MICROREAD AWARD

INSIDE Contactless has announced its finalist status in the “2008 Mobile
Innovation Global Awards”, selected for its “MicroRead” NFC offering.
The “Mobile Innovation Global Awards” will award 1 finalist from each of
the 5 categories, 1 overall winner and, given INSIDE’s victory, will
demonstrate
the potential of NFC in confirming the evolution of the user-environment
dynamic. INSIDE has over 55 patents, has been designing contactless chip
solutions for 12 years, has delivered over 35 million “MicroPass” platforms
between 2005 and 2007 for nearly 20 leading bank card issuers and has
more than 25 key partners around the world.

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VISA PAYWAVE TRIAL

TD Canada announced it will be implementing the “VISA payWave”
contactless payment feature for its “TD VISA” chip card trial underway
in Kitchener-Waterloo. In conjunction with this development, TD has also
announced the installation of over 300 additional VISA “payWave” secure
contactless readers at merchant locations across the trial area during
the coming months. Select “TD VISA” cardholders in the
Kitchener-Waterloo area will receive their new dual interface chip and
“VISA payWave”-enabled card beginning in April. TD Canada Trust is the
only financial institution in Canada to offer both “VISA
payWave”-enabled products and point-of-sale acceptance.

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Southern FCU Moves Debit Cards to TNB

Southern Federal Credit Union has moved its debit card processing sector to operate under TNB Card Services. With this development, the organizations strengthen an already existing relationship and will enhance settlement and back-office operations. Furthermore, the partnership will allow Southern FCU to more effectively to settle funds and responsiveness to customers. Southern FCU currently has 3,400 members and assets of $32 million while TNB Card Services provides electronic payments processing and agent issuing solutions for nearly 500 credit unions and manages over 1.8 million cards.

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SILVERBIRCH, G4BOX & ONEBIP

For the expansion of its “Metin2” mobile game, SilverBirch Studios
and G4Box have signed agreements with the OneBip cell phone
payment company. With this agreement, “Metin2” players can
purchase items for the game without using a credit card or bank
account. “Metin2”, 3-D medieval digital game has been voted as a top
10 MMORPG’s for 2007. SilverBirch Studios game developer provides
handheld, mobile and online games, focusing on end-to-end development
while G4Box distributes MMORPG games.

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CardFlash Looks Back to December 2007

CPI Card Group expands its “green” manufacturing initiative by using wind power to runs its Colorado plant. BofA introduces the new “Brighter Planet VISA” from Bank of America enables cardholders to earn one “EarthSmart” point for every $1 spent in purchases. VeriFone’s stock collapses after the Company reported that its financial reports for this year were not accurate. MasterCard introduces the first prepaid travel card with contactless technology. Discover Financial Services says it will take a $422 million impairment charge related to its “Goldfish MasterCard” and “Goldfish VISA” credit card business in the U.K. for the quarter ending November 30th. Metavante inks an agreement to offer its merchant clients full-service processing for all Discover Network card transactions. Omaha-based Planet Group has signed an agreement to acquire AZ-based Opticard Payment Services. Bankrate acquires Memphis-based Nationwide Card Services for $26.4 million in cash with a $7.0 million earn-out over the next two years. Payment card hologram specialist American Bank Note Holographics signs a deal to be acquired by communications specialist JDSU for $138 million in cash plus stock. GE indicates it is looking to sell or form a partnership for some of its GE Money services including its U.S. private-label credit-card business. Discover Financial Services buys the discover.com domain name, formerly used by Discover magazine, for $5 million. The European Commission decides to force drastic reductions on MasterCard Europe’s default cross-border interchange fees. Hypercom enters final negotiations to acquire the e-Transactions business line of Thales.

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Berman to Acquire Merchant Processing Intl

Berman Holdings is intending on acquiring Merchant Processing International. Processing nearly $5,000,000 in credit card settlements monthly and employing approximately 100 agents nationwide, Berman Holdings has signed a letter of intent for a 100% acquisition of the card processing organization with undisclosed terms. Having only recently joined the prepaid market, Merchant Processing sees much potential in the under banked market, estimated at $100 Billion per year in total revenue with 30% annual growth, and guarantees prepaid debit card approval for anyone with a valid ID.

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CardFlash Looks Back to November 2007

VISA Inc. reaches a $2.25 billion settlement with American Express over a 2004 antitrust lawsuit that claimed VISA and MasterCard illegally blocked AmEx from the bank-issued card business in the USA. VISA Inc. also files an IPO registration statement with the SEC that seeks to raise $10 billion, the second largest IPO offering of stock in U.S. history. Capital One and prepaid card specialist NetSpend pull the plug on their proposed merger. MA-based TJX Companies reaches a “Settlement Agreement” with VISA in regard to its security breach disclosed earlier in the year. A flat-panel VISA debit card is launched in the USA by TD Banknorth. MasterCard announces an organizational realignment broadening some executive responsibilities, hiring a new senior executive and beginning the transition process for the retirement of its COO, Alan Heuer, at the end of 2008. Barclays launches the “Princess Rewards VISA Signature” card. Affinion Group teams with Debix to offer a new tool that stops identity thieves from opening fraudulent credit accounts called “Debix Instant Authorization.” MBNA Canada Bank introduces the “Eco-Logique MasterCard.” Barclaycard US has teamed with CA-based Affinity Group to launch three credit card products that will enable cardholders to earn reward points on every purchase through a unified recreation rewards loyalty program. Starbucks reported that its customers loaded and redeemed more than $1 billion on its card products during 2007.

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Monthly Payment Rates Slide in December

Monthly payment rates, the amount that cardholders pay on their credit card debt, continued south in December. After topping 20% one-year ago, the MPR dropped 80 basis points between October and December. Among managed credit card outstandings, the MPR declined to 18.41% in December after rising to 19.21% in October. The MPR has remained fairly stable in the first three quarters of this year and remains consistent with historical levels since the new FFIEC minimum payment rules went in effect in 2005. According to CardData, the yield also decreased in December to 14.63% from 14.80% in November, but was flat compared to year-ago levels.

U.S. PORTFOLIO METRICS
YIELD MPR
Dec 06: 14.63% 19.70%
Jan 07: 14.77% 19.88%
Feb 07: 14.75% 19.81%
Mar 07: 15.01% 18.12%
Apr 07: 14.99% 18.04%
May 07: 14.87% 19.01%
Jun 07: 14.93% 18.40%
Jul 07: 14.77% 18.30%
Aug 07: 14.80% 18.99%
Sep 07: 14.71% 18.86%
Oct 07: 14.82% 19.21%
Nov 07: 14.80% 18.89%
Dec 07: 14.63% 18.41%
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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PayPal Fourth Quarter Revenues Climb 35%

eBay reported that PayPal posted $563 million in fourth quarter revenue, an increase of 35% year-over-year. Net total payment volume for the quarter was $14 billion, an increase of 35% over 4Q/06. At the end of the year PayPal had 57.3 million active accounts, a 16% increase from one-year ago. During the fourth quarter, PayPal handled 203.9 million payments, an 18% increase over the prior quarter, and up 22% from 4Q/06. PayPal’s 4Q/07 transaction revenue rate decreased to 3.84% from 3.87% in the prior quarter. The processing expense rate for the fourth quarter was 1.18%, compared to 1.13% for 4Q/06. PayPal’s transaction loss rate came in at 27 basis points, down 16 basis points from one-year ago. During the fourth quarter PayPal signed top merchant service account deals with U.S. Airways, AirTran, drugstore.com and Shop NBC among others. The payments company also hired four seasoned executives with deep consumer, technology and international experience to help drive the company’s ongoing expansion. For complete details on eBay/PayPal’s fourth quarter performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

PAYPAL HISTORICAL
$VOLUME #ACCOUNTS
4Q/06: $10.4 billion 49.4 million
1Q/07: $10.8 billion 51.3 million
2Q/07: $11.1 billion 52.8 million
3Q/07: $11.6 billion 54.8 million
4Q/07: $14.0 billion 57.3 million
SOURCE: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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

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AmEx to Launch a Travel Auction in Feb

American Express has rolled out the “Going Once” website, an auction style site that features a limited selection of fixed price travel packages. One new destination will be posted each day and once the travel package goes on sale at noon, the price drops every twenty minutes until 8:00 pm ET or until the package sells out, whichever comes first. The site will also feature a limited amount of nine fixed price packages under $2,500 and more than 70 exclusive premium travel offers. Cardmembers have the opportunity to choose from top vacation destinations, each offered in a full travel package with varying quantities, ranging from 10 to 30. Cardmembers can keep track of the quantities remaining as the prices drop to ensure they snag the package they want before it’s gone.

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Online Chargeback Database Introduced

Chargeback File has launched an online chargeback history database. With the new solution, retailers and merchants are afforded the knowledge of historical charge-backs and the illegal activity of billers, websites and message forums complete with emails and usernames, for a monthly charge of $4.95. The database currently holds adverse records of nearly 5 million and has over 60 million data points. The chargeback history data includes email addresses, known spammers, third-party billers, phone numbers, credit card chargebacks, auction usernames, and message forum usernames.

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