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The Collaborative VISA NFL




FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Panthers Olsen and Williams, North Carolina Treasurer Cowell, The Collaborative and Visa Inc. Partner to Roll out Financial Football Statewide

Financial Education Video Game to Help North Carolina Students Score Financial Touchdowns

Charlotte, NC – March 11, 2014 – Panthers running back DeAngelo Williams and tight end Greg Olsen joined North Carolina State Treasurer Janet Cowell, The Collaborative and Visa Inc. today to tackle head on the issue of financial literacy improvement among North Carolina teens. They announced a statewide effort to improve the money management skills of high school and middle school students with the rollout of Financial Football, a free educational video game and classroom curriculum developed by Visa Inc. The game is being distributed by the Treasurer's office to every public middle school and high school in the Tar Heel State.

State Treasurer Cowell kicked off this financial literacy campaign today at Mallard Creek High School in Charlotte with help from Olsen, Williams, The Collaborative and Visa. The two Panthers stars and Cowell rolled up their sleeves and led teams of students in a hard-fought, high energy game of Financial Football. Earlier Olsen shared his personal experiences on the importance of money management with students.

"Financial Football is an exciting and effective way to get students interested in personal finances and gives them a financial playbook they can use the rest of their lives," said North Carolina Treasurer Janet Cowell. "This is a valuable program and a great partnership between my office, The Collaborative, Visa and the NFL."

"Spending time helping our students increase their financial awareness is time well-spent," said The Collaborative executive director Donna Gallagher. "With the help of resources like Financial Football, students can have the tools to make the smart financial choices that can impact their lives for the better."

The centerpiece of Visa's nationwide educational initiative with the NFL and NFL PLAYERS, Financial Football helps students and adults tackle their financial futures. The game is accompanied by a classroom curriculum.

"Kids need to learn to make smart money management decisions early in life," said Panthers tight end Greg Olsen. "It takes the combined efforts of parents, teachers and mentors within the community to give teenagers a strong background in personal finance."

"It doesn't matter whether you make minimum wage or millions," said Panthers running back DeAngelo Williams. "If you don't learn to budget, save, invest and pay bills on time, the consequences can be devastating."

Available online at http://www.practicalmoneyskills.com/financialfootball, Financial Football puts students' fiscal knowledge to the test in an online simulation game environment by combining the structure and rules of the NFL with financial education questions of varying difficulty. Visa has also released the game as a free iPhone app on iTunes, along with an optimized HD iPad version.

"For over a decade, Visa has been committed to promoting financial literacy and we are proud to assist Treasurer Cowell in her efforts to strengthen financial education," said Nat Sillin, Head of U.S. financial education, Visa Inc.

This launch is part of a national educational campaign with Visa, the NFL and NFL PLAYERS, now in its seventh season. Since 2006, Visa has reached agreements with forty-two states and the District of Columbia to distribute Financial Football to every high school and middle school in those states, including Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

Financial Football is part of Practical Money Skills for Life (www.practicalmoneyskills.com) a free, award-winning financial education program that reaches millions of people around the world each year. Launched in 1995, the program is now available in ten languages in thirty countries. At Practical Money Skills for Life, educators, parents and students can access free educational resources including personal finance articles, games, lesson plans and more. Visa also runs What's My Score (www.whatsmyscore.org), a leading higher education consumer awareness program.

About The Collaborative
The Collaborative is a private, statewide 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization serving all of North Carolina. We are the lead agency for the North Carolina Saves campaign and work at the statewide level and in communities to implement and promote strategies to build economic security for North Carolina families. We are funded by public and private sources.

About Visa Inc.
Visa is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to fast, secure and reliable digital currency. Underpinning digital currency is one of the world's most advanced processing networks–VisaNet–that is capable of handling more than 20,000 transaction messages a second, with fraud protection for consumers and guaranteed payment for merchants. Visa is not a bank and does not issue cards, extend credit or set rates and fees for consumers. Visa's innovations, however, enable its financial institution customers to offer consumers more choices: Pay now with debit, ahead of time with prepaid or later with credit products. For more information, visit http://www.corporate.visa.com.

For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Hugh Norton (703) 683-5004, ext. 133, or hnorton@crcpublicrelations.com

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