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Application Process

The 2017/2018 Competition has now closed.

The application process comprised two stages.

The first stage involved submission of an online initial application (Concept Note) – a concise summary of the business idea. The Initial Application template and Guidance Notes were made available upon registration.

The competition followed an online ‘rolling’ format, which was open for a period of one year with applications submitted and evaluated periodically.

Submitted applications were then reviewed for eligibility against the selection criteria. Unsuccessful applicants had the opportunity to refine and resubmit their applications subsequently, along with new entrants in the competition. The new model of competition allowed applicants to submit high quality business ideas due to the continuous feedback.

In the second stage of the application process, the shortlisted applicants were invited to submit a full business plan proposal.  

At this point, the applicants were required to provide more detailed information on the proposed project, including financial, business performance and development impact projections. The Mastercard Foundation Fund for Rural Prosperity team provided guidance at this stage, and thereafter, the applicants were invited to present their business plans in person to the Fund's Selection Committee.

Selection Criteria

Selection for the 2017/2018 Rolling Competition was based on the following criteria:

Criteria Weighting
Capacity of the company to implement 20%
Commercial viability 20%
Development impact 25%
Innovation 25%
Capacity development of end users 10%

the innovation brochure

Download the Competition Guidance Notes.


Once the review process is completed, the Mastercard Foundation Fund for Rural Prosperity will make final awards to successful business plan proposals. A Partnership Agreement, which stipulates disbursement schedules, milestones, reporting requirements and targets, is the governing contract between the Fund Manager and the applicant and will be operative for the life of the Fund.


For a quick reference to some of the common questions being asked about the Mastercard Foundation Fund for Rural Prosperity, please click here.