Capital One Enters Prepaid Cards

Capital One has made its first move into the prepaid card market. NetSpend is partnering with the top issuer to develop and launch reloadable prepaid debit products. Under the multi-year strategic partnership agreement, NetSpend will be the exclusive strategic partner for Capital One’s reloadable prepaid program. Capital One had 37.6 million accounts as of December 31st, compared to 37.5 million in the prior quarter and 37.6 million one-year ago. The “NetSpend Prepaid Card Network” includes leading consumer brands and the foremost companies serving the un-banked and under-banked markets and its strategic relationships include card issuers, EFT networks and payment card associations. (CF Library 1/19/07)

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First Data Opens Office In Croatia

Electronic commerce and payments services provider First Data has
opened its’ third European office in the past year in Zagreb, Croatia.
The branch will also serve the Slovenia, Bosnia, & Herzegovina regions.
The Company offers financial institutions and large retailers a
wide-range of high-quality, competitive electronic processing and
support services. These are countries First Data sees as key markets because of imminent potential for growth in the electronic payments market. The company has approximately 7,900 employees. First Data operates across the globe serving 4.9 million merchant locations, 1,900 card issuers and their customers.

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Sen. Specter Surveys Interchange Fees

Sen. Arlen Specter met with Pennsylvania grocery shoppers and Giant Food CEO Carl Schlicker to explore the impact of hidden credit card “interchange” fees. Interchange fees are charged to merchants by VISA and MasterCard every time a customer uses a credit or debit card. Interchange fees are set in secret, and unlike other credit card fees, they are not disclosed to consumers and add an average of two percent to every credit card transaction. VISA, MasterCard and their member banks collect more than $30 billion in interchange fees every year. The Merchants Payments Coalition collectively represent about 2.7 million stores with approximately 50 million employees is fighting for a more competitive and transparent card system that works better for consumers and merchants alike.

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Farmacias Guadalajara Offers Western Union Services

Banamex will offer Western Union money transfer service at 450 Farmacias
Guadalajara pharmacies in Mexico. These branches will be in addition to
Banamex’ existing 4500 locations throughout the country that currently
offer the Western Union service. Farmacias Guadalajara is the newest
member to be acquired by the Banamex network. The pharmacy chain has
nearly 500 locations in 113 cities in 18 states in Mexico and was
founded over 65 years ago. Western Union has a network of 300,000 Agent
locations in over 200 countries and territories around the world.
Banamex is a member of Citigroup Inc. and has over 1,450 branches and
5,114 automatic teller machines located throughout Mexico.

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IPS Consolidates its Transcard Brand

TN-based stored-value card specialist Innovative Processing Solutions this week announced it is consolidating its separate card products under a single Transcard brand. Transcard will offer “Cheque Directo,” an electronic payroll and international money transfer card marketed to Hispanic populations; “PayCheck Direct,” a payroll card that can be funded through any existing direct-deposit process; and “Transfund$,” a fuel, cash and payroll card offered to the trucking industry. These cards are existing products of IPS that will be consolidated into the new Transcard brand portfolio. Transcard also owns the transcard.com Web site. Transcard processes nearly $900 million dollars in electronic transactions per year.

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CBI Signs agreement with Al Ansari

An agreement signed between Commercial Bank International and Al Ansari
Exchange will allow CBI customers and credit card holders access to
additional payment channels. Al Ansari Exchange is a money transfer
operator that customers can now visit to address CBI banking & bills as
a result of the agreement. The agreement also emphasizes CBI’s
customer-centric goals by making easy banking a reality for everyone.
Al Ansari Exchange offers money transfer services to customers with more
than 50 branches across the United Arab Emirates. CBI has a network of 8
branches and 18 ATMs across the country and employs 400 of which 30%
are UAE Nationals.

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GPN Lands Four VIP LightSpeed Clients

Global Payments has entered into four new agreements with Nevada gaming establishments to provide GPN’s “VIP LightSpeed” cash access products and services. CasaBlanca Resort Casino & Spa, Oasis Resort Casino & Spa, Virgin River Hotel Casino and Carson Station Hotel & Casino will utilize Global Payments’ web- based “VIP LightSpeed” suite of services that include the “VIP Preferred” check-cashing services, “PlayerCash @dvantagecredit” and debit card cash advance services, and “ATM Cash @dvantage”, which permits electronic check transactions at ATMs without casino cage assistance.

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Linea Deploys Fair Isaac’s Model Builder Platform

As a means of improving risk assessment and portfolio profitability,
Linea S.p.A. will apply Fair Isaac’s “Model Builder for Predictive
Analytics.” “Model Builder for Predictive Analytics” is an advanced
predictive modeling tool that utilizes historical information
as a basis for making better decisions about future transactions,
business problems and customer interactions. Linea specializes in
consumer credit and manages more than 3 Billion Euros of consumer and
revolving loans. In less than 10 years, the company has achieved a wide
national presence thanks to 23 direct points, 2000 banks branches and
about 8000 partner dealers. Fair Isaac powers hundreds
of billions of decisions per year in many different sectors.

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PCI Council Seeks Nominations

The PCI Security Standards Council is soliciting nominations for election to the PCI Security Standards Council Board of Advisors and is seeking representation from EMEA, North America, Latin America and Asia Pacific. To generate a broad range of input from across the stakeholder chain, 21 seats will be available on the PCI SSC Board of Advisors. Fourteen seats will be open for nomination by members of the existing PCI SSC Participating Organizations. To ensure a wider range of input, an additional seven seats will be appointed from the Participating Organization by the PCI SSC Executive Council to fill any gaps in representation and to help augment any under-represented stakeholder sector or geographic market.

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Euronet Signs a Top-Up Deal with Premiere

Euronet’s subsidiary Transact announced electronic top-up agreement
with Premiere Fernsehen in the development of a new pay-TV
product, “Premiere Flex”. “Premiere Flex” offers customers the ability
to purchase pay television without having to commit to subscriptions or
long-term contracts. Transact will be the only top-up provider for
Premiere’s new prepaid pay TV product in Germany under the new contract.
Transact has already completed distribution of Premiere’s prepaid pay TV
product to 2,100 stores across Germany and plans on distribution to
3,000 more. Starting in March, in conjunction with the “Premiere Flex”
advertising campaign, the service will offer seven different
specialized channel packages. Euronet processes electronic top-up
transactions at more than 296,000 point-of-sale terminals for more than
161,000 retailers across the world. The company has 26 worldwide offices
and serves clients in approximately 100 countries.

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Cabela’s/WFB VISA Card Loans Jump 23%

The World’s Foremost Bank, a subsidiary of Cabela’s, the “World’s Foremost Outfitter,” reported that its average VISA credit card loans increased 23% in the fourth quarter compared to one-year ago and up 6.5% sequentially. With an estimated 1.4 million cardholders for its “Club VISA,” WFB posted managed card loans of $1.484 billion for 4Q/06. For the fourth quarter, the nation’s 23rd largest issuer, also reported interest income of $40.7 million, interchange income of $13.1 million and other credit card fee income of $6.3 million. Over the past year Cabela’s has introduced a loyalty card and a debit card with rewards. In June, U.S. Bank and Cabela’s introduced the “Cabela’s VISA Check Card,” offering reward points for signature purchases. The “Club VISA” offers 2% back on all Cabela purchases and 1% on other purchases. The U.S. bank-issued “VISA Check Card” offers one point for every $2 spent at Cabela’s stores and one point for every $3 spent at other merchant locations. For complete details on Cabela’s/World’s Foremost Bank latest performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

WFB AVG CARD LOANS
4Q/05: $1207 million
1Q/06: $1254 million
2Q/06: $1295 million
3Q/06: $1394 million
4Q/06: $1484 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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

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ACS To Supply Ticketing System For Jerusalem Tramway

Vital to the 30-year Jerusalem-Tramway contract is a reliable fare
collection system. A significant shareholder in the contract is Alstom
and has appointed ACS to supply the new fare collection system. The
contract stipulates that ACS will build, operate & transfer (BOT)
control of the tramway system over a period of 30 years. In doing so,
ACS will supply a complete ticketing system for the Jerusalem tramway.
This project is the third large-scale project crowned with a powerful
system that ACS has won in early 2007. ACS employs 58,000, supporting
client operations reaching 100 countries.

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