Toronto, July 3, 2013 – MasterCard celebrated 40 years of innovation in Canada by announcing a partnership with MaRS Discovery District, opening a new networking space for entrepreneurs at MaRS and announcing MasterCard N<XT,the first payment network developer challenge with Rogers and CIBC as co-sponsors, to be hosted at the MaRS Centre.

The two-day challenge, September 28-29, will search for Canada’s next great developer and breakthrough payment solution. With access to MasterCard’s commerce infrastructure, professional and student application developers are invited to create their own innovative payment applications and mobile solutions. Working in teams, developers will leverage MasterCard’s open API and toolkit to build any type of app with a payment connection. Winners will be chosen by a judging panel comprised of some of Canada’s most sought-after technology innovators; they will award three top prizes of $10,000, along with access to senior technology executives to pitch their apps.

In addition, MasterCard has sponsored the creation of the MasterCard deck, a patio space on the second floor of the MaRS Centre’s Heritage Building. The MasterCard deck will continue MasterCard’s tradition of innovation and help build the next generation of great ideas by providing an invigorating networking space for entrepreneurs and stakeholders.

“We are delighted to partner with MasterCard – a global innovation pioneer – in support of the entrepreneurs in our MaRS ecosystem,” said Ilse Treurnicht, CEO, MaRS Discovery District. “The MasterCard deck is a unique addition to the MaRS Centre – strategically located in the MaRS Commons within the iconic Heritage Building. It will provide an inspiring new space for our entrepreneurs to meet and collaborate, further catalyzing the innovation that will drive Canada’s knowledge economy. We also look forward to providing the platform for MasterCard’s upcoming payment network development contest, where we can bring together top tech talent both from within the MaRS network and the larger community across Canada.”

“Innovation is in our DNA,” said Betty DeVita, President of MasterCard Canada. “Over the last 40 years, MasterCard has led the way in bringing payment innovations to the fingertips of Canadians and merchants – from chip & pin to Tap & Go – we continue to find ways to make electronic payments a seamless, convenient and rewarding choice for Canadians.”

About MasterCard Worldwide

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 @MasterCardNews, join the discussion on the Cashless Conversations Blog and subscribe for the latest news.

About MaRS Discovery District

MaRS Discovery District (@MaRSDD) is a mission-driven innovation centre located in Toronto. MaRS works with partners to catalyze, accelerate and amplify innovation. MaRS supports entrepreneurs building Canada’s next generation of growth companies. In the last three years, MaRS startup clients have raised over $750 million in capital, earned over $375 million in revenue and hired well over 3,500 workers into knowledge economy jobs.

Media Contact:

Melissa Hughes
Manager, Media & Community Relations
MaRS Discovery District
416.673.8100 ext. 2710
mhughes@marsdd.com