Virtual Piggy, which offers an online alternative payment system for teens, will run a developers event for participants up to 19 years old in Los Angeles on Dec. 7.

The prizes include more than $25,000 in scholarships toward higher education, internships at Virtual Piggy, and other prizes form sponsors.

"We are running our first Hackathon to help promote the importance of learning computer science and youth empowerment in the digital age," says Jo Webber, CEO and founder of Virtual Piggy, in an Oct. 24 press release. 

Payment companies are increasingly using hackathons, a type of competitive event for software developers, as a way to spot new ideas and foster innovation. MasterCard and PayPal operated hackathons this year, while FreedomPay and Barclays participated in a Microsoft-hosted developer event.

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