Experian Acquires Tallyman

Experian has acquired Tallyman debt collection to become part of the
company’s Decision Analytics division. Tallyman ensures that revenue
collection processes are aligned with company’s business’ objectives
and currently has over 40 clients using the solution to manage over 1.25
billion GBP in debt. The solution developed by the two companies
will allow organizations to add value by making the collections function
more efficient and impacting their overall profitability. Furthermore, the
new solution will improve the productivity of each action addressed to
individual customers.

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MasterCard and Home Depot Launch a Promotion

MasterCard and The Home Depot have launced the “$100,000 Backyard Retreat Sweepstakes.” MasterCard cardholders in the U.S. are automatically entered for a chance to win a “$100,000 Backyard Retreat” each time they use their MasterCard cards at The Home Depot between now and June 23rd. Consumers automatically receive double sweepstakes entries when using “The Home Depot Rewards MasterCard” or “The Home Depot Business Rewards MasterCard” cards. MasterCard and Home Depot are supporting the promotion with a fully-integrated media platform which will encompass print, online and radio and will appear in publications including: Better Homes & Garden, Real Simple, and Ladies Home Journal. The Home Depot is also supporting the promotion with point-of-sale materials in more than 2,000 retail stores nationwide.

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QNB Migrates Card Portfolio to PRIME 3

Qatar National Bank has announced the completion of its
card portfolio migration to TSYS’ merchant management service,
“PRIME 3”. With the introduction of “PRIME 3”, TSYS helped
the bank convert data from 81,000 card accounts, 32,000
customers and 2,300 merchants. The open architecture of
“PRIME 3” streamlines integration with existing bank and third
party interfaces, and offers multi-institution, workflow and
case-management features. The solution supports EMV
chip-card programs, web-services, and offers support from
TSYS Card Tech’s office in Dubai, and the company’s
24-hour support service facility.

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VISA INTL 2006

VISA International reported that total volume for its consumer debit and prepaid programs, including cash transactions, grew by 17% last year to $2.68 trillion. This compares with a total volume of $2.29
trillion for the same period in 2005. Debit and prepaid now account for
60% of VISA global total consumer volume and over 67% of the number of VISA transactions, based on total consumer volume of $4.4 trillion and 59.9 billion total transactions. During 2006 VISA launched a prepaid loading network in the U.S., enabling users to add value to their VISA prepaid cards through a network of more than 60,000 everyday shopping locations such as supermarkets, drugstores and discount retailers.

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GCA To Provide Cash Access to Partouche

Global Cash Access(GCA) has announced that it will be providing
Partouche Group casino customers with cash access. In doing so,
GCA will install “QuickCash” kiosks in the casinos and credit card
cash advance transactions through cashiers, whom will be using
the GCA “QuikCash Plus Web browser”. The GCA “QuikCash Plus
Web browser” speeds transactions, thus improving customer service.
GCA provides over 1,000 casinos around the world with cash access
products for their patrons.

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CPI Launches a Contactless Initiative

CPI Card Group, Inc. has developed a new contactless payment card “Kick Start” initiative for first-time MasterCard PayPass issuers to encourage issuers to commit to their first deployment of PayPass in 2007. Issuers who place their first orders for PayPass-enabled cards before the end of Q2 will receive substantial pricing discounts. The program will feature cards manufactured by CPI using INSIDE Contactless’ MicroPass L4-2G platform with a Smartrac half-size antenna. Not only will issuers benefit from the lower cost per card, they will receive program deployment support for initial and follow-on deployments from CPI. The special considerations associated with the program are for commitments received prior to June 30, 2007. CPI Card Group is a manufacturer of plastic cards.

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Internet Consumer Confidence Picks-Up

A new survey shows that users who felt confident when using the Internet increased from a confidence index of 39.0 to an index of 39.9. However, while the overall confidence score had increased, consumers in the U.S. and France indicated that their confidence had dropped from an index of 44.4 and 41.1 respectively in August to 43.8 and 39 in February. The Trend Micro survey also found that the increase in confidence was led by the U.K., Germany and Japan, each of which demonstrated an increase. Of these, the UK showed the most notable increase in confidence, from 42.2 in August to 46 in February. The survey also found that a vast majority of consumers still use credit cards to make purchases over the Internet and bank online.

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PayPal Lands Zippi Networks’ Business

San Jose-based Zippi Networks has signed an agreement with PayPal to process all of Zippi’s online auction sales transactions. Zippi Networks is an integrated service provider and has introduced a mobile franchise opportunity, drop-off stations and the Zippi Affiliate Network, replacing rapidly shrinking margins on sales with a commission-based opportunity that allows an entrepreneur to network with other sellers to increase commissions. PayPal, an eBay company, enables any individual or business with an email address to send and receive payments online securely and easily using a bank account, credit card or stored balance.

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Texas Passes a Data Security Breach Bill

The Texas House of Representatives voted 139 to 0 in favor of a data security breach bill which has been strongly supported by the Texas Credit Union League. The bill, authored by Representative Gary Elkins will help protect Texans from identity theft. Designed to compel merchants to properly protect consumer financial information, HB 3222 will also allow credit unions to recover costs when data is not appropriately protected. If the bill is adopted, the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS) will be codified into Texas state law for all payment card related transactions. This is a significant step forward from existing state law. Currently, when a data breach occurs, regardless of who is responsible, financial institutions, such as credit unions, are responsible for notifying their cardholders, reissuing new cards, and covering all costs associated with the fraud losses.

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GTCR Sells TransFirst for $683 Million

GTCR has signed a deal to sell TransFirst to Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe for $683 million. TransFirst currently processes approximately $25 billion in annual sales volume for more than 155,000 merchants and 965 financial institutions. Originally founded as ACS Merchant Services in 1995, GTCR partnered with TransFirst CEO Thomas Rouse to re-capitalize the company in 2000. The financing for the transaction is being led by Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank Securities, both of whom acted as M&A advisors to Welsh, Carson. TransFirst’s legal counsel was provided by Kirkland & Ellis. Legal counsel for Welsh, Carson was provided by Ropes & Gray.

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ECHO and Solupay Team for Check Conversion

Electronic Clearing House and Solupay have teamed up to offer new grocery check conversion payment solutions for merchants. Grocery store chains that use the IBM ACE POS system, such as Seattle-based Saar’s have implemented Solupay’s Processing Systems integration of electronic check conversion services provided by ECHO. Solupay’s first IBM Ace installation links Saar’s POS system to ECHO’s electronic check conversion payment gateway. Solupay Processing Systems is a provider of integrated credit, debit, gift and electronic check conversion processing solutions. ECHO’s fully integrated payment processing includes credit card processing, electronic check conversion (ECC), check guarantee, check verification, check collection and debit cards.

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Survey Shows PCI Compliance Moving Forward

A survey conducted by Hughes Network Systems discovered that four out of five executives surveyed believed that their companies had made significant progress toward PCI compliance by addressing their point-of-sale and back-office systems. However, the vast majority had yet to achieve full end-to-end network PCI compliance. While the majority of respondents were not fully compliant, nearly all of those surveyed indicated they were familiar with PCI compliance and actively working to achieve it. Nearly 100 percent acknowledged that PCI compliance was important to their business. The Hughes survey consisted of written responses by 62 restaurant executives who visited the Hughes exhibit while attending Hospitality Magazine’s 2007 MURTEC tradeshow. Hughes Network Systems provides broadband satellite networks and services for large enterprises, governments, small businesses, and consumers.

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