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Becomes first to win prestigious competition back-to-back

TORONTO, July 26, 2018 /CNW/ - TD Bank Group (TD) is thrilled to announce that Layer 6, the Canadian artificial intelligence company we acquired earlier this year, in collaboration with the faculty and students at the Vector Institute for Artificial Intelligence, was named the winner of the prestigious 2018 RecSys Challenge, one of the world's leading AI forums. This is the second consecutive year Layer 6 has won the competition and proves that Toronto is home to world-class technology talent.

This year's challenge focused on personalized music recommendations and automatic playlist continuation. As part of the challenge, Spotify released the Million Playlist Dataset, comprised of a set of 1,000,000 playlists created by Spotify users that includes playlist titles, track listings and other metadata. The competition consisted of two separate challenges, one where participants were restricted to the music dataset that was provided, and another where participants could use external data to try and provide even more personalized recommendations. Layer 6 was the winner of both portions of the competition.

"Participating in competitions such as the RecSys Challenge allows us to benchmark our AI capabilities against the world's best and contribute back to the global AI community," says Tomi Poutanen, TD's Chief AI Officer and Co-Founder of Layer 6.

Participants were tasked with improving personalization and user engagement by making it easier to create playlists. The participants also worked on ways to use AI to extend listening beyond the end of existing playlists by adding the most relevant songs that are unique to each person's taste. To win the competition, Layer 6 used its expertise building its world-leading Artificial Intelligence prediction engine.

"AI is powering personalization across a wide range of industries, from music to banking to health care," says Poutanen. "TD continues to encourage us to push forward and both innovate and incubate new ideas. As we think about new products that will reimagine the customer experience, these types of competitions help us to hone our skills and talents and think differently about the work."

In January 2018, TD announced the acquisition of Layer 6, a world-renowned AI company based in Toronto, Canada. Layer 6 is a global thought-leader and pioneer in the delivery of responsive, personalized and insight-driven experiences for TD's customers. Layer 6 co-founders Jordan Jacobs and Tomi Poutanen are also part of the founding team of the Vector Institute for AI in Toronto.

About TD Bank Group

The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Group (or the "Bank"). TD is the sixth largest bank in North America by branches and serves more than 25 million customers in three key businesses operating in a number of locations in financial centres around the globe: Canadian Retail, including TD Canada Trust, TD Auto Finance Canada, TD Wealth (Canada), TD Direct Investing, and TD Insurance; U.S. Retail, including TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank®, TD Auto Finance U.S., TD Wealth (U.S.), and an investment in TD Ameritrade; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD also ranks among the world's leading online financial services firms, with approximately 12 million active online and mobile customers. TD had $1.3 trillion in assets on April 30, 2018. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol "TD" on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.

SOURCE TD Bank Group

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