Innovative solutions for European small businesses
This fund invites proposals for digital and data-first solutions that support small businesses in the European Union to:
- Unlock working capital and credit through embedded finance.
- Go digital safely by bolstering cybersecurity.
- Navigate evolving consumer preferences and regulatory expectations around environmental sustainability.
- Harness AI to save time and make more money.
Read more about the focus areas using the links above.
Successful applicants will receive up to €500,000 to validate and develop their solutions over 12 to 18 months. Applications for €250,000 and above will require a minimum of 10% match funding. See terms and conditions for more information.
What additional benefits will winners receive?
Winners will have access to several benefits in addition to the grant, including:
- Strive and Mastercard expertise.
- Access to select Mastercard Start Path resources.
- Mentorship from best-in-class experts relevant to their innovation.
- Opportunities for exposure and publicity in collaboration with Mastercard and Strive.
Who can apply?
Startups, established companies, nonprofits, social enterprises, or other organizations can apply. Organizations must be registered and operating in one or more of the twenty-seven EU member states. Government entities and academic institutions are not eligible to apply. Read more about the eligibility criteria.
What are we looking for?
This fund seeks projects that depart from business-as-usual operations and that support the growth of small enterprises. We aim to fund the development of novel solutions or business model innovations with a clear potential for scale. Projects must be implemented within an EU market. Projects developing and delivering training will not be considered.
Eligible projects should be at least in the Product Definition stage and ready to demonstrate that a more mature phase has been achieved by the end of the project. Projects requesting higher grant amounts must demonstrate high potential for scale.
Want to learn more?
Have a look at the FAQs.