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Visa increases commitment to Financial Literacy

Johannesburg – 7 July 2011 – This week, Visa highlights their commitment to financial education at Education Week where key stakeholders are attending a convention and learning expo to share best practice and showcase education projects. The convention is the perfect platform for Visa to launch the hard copy version of the Financial Football game as an additional tool for teachers to take into the classroom, to make teaching easy for educators and to make learning fun for students.

Visa's guiding principle is to provide economic empowerment to citizens and to stand with government, civil society, business and consumers as an ally in money management and economic growth.

Recognising that the payments industry has an important role to play in educating consumers, Visa has made a commitment to promote financial literacy worldwide. Visa provides free, relevant, accessible and innovative financial education to individuals as well as communities and strives to facilitate access to financial services for the unbanked.

The material in the Financial Football book complements the innovative Financial Football game, which tests learners' knowledge of the information in a fun, interactive way. The intention is that the game will provide the added motivation to study the content. Ultimately, it provides the foundation to manage one's money in a responsible manner.

In their quest to bring financial literacy to as many people as possible, Visa invites any interested parties to work with them to further distribute this information. The content is free to anyone.

The Financial Football game challenges players to answer fast-paced, multiple-choice money management questions correctly to advance down the field for a chance to score a goal. It offers single player and head-to-head game play options. This free game features three difficulty levels – and has companion lesson modules for classroom use. Players learn key concepts about saving, responsible spending, budgeting and the wise use of credit. The game can be played online at

Visa believes the most important financial tool is not a product – it is knowledge. That is why, for over a decade, Visa has been developing financial literacy programmes across the globe to teach individuals how to spend, save and budget responsibly. Visa is committed to reaching 20 million people worldwide with financial literacy information by May 1, 2013.

Visa's financial literacy programmes were first launched in 1995 and spread globally in 1996. The global financial literacy initiative is localised across more than 20 countries, with the programme's websites receiving 75 000 unique visitors and 1 million page views each month. To date, hundreds of thousands of pieces of free materials have been distributed around the world.

In South Africa, Visa is heavily invested in making a sound contribution to financial literacy. "We commissioned an industrial theatre show that builds on the African story-telling tradition to deliver fundamental financial literacy messages in an entertaining and humorous way. Key messages focus on budgeting, saving, opening a bank account and how to use an ATM. Nationally, this show has reached over 150 000 people across South Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa. In 2010, Visa launched the digital version of the Financial Football game," says Mandy Lamb, Country Manager, Visa South Africa.

"Supporting financial literacy is good for our business and the right thing to do," Lamb concludes.