CLEAR2PAY & DIAGRAM EDI

Clear2Pay payment solutions has announced its recent acquisition of
Diagram EDI e-banking solutions under terms that have been
undisclosed . With this, e-banking solutions provider will become a
wholly owned, integrated business unit of the acquiring company.
Diagram EDI implements its multi-channel retail and banking solutions
throughout the electronic field with Internet solutions. Additionally,
these
solutions are designed for integration with existing financial platforms
and span a network that reaches over 250 clients in over 50 different
countries. Diagram EDI brings to Clear2Pay a staff of over 30 while
Clear2Pay provides secure electronic payments solutions around the
world and employs 300.

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OBERTHUR EXEC

Oberthur Card systems has appointed Jean-Francois Durand as the
VP of Global Manufacturing Americas. Durand has been with Oberthur
for 23 years and will oversee imminent plans to increase staff and upgrade
company manufacturing facilities, including new presses and finishing
equipment,
to double mag-stripe-card production. His advanced education includes a
B.S. in
Mechanical Engineering and, prior to this development, he was vice
president of
operations for Oberthur Gaming Technologies in San Antonio, TX and a plant
manager/director for Oberthur in Puy-Guillaume, France. Before joining the
Oberthur Group, Durand was a trainer and designer for the Michelin Tire
Company.

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GiftCertificates.com Expands Merchant Roster

Vanguard ID Systems has reached a milestone after it manufactured its one-billionth bar coded key tag. The company manufactures an award-winning product line composed of cards and key tags in a variety of styles and sizes for customer loyalty, membership, gift card programs, debit card programs, security access, time and attendance and many other applications. The cards and key tags incorporate bar code, magnetic stripe and/or RFID technologies. All products can be ordered with the DataGuard Security System, its patented attached label, to save time and money and streamline enrollment. According to Jupiter Research, more than 75% of consumers participate in at least one loyalty program and the vast majority carries their loyalty card on their key chain. The convenience of the bar coded key tag has been a boon to loyalty marketing programs offered by retailers and manufacturers, and ensures that consumers don’t miss out on valuable deals that are particularly relevant to them.

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VISA GEAR

Canada has emerged as the world’s leading nation for government electronic payments because of the government’s comprehensive electronic administration procedures. The finding comes from VISA’s “Government ePayments Adoption Ranking” that measures the extent to which governments in 43 countries provide key payment services on electronic platforms. The “GEAR” study was underwritten by VISA and conducted independently by the Economist Intelligence Unit. The rankings show that Canada is followed in order by the United Kingdom, Germany, the United States, Sweden, Australia, South Korea, France, Hong Kong and Singapore. VISA says one of the interesting findings in the study is that developing countries, notably Turkey, China and Brazil, have overcome the limitation of their infrastructures and introduced effective electronic payment systems.

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Vanguard ID Systems Sets a Key Tag Record

Vanguard ID Systems has reached a milestone after it manufactured its one-billionth bar coded key tag. Vanguard ID Systems manufactures Auto ID cards and key tags. Its award-winning product line includes cards and key tags in a variety of styles and sizes for customer loyalty, membership, gift and debit card programs, security access, time and attendance, and many other applications. The cards and key tags incorporate bar code, magnetic stripe and/or RFID technologies. All products can be ordered with the DataGuard Security System, its patented attached label, to save time and money and streamline enrollment. According to Jupiter Research, more than 75% of consumers participate in at least one loyalty program, and the vast majority carries their loyalty card on their key chain. The convenience of the bar coded key tag has been a boon to loyalty marketing programs offered by retailers and manufacturers, and ensures that consumers don’t miss out valuable deals that are particularly relevant to them.

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AR GROWTH & PROBENEFIT

AR Growth has signed agreements for the acquisition of Probenefit S.A.
credit card, pension and insurance company. The terms of the agreements
stipulate that AR Growth will acquire 50% of the outstanding shares of the
organization for an initial disbursement of USD $1.0 million cash to be
followed by a secondary payment of USD $4.0 million by April 30, 2008
and a third installment of USD $5.0 million maturing on April 30, 2010.
Probenefit has approximately $30.3 million in assets, generated $17.9
million
in revenue for 2007 with $690,000 in after tax profit, representing a 45%
increase in revenue and an 83% increase in after tax profit over 2006.

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Credit Card ABS Remains Stable & Growing

A new analysis of the credit card securitization market reveals that it is alive and well despite investors concerns regarding the entire market in the wake of the meltdown in the sub-prime mortgage sector. New credit card ABS issues are up 30% over last year and may hit $80 billion by year end. According to a new report from TowerGroup, new credit card ABS issues through September exceeded $69.0 billion and is the only asset-based segment to grow this year. The research firm notes that close monitoring of issuing banks by several government agencies means that the credit card ABS market is subject to less volatility than mortgage-backed securities. However, a weakening economy, rising delinquency rates, and problems with sub-prime will raise the cost of funding all ABS issues. The U.S. credit card ABS market currently exceeds $400 billion.

CREDIT CARD ABS ISSUANCE
2003: $68 billion
2004: $63 billion
2005: $58 billion
2006: $60 billion
2007: $78 billion
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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AEROPLAN & NECTAR

The country’s top loyalty marketing company has signed a deal to acquire the U.K.’s largest customer rewards program. Montreal-based Aeroplan has agreed to acquire London-based LMG, the owner of the “Nectar” loyalty card program, for about US$745 million. Besides the “Nectar” program, LMG operates Insight & Communications and Loyalty International. About half of U.K. households participate in the “Nectar” loyalty program along with 15 national retail brands. Aeroplan says the two loyalty programs, “Nectar” and “Aeroplan,” will continue to be
operated separately. Members’ participation in their respective program
is unaffected. Rupert Duchesne will remain President and CEO of Aeroplan. Alex Moorhead and his executive team will continue the management of LMG. LMG is being acquired from Sir Keith Mills (Chairman of LMG), global private equity investor Warburg Pincus and the management team. The transaction is expected to close by the end of the
year.

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Springbok Services Lands a TSYS Exec

Prepaid card solution provider Springbok Services has hired Brad Fauss, previously with TSYS Prepaid, as SVP and general counsel. Fauss held the position of senior vice president of Legal, Risk and Compliance for TSYS Prepaid, Inc. He also served as division general counsel for Global Payments Inc., a leading merchant acquirer, where he focused on mergers and acquisitions, securities compliance and general corporate transactional work. Before entering the world of electronic transaction processing, Fauss practiced law with Alston & Bird, LLP in Atlanta, Ga. and with Parker, Poe, Adams, and Bernstein, LLC in Raleigh, N.C. Fauss received his Juris Doctor degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law and his Bachelor of Science degree in finance from Florida State University. Springbok Services is a leading provider of prepaid MasterCard card solutions.

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Mall Networks Wins Product of the Year

MA-based loyalty solution provider Mall Networks has received a 2007 Product of the Year Award from Technology Marketing Corporation’s Customer Interaction Solutions magazine. Customer Interaction Solutions recognized Mall Networks for its market-leading multi-channel “Loyalty Shopping Suite”, which powers a strategic merchant network, a personalized multi-channel shopping experience and a best-in-class loyalty shopping platform. The Loyalty Shopping Suite increases revenue, strengthens customer loyalty and improves member engagement for financial institutions, card issuers, loyalty programs and affinity organizations. Mall Networks is a provider of merchant-funded loyalty shopping solutions that increase revenue, strengthen customer loyalty and improve member engagement for financial institutions, card issuers, loyalty programs and affinity organizations.

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Mint.com Expands Money Management Services

Online financial management provider Mint.com has introduced new enhanced features to their product line. The new features include “Budgeting and Budget Alerts”. Mint users can set budgets in any spending category, and track spending versus that budget throughout the month. If requested, users can receive email or text message alerts if they exceed their target and “Account Naming and Customized Views” to view spending in business accounts separately from spending in personal accounts, or view individual accounts separately from joint accounts. In addition, bank and credit card accounts can now be renamed by users. Taken together, these enhancements enable users to create a more customized and intuitive view of their spending. Mint.com provides an automatic, secure, and nearly instantaneous snapshot of a person’s spending, organizing over $3.5 billion in user transactions, and identifying over $55 million in savings opportunities.

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