Making The Cut With Kyle Lowry: That's What MasterCard Calls Priceless

MasterCard and Toronto Raptor Kyle Lowry Give Canadian Basketball Fans 'Priceless Surprises'
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TORONTO, March 24, 2015 /CNW/ - MasterCard continues to bring sports fans even closer to their favourite athletes and all because they use MasterCard. Ten MasterCard cardholders at the downtown Toronto barber shop In The Cut got a Priceless Surprise when they made the cut for an evening of basketball and an exclusive after-game party with Toronto Raptors All-Star point guard Kyle Lowry.  See the Raptors fans receive the ultimate surprise of the season here. It was part of the latest round of MasterCard Priceless Surprises, which celebrated its one year anniversary last week.

Lowry was in on the Priceless Surprise with his personal Toronto barber, In The Cut's founder Justin Radam. Radam booked appointments for 10 unsuspecting MasterCard cardholders, telling them they would each receive a free "We the North" T-shirt if they paid using their BMO MasterCard.

Once in the barber's chair, Lowry stepped from a back room and surprised the clients and further surprised them with tickets for their friends and family to see a Raptors' game from the MasterCard World Elite Suite at the Air Canada Centre. At the game, they were surprised again with an invitation to an after-party at Real Sports Bar & Grill where Lowry, the Raptors Dance Pak, and 'The Raptor' mascot joined them for autographs and pictures.

"I love playing in Toronto because the fans are incredible. They're a huge support, and any day I can connect with Raptors fans across the country is a good day," said Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors. "The looks on the guys' faces when they found out where they were going – and all because they're BMO MasterCard cardholders – was amazing to see."

When Priceless Surprises launched in Canada in 2014 the program generated attention for its ability to connect consumers with their favourite sports teams. MasterCard continues to bet on sports because that is a strong passion point for cardholders. With partners like Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE), the Canadian Hockey League (CHL) and the Montreal Canadiens, MasterCard is the only brand that puts fans at the centre of hockey, soccer, and basketball. 

"We've focused our efforts on sports because our cardholders are passionate fans – they want the connection to their favourite players, teams and priceless experiences." said Milos Vranesevic, Head of Marketing, MasterCard Canada. "What excites us is our ability to make it extra special for our cardholders– from helping them propose on the big screen, to securing a table at Real Sports for the biggest game of the year. When we see their face light up – that's a true priceless moment for us."

The Priceless Surprises program has given surprises to nearly 12,000 Canadians. The concept is simple. Just by using MasterCard, cardholders can be surprised in big and small ways, including MasterCard Prepaid cards, next game upgrades at events, meeting world-class entertainers and athletes, and much more. The Kyle Lowry surprise marks the fifth in an ongoing Canadian campaign to surprise MasterCard cardholders when they least expect it. Previous Priceless Surprises videos have been viewed online more than 29 million times and include hockey great Doug Gilmour, fashion icon Coco Rocha, and a truck full of Christmas surprises for charities in Calgary.

If you have a MasterCard in your wallet you are also eligible for:

  • Between-the-benches seats at ice level for the Toronto Maple Leafs at the ACC
  • Courtside seats for the Toronto Raptors at the ACC
  • Field-level seats at BMO Field for Toronto FC
  • Pre-sale tickets for cardholder purchase to Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Raptors games
  • Discounts at Real Sports Apparel
  • Exclusive merchandise at the Priceless Toronto Zone at the ACC
  • Priceless experiences with the Montreal Canadiens
  • Pre-sale tickets for cardholder purchase to Montreal Canadiens games
  • VIP passes for the Canadian Hockey League's Canada/Russia Super Series
  • Tickets to the MasterCard Memorial Cup

"As the Official Bank of the Toronto Raptors and NBA Canada, we love basketball and the passion that comes with being a fan," said Betsey Chung, Chief Marketing Officer, BMO Financial Group, Canadian Banking and Global Wealth Management. "The chance to work with Kyle Lowry and MasterCard to surprise unsuspecting cardholders who are diehard basketball fans – just like we are – was thrilling."

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 @MasterCardCAnws, join the discussion on the Cashless Pioneers Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau.

SOURCE MasterCard Canada

Video with caption: "Video: MasterCard partnered with All-Star point guard Kyle Lowry and his personal Toronto barber to give Raptor fans an experience like no other. When fans arrived at the barbershop they were expecting a cut and a free Raptors T-shirt for paying with their BMO MasterCard. Instead they got a Priceless Surprise.". Video available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kkheo0vUF-A

For further information: Contacts: Leslie Jackson, Ketchum Public Relations, leslie.jackson@ketchum.com, 416.355.7421; Serda Evren, North American Communications, MasterCard, serda_evren@mastercard.com, 416.365.6671

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