VIPGift Plans to Release LEAP 2.0

VIPGift is set to launch its Fall 2009 “LEAP (Loyalty Engagement Award
Platform) 2.0” points-based enterprise software application. With “LEAP
2.0”, VIPGift aims to increase employee productivity, directing behavior
through targeted rewards, linking specific, positive employee behaviors
to small points allocations over time. This allows companies to reward
specific employee behavior frequently with the attendant benefits of
training theory. “LEAP 2.0” subsequently helps companies reduce employee
turnover costs, based on research showing employees regularly rewarded
are more engaged and loyal to their companies. VIPGift offers corporate
and consumer incentive programs and prepaid card solutions.

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U.S. Bank Buys KeyBank Portfolio from Citi

OH-based KeyBank has partnered with Elan Financial Services to offer
credit card products and services to Key’s clients. This portfolio is
one of three acquired by U.S. Bank from Citi. Elan Financial Services is
a division of U.S. Bank. In conjunction with the new relationship with
Elan, KeyBank will be terminating its previously existing credit card
issuing relationship with Citi. By purchasing this portfolio of credit
card assets associated with Key’s clients from Citi, Elan will own the
assets but will continue to brand and market the credit cards under the
KeyBank name. The acquired portfolio will be converted in the second
quarter of 2010 and all of the new products and services will be made
available to clients at that time.

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Walmart to Launch a MasterCard PayCard in Sept

Walmart this month is launching an electronic pay program that includes the “Money Network MasterCard Paycard” and electronic pay stubs. Walmart and Sam’s Club associates may receive their pay either by direct deposit or through the “First Data Money Network” program and may access their wages through the “Money Network MasterCard Paycard” or “Money Network Checks.” First Data will provide the processing and reload network for the program as part of First Data’s “Money Network Payroll Distribution Service.” MasterCard will be the exclusive brand for the card, which can be used anywhere “Debit MasterCard” is accepted, including ATMs.

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Global Axcess to Add Another 52 ATMs

FL-based kiosk provider Global Axcess has signed a five-year
contract for $550,000 per year with a regional convenience store chain in the
Southeastern United States for ATMs at 52 locations. Global Axcess will install, maintain and conduct transaction processing for ATMs in 52 of the customer’s
convenience store outlets. Global Axcess currently
owns, manages or operates more than 4,400 ATMs and other self-service kiosks in its
national network spanning 43 states.

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IN MOTION & UTA

The Utah Transit Authority (UTA) has deployed In Motion Technology’s
“onBoard Mobile Gateway” across its fleet of 530-vehicle buses to
provide wireless communications capabilities for in-vehicle credit card
payments and Internet access. The “onBoard Mobile Gateway” creates a
wired and wireless local area network aboard transit vehicles to allow
devices and systems reliable connectivity. It also provides UTA
headquarters information about networks, devices and vehicles from the
field for subsequent high level of information and control over the
wireless communications. The In Motion solution also provides real-time
communication for credit card authorization, ski passes and other
electronic fare media used by UTA passengers as they board and allowing
access to the Internet from their laptops as they ride.

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CMO Retail Solutions is Launched

Marketing veteran Bryan Kipp is launching CMO Retail Solutions, LLC,
for retail clients by offering interim CMO solutions and services.
One partnership is with RevTrax, Inc., which is a media and technology
platform that utilizes intelligent coupon and promotional technology to
drive in-store traffic. RevTrax has been able to provide clients with
strategic and innovative digital marketing partners and solutions to
drive and measure offline sales, ranging from SEM, SEO, display,
affiliate, email, coupons and loyalty. Another successful program he
introduced at S&K Menswear was a “Gives Back”
cause-marketing program, where guests could enroll their favorite
church, charity or school, and each time they make a purchase online or
offline, the charity earns a 5% cash donation.

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NFC CHALLENGES

A new report estimates a cash universe of about $225 billion in the U.S. is available for proximity payments. However, last year only about $4 billion was captured of the cash universe. Celent says in its report that estimates of $70 billion to $80 billion by 2013 are way too optimistic. Celent estimates that a 30% cash displacement ratio, or an incremental $151 per card account, per year is reasonable, with an average revenue increase of $1.83 per debit card account per year. Celent says that unfortunately, a number of business model issues have prevented players across differing industries from crossing the finish line to widespread mobile NFC adoption. Many of these issues are tied to hesitation about the uncertainties of mobile NFC adoption. Mobile carriers and merchants do not want to make infrastructure investments until there is proven demand; banks do not want to issue virtual cards until the infrastructure is in place. A classic payments “chicken and egg” scenario has stagnated mobile NFC roll-out.

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STIB MOBIB

Societe des Transports Intercommunaux de Bruxelles has selected Gemalto’s “Celego” card for its contactless transport “MOBIB” card program. STIB will issue the new cards to more than 400,000 inhabitants in Brussels. The “MOBIB” card is personalized with the holder’s picture and is valid for five years. The reloadable card will initially be used for public transport and public car parks. In the future, users will be able to access events equipped with “MOBIB” machines, such as stadiums, fairs and theaters. Currently, nearly 30 cities of over one million people use Gemalto’s contactless transport cards around the world. Gemalto is involved in numerous ticketing projects across the globe and has already rolled out more than 120 million contactless travel cards.

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ENSAN CARD

Ensan Charity Association and Al Rajhi Bank have launched the “Ensan”
Credit Card to support social and charity projects. The charity spending
supports key causes in the Saudi community, opening social contribution
to its holders by donating to orphans via the reward points earned when
using the card. Reward points are calculated to its equal value
according to the bank’s system and automatically deposited in the
charity’s account. Customer can also deposit additional money to the
card, allowing for a greater spending limit and charitable donation.

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U.S. Consumers Feel Better But Not Spending

Another tracking poll is pointing to an uptick in economic confidence
but whether it will drive more consumer spending is not clear. For the
third consecutive month, most consumers plan on cutting discretionary
personal spending in September. The August “Discover U.S. Spending
Monitor” rose to 87.0 from 85.6 in July and 83.5 in June. About 31% of
U.S. consumers felt economic conditions were improving and just over 21%
felt their finances were improving. Discover says it appears the rise in
the stock market and stable gas prices may have lifted confidence. But,
the August survey shows 52% plan to cut discretionary spending. This
number has stayed at or above 50% for the last 18 months. Around 53%
plan on cutting home improvement expenses in the month ahead, a 3-point
increase from July. Nearly half are also planning to cut major personal
purchases, like vacations, out of their budgets. Nevertheless, 58%
percent plan on saving and investing the same or more in the month
ahead, a 3-point increase from July.

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nFinanSe Picks Up $12MM in New Funding

Prepaid card solution provider nFinanSe has completed aggregate equity offerings
totaling $12.2 million. The offering include the $6.5 million sale of approximately 2.2 million shares of its
Series D Convertible Preferred Stock and through the exchange of $5.7
million of notes and accrued interest for approximately 1.9 million
shares of Series D Convertible Preferred Stock. Each share of the Series
D Convertible Preferred Stock is convertible into ten shares of the
Company’s common stock at $0.30 per share. Each investor received
warrants to purchase 10 shares of common stock at $0.01 per share for
each share of Series D Convertible Preferred Stock.
Emerging Growth Equities, Ltd. acted as placement agent for the offering.

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