents are received, the AAIP will assess your Business Application. If the AAIP approves your application, you will be sent a Business Performance Agreement (BPA) for your review and signature.

If your application is declined, you may be eligible to submit a request for reconsideration.

AAIP Application
Submit Online Application:
Official Program Guide:
AAIP Application Fee:
Processing Time:
Document Checklist:
780-6382843, 780-6447534
[email protected]
If your application is declined, you may be eligible to submit a request for reconsideration.

Step 6: Business Performance Agreement (BPA)

If you meet all Graduate Entrepreneur Stream criteria and get approved by AAIP,  you will be sent a Business Performance Agreement for your review and signature.

You must scan your signed and dated Business Performance Agreement and submit as instructed within fourteen (14) days from the date the agreement was sent to you.
Your Business Performance Agreement is your legal agreement with the Province of Alberta. It will state the amount you will invest in your business and the business sector where you will operate your business. The Business Performance Agreement will also list any other information relevant to your application including but not limited to: job creation, business succession, and business location. This is based upon the information you supplied in your Business Plan.

Step 7: Business Establishment in Alberta

Upon approval you are required to reside in Alberta and actively operate your business on a day-to-day basis as per the requirements of your BPA and Business Plan.

To be eligible for nomination you must satisfy the terms of your signed BPA within the validity of your Post-Graduation Work Permit and demonstrate operation of your business with at least 34% ownership for no less than twelve (12) months.

If you need to extend your work permit to meet the conditions of the Business Performance Agreement, you must submit a Request for a Work Permit Letter of Support to the AAIP within 90 days of your work permit expiry.

Step 8: Request for Nomination

In order to be eligible for nomination you must be living in Alberta and you must have fulfilled the terms outlined in the Business Performance Agreement including operating business for at least twelve (12) months, transferring the required funds to Canada, and maintaining legal status in Canada.
Once you have fulfilled your Business Performance Agreement, you can request nomination. To do so, you should electronically submit an application for nomination.
You must demonstrate that you have actively managed your business for a minimum of twelve (12) months in Alberta and also satisfy the officer that you have been, and remain, a resident in Alberta. If approved for nomination the AAIP will send a nomination certificate so you can apply to IRCC for permanent residence.

Step 9: Apply for Permanent Residence

If you are nominated by the Province of Alberta, then your next step is to submit a complete application for a permanent resident visa within six (6) months (➨Page).

You must submit your application using the IRCC Permanent Residence Portal (PR Portal) (➨ 

If your application is complete, you will receive a letter or an email confirming that your file has been received and accepted for processing. This letter is called the Acknowledge of Receipt (AOR) and will include your IRCC file number.

Once you have received your acknowledgement of receipt, you can create an online account and link your application to it. By creating an account, you will be able to receive email updates and a more detailed case status.

Step 10: Landing in Canada

If your application is approved, you will be asked to pay your right of permanent residence fee if you haven't already done so. You will receive a Confirmation of Permanent Residence (CoPR) and if you are from a country that requires a visa you will also be issued a permanent resident visa.

You will only become a Permanent Resident of Canada when you cross a Canadian port of entry. This is referred to as ‘landing in Canada' (➨Page).

You must land in Canada before the expiry date, which appears on your Canada Immigration Visa. Usually, the expiry date is one (1) year from the time medical examinations were completed. As this is not always the case, be sure to verify the expiry date as soon as the Canada Immigration Visa is received.

Ready to take the next step towards your Canadian immigration journey? Fill out the form below and embark on your path to new opportunities.







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