First Data Appoints New CFO

Ray E. Winborne has been appointed to the First Data Board of Directors as the company’s CFO. Named Executive VP and Acting CFO in May 2010, he first joined the electronic commerce and payment processing organization in 2009 as Senior VP, Finance and Controller. Since then he has been the company’s principal accounting officer responsible for all corporate accounting activities including SEC and regulatory financial reporting, Sarbanes-Oxley financial compliance, benefits and revenue accounting, procurement and receivable services. Winborne began his career with PricewaterhouseCoopers and was later named corporate controller and chief accounting officer at two Fortune 200 companies – BellSouth Corporation and Delta Air Lines.

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Sheetz Offers Rewards Tempo Debit Card

Sheetz convenience stores is now offering its customers a Tempo-powered rewards debit card that links to consumers’ existing checking accounts. The Sheetz “Rewards Debit Cards” are issued by Tempo partner First Bank & Trust of Brookings, SD, part of Fishback Financial Corporation, and can be used everywhere Discover cards are accepted. Shoppers using the Sheetz Rewards Debit Card for purchases at Sheetz locations will earn discounts on gasoline purchases, as well as cash-back for purchases at millions of other retailers nationwide. Sheetz is using Tempo’s Web-based debit card platform to offer its own branded debit cards and provide a web portal for consumers to apply for and activate cards, as well as track purchases and rewards. Every time customers use the Sheetz Rewards Debit Card at a Sheetz location they will earn a discount of 2 cents per gallon off at the pump on their next gasoline purchase. Tempo-enabled debit cards are affinity partner-branded, generate valuable cardholder rewards, and can be used for online and offline purchases and ATM withdrawals.

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HUDSON BAY

Capital One Canada is set to acquire and service GE Capital’s “Hudson’s Bay Company” credit card portfolio and related assets, with outstanding receivables of approximately $1.3 billion. The acquisition will include the transfer of approximately 400 GE employees directly involved in the Hudson’s Bay Company’s financial services business to Capital One. These employees will continue to work on the Hudson’s Bay Company credit card portfolio at locations in Toronto and Montreal. The transaction was approved by the board of directors of Capital One and GE Capital is subject to customary regulatory approvals and notifications and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2011. GE Capital Retail Consumer Finance offers customized private label credit card programs to more than two dozen partners and has nearly $30 billion in assets and over 40 million account holders.

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Consumers Focused on Reducing Card Debt

Credit card debt amongst consumers with a credit card decreased 7% since January while consumers in seven states have paid down their credit card balances by more than 10% since the beginning of the year. These states include Indiana and Tennessee down by 10%; Oregon by 11%; Nevada by 12%; Hawaii and Idaho by 13%; and Wisconsin credit card debt dropped by 28%. This, according to the CreditKarma.com “U.S. Credit Score Climate Report,” however also average credit scores remain at the beastly number of 666 from September 2010, down three points since January, while an additional eight states have fair to poor credit scores of 650 or lower. These states include Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Tennessee while California, Massachusetts and New Jersey have the highest credit scores nationally with an average of 684; Arkansas had the lowest with an average 636; and Louisiana saw the largest credit score change since January 2010, up from639 to 647.

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Gemalto Launches Online Banking Security Card

Gemalto digital security has introduced its “Ezio” credit card to combine one-time password security capabilities with standard payment, allowing banks to provide a single card that delivers both payment and increased security for online transactions. The “Ezio” online secure password feature is activated by pressing a button on the face of the card, consequently generating and displaying the one-time code. Providing a second factor of authentication, the user then enters the unique and non-reusable numeric code on a Web page, in addition to their user name and password. Gemalto provides a turnkey platform that is plug and play with existing banking systems while products within its “Ezio” eBanking security range are already being used by over half a million online customers globally.

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USA Tech Reports 3Q/10 Revenue Up 16% Y/Y

USA Technologies wireless non-cash transactions has reported a total revenue for 3Q/10 having increased by 16% to $4.4 million, compared to $3.8 million in the year ago period. Also since the year ago period, gross profit was up 32% to $1.4 million from $1.0 million from last year’s fiscal first quarter; gross profit margin expanded to 30.5%, compared to 26.9% a year ago; while EBITDA improved to a loss of $1.4 million for the quarter, and improvement from the year ago loss of $2.5 million. The Company also increased the number of devices connected to its network by 54% to approximately 88,000 from 57,000 as of 3Q/09; the number of cashless transactions processed during the quarter increased by 89% to 13.9 million to $24.5 million for a 68% increase. USA Technologies was named to Deloitte LLP’s 2010 “FAST (News – Alert) 500” List of the Fastest Growing Companies in North America and expects the total number of connections to its service to exceed 100,000 by December 31, 2010.

USA TECH EARNINGS
2Q/10 3Q/10
Net Loss $ (2,089,803) (1,886,614)
Interest Income (48,281) 25,310
Interest Expense 12,184 12,658
EBITDA $ (1,6 million) (1.4 million)
SOURCE: USA Technologies

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WU

MTN Group EMEA mobile operator and Western Union global payment services have inked commercial agreements to introduce international mobile remittance services in the 21 countries where MTN operates. This service will allow MTN subscribers to conveniently send and receive Western Union Money Transfer transactions using their MTN MobileMoney accounts, which will first be introduced in Uganda. Uganda receives nearly US$500 million in remittances every year, making up 3% of the country’s GDP. An MTN subscriber who receives a Western Union Money Transfer transaction in his MobileMoney account will be able to use the funds to pay bills or withdraw cash at MobileMoney Agents or any participating ATM.

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Discover to Join Tournament of Roses Parade

Discover Financial Services announced its participation in the 2011 Tournament of Roses Parade to be held on Jan. 1, 2011, in Pasadena, Calif. Discover’s involvement with the Tournament of Roses complements its commitment to college football and the company’s partnership with the Bowl Championship Series (BCS), which includes a four-year title sponsorship of the Orange Bowl and status as the Official Credit Card of the BCS. In doing so, Discover has selected Fiesta Parade Floats to design and construct a float entitled “A State Fair to Remember” and will feature six members of its customer service team on its float.

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SMARTSWIPE

NetSecure Technologies online transaction security hardware and software has received the TIA (Technology-in-Action) New Saskatchewan Product Award for its “SmartSwipe” online purchase security system. The Annual Achievement in Business Excellence (ABEX) Awards honor outstanding achievements in business excellence. The “SmartSwipe” solution secures sensitive data at the point of origin, before it ever reaches the computer, protecting sensitive financial and personal information from endpoint threats such as keylogging, spyware and man-in-the-middle attacks. Credit card holders can swipe their credit card from their home computer just like in a store. Using the same level of encryption found in ATM’s, SmartSwipe encrypts the card information while being swiped, rendering it unreadable to hackers and malicious programs.

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American Express Launches Rewards Shopping Tool

American Express has unveiled its “inSite” shopping tool that delivers Membership Rewards bonus points, discounts, free shipping and other special benefits for its Cardmembers as they shop online. Currently available for Cardmembers enrolled in “Membership Rewards” at insite.americanexpress.com, “inSite” lets Cardmembers search online results with the blue American Express icon, for which the offer is revealed when the cursor is placed over it. The tool also advises Cardmembers of offers when they directly visit participating retail websites, which span more than 250 popular brands like Banana Republic, Crate & Barrel and Barnes & Noble.com. American Express will continue to evolve “inSite” by incorporating additional features and offers to ensure ongoing customer value.

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G&D US

Giesecke & Devrient “Convego Air” contactless payment cards shipments to the U.S. has now surpassed the 50 million unit mark, the first card vendor to do so. With this, the G&D contactless platform has captured a leadership position in the U.S. among Visa and MasterCard branded contactless payment cards through its mobile payment sticker for mobile phones and contactless payment cards products. G&D’s contactless payment cards are issued by many of the major U.S. banks and is now expanding with new form factors and into new market applications. German-based Giesecke & Devrient employs more than 10,000 and generated sales of EUR 1.7 billion in fiscal 2009.

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