VISA USA estimates overall retail sales (excluding auto sales) for the 2006 holiday season will grow 7.5%, slightly lower than the growth rate of holiday sales in the previous two years. VISA its data show that personal entertainment, sporting goods and hobby stores, and specialty retailers or stores commonly found in a mall environment will do the best. VISA notes that “Cyber Monday,” or the Monday following Thanksgiving weekend, will continue to be a popular time for online purchases as consumers accommodate their busy schedules and avoid crowded shopping malls. VISA also expects big-box and general retail stores to experience moderate growth, but not at last year’s levels.Details
Private equity firm, Warburg Pincus, has signed a deal to acquire easycash, Germany’s top POS network service provider, from First Data International. When First Data acquired GZS Gesellschaft fur Zahlungssysteme in June, the Federal Cartel Office stipulated that GZS divest easycash to a third party as part of the merger control clearance. easycash offers customized card-based payment solutions and credit card routing to a broad range of merchant customers. easycash has more than 700 million transactions in 2005 with a total transaction volume of $55 billion through 165,000 active connected POS terminals.Details
FL-based Direct Technology Innovations has inked a preferred vendor relationship with TEK POS, a distributor and installer of POS technology for the hospitality industry. TEK POS, based out of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, chose DTI because “DTI’s principals understand the importance of convergence of technology within the POS industry and the specific needs and the applications required for businesses to do business within the hospitality industry,” stated Michael Smith, President of TEK POS. The Direct Technology Innovations Team, accredited with its highly successful Swipe N’ GoÂ® Program is a strong leader in the QSR industry.Details
London-based ATM:ad has announced the appointment of Kevin Kemp, who joins the team as Head of Business Development. Kemp comes to ATM:ad from Avanti Screen Media. His responsibilities at ATM:ad will be to focus on the outdoor specialist agencies, to develop business strategy and new opportunities. Since its launch in mid-2004, ATM:ad has carried campaigns from a wide range of sectors including travel, FMCG, Internet,
entertainment and government for a variety of advertisers including
Essex, Surrey, Leicester & Thames Valley Police, Burton’s, UIP, British
Airways, Fox Home Entertainment, Nestle, Comic Relief, Carling, and
VeriFone Holdings has completed the acquisition of Lipman
Electronic Engineering. VeriFone signed an agreement in April to acquire Lipman for $793 million in cash and stock. The deal will make VeriFone the largest global provider of electronic payment solutions and services with annual revenues of nearly $750 million. VeriFone also announced that William Atkinson has been named EVP/Payment Systems and Isaac Angel has been named EVP/Operations. Additionally, David Turnbull has been named global head of research and development and Jesse Adams has been named vice chairman of VeriFone. The Company reaffirmed its long-term operating model that was announced on April 10th, specifically that revenue growth is expected to be between 10% and 15% for 2006.
New Mexico Rail Runner Express has selected Abanco International’s “Mobile Data Technology In-Transit” application to bring credit, debit and cash payment options into one application on the station platform. MDT In-Transit operates on a rugged, wireless terminal. It is a fully-functional, web-enabled, touch screen unit with built-in software and custom integration components that utilize barcode scanning and magnetic strip technologies to simplify the business process and to deliver secure transactions in the field. The New Mexico Rail Runner Express recently began carrying passengers between the City of Albuquerque and the Town of Bernalillo, 17-miles to the north. Abanco International, LLC, headquartered in Rosemont, IL, was founded with a mission of providing the best “Total Payment Solutions” available.Details
TN-based Comdata has acquired HQ Gift Cards, a provider of mall gift card program management services. Headquartered in Culver City, CA, HQ Gift Cards provides management services for mall, airport and casino gift card programs. The firm currently oversees gift card operations in over 200 malls nationwide. HQ Gift Cards will be integrated into Comdata’s Stored Value Solutions division which is located in Louisville, KY. Comdata serves more than 300 customers with gift card solutions: card production and management, transaction processing, and loyalty programs.Details
Chase has launched the “Miami HEAT Chase Ultimate Fan Rewards VISA” and three “Ultimate Fan Rewards VISA” credit cards for soccer fans. The “Miami HEAT Chase Ultimate Fan Rewards VISA” program offers exclusive “HEAT” memorabilia and arena experiences plus team leather jackets to official NBA balls autographed by the entire team to the ultimate experiences such as game tickets or a five-on-five game on the court at AmericanAirlines Arena. Cardholders earn one point for every $1 in eligible card purchases and points add up on monthly statements. Redemption levels start at 1,000 points for a Miami “HEAT” hat or T-shirt. The new soccer “Ultimate Fan Rewards VISA” credit cards offer seven redemption levels with a wide range of rewards, from exciting soccer experiences to authentic memorabilia to earning a VIP trip to a men’s or women’s “FIFA World Cup” qualification game for two. Soccer fans can choose between Major League Soccer, the U.S. National Team and the “Mexican National Team Chase Ultimate Fan Rewards VISA” credit cards featured in 12 different card designs.Details
U.S. Bank Canada has acquired CIBC’s “VISA Purchasing” and “VISA Corporate” credit card portfolio. U.S. Bank is the largest issuer of VISA commercial cards worldwide, racking up business credit card volume of $7.7 billion in the third quarter. U.S. Bank has offered corporate and purchasing cards to businesses and government since 1991. It was the first to offer corporate bankcard, purchasing and relocation card programs, as well as the first to offer private-label fleet cards.
CIBC VISA corporate and purchasing cards will become U.S. Bank cards and
will be managed by a dedicated sales and relationship management force
located across Canada. CIBC will refer commercial and corporate clients
inquiring about corporate or purchasing card programs to U.S. Bank Canada.
VA-based Online Resources has hired Robert Craig, who co-founded REMITCO, as EVP and GM of eCommerce Services. Mr. Craig comes to Online Resources with extensive entrepreneurial and leadership experience in the payments industry. In 1996, he co-founded REMITCO, a remittance processing company dedicated to the specialized payment processing needs of corporations serving millions of consumers in the credit card, telecommunications and utility industries. Online Resources powers web-based financial services for 2600 financial institutions, billers and credit service providers.Details
TSYS has been certified to support open-loop prepaid cards in Europe on the MasterCard network including capability for chip-and-PIN processing. The announcement marks another milestone in a long-standing relationship between TSYS Card Tech, acquired by TSYS earlier this year, and MasterCard. MasterCard Worldwide advances global commerce by providing a critical economic link among financial institutions, businesses, cardholders and merchants worldwide. TSYS (tsys.com) is one of the world’s largest payment-services companies, offering a broad range of packaged and outsourced issuing or acquiring technologies that support consumer-finance, credit, debit and prepaid services for financial institutions and retail companies worldwide.Details