Javelin Releases a Mobile Payments Forecast

Javelin Strategy & Research has released an analysis of the critical factors that will make contactless and other mobile payments adoption more probable. To realize this convergence, financial institutions and payment networks must understand the roles and needs of additional players in the value chain-most notably wireless carriers and merchants and has created a forecast model for the adoption of contactless payments. The report looks at the following areas: What is the likelihood of adoption for various mobile payment types-contactless, mobile internet transactions, and mobile person-to-person transactions; what is the value to each constituent in the value chain and how is that value realized; what is the role of wireless carriers in the value chain; what is necessary to attract merchant acceptance beyond “traditional” merchant categories and how will alternative payment mechanisms affect mobile person-to-person and mobile e-commerce transactions?

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TD Banknorth & TD Canada Collaborate To Eliminate Fees

TD Banknorth customers can now use TD Canada Trust ATMs to make
withdrawals free of charge. According to an announcement by both companies,
the foreign ATM fee will be waived when the bank’s customers use any of
TD Canada’s 2,500 “Green Machines”. In addition, TD Canada customers
will have the same advantage when using any of TD Banknorth’s 700 ATMs
throughout the New England & Mid-Atlantic area. TD Banknorth is a
commercial banking organization with over $40 billion in assets. TD Bank
Financial Group serves more than 14 million customers around the world,
including over 4.5 million on-line customers, and has nearly $397
billion in
assets.

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Level Four Partners with Spain’s Aurigae

Level Four Software has partnered with Spanish payment processor Aurigae for the delivery of “BRIDGE:test” to banks and ATMs.
“BRIDGE:test” is being introduced in Spain to offer banks an
independent automated testing solution for ATM networks providing
efficiency. This is an alternative to manual testing of ATM software
which is cost, resource and risk intensive. Also, Aurigae will provide
sales assistance, implementation and consultancy services for Level
Four products in Spain. “BRIDGE:test” is an ATM network based
on the industry-wide CEN/XFS open standard. Aurigae specializes in
payment systems in financial, telecommunication and retail sectors with
the development of turn-key projects and consultancy services in system,
and application, areas.

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FDC Introduces The Vue Gift Card

First Data International has introduced a gift card for the Vue cinema chain
for use at 58 of the cinema’s locations to purchase tickets, consumer and
retail items. The cards will be offered in both a standard edition and
editions
promoting new releases. Graphics on the card will represent the movies
currently including “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”, “Shrek 3”,
“Transformers”, “Evan Almighty” and “The Simpson’s Movie”. First Data will
provide processing and card procurement services to enable delivery of the
new gift card program. The card can be redeemed until the credit is
entirely
used. Once the card balance is GBP 0, the card is re-loadable for
continued use
in increments of GPB 5 up to GBP 250. Vue owns 59 multiplexes across the
UK and Ireland, has over 570 screens, and continues expansion with plans to
open 15 to 20 new sites in the next 2-3 years.

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CUP Data Provides Processing For Huaxia Bank

TSYS has announced that China UnionPay (CUP) Data Services is
processing bankcard accounts, transactions, disaster recovery and other
services for Huaxia Bank. CUP Data is China’s 3rd largest bank processor
with over 30 signed credit- and debit-processing client banks. TSYS owns
a 44.5% equity stake in CUP Data, which is a subsidiary of China UnionPay.

TSYS is an American company that offers outsourced payment services
including a range of issuer- and acquirer-processing technologies that
support
consumer-finance, credit, debit and prepaid services for financial
institutions
and retail companies in the Americas, EMEA and Asia-Pacific regions.

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Finaref Launches the Madelios Private-Label Card

Finaref has introduced the Madelios card for the Paris Department
store of the same name to be marketed as “le privilège de l’homme”
(“a man’s privilege”). This card is the first issued by Finaref for a
single store and is a private-label card introduced with the intent on
increasing customer loyalty, drive sales, and increase the store’s footfall
and average spend. Benefits offered by the Madelios Card include a
15% reduction throughout the store on the day the card is taken out,
discounts ranging from 15-30% several times a year on certain
merchandise, free delivery within central Paris, an hour of free parking
and 50% off alterations. Madelios sells nearly 100 brands, has floorspace
of 4,000 m² across two floors and a comfortable environment for
customers, 80% of whom are men.

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PCI Security Vendor Alliance Adds Twelve

The Payment Card Industry Security Vendor Alliance has twelve new members that include ADTRAN, AirMagnet, Compliance Security Partners, Compuware, Control Path, Envision Inc., GSI Hosting, Ounce Labs, Patrick Townsend & Associates, Tripwire, Unified Compliance Framework, and Visonys AG. PCI SVA members, all with strong experience in delivering PCI compliance solutions to thousands of customers, will leverage their combined knowledge to support the objectives of the PCI Security Standards Council. PCI SVA’s founding members are ConfigureSoft, Inc., Cyber-Ark, Inc., Modulo Security, Proginet, Inc., Protegrity USA, Inc., Reflex Security and Safe-Net, Inc. The PCI SVA was formed in January 2007 to work with the retail and payment card industries to develop an efficient and cost-effective way to achieve compliance with the PCI Data Security Standards (PCI DSS).

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APR DEBT

Credit card debt inched up in April setting a new record of A$39.6 billion. Credit card volume was up 16% compared to one year ago and remains sluggish in the wake of credit card surcharge fees. Credit card debt rose 12%, compared to April 2006. Credit card limits also reached a new high at A$107.9 billion, marking the eighth consecutive month of A$100+ billion. Card volume was A$15.3 billion during April, compared to a previous record of A$17.1 billion set in December, according to the Reserve Bank of Australia. One-year ago credit card debt stood at A$35.4 billion. There are currently 13.5 million credit card and charge card accounts in Australia, compared to 12.9 million one-year ago.

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Hammersley to Lead CivisCard Development

A former HSBC card executive has taken over the controls at a small prepaid card business. Bruce Hammersley, former managing director – business development retail services for HSBC Bank, has become president and CEO of Chicago-based Civis Financial. The Company offers the “CivisCard” prepaid debit card to the unbanked and underbanked market. Civis was founded in 2001 by Ken Gay, who has been elected a vice chairman and will continue to lead the company’s operational and technology efforts. Hammersley joined Household International in 1990 and was named Director of HFC Business Initiatives in 1998. He was subsequently named CFO of Household Canada in 2000. Hammersley became Group Director of Centralized Sales and Partnerships in 2003 after Household was acquired by HSBC.

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Verizon Wireless to Offer Obopay M-Payments

Verizon Wireless announced plans to make Obopay’s mobile payment service available to its customers this summer. Obopay will initially run on Verizon Wireless mobile phones as a “BREW” application that can be downloaded from the Verizon online catalog. After downloading the application, users will be able to sign up for the service directly from their Verizon Wireless mobile devices or via Obopay’s Website. The service will also be made available as part of Verizon Wireless’ Mobile “Web 2.0” service. In May Cellular South announced the availability of Obopay’s mobile payments solution on Cellular South handsets. (CF Library 5/4/07)

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VISA Annual QSR Volume Rises 30%+ in 1Q/07

VISA USA reports that the number of VISA card transactions at quick service restaurants increased 31% and debit card usage grew 32% over the previous year. VISA says the QSR segment represents more than $160 billion in spending, with more than 80% of transactions conducted in cash. Industrywide, QSR volume topped $50 billion last year driven by major incentives from the card networks. VISA currently has partnered with Burger King on a summer promotion called “The Fastest Way to a Free Meal” program. VISA also released a survey that found one in five survey respondents are using cards to pay for more than half of their purchases at QSRs. The poll discovered that respondents would make additional purchases with their cards if they could get through lines faster; had the opportunity to earn rewards or free meals; more locations accepted payment cards; or they could swipe their own card.

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Canadian ATM Fees Eliminated for TD Banknorth

TD Banknorth customers can now use any TD Canada Trust ATM in Canada to make withdrawals without incurring a foreign ATM fee of $1.75. TD Canada Trust customers are also able to use any of TD Banknorth’s more than 700 ATMs located throughout New England and the Mid-Atlantic without incurring extra fees. TD Canada Trust has more than 2,500 Green Machinesâ”one of Canada’s largest ATM networks. Customers using their VISA debit card will be subject to a VISA international assessment fee that is equivalent to the exchange rate plus 1 percent. TD Bank Financial Group serves more than 14 million customers with $397 billion in assets.

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