Global Cash Access Inks Four Deals

Las Vegas-based Global Cash Access has inked new deals with Ladbrokes Casino & Sports Bar in London and Grand Casino Baden in Switzerland and expanded agreements with Gala Casino Harbourside and Gala Casino Manchester 235 in the U.K. All four properties will utilize GCA’s “QuikCash” cash advance terminals and “QuikCash Plus” Web. “QuikCash” cash advance terminals provide patrons with POS debit card and credit card cash advance transaction options, while “QCP Web” is a proprietary browser-based, full-service cash access transaction processing system for casino cashier operations.

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AmEx Bonus Points Mall Opens for Business

American Express has unveiled a new benefit that enables “Membership Rewards” members to earn two points for every dollar spent with major online retailers. The “Bonus Points Mall” features more than 100 top online retailers across 23 categories, such as apparel, books, electronics, home and sports. AmEx also redesigned the “Membership Rewards” Web site. Some of the key enhancements include a user-friendly format; a beefed-up search engine tool; personalization capabilities; rich media applications through “Flash;” and a customer support and education section. Last month, AmEx announced it was dropping double points on everyday purchases on the “Green,” “Gold” and “Platinum” charge cards but will continue the bonus points on its credit cards. AmEx is also introducing a new insurance feature to reimburse “Gold,” “Platinum” and “Centurion” cardholders if they unexpectedly miss an entertainment or sports event. (CF Library 8/1/06)

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Moto Hospitality and ReD Fuel Cards Partner

ReD Fuel Cards has formed a partnership with Lymm Services, a popular HGV refueling location in the U.K. The fuel operation at Lymm – which is located close to Junction 20 of the M6 in Cheshire – will be fully managed by ReD Fuel Cards. Moto has worked closely with ReD over the past six months testing their ability in running bunkering
fuel sites. ReD’s Card Issuing Operations consist of fuel cards in Australia, the U.K. and Europe and pre-paid card operations also in Australia, the UK and Europe. Moto is owned by Macquarie Bank.

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FTC Shuts Down a Debt Reduction Scam

The FTC has charged five companies with deceptive and unfair practices for a program that claimed it could reduce consumers’ debt by up to 60%. A federal judge recently issued a temporary restraining order against the nationwide operation. The court issued an ex parte TRO against Homeland Financial Services, National Support Services, United Debt Recovery, Freedom First Financial, and USA Debt Co, and their principals. The FTC says the defendants falsely claimed that, for a non-refundable fee of up to 15% of a consumer’s unsecured debt, they could reduce all of their unsecured debts, including credit card balances and medical bills. To the extent that the defendants initiate negotiations with creditors, they typically began only after a consumer paid 30% to 40% of the fee, which could be up to three months after a consumer has stopped making payments to creditors, as the defendants have advised them to do, the complaint stated.

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OXXO to Market Poni Cards at 4,360 Stores

The country’s largest convenience store chain is gearing up to carry “Poni Cards” at its 4,360 stores. OXXO, a subsidiary of the FEMSA Corporation, agreed to offer the ATM card from NJ-based The American Cash Exchange. The card can be used to receive cash sent from the U.S. at more than 26,000 ATM machines in Mexico. A “Poni Card” holder can immediately receive cash upon entering a “Poni PIN” purchased by the money sender in the U.S. The single use PIN’s permit beneficiaries to receive peso values up to $3000 Pesos. ACE has distributed almost 1 million of the ATM cards in all Mexican states since 2004.

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VASCO Digipass 810 Receives Full EPCI Certification

VASCO Data Security has become the first vendor to receive the full “Electronic Payment Certification Institute” certification for its
“Digipass 810.” VASCO already was the first vendor to receive the provisional “EPCI” certificate in 2005. The “EPCI” certification for VASCO’s “Digipass” stands for the authentication functions allowing a cardholder to authenticate himself/sign transactions and to check the card’s “Proton” balance. The certification also includes MasterCard and VISA “EMV-CAP” specifications.

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Skywards Miles Promotion Launched

Emirates Airlines and Citibank have launched the “Skywards Miles Raffle Draw” promotion offering new and existing cardholders the chance to win 120 prizes of 25,000 “Skywards” miles each through monthly raffle draws. New cardholders will get three “Raffle Draw” entries for the silver card and five entries for the gold card, while existing cardholders will receive one entry into the draw for every retail purchase of AED 1001. The new promotion follows the recent “APPLY&FLY” campaign which targeted new credit card applicants. Citibank and Emirates Airline also recently introduced “The Emirates-Citibank Ultima Credit Card,” UAE’s premium black credit card.

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Wincor Nixdorf Names a New U.S. CEO

Wincor Nixdorf has named Brad Waugh, formerly with Watch Hill Partners and MasterCard Advisors, as its new U.S. CEO. Waugh will be responsible for the performance of Wincor Nixdorf’s U.S. operations in retail, banking and service, including marketing and sales. Prior to his executive roles at Watch Hill Partners and MasterCard Advisors, Waugh was President at an infrastructure management services company, and executive vice president for a consulting and technology services company. Wincor Nixdorf is one of the world’s leading suppliers of IT solutions to the retail and banking industries.

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VISA International Names a New GC

VISA International has promoted Thomas M’Guinness as general counsel and corporate secretary, effective October 1st. From 2002 to 2004, he was EVP, general counsel and CFO for VISA’s Latin America and Caribbean Region, and is currently the deputy general counsel for VISA International. He first joined VISA in 1997 as staff counsel. M’Guinness is replacing Guy Rounsaville who leaves Visa at the end of the month.

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Barclaycard & First Data Ink a Long-Term Pact

Barclaycard have inked a long-term processing contract with First Data International. FDC will provide credit card and loans processing for Barclaycard’s new partnership programs in the U.K. on its “VisionPLUS” processing platform. The deal also includes a full range of contact center services and managed services to include plastics personalization, applications processing, payment processing, statements, letters and PIN mailers. In the UK, Barclaycard manages the Barclaycard branded credit cards and other non-Barclaycard branded card portfolios including Monument, SkyCard and Solution Personal Finance. In consumer lending, Barclaycard manages both secured and unsecured loan portfolios, through Barclays branded loans, being mostly Barclayloan, and also through the FirstPlus and Clydesdale Financial Services businesses. Outside the UK, Barclaycard provides credit cards in the United States through Barclaycard US, Germany, Spain, Italy, Portugal, Scandinavia and across Africa. Barclaycard has 11.2 million U.K. customers and has issued 5.3 million international cards to-date. The bank currently has 95,000 retailer relationships.

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MasterCard Europe Creates Two New Positions

MasterCard Europe has created two new positions including Group Head of Marketing and Head of Communications. Pedro Rangel, most recently Senior Business Leader, Marketing, for MasterCard’s Latin
America and Caribbean Region, will now serve as Group Head of Marketing.
Paul Vandermoere, most recently Director of Communications, Europe & CIS for Lufthansa, will take the Head of Communications position. MasterCard handles about $550 billion in gross dollar volume in Europe. The network has 126 million accounts and 139 million cards-in-force in the region. MasterCard is accepted at 8.1 million locations in Europe.

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