It’s small businesses like yours that serve as the foundation of our economy and the pillars of our communities. As someone who works closely with small businesses, I’ve been fortunate enough to be surrounded by many passionate and hard-working individuals. It’s exciting to see the industry evolve as digital innovations push what’s possible and more individuals embrace entrepreneurship, as we’ve seen with the rise of the creator economy.
I’m optimistic about the future but I also recognize the challenges small business owners face as their resources are stretched. Whether it’s mitigating the risk of a cyber-attack, accessing funding, or digitizing their business, small business owners are known for wearing many hats. As the backbone of our communities, it’s imperative they are supported by the communities they serve. That’s why Mastercard has a proud history of supporting small businesses in Canada. We have long placed an emphasis on underrepresented groups, including women-owned businesses in particular, to provide them the tools, insights, resources and support needed to succeed.
We know that the resiliency of Canada’s economy and workforce can largely be attributed to the collective power of small businesses, which account for 98% of all businesses in Canada. But the sad reality is only about only 17% of businesses are majority owned by women. Last year, we supported women entrepreneurs by empowering them to grow their businesses through access to tools, mentorship, and resources. As part of this commitment, we expanded the Mastercard x Pier Five Small Business Fund to provide ten women-owned small businesses with $10,000 each in funding.
We know when small businesses have the right support and resources, they can thrive and flourish. As we begin a new year, I encourage you to seek support from your community, including our team of experts and the incredible organizations we partner with that are committed to seeing small businesses succeed. Thank you for everything you do for our communities; we wish you growth and prosperity.
Small Business Lead, Mastercard Canada
Nishant Raina is the Small Business Lead for Mastercard in Canada.
As a product leader, Nishant develops and oversees the Small Business segment strategy by commercializing new products and services and supporting new product development with partners. With a strong passion for helping small businesses, Nishant drives the growth of the Small Business segment at Mastercard and within the entire payments ecosystem.
Since joining Mastercard, Nishant has made a measurable impact on strengthening the Small Business segment within Canada and leading key strategy development projects, supporting partners in product development initiatives, and working with regional and global teams to drive thought leadership.