Mocapay Provides Denver Students SaaS Platform

Mocapay has entered a strategic partnership with The University of Denver’s Daniels College of Business School of Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism Management (HRTM). The platform uses Mocapay’s mobile Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) technology to allow students to use their mobile phones in making purchases at Beans, the school’s student run coffee shop. Mocapay will also allow embedded messaging engine to distribute customized mobile marketing campaigns to students. Since mobile technology is quickly becoming an essential part of the hospitality industry’s business processes, the School also plans to integrate the Mocapay platform into its curriculum. Students and faculty will be able to conduct mobile transactions at the point-of-sale, access their account balance and transaction history and reload their account, all from their mobile phone. Mocapay end-to-end, mobile payments addresses merchants’ need for a new channel that will broaden their loyalty and gift programs.

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SPG & AMEX

The consumer and small business Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Cards from American Express have officially arrived. With the new Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card, Cardmembers can earn one Starpoint for every $1 in purchases charged to the Card. By applying for the Card by May 31, 2010 at SPG.com, cardholders can get the Card free for the first year and earn 11,000 bonus Starpoints, enough for up to three free nights at Starwood hotels and resorts. The substantial 1:1 earn rate and countless opportunities to earn Starpoints through everyday purchases, will give Cardmembers a way to earn rewards faster than ever before. The annual fee of $120 will be waived for the first year for those who apply at SPG.com for a limited time. Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with 982 properties in more than 100 countries.

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Billing Tree Offers Bill Payment Solution for Energy Utilities

On demand payment processor BillingTree has introduced its “Utility Suite”
of Bill Presentment and Payment solutions for companies in the energy
and utilities sector. Advantages to a single, centralized billing and collections system for
utility service providers includes improved customer service and
increased satisfaction, providing the consumer more options to pay bills
in a highly secure and swift format. In addition, the potential to
reduce paper invoicing enables utility providers to avoid passing rising
billing costs on to their customers. BillingTree anticipates utilities
save 60 to 90% off current paper, postage, handling and other
costs for each household opting into electronic statements with
recurring/automated payments. BillingTree supplies the integrated, multi-channel
electronic payment platform to a growing list of industries that also includes healthcare and subscription-billed services.

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AFS & FIRST DATA

E-payment provider Arab Financial Services (AFS) has inked an agreement with First Data Corporation to enable AFS to leverage First Data’s global processing power to support its regional client base.
AFS currently licenses First Data’s VisionPLUS® software to manage a portfolio of more than one million payment cards. Under the new agreement, AFS clients will have the opportunity to benefit from First Data’s strategic issuing and consumer finance solution, FirstVision(TM). FirstVision incorporates an enhanced version of VisionPLUS as well as a full range of associated operational and value-added services.
First Data’s scale and strength has enabled it to continue to invest through the current economic downturn, focusing on the development of FirstVision – a single solution that delivers consistent functionality and technology in support of banks and major retailers around the world. AFS is the leading Arab company for electronic banking, personal payment instruments and related services. Established in 1984, AFS is in a strong financial position with backing from leading international financial institutions in the Arab world. The company pioneered the concept of outsourcing card processing in the region and was the first company to set-up an end-to-end state-of-the-art card-outsourcing environment in Bahrain. AFS is one of the largest payment card processors in the Middle East and North African regions.

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TeleTech Services To Offer Support for Member Reward Program

BPO outsourcer TeleTech Services Corporation has signed a multi-year
contract with a leading financial services company to provide advanced
technology and customer management support for the client’s member
rewards program and cardholders who require assistance with lost or
stolen credit cards. TeleTech will provide the client with a suite of
managed and hosted services to assure a consistent, high-quality
customer experience model across all support channels as cardholders
check their reward program balances, redeem reward points or require
support for lost or stolen cards while traveling across the globe.
The client was seeking to streamline multiple support services with a
single partner who could provide the technological and geographical
resources to ensure a seamless transition and continued high customer
satisfaction levels for its cardholders. TeleTech was selected due to
its ability to design and support a comprehensive solution that spans
diverse geographies and leverages its advanced centralized technology.

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CardinalCommerce Appoints VP, Merchant Services

Chuck Diulus has been appointed VP, Merchant Sales with OH-based CardinalCommerce payment brands. Bringing with him over 20 years’ experience with acquiring, issuing, and Electronic Funds Transfer solutions for financial Institutions and retailers Diulus’ will focus on managing the sales team for Market, Client and Merchant Services for CardinalCommerce’s Centinel solution and increasing transaction volume and revenues for its more than 50,000 customers. In doing so, he will extend Cardinal’s service offerings to merchants, merchant services providers, gateways and processors. CardinalCommerce Corporation enables authenticated payments, secure transactions, and alternative payment brands for both eCommerce and mobile commerce.

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Talaris and SkylineOffer Check Processing

Teller equipment supplier Talaris has partnered with remote capture
software supplier Skyline to offer Talaris’ electronic check-processing
solution, “Pronto.”
Through the agreement, Skyline’s “DirectFED Deposit”
remote-deposit-capture software, has been leveraged to create “Pronto,” a
solution that enables banks, credit unions and retailers to immediately
and simply process checks with the Federal Reserve System. As a result
of the increased speed and efficiency of check processing realized
through Skyline’s “DirectFED Deposit”, financial institutions and
retailers will realize high performing operational advantages and
cost-savings than those typically associated with check-processing
solutions. Talaris unveiled Pronto, its first Check 21 solution that is
powered by DirectFED Deposit™, at Banking Automation Institute’s Retail
Delivery Conference in November 2009. Pronto features a simplistic
design and “plug-and-play” set-up process that enables financial
institutions and retail locations to install the solution in just a few
hours, thereby realizing the cost-saving benefits of Check 21 within two
days.

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Veritec and First American Commercial Ink Marketing Agreement

Veritec proprietary two-dimensional matrix technology and developer of mobile banking debit card solutions signed a marketing agreement with First American Commercial Enterprises to market “blinx On-Off” card and “PhoneCodes” technologies. Veritec’s mobile banking software platform processes debit, pre-paid and gift cards solutions to debit card issuers and sponsoring organizations. Under the MTC™ and “blinx On-Off” card programs, card issuers and sponsors may provide Veritec’s private branded debit or gift cards to individuals with or without an acceptable credit history. The “blinx On-Off” card features the ability to turn card use on and off, make real time money transfers, and to provide notifications of card use. This offers cardholders the security and convenience to manage their funds, as well as transferring amounts from card to card or account to account, in real time.

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Cardlytics Taps Former AMEX Exec To Build Sales

Loyalty marketer Cardlytics has named sales and marketing veteran Keith
Ingenthron as the company’s strategic account director.
He will leverage his merchant relationships to grow Cardlytics’
footprint among national and regional organizations in the retail,
restaurant, grocery, gas, travel, and service industries and manage
Cardlytics’ existing relationships in that area. Most recently,
Ingenthron was client manager of national accounts in the central region
for American Express Merchant Services, where he developed marketing
partnerships and managed a portfolio of 20 to 25 national accounts with
total charge volumes in excess of $1.5 billion. Besides increasing his
account volume by more than 8.8% in 2007, Ingenthron earned the
company’s Masters Award for his outstanding performance in 2006 and
2005. Previously, Ingenthron was area vice president for channel sales
in the East region for American Express Incentive Services, where he was
awarded American Express’ Circle of Excellence Award for exceeding
profit goals by 7.7%.

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Acculynk Extends Card Processing to ISOs

Software-only service provider Acculynk has extended its product line to
include online card processing and Internet PIN debit available for
resale through Independent Sales Organizations (ISOs). With this, Acculynk
has introduced its “PaySecure Plus” payments platform, which includes
credit card and
signature debit processing, plus offers the added benefit of processing
Internet PIN debit transactions through PaySecure. Acculynk’s card
processing services include acceptance of all major credit and debit
cards, a full-service ISO and merchant support organization, and
competitive rates and margins. Acculynk introduced PaySecure in March
2009, and has since partnered with 7 EFT networks to process Internet
PIN debit transactions; the company has 1,000+ unique websites that are
enabled with PaySecure.

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U.S. Retail Industry Sectors Continue Y/Y Gains

Retail sectors posted solid performance in March from the year prior. The eCommerce channel was up 18.4% from last year for its 8th consecutive month of double digit growth. Luxury sales posted a 22.7% year-over-year increase while U.S. Specialty Apparel Sales increased a solid 5.2% with strength across the board as every subsector posted positive year-over-year gains. Some of the strength in this category may be attributed to an earlier Easter this year, pushing much of the pre-Easter spending into March. This, according to the MasterCard “SpendingPulse” macro-economic report, also showed overall electronics sales were up 4.9% year-over-year, posting a strong growth of 6.8% in the Appliance sub-sector and a gain of 4.5% year-over-year for Consumer Electronics sales while the sector is still down 4.2 % when compared to March of 2008. MasterCard “SpendingPulse” focuses on specific U.S. retail industries in March, 2010.

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ISOs Unhappy With Vendors, Seek Change

Independent sales
organizations (ISOs) rated their
vendors which includes bank acquirers, front-end processors, and
back-end processors and their levels of satisfaction with their services.
According to the Aite report, no category of surveyed vendors has
achieved a high level of satisfaction with their ISO base. Vendors that
are negatively rated by their ISOs are sure to see them switch to a
competitor. ISOs are a significant force in the merchant acquiring
industry. They are the extension and sales force of banks that want to
sign merchants but prefer not to rely entirely on their internal sales
force. ISOs consider their various partners an important component to
their success, and look to their vendors to provide a solid platform,
low pricing, and responsive customer service in order to meet the
demands of a changing market.

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