Edgar Dunn Hires a New Americas Director

Payments consultant Edgar, Dunn & Company has hired Ann Schmitt as a Director and will focus on the Americas payment marketplace. Schmitt’s 25 years experience in financial services and payments most recently includes roles as President and CEO of two private equity-backed financial services companies where she led turnarounds, including assessing and re-positioning loan portfolios and under-performing units. From 1998-2002, Schmitt was a Director at Dove Consulting where she served as a consultant to leading banks, card associations, investment banks, merchants, and payment processors.

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PCI Council Presents PA-DSS Version 1.1

At the recent Electronic Transactions Association Annual Meeting and Expo, the PCI Security Standards Council has unveiled the version 1.1 of the Payment Application Data Security Standard (PA-DSS). PA-DSS has been designed to aid software vendors in developing secure payment applications that do not store prohibited data, ensure application compliance with PCI DSS and apply requirements to payment applications sold, distributed or licensed to third parties. Moreover, the Council also announced it will be approving companies with PA-QSA certification for recognition in having met PA-DSS assessments in accordance with the PA-DSS Security Audit Procedures. PCI Security Standards Council was established by American Express, Discover Financial Services, JCB International, MasterCard Worldwide and Visa Inc to enhance payment account security through awareness of the PCI Data Security Standard.

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Cash Advance Providers Create the NAMAA

The North American Merchant Advance Association has been created to represent the business interests of merchant cash advance providers. The merchant cash advance industry provides working capital to small and mid-sized businesses in need of financing for reasons such as the purchase of new equipment or inventory, expansion or remodeling, payoff of debt or taxes, or emergency funding. Merchant cash advances are typically unsecured, and not personally guaranteed except in cases of fraud. The cash advance transaction is structured as a purchase of a future receivable at a discount, and is not a loan or a secured transaction. NAMAA’s members will have the opportunity to share industry education and professional development, ethical standards and best practices guidelines, the development of industry relevant products and services, and the engagement in regulatory and legislative advocacy. NAMAA is a not-for-profit trade association representing organizations in the United States and Canada that are in the business of providing working capital advance products based on credit, debit or other card and electronic payment-related revenue streams to small and mid-sized businesses.

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NOVA Information Systems Becomes Elavon

U.S. Bancorp’s NOVA Information Systems and its affiliate merchant acquiring brands including First Horizon Merchant Services and euroConex have become Elavon. Elavon has profited from the investments made by U.S. Bancorp, which have fuelled expansion which include strategic acquisitions include the Citibank Card Acceptance business in Europe, FHMS and most recently Southern DataComm. Elavon’s development of an international processing platform that consolidates multiple front-end authorization and back-end settlement systems onto a single network .Elavon is also positioned to respond to the expanding needs of merchants in multiple segments including retail, hospitality, health care, education, and the public sector. End-to-end processing control and the delivery of strategic solutions including electronic check conversion, health care claims eligibility processing, and convenience fee processing.

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First Data Unveils the FD50 POS Terminal

First Data has introduced an affordable POS terminal featuring solid design and construction, easy operation and state-of-the-art security. The new “FD50” features touch-screen technology, five USB ports, 64 megabytes of memory, and is off-the-shelf multi-language capable. It is the latest addition to the expanding First Data proprietary terminal line, which already includes the “FD100.” The “FD50” terminal supports both dial-up and IP communications. With the addition of optional peripheral equipment, the “FD50” terminal can also accept contactless payments, and checks using TeleCheck ECA or paper solutions.

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Higher One Set to Acquire EduCard

CT-based Higher One has signed acquisition agreements to takeover EduCard from its affiliate, CA-based Evisions. Using “Intellecheck” technology, EduCard provides users with paperless payment solutions through the “Intellecard” stored value card and with this acquisition provides “Intellecheck” clients with greater convenience and faster refund payment transfers directly to Higher One disbursement management. Higher One has managed disbursements of over $4 billion in refunds, currently serving 5% of all college students in the United States, while Evisions Software Developer provides 900 Higher Education Institutions with its products and services.

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Moneris Teams with Infonox for TranSending

IL-based Moneris Solutions has partnered with Infonox for the implementation of the Internet-based “TranSending” automated merchant acquiring solution. Ultimately to provide savings costs and efficiency, Moneris will be deploying the Infonox solution to automate sales management, back office functionality, merchant reporting solutions and to manage/organize sales leads, online merchant application submission, underwriting, service agreements and profitability analysis. “TranSending” also provides Moneris customers with a portal in which to access a document library, help center and customized report for statistical trends and transaction details. Infonox “TranSending” platform provides businesses with complete automation while Moneris credit and debit card processor has assets of over $700 billion, serves more than 350,000 North American merchant locations and has a staff of over 1,100 employees.

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VIDEOGUARD & PAY-TV

Premier has deployed “VideoGuard” NDS content protection technology
to secure its “Pay-TV” satellite platform for 2Q08. With this development,
Premiere and NDS will migrate operations to protect 82.7 million
“VideoGuard” devices around the world. In doing so, the smart cards
currently deployed will be replaced by the said software using Premier’s
“Simulcrypt” technology and NDS’ “MediaHighway” middleware. NDS
middleware of this nature has been deployed in over 76.4 million devices
worldwide. Premiere serves 11 million viewers in about 4.2 million
households
while NDS end-to-end digital technology is available on digital
pay-television
platforms.

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U.S. Bank Credit Card Charge-Offs Approach 4%

U.S. Bancorp reported that its first quarter merchant acquiring volume grew more than 12% over 1Q/07 to $64.9 billion, produced from 846,108 merchants. Average credit card loans were up more than 4% year-on-year to $11.0 billion. However, credit card charge-offs rose to 3.93% from 3.29% in the fourth quarter and 3.48% one-year ago. Payment Services contributed $289 million of the Company’s net income in the first quarter, a 25.1% increase over the same period of 2007 and a 9.4%t decrease from the fourth quarter. Net interest income increased due to strong growth in higher yielding credit card balances and the timing of asset repricing in a declining rate environment. U.S. Bank says the decrease in Payment Services’ contribution in the first quarter was due to seasonally lower fee-based revenues and an increase in the provision for credit losses due to portfolio growth and changing economic conditions. Total net revenue was lower due to a 6.9% decrease in total noninterest income, partially offset by a 10.0% increase in net interest income in this declining rate environment. Merchant processing services also declined on a linked quarter basis due to seasonally lower transaction volumes and the impact of the mix of business on interchange rates. For complete details on U.S. Bancorp’s 1Q/08 performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

MERCHANT ACQUIRING VOLUME HISTORICAL
1Q/06: $49,222,000,000
2Q/06: $56,056,000,000
3Q/06: $56,411,000,000
4Q/06: $56,007,000,000
1Q/07: $57,839,000,000
2Q/07: $62,853,000,000
3Q/07: $63,882,000,000
4Q/07: $62,382,000,000
1Q/08: $64,853,000,000
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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WU & ABSA

Western Union and the Absa Group have signed agreements to provide
WU’s “Money Transfer Service” for inbound/outbound monetary transfers
at Absa branches throughout South Africa in time for 2H08. The agreement
taps the South African remittance market valued at approximately $735
million inbound and $1 billion outbound transfers for 2006. WU global
money transfer services provides money remittance through a network of
over 335,000 Agent locations in 200 countries while The Absa Group
Limited (Absa) financial services group has a market capitalisation of R75
billion, assets of R641 billion, 892 points of presence, 9 million
customers,
7,687 ATMs and 36,893 employees.

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I-SERIES TERMINALS

First Data has awarded Ingenico “i-Series” transaction terminals, which
includes its “i5100,” “i7780” and “i3010” PIN pads, with its “Class A”
certification. The final certification will be complete before the end
of 2008 and allows Ingenico to promote its products through the First
Data channels. First Data also offers its “Class B+” certification,
currently available for certain channels. First Data Corp provides
electronic commerce and payment solutions for businesses worldwide
through its operations in 37 countries, over 5.4 million merchant
locations and 2,000 card issuers.

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