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The Green SheetGreen Sheet

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Square buys, innovates, mentors

Well-funded mobile payments startup Square Inc. continued its expansion in a number of directions. In the first days of October 2012, Square acquired a New York-based web interface design company and unveiled a contest to encourage female university students to choose careers in technology. Additionally, a mall operator also headquartered in New York reported it had partnered with Square and had already entered a pilot program in California with the startup.

Square purchases 80/20

80/20 Group LLC revealed on its corporate blog that it had been acquired by Square. The web interface designer called the acquisition a "natural next step" that allows it to focus its interface design capabilities on Square alone.

"Square shares our passion for using technology and design to improve people's lives," 80/20 said. "Together, we will reimagine and redesign how people communicate through commerce everyday, all around the world."

A mall partnership

Rouse Properties, an owner/operator of malls in the United States, said it is working with Square to bring the payment company's POS solution to its "common area small business retailers." A one-month pilot program was recently launched in three Rouse Properties' malls in California. The company said it plans to bring the Square POS system to all of its 31 malls before the end of 2012.

Andrew Silberfein, President and Chief Executive Officer of Rouse Properties, commented, "Square's technology will help put money back in retailers' pockets while providing shoppers with a quick and highly convenient payment experience."

Code camp for women

Finally, Square initiated its inaugural Code Camp contest to "invest in, develop and inspire women in technology." College-age students majoring in computer science, computer engineering and other related technological majors are encouraged to submit resumes, along with essays, about why they would like to participate in the three-day, expenses-paid immersion program at Square's San Francisco headquarters.

Fifteen women will be selected to attend Code Camp, which will be held in January 2013. The event will feature mentorship sessions with Square leaders, hands-on workshops, Q&A sessions and Bay Area sightseeing. Applications can be submitted online at squareup.com/form/code-camp. end of article

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