Where should I start to set up a business in Canada?


The idea of setting up a business in Canada is appealing to a lot of people. Get ready to bring your idea to life by thoroughly researching the Canadian market and by possessing a strong knowledge of Canada’s mercantile law. To ensure a successful start to this journey, the budding entrepreneur needs to have an excellent grasp over Canadian business structure, Canadian taxation system and the Canadian custom and review agency (CCRA). Completing this detailed research beforehand will guarantee the success of your business to a great extent. Here are a few steps that will assist you with the implementation and realization of your great idea!

Registering your business

There are two jurisdictions under which a business in Canada can be incorporated. The first one is under the Provincial law and the second, under the Federal law. If your business operations are limited to one specific province, you will have to adhere to the Canadian provincial law. If you are planning to expand your business across the country, then you will need to incorporate federally.

Planning and naming your business

Once you are through with the initial stages of inception, formulating a business plan and selecting a company name are two crucial steps. The business plan will define your business idea, map out your goals and describe the viability of your business. Also, you will need to register the decided company name as in Canada, it is mandatory to register the business name for almost all types of businesses.

Financing your business

Following this, you will have to arrange for the finances. Best case scenario would be to finance the business, out of pocket, altogether!  However, if you need some external sources of financing – which is the main challenge for most new entrepreneurs – there are both government and private-sector sources of financing that you can tap into to get your business off the ground. The government provides financial support (under certain conditions) to assist start-up companies. Visit the Financing page of the Government of Canada web site for more details. Additionally, you can always look to Canada’s major financial institutions for a potential loan.

Permits, licences and insurances

You will be required to obtain the necessary legal business license depending on the type of business that you plan to establish. Plus, in order to protect your business from risks and uncertainties, you will have to arrange for business insurances.


Remember, barring some exceptions, GST/HST registration is mandatory in Canada if sales exceed $30,000 within a calendar year.

Starting a business is an overwhelming process.  Yet with the support and resources of a very cooperative Canadian government, in no time your business will grow, succeed and enable you to live a rewarding productive life.

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