VISA & BTA

VISA International and the Beijing Tourism Administration have
launched the “Best Merchants in Beijing” program for the promotion of
merchant acceptance of international payment cards in time for the 2008
Olympic Games. Throughout Beijing, the program will focus on 9 tourist
locations and expects nearly 1,000 merchants to join. As incentive, VISA
will provide the merchants with free training and will select ten merchants
every month to be awarded with a ticket to the Games. For the event, it is
expected that nearly 7,000,000 people will flood the area, 500,000 of whom
are expected to come from overseas. Following the VISA Merchant
acceptance expansion for the Olympic Games, nearly 10,000 more merchants
are expected to join the initiative by 2008. Visa connects 1.59 billion
cardholders and more than 26 million merchants and financial institutions
through a global electronic payments network.

Details

Payment Rates Drop 61 Basis Points in June

Monthly payment rates continued to spiral downward during June, falling to its lowest level in two years. The MPR, or the amount that cardholders pay on their credit card debt each month, peaked in October of last year, reaching almost 21%. The higher payment rates were driven by new minimum payment standards. According to CardData, the MPR declined to 18.40% in June, compared to 19.01% in the prior month and 19.99% one-year ago. While the dip historically has been seasonal, it appears that many borrowers are increasingly pressured by current economic factors. The combination of higher interest rates and a cooling off of the real estate market diminished the attractiveness of “cash out” refinancing activity in which many borrowers reduced their more expensive credit card debt by drawing on the equity in their home — either by refinancing their mortgages or by accessing their home equity lines of credit.

MONTHLY PAYMENT RATES
Jun 06: 19.99%
Jul 06: 20.46%
Aug 06: 20.20%
Sep 06: 20.02%
Oct 06: 20.83%
Nov 06: 20.01%
Dec 06: 19.70%
Jan 07: 19.88%
Feb 07: 18.79%
Mar 07: 18.21%
Apr 07: 18.04%
May 07: 19.01%
Jun 07: 18.40%
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

Details

TSYS & TINKOFF

TSYS Card Tech will provide Tinkoff Credit Systems with card management
and authorization. This development will allow the Moscow Bank to expand its
portfolio and minimize cost using the TSYS solution, “PRIME” 3.0. Tinkoff
processes nearly 10 million card transactions daily and is soon to be
the first
credit card monoliner in the country. TSYS Card Tech is a subsidiary of TSYS
and serves over 300 clients in more than 75 countries with 13 offices
around
the world.

Details

Concur Acquires Gelco Expense Management

WA-based Concur has agreed to acquire privately-held H-G Holdings and its subsidiaries, including Gelco Information Network. Gelco owns the “Gelco Expense Management” service. Under the terms of the agreement, Concur will pay $160 million in cash for all of the outstanding equity securities of H-G Holdings. Concur is the top provider of on-demand “Employee Spend Management” services.

Details

WIRECARD 1H07 SALES

Wirecard AG has released figures suggesting continued growth for 1H07
with a 55% increase in sales since 06, of 56.5 million euro and a 62%
increase in EBIT with a volume of 13.3 million euro. From 1Q07, 2Q07
figures show a rise in sales by 19.3 million euro, a 55% increase and an
EBIT increase of 64%. Card products being introduced by Wirecard Bank
AG for electronic payment processing is a driving force behind the steadily
increasing revenue.

Details

Affluent Spending Rises 9% in 2Q/07

Affluent consumers went on a spending spree for luxuries in the second quarter. The typical luxury consumer spent $15,283 buying luxury goods and services during the second quarter, 9% more than the average expenditure of $14,024 in the first quarter. This according to the results of Unity Marketing’s “Luxury Tracking” survey of 1,000 affluent consumers conducted at the close of the second quarter (average income $155,500 and average age 44.3 years). Luxury dining rose 23%, entertainment 53%, and travel 21%, according to Unity Marketing.

Details

JUNE DEBT

Credit card outstandings declined during June by GBP 300 million to GBP 53.5 billion. This is the fifth straight monthly drop and remains well below the December 2005 peak of GBP 59.0 billion. Year-on-year credit card outstandings (not seasonally adjusted) are running about 5% lower than one-year ago. According to the The Bank of England, the three-month annualized growth rate in net lending to individuals fell by 0.1 percentage points to 9.2%.

Details

500 Internet Retailers Add the PaidByCash Option

Retail Expansion Network announced that more than 500 Internet retailers have added PaidByCash to their sites. PaidByCash enables consumers to easily use cash to make purchases online by obtaining a virtual prepaid MasterCard card account. Shoppers may load a PaidByCash card account with an exact amount for a one-time online purchase or load up to $350 and make multiple online purchases. Any online retailer that accepts Debit MasterCard can accept PaidByCash. The PaidByCash Virtual Prepaid MasterCard account is issued by First Bank of Delaware.

Details

Pay By Touch Hires a New CFO

Pay By Touch announced that Robert M. Sigler, Co-Founder and President of the Global Trust Ventures private equity fund, joins the company as CFO. Sigler has over 20 years of experience in accounting, finance, investment banking, mergers, acquisitions, capital markets, private equity, divestitures, venture strategy and management at leading companies such as Sanford Bernstein, Credit Suisse, Price Waterhouse and the Financial Accounting Foundation. He has served as Founder, CEO and/or CFO of a number of private companies and is the Co-Founder and President of the Global Trust Ventures private equity fund, a significant investor in Pay By Touch.

Details

Pentagroup Financial Gets LIFT From First Data

Pentagroup Financial has adopted “Call Manager”, a First Data LIFT analytic solution, which is powered by Intelligent Results. Pentagroup’s collection platform assists creditors in achieving higher profitability and improving cash flow by utilizing deep industry expertise, next-generation intuitive technology and a performance-driven collections team. Pentagroup will deploy LIFT in a hosted environment, which will enable the company to capture a time-to-market advantage. First Data Solutions, the data analytics services business unit of First Data, will host the service. Pentagroup Financial provides accounts receivable management. The Intelligent Results analytics platform allows companies to better understand and predict customer behavior.

Details