Capital One Introduces a No Interest Card

Giesecke & Devrient (G&D), provider of smart cards and smart card
solutions, has appointed Jean-Louis Dieu as CEO. Dieu has experience
in the smart card field dating back to 1977 with companies such as
Datacard France, Axycartes, and most recently as head of the French
Activities Department at Oberthur Card. G&D provides French banking
and telecommunications markets with its end-to-end smart card solutions
and is developing answers for the integration of smart card-based products
for industry and local administration.

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Card Users Don’t Use All Benefits

Travelex and Retail Decisions card issuer have partnered for fraud
prevention services. ReD’s card fraud prevention solutions will be applied
to Travelex’s “Cash Passport” prepaid travel card. “Cash Passport” can be
loaded in any currency for withdrawals, while traveling, from over 1
million foreign VISA ATMs and numerous VISA merchant terminals. ReD
will implement “PRISM,” which scores 35 to 50 million transactions
daily, to
monitor “Cash Passport” usage patterns and detect fraud. The Travelex
product has 600,000 cards issued around the world with a 30% growth in
the past year among UK consumers.

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Verizon & Chase Paymentech Team for Processing

Verizon Merchant Services, “Payments Powered by Chase Paymentech” has been launched, targeting small and medium-sized businesses. The new broadband service offers the ability to process card transactions in a fraction of the time it would take with a dial-up connection. Dial-up terminals can take between 15-20 seconds to process each transaction while the Verizon service can process each transaction in a fraction of that time. Verizon offers IP-enabled terminals with up to 3 Mbps of high-speed Internet connection. In addition to broadband Internet access, Verizon solutions include online backup storage, e-mail encryption and communications management tools. Chase Paymentech processed approximately 18.2 billion transactions in 2006, with more than $660.6 billion in annual bankcard and debit volume from 600,000 merchants. Verizon Wireless has 60.7 million customers nationwide.

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ONEPULSE CARD

Barclaycard is launching a super payment card that combines the “Oyster” mass transit card with a contactless VISA credit card this fall. The new “OnePulse VISA” will target 10 million “Oyster” cardholders. The new card will have three functions: “Oyster Card,” “Chip and PIN,” and contactless. In May VISA announced that its “payWave” contactless card payments will see a commercial roll-out as early as September throughout London. HSBC, HBOS, Lloyds TSB, and Barclays all indicated they will launch contactless payments by year’s end. VISA is currently introducing contactless facilities at retailers in Canary Wharf, Liverpool Street, Moorgate, Fenchurch Street, London Bridge, Charing Cross and Waterloo Stations. “VISA payWave” also expects launches throughout Europe, and the next one has just been announced in Turkey. Denizbank’s “Sea&Miles” cards will feature “payWave” that can be used on Istanbul Seabuses and a number of retailers. Other “VISA payWave” plans are already well developed in France, Spain and Switzerland.

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Barclays Launches the VEGAS.com MasterCard

Barclays has landed the VEGAS.com co-branded credit card from MBNA. The new “VEGAS.com MasterCard” allows customers to earn “Frequent Vegas Points” redeemable for hotels, shows and Vegas merchandise. Every dollar spent on the card earns points and every purchase on VEGAS.com earns double points. Cardholders receive a bonus of 2,000 points with the first purchase made on the “VEGAS.com MasterCard.” VEGAS.com merchandise rewards begin at 1,995 points; hotel and show rewards begin at 5,000 points. Barclay’s has co-brand deals with US Air, Frontier, Midwest, AirTran, ATA), plus Best Western hotels, Carnival cruises, Travelocity and Orbitz. In 2003, MBNA and VEGAS.com signed a five-year deal to launch “Platinum Plus” or “Preferred” VISA credit card tied to the new “VEGAS.com Reward Program.” (CF Library 6/16/03)

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Western Union And Subsidiaries Convene On Issues

e-Smart Technologies has opened an engineering production center in Seoul,
South Korea. The center will produce manufacturing designs, oversight
control,
quality control, product delivery control, research and development for
the Asian
market. e-Smart Technologies supplies the Biometric Verification
Security System,
the Super Smart Card and related system technologies for Asia, Africa
and the
US. The smartcard has an on-card sensor and a full match on-card system for
biometric ID verification. These technologies provide governments,
public and
private institutions, healthcare providers and insurers, and companies with
protection.

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M&A Activity in the ARM Industry Remains High

Merger and acquisition activity remains high for the Accounts Receivable Management industry with a total deal value at nearly $1 billion through the second quarter. According to Kaulkin Ginsberg there have been 25 transactions with a total estimated deal value of roughly $910 million this year. The first two quarters of last year saw 28 deals with an estimated total deal value of $790 million, but 2006 went on to set a new industry record of $3.1 billion for the year. The management-led buyout of NCO Group and the recapitalization of West Corporation led an ARM deal value of $1.6 billion in the fourth quarter. The largest transaction of the second quarter occurred in May, when West Corporation purchased Omnium Worldwide for $150 million. Other significant transactions included the purchase of a 25% stake in Encore Capital Group by investors from J.C. Flowers and FPK Capital; the $64 million purchase of ARM agency Creditors Interchange Receivables Management by Debt Resolve; and the $55 million purchase of Nationwide Credit by Ocwen Financial.

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VASCO Introduces a Speaking Card Reader

AOK Insurance has chosen Gemalto to personalize and deliver 35
million e-Health cards to German customers. The cards are designed
to carry electronic prescriptions, prevent duplicate examinations and
will carry patient information including blood group, allergies alerts
and ongoing treatments records. The cards will operate on a secure
platform and authenticate patients’ identities using a PIN to prevent
fraud. Gemalto has operations in nearly 100 countries and has 11,000
employees. AOK has been in operation for 100 years, has 26.5
million customers, a staff of 64,260 and more than 1,500 branches.

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Merchant Link and Panasonic Team for the QSR Market

MD-based Merchant Link and Panasonic announced agreements with 17 national quick service restaurant franchisees for a payment gateway solution. The agreements cover Merchant Link’s siteNET product, which provides these restaurants with one connectivity point to the American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa payment card networks to process credit card, debit card and prepaid/gift card transactions. Additional agreements with other franchisees and national chains are expected to be announced over the coming months. Merchant Link provides comprehensive, secure solutions to the integrated point-of-sale industry, including high-end technical support and data transport services. Merchant Link currently supports more than 100,000 hotels, restaurants, ballparks, and other venues, and maintains connectivity to the major US payment card processors.

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ACI Worldwide Extends Processing Agreement With JCB

Banco Esprito Santo(BES) will be implementing the “Teamworks BPM”
software solution designed by Lombardi business process management
(BPM). For its major areas of concern, including retail, private banking
(domestic and international), corporate banking (middle market),
wholesale and investment banking (Portugal, Spain and Brazil), BES
hopes to achieve better service. Service BES is targeting a focus on
customer service issues such as poor response times, poor quality of
responses, and decreasing lack of accountability. BES has revenues of
8.25 billion and is the third largest bank in Portugal. Lombardi develops
business process management software for both private and government
agencies.

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