VISA LAC

Visa Inc. payments volume on all Visa-branded
products in the Latin America and the Caribbean Region (LAC) grew 27%
over the previous year to US$193 billion for the year ending on December
31, 2008. Visa’s strategy in the region to increase debit card
activation and
migrate transactions to the point-of-sale played a key role in the
growth during this period. In fact, the total number of payment
transactions continued to advance reaching 5 billion, which reflects a
growing proportion in non-discretionary spending at the point-of-sale by
consumers in key areas such as gas stations, supermarkets, fast food
restaurants, healthcare and recurring payments. The result was an expansion in the number of cards carrying the Visa brand in the region, which reached 340 million in 2008.

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INSIDE & ENOVIA

Dassault Systèmes announced that INSIDE Contactless has successfully
implemented the ENOVIA
Synchronicity DesignSync solution. By leveraging Dassault Systèmes
ENOVIA Synchronicity DesignSync Data
Manager, DesignSync DFII and ProjectSync INSIDE Contactless has been
able to improve global team collaboration while also optimizing product
design. This approach has enabled INSIDE Contactless to increase
system-on-chip design integration efficiencies and IP reuse by utilizing
modular data abstraction within a hierarchical design data and
configuration management system. INSIDE Contactless is using the
DesignSync solution to
design high-performance contactless chip technologies for
next-generation payment, transit, identity and access control
applications. INSIDE’s secure contactless and NFC solutions are
currently found in smart cards, key fobs, mobile phones, handheld
devices, point-of-service systems and PC peripherals.

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AmEx Charge-Offs Top 10%; Delinquency Slows

American Express reported that managed U.S. charge-offs in April hit 10.1%, compared to 8.8% in March and 8.6% in February. However, 30+ day managed U.S. delinquency edged down to 4.9% in April from 5.1% in March and 5.3% in February. Credit card outstandings for the U.S. declined to $55.4 billion from $56.5 billion in March and $57.8 billion in February. AmEx notes that the March charge-off ratio was impacted by the sale to third parties of certain cardholder loans that had been previously written-off. The net write-off rates for March reflect the benefit of the sale proceeds being treated as a partial recovery of such previously written-off balances. AmEx also notes that the results for April are consistent with the Company’s estimate that the U.S. lending write-off rate on a managed basis for the second quarter is expected to increase between 200 and 250 basis points over the first quarter rate of 8.5%. For complete details on American Express’ latest performance visit CardData (www.carddata.com).

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PLANET PAYMENT Q1

Payment processor Planet Payment reported total revenue increased 100% to $10.3 million; multi-currency revenue grew 34% to $6.3 million;
processing revenue was up 797% to $4.0 million; gross profit
increased 111% to $3.6 million. Net loss was reduced by 54% to
$1.4 million. During the first quarter the Company achieved
a number of important operational milestones. The Company extended its
reach across Asia-Pacific with the activation of multi-currency processing services An additional 400 merchant locations were activated during the quarter, bringing the Company’s total as of March 31st, to 8,360 locations. The Company’s momentum is further demonstrated by the fact that approximately 66% of core multi-currency transaction volume processed in March arose from merchant locations activated in 2008 and that 7% of the March volume derived from locations activated in the first quarter. For complete details on Planet Payment’s latest results visit CardData (www.carddata.com).

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PIXELPOINT & GIVEX

Restaurant POS solution provider PAR PixelPoint has announced the successful certification of PixelPoint POS software to stored value card provider Givex. Merchants using PixelPoint POS will now have the
ability to operate their own gift card programs across multiple
locations as well as issue and redeem gift cards in real-time. Givex
provides a broad range of profit enhancing processes that seamlessly
integrate gift cards, loyalty engines, e-couponing and targeted email campaigns. PAR PixelPoint has become an innovative leader, developing and marketing POS, Web, Wireless and Enterprise software suites for the restaurant industry.

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MARCH ABS

Delinquency and charge-offs among credit card-backed securities hit an all-time high in March. The 20 basis point sequential increase in 60 to 180 day delinquency and the 90 basis point sequential leap in charge-offs are both significant. The Fitch “Charge-off Index” increased in March to 8.4%, compared to 7.5% in the prior month and 6.6% one-year ago. In March, the Fitch “Delinquency Index” increased for the seventh month in a row, moving to 5.0% from 4.8% in February and 3.6% in March 2008. Fitch also reports that its “Monthly Payment Rate Index” was 17.3% in March, compared to 15.2% in the prior month and 16.4% in January. The Fitch “Yield Index” increased 180 basis points to 21.1% in March. Having increased for each quarter of 2008, the outstanding amount of credit card debt held by U.K. borrowers declined 3.1% in the first quarter to GBP 52.2 billion in from GBP 53.9 billion in the fourth quarter.

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GI Joe Collectible Gift Card is Offered

TX-based Cinemark set to launch the limited edition “GI Joe: Rise of
Cobra” gift card. Cinemark Gift Cards allow patrons to place any value
they wish on a
stored value card for redemption towards ticket and concession purchases
at any Cinemark Theatre location nationwide. The gift cards can then be
reloaded online at cinemark.com or at any Cinemark Theatre. Cinemark
gift cards never expire. The card holder may
register his or her card at www.cinemark.com to manage their account,
purchase advance tickets online with no service fee, view transaction
activity, and reload the card with additional value.

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KIWIBANK & POSTILION

Kiwibank has
successfully migrated from an in-house transaction processing system to
the open systems based Postilion platform. This seven year-old bank,
owned by New Zealand Post, known for its
innovative approach to banking services, is using a range of Postilion
solutions for all of its EFT needs, including the Postilion solution for
ATM owners and the Postilion solution for merchant acquirers. The
Postilion payments platform is now driving Kiwibank’s deployment of
approximately 300 ATMs and processing transactions from both its
cardholders and those from other banks’ customers.

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LASER CUTTING GUIDE

Card manufacturer Spartanics has released its “Laser Cutting Technical
Guide”. Plastic card
manufacturers seeking more information on how to match laser cutting
technology to their application requirements can now download the
popular guides in four languages. “The Laser Cutting Technical Guide”
Part I chapters include: 1) Choosing
Between Laser Cutting vs. Tool-based Die Cutting Systems; 2) Quality and
the Soft Marking Standard; 3) Cutting Speed vs. Web Speed. Part II
includes 1) Fallacy of the Double Scan Head Advantage; 2) Systems
Integration, User-Friendliness and Production Output; 3) Selecting
System Components; and 4) Suggested Method for Sourcing Laser Cutting
Technology.

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VeriFone Unveils the Plug-n-Play QX1000

VeriFone Holdings has introduced the “QX1000” plug-and-play
solution for POS contactless acceptance. The “QX1000” is based on an
advanced
contactless architecture that utilizes a single contactless interface
(SingleCI)
and incorporates the most sought-after features in user-friendly design and
customer branding and is ideal for a variety of retailers – from quick
service restaurants and petro
stations to retail stores, parking garages, movie theaters and sports
arenas – with a “touch and go” design and high-speed processor that
keeps checkout lanes
moving. Multiple LEDs and a buzzer clearly communicate transaction
status to both
the consumer and the merchant allowing for a quick and easy payment
experience.

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Discover Doubles Rewards for the Military

Discover is rewarding Discover Cardmembers
with “Double Cashback Bonus” or “Double Miles” when they make purchases
at U.S. military bases and welcomes Operation Homefront as a Cashback
Bonus Partner. The program will include military installations in the
United States and
overseas, and includes purchases made at commissaries, exchanges,
shopettes/convenience stores, exchange catalogs, exchange online stores
and exchange gas/service stations on-base. To coincide with this
promotion, Discover is proud to again
welcome Operation Homefront as a Cashback Bonus Partner from mid May
through Labor Day. Operation Homefront is a non-profit organization that
provides emergency assistance and morale to our troops, their families
and to wounded warriors when they return home, and has provided critical
assistance to more than 45,000 military families in need.

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