NHL and NHLPA welcome Visa as an official partner

    Visa strengthens its commitment to sport in Canada through new

    TORONTO, Oct. 15 /CNW/ - Visa Canada, the National Hockey League Players'
Association (NHLPA) and the National Hockey League (NHL) today announced a new
sponsorship naming Visa as an official partner of the NHL and NHLPA in Canada.
The sponsorship also designates Visa as the official payment card of the NHLPA
and NHL.
    "As a committed supporter of some of the world's most celebrated sporting
events, Visa is delighted to team up with the NHL and NHLPA as an official
partner," said Brenda Woods, Head of Marketing, Visa Canada. "Canadians are
passionate about hockey and through this sponsorship, Visa cardholders will
have opportunities that will help bring them closer to the sport they love. We
look forward to working with the NHL and NHLPA beginning this 2008-2009 NHL
    "The NHL is thrilled to align with Visa, one of the most powerful brands
in financial services," said Laurel Walzak, Director of Business Development
for the NHL. "We see many synergies with Visa as we super-serve NHL fans with
unique, exciting experiences."
    "The NHLPA is excited to partner with Visa, an organization that is a
strong supporter of amateur and professional sports in Canada," said Mike
Ouellet, NHLPA Chief of Business Affairs. "NHLPA members look forward to
working with Visa to bring many unique hockey experiences to fans across the
    The partnership, which runs until June 30, 2011, allows Visa to engage
with Canadian hockey fans nationwide and develop hockey-themed opportunities.
    Visa's partnership with the NHL and NHLPA strengthens Visa's commitment
to sport in Canada. In addition to its global sponsorships of the Olympic and
Paralympic Games and FIFA, Visa is a proud supporter of its Canadian Team Visa
athletes and is the title sponsor of Canada's national men's and women's
bobsleigh and skeleton teams. The NHLPA and NHL partnership is yet another way
for Visa to create Visa cardholder opportunities or compliment those of its
financial institution clients. The partnership also allows Visa to promote its
products and services in connection with hockey, one of Canada's favourite

    About Visa

    Visa operates the world's largest retail electronic payments network
providing processing services and payment product platforms. This includes
consumer credit, debit, prepaid and commercial payments, which are offered
under the Visa, Visa Electron, Interlink and PLUS brands. Visa enjoys
acceptance around the world and Visa/PLUS is one of the world's largest global
ATM networks, offering cash access in local currency in more than 170

    About the NHL

    The National Hockey League, founded in 1917, is the second-oldest of the
four major professional team sports leagues in North America. Today, the NHL
consists of 30 Member Clubs, each reflecting the League's international
makeup, with players from more than 20 countries represented on team rosters.
According to a Simmons Market Research study, NHL fans are younger, more
educated, more affluent, and access content through digital means more than
any other sport. The NHL entertains more than 100 million fans each season
in-arena and through its partners in national television (VERSUS, NBC, TSN,
CBC, RDS, RIS, NASN, ASN and NHL Network) and radio (NHL Radio, Sirius XM
Radio and XM Canada). Through the NHL Foundation, the League's charitable arm,
the NHL raises money and awareness for Hockey Fights Cancer and NHL Youth
Development, and supports the charitable efforts of NHL players. For more
information on the NHL, log on to NHL.com.

    About the NHLPA

    The National Hockey League Players' Association (NHLPA) is a labour
organization whose members are the players in the National Hockey League
(NHL). The NHLPA works on behalf of the players in varied disciplines such as
labour relations, product licensing, marketing, international hockey and
community relations, all in furtherance of its efforts to promote its members
and the game of hockey. In 1999, the NHLPA launched the Goals & Dreams fund, a
$16-million hockey program which is the largest grassroots hockey program in
the world. The players' program has donated full sets of hockey equipment to
more than 9,000 economically disadvantaged children in 17 countries and
assisted with upgrades and the building of hundreds of arenas worldwide. For
more information on the NHLPA, please visit nhlpa.com.

    (R)  NHL and the NHL Shield are registered trademarks of the National
         Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

    (TM) NHLPA is a registered trademark of the National Hockey League
         Players' Association. All Rights Reserved.

For further information:

For further information: Visa Canada: Teri Broughton, (416) 860-8869,
tbrought@visa.com; NHL: Michael DiLorenzo, (212) 789-2657, MdiLorenzo@NHL.com;
NHLPA: Jonathan Weatherdon, (416) 313-2316, jweatherdon@nhlpa.com

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