Frequently Asked Questions


For more information about the
Cartier Women's Initiative,
contact us at:

+33 (0)1 58 18 10 17
33 rue Boissy d'Anglas,
75008 PARIS

About the Application Procedure

Can I send my application by mail?

You cannot send your application by mail. Only applications submitted through the official registration website and received in the appropriate online format are accepted.

Can I send you my business plan instead?

We do not accept business plans. Only applications submitted through the official registration website and received in the appropriate online format are accepted.

Will I receive a confirmation that my application has reached you?

You will receive a generic confirmation email stating that your application has been saved and submitted. You will only receive this email once you have validated the preview and clicked on ‘SUBMIT MY APPLICATION’. Should an error occur during the submission, we suggest that you write to us directly to check that we have received your application. Your queries will be answered within a week’s time.

I started completing the form but my web-page expired. What can I do?

Once you have signed in using your email address and password, your session will automatically stay open for 23 days. If a problem occurs within this timeframe, it may be due to your browser or your internet connection. Please make sure that your browser accepts cookies. We recommend using Google Chrome for an optimal experience.

We strongly recommend that you first write your answers in a separate draft document, then copy and paste them into the form once you are finished.

I have trouble uploading files and attachments to my form. What can I do?

To add heavy files in the attachments section, you must upload them one by one or compress them. The size of each attachment should not exceed 3MB. Accepted formats are .pdf, .jpg, .jpeg, .png, .gif, .doc, .xls, .ppt, .odt, .ods and .odp. Attachments sent to us by email are not accepted.

Can I send you samples of my product?

We do not accept product samples during the call for applications. However, you may include photos of your product or service in your application form.
If you are selected as a finalist, you will have the opportunity to present your products to the jury panel during the evaluation pitch.

Can I submit my application in a language other than English?

English is the only language accepted as it is the international language of business. Our jury members and our coaches are English-speakers. Good command of English is required (both verbal and written) to fully benefit from the many opportunities and resources the Cartier Awards program has to offer. We require the Common European Framework of Reference Level B2 and above. This level requires an understanding of main ideas of complex text, technical discussion in business and your field of specialization, ability to interact with fluency and spontaneity with native speakers.

The form states that all fields are mandatory but some do not apply to my company. What should I do?

If a question does not apply to your business, write ‘NA’ for ‘Not Applicable’ and explain why.

I have already submitted my project but would like to add new information. How should I proceed?

If you have submitted your application before the deadline, you can still sign in and change it right until the very last day of the call for applications period (August 14, 2019).

If you wish to bring changes to your application past the submission deadline, please contact us by email at Please note that we only accept updates if they have a direct impact on the eligibility of your business for the competition, or if they concern your personal contact information (email, address, phone). Other changes will not be taken into account past the submission deadline.

I own two businesses. Can I submit an application for both?

Candidates may only enter one business into the Cartier Women's Initiative programme.

About the Eligibility Criteria

What do you mean by ‘early stage’?

‘Early stage’ means the business should have a proven business model and be in the initial phase of its development and growth (between 1-5 years of licensed/registered operations). The Cartier Women's Initiative caps the funds raised to US$2 million in order to ensure that the businesses selected fall within a similar stage of development.

What is an impact-driven business?

An impact-driven business is a business that seeks to create strong, sustainable and measurable social and/or environmental impact. The business must align with at least one of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs are a collection of 17 global goals set by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015 for the year 2030. The SDGs are a call for action by all countries to promote prosperity while protecting the environment. They cover a series of social, economic, and environmental development issues.

I am not the sole founder of my company and have a business partner: can I apply?

We accept applications from businesses that are headed by several cofounders. However, the business can be represented by a woman only.
She must hold the main leadership position within the company, either in the capacity of General Manager, Director or CEO and must own significant stake in the business.
If a business is led by two or more female cofounders, only one of the cofounders can represent the business during the Cartier Women’s Initiative programme.

My project is an entrepreneurial initiative undertaken within a corporation. Am I eligible?

No, we accept only early-stage businesses that have been registered as independent companies and are not affiliated in any way with an established corporation or a similar women's initiative program.

I want to set up a subsidiary for an existing company. Am I eligible?

No, your project must be an original business creation, wholly conceived by the team; a completely new concept, meaning it cannot be a buy-back, off-shoot, or a subsidiary of an existing concept.

I have no team members at this point. Can I apply?

Yes, you may apply for the Cartier Women's Initiative programme as an individual. In the application form, fill in only the part on the lead entrant.
Please note that your business needs to have been operational for at least one year and generating revenue to be eligible.

I am a woman but my business partner or team members are men. Can I apply?

You may apply as long as you hold the main leadership position within the company, either in the capacity of CEO, General Manager or Director.

You must also own significant stake in the business and be able to provide proof. You will be asked to share an up-to-date capitalization table with your application form. A capitalization table (or cap table) is a table providing an analysis of a company's percentages of ownership, equity dilution, and value of equity in each round of investment by founders, investors, and other owners.

Please note that if your role in the venture is limited; your project will automatically be rejected.

Other Questions

My project was not selected. Why?

We do not discuss applications before, during or after the application period. The jury’s decision is considered definitive and irrevocable. In some rare cases, upon request, we may provide feedback to candidates that got past the preselection stage.

How many candidates applied this year?

In 2018, we received over 2900 applications from 142 different countries. About 800 of these applications made it to the preselection stage and a further 70 applications were submitted to the international jury committee for review.