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In 1966, a group of Californian banks created the bank card brand MasterCharge, the predecessor of MasterCard, as a major competitor to Bank of America’s BankAmericard. Today, MasterCard is the second most popular bank card brand after Visa, and it is headquartered in Purchase, the state of New York.

The company has established itself a provider of premium financial services worldwide and since 2006, it has been publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker MA. The top executives of the MasterCard Company are Mr. Richard Haythornthwaite, Chairman of the Managing Board of MasterCard, and Mr. Ajay Banga, President and CEO.

The Canadian business of MasterCard Company has developed a wide range of integrated financial services including a reliable emergency contact center available 24/7, convenient bill-payment options, an ATM locator, flexible bank card and expenses management programs for medium-sized businesses, corporations, and institutional clients. To provide maximum financial security for their clients in Canada and around the world, MasterCard Company has equipped all of its bank cards with a computer chip embedded at the front. All payments with bank cards of MasterCard are PIN-protected. MasterCard’s PayPass is a payment technology which allows the cardholders to wave or tap their cards over a terminal, upon which the payment information is securely transmitted to the reader by a smart chip and a radio frequency antenna inside the credit card.

For all their enhanced payment security and innovative card protection methods, the MasterCard Company has established a partnership with only one of Canada’s big five banks (Bank of Nova Scotia, Bank of Montreal, Royal Bank of Canada, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, and the Toronto Dominion Bank) - and namely the Bank of Montreal, commonly known as BMO.

The BMO Gold AIR MILES MasterCard allows its holder to take advantage of a 25-percent discount on all Air Miles flights worldwide and get one Air Miles reward mile for each fifteen US dollars in card purchases. In addition during the first three months, card holders may get up to six hundred bonus reward miles. The card’s interest rate is 11.9 (additional payment of 35$ per year is required to take advantage of this option) or 19.5% a year and the annual fee is US $99.

The BMO Premium CashBack MasterCard grants its holder one percent cash back on purchases and a free BMO Roadside Assistance Service, including lock-out service, flat tire change, and battery boosts. Furthermore, card holders get three percent cash back for purchases done in Shell locations on the territory of Canada. The interest rate is again 11.9 or 19.5% and the annual fee is 49 US dollars. The card is accepted at thirty million locations around the world and comes with optional features such as medical protection, travel protection, and Balance Insurance.

BMO SPC Air Miles MasterCard and BMO SPC CashBack MasterCard are special credit card for students, the first granting its holders one free Air Miles mile per each $20 purchase with the card and the second – 0.5% cash-back on every purchase. Both cards have an annual interest rate of 11.9 (again, this option is available upon additional payment of $35 per year) or 19.5% and are exempt from annual fee.

Persons who discover that their MasterCard is stolen or lost should immediately report to the Bank of Montreal at 1-800-361-3361 for all of North America. Alternatively, they can dial 514-877-0330 from anywhere around the world. Members of credit card registration plans should inform them about lost or stolen cards which in turn will be reported to the Bank of Montreal.