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The 2023-2024 Mastercard x Pier Five Small Business Fund (the “Program”) is sponsored by MASTERCARD CANADA ULC and PIER FIVE (“Sponsors” or “we”). By submitting an application for the Fund, each applicant agrees to these Rules and decisions of Mastercard and Pier Five, which are final and binding in all respects.

Fund Description: Mastercard and Pier Five are proud to announce the 2023 Small Business Fund. Ten (10) women-owned small businesses in Canada will receive $10,000 CAD each in funding. Each Fund recipient will also have an opportunity to participate in a Mastercard “Priceless Experience” in Toronto, a unique event focused on mentorship, connection and expert advice to further support each recipient in growing and scaling their business, having an estimated value of $1,000 CAD based on the Fund recipients being located in Toronto (collectively, each $10,000 CAD funding and the Priceless Experience, the “Fund”).

Program Period: Eligible applicants can submit an application for the Fund anytime between 12:01am Eastern Time (“ET”) on October 3, 2023 and 11:59 pm ET on November 5, 2023 (the “Submission Period”).

How to Submit an Application: No purchase necessary. To participate, visit and follow the instructions to complete a Fund application during the Submission Period. Each application must identify (i) the individual applicant and owner of the business and (ii) the small business in question.

Eligibility Criteria: To be eligible for a Fund, each submission must meet the following criteria:

  • The individual applicant must (i) identify as a cis or transgender woman; (ii) be 19 years of age or older; (iii) be a Canadian citizen, a permanent resident of Canada, or hold current and valid authorization under the Canadian Immigration and Refugee Protection Act; and (iv) be the owner of the business identified in the application;

  • The business must have a Canadian or provincial business registration number in addition to a registered business name;

  • The business must have a minimum of one (1) employee and up to a maximum of 99 employees. An “employee” is defined as an individual on the business’ full-time or part-time regular payroll, with the requisite payroll deductions being applied by the business owner;

  • The business must make less than $1 million CAD in yearly revenue; and

  • The business must have been in operation in Canada for at least one (1) calendar year prior to October 1, 2023.

  • The application form must be duly completed online at

  • The business must not: be a franchised operation (as the term is generally understood in the business community or as defined by provincial law); be a not-for-profit or charitable entity; religiously or politically affiliated; or receive government funding on an ongoing basis for its operational expenses.   


Each applicant consents to, and agrees to cooperate with, all legal due diligence and background checks that the Sponsors may elect to conduct on the individual applicant and/or the business, including in relation to legal proceedings, criminal records, fines and other claims.

Employees, representatives or agents of Sponsors, their parent, affiliated or related companies, subsidiaries, divisions and all advertising, media buying and promotional agencies, and any businesses that these individuals own or are affiliated with, are ineligible, as well as members of the immediate family of, or persons domiciled with, any of those described above. “Immediate family” means parents, siblings, children or spouse. Recipients of a prior fund or grant from Mastercard, Pier Five, American Express, Visa, UnionPay, Discover, PayPal or Interac prior to October 1, 2023 are also ineligible.


All individual applicants and businesses are subject to review and approval by Sponsors, in their absolute discretion, to determine their eligibility for a Fund. All decisions of Sponsors regarding the Fund and these Rules are final, legally binding and are not reviewable by any other body. Limit of one (1) submission per person and per business. If a business has two co-owners, both of whom meet the individual eligibility criteria, then only one (1) submission may be made by one of the co-owners on behalf of both co-owners.

Selection Criteria: The following criteria will be used by Sponsors’ internal selection committee in selecting each of the ten (10) successful submissions to receive a Fund:

  • The quality displayed in the applicant’s written submissions for why they should receive the Fund and how the Fund would be used;

  • The applicant’s written submissions of the business’ short and long-term goals;

  • The potential impact of the Fund for the short-term and long-term growth of the business;

  • The applicant’s availability for a finalist interview; and

  • If selected as a finalist, the quality displayed in the finalist’s interview in describing the reason(s) why the applicant should receive the Fund and how the Fund will be used, as applicable.

Fifteen (15) finalists will be selected by Sponsors from all eligible submissions received on or about December 4, 2023. If you are selected as a finalist, you may be required to participate in a finalist interview and presentation in accordance with instructions provided by the Sponsors.

From the fifteen (15) finalists, the Sponsors will select the ten (10) submissions that will each receive a Fund, subject to entrants meeting the Eligibility Criteria above and agreeing to the Funding Criteria below. The final Fund recipients will be announced on or about January 29, 2024 and the Funds will be awarded to the final recipients by Sponsors on or about the week of February 5, 2024.

Funding Criteria: In order to receive a Fund, each applicant must agree to the following:

  • The applicant has read, understood, and will comply with these Rules.

  • The applicant agrees to complete a declaration and release document provided by the Sponsors.

  • The individual applicant declares that she/they are the owner of the small business named in the submission and that she/they have the authority to bind the business and accept the Fund on behalf of the business.

  • By accepting a Fund, each applicant authorizes the Sponsors and their representatives to broadcast, publish and disseminate their name, business name, city and province of residence, information associated with their submission, photographs, video, voice or any other likeness, and any edits or alterations thereof (collectively, the “Media”), in connection with any promotion or publicity including, but not limited to, television, radio and social media, with no further compensation, and waive all moral rights therein. The applicant assigns to Sponsors all rights in its submission, the Media, transcriptions, and translations.

  • The applicant agrees to not conduct themselves in any manner that may become the subject of or cause shame, reputational issues, scandal or embarrassment to the Sponsors, including through: any statement, action, or association known to the general public; being charged with any crime involving moral turpitude or a crime related to corruption, bribery, illegal or unethical acts; and any statement or action which the Sponsors may reasonably believe could or would disparage the Sponsors’ or any Sponsor affiliated product, service, trademark or service mark.

  • The applicant agrees that the Fund will be used towards their business.


If an applicant does not agree to the above, or is subsequently found by the Sponsors to be non-compliant with these conditions or the Rules, the Sponsors may, in their sole discretion, deem that potential recipient ineligible, terminate its relationship with the potential recipient, revoke the offer for the Fund, and/or provide the Fund to an alternate submission in accordance with these Rules. If the Sponsors make this determination, then the potential recipient is not entitled to any portion of the Fund.

General Conditions:

All submissions are subject to verification. All submissions and application forms are the property of the Sponsors and will not be returned. Proof of submission will not be deemed proof of receipt. Any submission that is incomplete, inaccurate, illegible, mutilated, fraudulent or not submitted in accordance with the Rules or the Sponsor’s instructions is ineligible. Persons who tamper with or abuse any aspect of the program, as solely determined by Sponsors, will be disqualified. Sponsors will attempt to contact potential recipients three (3) times through the contact information provided in their submissions. If an applicant cannot be reached within five (5) business days, or if they can be reached but decline to proceed or provide Sponsors with required information to proceed, that applicant will be deemed ineligible.

Fund must be accepted as awarded, may not be refunded or transferred and is not convertible. Sponsors reserves the right, in their sole discretion, to substitute all or a portion of the Fund with an alternate option of equal or greater value for any reason. Sponsors have the discretion to award all or a portion of the Fund to the individual applicant named in the submission, her/their co-owner, and/or to the named business. Recipients of Funds should consult their own tax advisors to determine the taxable nature of the Funds.

By participating in the Program, each applicant and its business agree to release and hold harmless the Sponsors, and each of their subsidiaries, affiliates, retailers, and advertising and promotion agencies and all of their respective officers, directors, employees and agents (the “Released Parties”) against any liability, for any injuries, losses or damages of any kind, including death, to persons, or property resulting in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from participation in this Program or acceptance, use or misuse of the Fund or any portion of the Fund. Released Parties cannot be held liable for any submissions that are lost, misdirected or late, including as a result of any breakdown, for any reason, of the Program website during the Submission Period, or for any damage to an applicant’s computer or mobile device.

Sponsors reserve the right, in their sole discretion, to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend this Program in whole or in part should human intervention or an event take place that could alter or affect the administration, security, impartiality or operation of the Program as provided for in these Rules. Released Parties shall not be liable should such an event or intervention occur.

This Program is subject to all applicable federal, provincial and municipal laws. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Rules, or the rights and obligations of participants and the Sponsors in connection with this Program, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws applicable in the province of Ontario.

Personal information provided in connection with this program will be used and disclosed by Sponsors as necessary for the purposes of administering the Program and otherwise in accordance with the Sponsors’ privacy policy at:


Pier Five:

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