Strategic partnership will launch a fund that supports female-run startups, financial inclusion programs and business skills training in the world’s most populous nation

Beijing, 20 October 2016 – Mastercard today announced a strategic partnership with China Women’s Development Foundation (CWDF) that will see the company take financial inclusion to new heights in the world’s most populous nation. The three-year inaugural partnership with the Chinese non-profit social welfare organization was announced at a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) ceremony in Beijing.

As part of the partnership, the ‘Mastercard Women’s Entrepreneurship Fund’ will be established. It is an exclusive fund in China that seeks to advance financial inclusion and women’s entrepreneurship. Mastercard and CWDF will collaborate on the development of various strategic opportunities for the benefit of CWDF members, specifically in providing financial support for female-run startups, entrepreneurship training, and financial literacy programs.

Guoying Qin, Vice Chairman and Secretary-General, China Women’s Development Foundation, said, “We are thrilled to partner Mastercard to help equip more women with key financial literacy and business skills, as well as support female-run startups. We believe that by empowering women with practical skills and knowledge, we can create sustainable change and in turn bring about profound societal change, whether by poverty alleviation or by helping build the next generation of women entrepreneurs.”

Ann Cairns, President, International Markets, Mastercard, said, “Our partnership with the China Women’s Development Foundation will deliver meaningful support to Chinese women, enabling them to gain access to the tools and technology needed to maximize their potential. Women make up 55 percent of the unbanked in China and through this partnership we can help women across this great and growing country to gain access to better opportunities through inclusion. Over the past few years, China has made significant strides towards the financial inclusion of its people and through partnerships such as the one between Mastercard and the CWDF we are able to make significant progress on including the 234 million Chinese adults who remain outside of the financial mainstream.”

Dennis Chang, Division President, Greater China, Mastercard, said, “We have been supporting China on its development priorities since entering this market three decades ago. As China underpins its economic reforms on promoting sustainable development, it becomes critical for public-private sector to enable access to financial tools in order to foster entrepreneurship and innovation. Initiatives like the Mastercard-CWDF Fund will help promote economic empowerment and build a world beyond cash, driving real change today.”

This announcement continues to build on Mastercard’s ongoing efforts in China to drive its vision of a world beyond cash. Earlier this year, Mastercard signed an agreement with the China Research Development Foundation (CDRF) to promote financial literacy through training for vocational school students and teachers. The company is also working with U.S. humanitarian organization Mercy Corps to provide business skills and financial literacy training to farmers in rural Sichuan Province. In addition, Mastercard recently announced an agreement with Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE) and Be Better to bring the Girls4Tech™ program to an estimated 50,000 young girls in China this year.

Mastercard’s financial inclusion and women’s empowerment initiatives in the Asia Pacific region have impacted over 200,000 women and girls to date.

To learn more about Mastercard’s corporate citizenship efforts, please visit here.

-ENDS-

 About Mastercard

Mastercard (NYSE: MA), www.Mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. Mastercard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MastercardAP and @MastercardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau.

Media contacts

Huanyu Wu, Mastercard, Hunayu.wu@mastercard.com, +86 10 8519 9304

Cindy Choo, Weber Shandwick, Cchoo@webershandwick.com, +86 21 2411 0003