Global Payments 1Q/07 Revenues Rise 16%

Atlanta-based Global Payments reported that revenues for the quarter ended February 28th increased 16% to $260.4 million. Net income for the quarter jumped 14% to $34.3 million. GPN says the growth was driven by expansion in its domestic ISO channel, the Asia-Pacific joint venture with HSBC and card association incentives in Canada. However, GPN acknowledges that its consumer money transfer segment continues to reflect the unfavorable impact of a competitive domestic pricing environment. During the quarter, GPN extended its alliance relationship with Comerica Bank through January 2014; signed several agreements with casinos to provide its “VIP LightSpeed” cash access products and services; and in cooperation with the Czech Republic retail chain Globus, Global Payments Europe launched GP mobile. Also during the quarter Institutional Investor named Global Payments’ Chairman, President and CEO, Paul Garcia, one of “The Best CEOs in America” for the third year in a row. GPN updated its annual fiscal 2007 revenue guidance to a range of $1,050 million to $1,057 million or an expected 16% growth rate over fiscal 2006. For complete details on Global Payments latest results, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]). (CF Library 2/14/07; 2/21/07; 2/23/07)

GPN HISTORICAL
PERIOD REVENUES NET INCOME
1Q/06: $225.2mm $30.1mm
2Q/06: $238.8mm $34.1mm
3Q/06: $260.3mm $44.2mm
4Q/06: $260.7mm $34.0mm
1Q/07: $260.4mm $34.3mm
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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WaMu Unveils the World Missions VISA

More than a million Catholics in the USA are being solicited this week for a new VISA card that benefits Catholic Church programs in more than 1,150 mission dioceses in the world’s poorest countries. The new “World Missions VISA” represents the joint efforts of Washington Mutual and Follieri Capital. A direct-mail campaign and print ad campaign in Catholic newspapers has been launched. One percent of card purchases are donated to the Society for the Propagation of the Faith. WaMu says the new card offers full “Platinum VISA” benefits, free on-line “FICO” credit-score access, money saving coupons, online bill payment, zero fraud liability and no annual fee. Follieri Capital provides financial products and services to Roman Catholic Church organizations in the USA.

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Card Holographic Overcomes HoloMag Problems

NJ-based American Bank Note Holographics reported that sales in the fourth quarter were $7.6 million, a decrease of 25%. Net income for the fourth quarter was $900,000 versus a net loss of $2.8 million for the fourth quarter of 2005. The decrease in sales was primarily due to the previously reported cessation of the “VISA HoloMag” program. Nevertheless, the Company notes that it maintained a good relationship with VISA and supported their implementation of new card formats with the “Dove” and “Mini” hot stamp holograms that it supplies. For the full year, “HoloMag” sales totaled approximately $8.5 million versus $8.9 million in 2005. In January ABNH commenced shipping its “Generation Two HoloMag” product in limited quantities. For complete details on ABNH’s fourth quarter performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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VISA Offers Free Scores to College Students

VISA USA announced the national launch of its “What’s My Score program” for college students by giving away 5,000 free FICO credit scores for “Financial Literacy Month”. To receive their FICO score, students will first have to take a free 15-minute online financial education tutorial, designed to provide a crash course in responsible credit use. A recent survey of VISA credit and debit cardholders include: 64% of cardholders surveyed knew their credit score by the age of 40 and 15% of those cardholders surveyed never learned their score. In addition to “What’s My Score,” VISA also runs the award-winning “Practical Money Skills for Life” program, a free, multilingual educational resource complete with home, school and at work financial lesson plans. “Practical Money Skills for Life” is aimed primarily at teachers and students in elementary through high school, as well as adult consumers. The acquisition of “What’s My Score” allows VISA to dramatically expand the reach of the company’s financial education efforts to the nation’s 17.5 million college students.

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Biz Collections Signal Economic Contraction

For the seventh time in eight months, an index tracking business credit and collections has declined. The seasonally adjusted “Credit Manager’s Index” fell in March by 1.6%. A total of eight out of the 10 Index components fell making it widespread. The National Association of Credit Management says collections problems are now signaling economic contraction as more businesses encounter cash flow problems. With the median price of existing homes falling for seven consecutive months on a year-over-year basis, it would appear that the effects of the bursting housing market bubble will continue for some time. In the meantime, the plethora of negative data from the first two months of 2007, such as weak job growth, a dramatic fall in durable goods orders, slack retail sales and deteriorating conditions in the sub-prime mortgage market all reflect an economy sure to continue in slowing.

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SF Giants Deploy Next Gen POS Terminals

The San Francisco Giants and VISA USA will deploy VISA consumer-facing payment terminals throughout AT&T Park. Last season VISA introduced 100 new terminals and will now enhance the game day experience for Giants fans by equipping every permanent point of sale location, bringing the total number of terminals at AT&T Park to 200. In the 2006 season, the Giants experienced a 49 percent increase in payment card transactions over the previous season, with nearly 67 percent of all electronic transactions being made with VISA-branded cards. During the trial, the average ticket size for electronic payment transactions was 31 percent higher than for cash transactions. The San Francisco Giants of the National League is one of the oldest franchises in Major League Baseball.

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USAT’s e-Ports Adds NFC Technology Option

USA Technologies unveiled vending machines equipped with Near Field Communications capable “e-Ports” at the CTIA Wireless conference. It is the first time that USA Technologies has publicly launched its NFC capable e-Port payment technology, which enables consumers to make purchases at unattended point of sale using an NFC capable cellular phone. MasterCard and USA Technologies are currently deploying 6,000 e-Port G6 wireless devices in vending machines nationwide to accept MasterCard’s PayPass contactless payment system. Bank of America is among the first banks to choose the e-Port G6 cashless terminals for evaluation in radio frequency cashless payment device trials. The readers are being installed in vending machines in more than 20 major U.S. cities. The 6,000 e-Port G6 terminals are NFC capable, and enable consumers to make purchases from vending machines with magnetic stripe and contactless cards, as well as NFC capable cellular phones. USA Technologies is a provider of wireless non-cash transactions, associated financial/network services and energy management.

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KKR to Acquire First Data for $29 Billion

In what ranks among the ten largest buyouts ever, First Data this morning confirmed it has signed a deal to be acquired by an affiliate of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts for about $29 billion. Under the agreement, FDC shareholders will receive a premium of approximately 34% over the average closing share price during the previous 30 trading days. Under the merger agreement, FDC may solicit proposals from third parties during the next 50 days to locate an alternative transaction. The KKR transaction is expected to close by the end of the third quarter. Since its initial public offering in 1992, FDC has grown from $1.2 billion in annual revenue to $10.6 billion prior to the spin-off of Western Union and $7.1 billion post spin-off. An investment in the company’s IPO, adjusted for the recent spin-off of Western Union, would have generated 18% compounded annual returns. FDC also owns a 49% stake in Chase Paymentech. In January, FDC reported that fourth quarter revenue grew 14% to $1.9 billion and that operating profit was up 67% year-on-year. Morgan Stanley is serving as sole financial advisor to FDC. Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Lehman Brothers, Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch have committed to provide debt financing for the transaction and are acting as financial advisors to KKR. (CF Library 1/25/07)

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CBCInnovis Offers the New CreditXpert Suite

CreditXpert announced that credit reporting service Columbus-based CBCInnovis will be the first to offer the latest version of the “CreditXpert” suite. Offering the upgraded “CreditXpert” services will enable CBCInnovis lending customers to close more loans by providing the most consumer-friendly credit management tools and content. CreditXpert provides personalized credit management tools including simulation, optimization, and analysis, to help lenders make more informed decisions and close more loans based on a technically advanced hybrid of artificial intelligence, statistical techniques and analytical methods. CBCInnovis provides risk management and marketing services to customers in the business, government and not-for- profit sectors.

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ID Theft Targets Victims Over Age 40

According to analysis by the Identity Theft Assistance Center, two out of three identity theft victims are over age 40. Broken out by age group, the more than 11,000 cases show 12% of victims were ages 18 to 29, 19% of victims were ages 30 to 39, 24% of victims were ages 40 to 49 and 23% of victims were ages 50 to 59. ITAC is partnering with academic and research organizations, including Utica College’s Center for Identity Theft Management and Information Protection (CIMIP). CIMIP’s analysis will provide a better understanding of who is at risk, the geography of victims and the sources of identity theft. The Identity Theft Assistance Center is a nonprofit dedicated to fighting identity theft through victim assistance, research and law enforcement partnerships.

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