MasterCard will launch its “Build Your Business” sweepstakes tomorrow. U.S. small businesses that use “MasterCard BusinessCard” and “Debit MasterCard BusinessCards” will have a chance to win one of two $50,000 cash prices to be spent to better their business, however they see fit. Small business owners who use their “MasterCard PayPass BusinessCard” or “MasterCard PayPass Debit BusinessCards” will receive two entries each time they use their cards. They can also receive double entries when they use their “MasterCard Business Card” and “Debit MasterCard Business Card” at Staples. MasterCard will also launch the new MasterCardBusiness.com site, where small business owners can find further information about the “Build Your Business” promotion and zero liability protections, as well as tips on how to manage employee benefits, ways to market their businesses on a budget, and helpful money management advice. The new site will also feature podcast interviews with small business owners.Details
The OFT says the claims ratios for payment protection insurance
are low compared with other insurance products. The OFT says this suggests that gross profits are high in the UK PPI sector, and implies customers are receiving poor value. The business survey of underwriters shows that the median claims ratio in 2005 were highest for first charge mortgage PPI (35%), 18% for unsecured personal loans, but just 11% for retail credit, motor finance and credit card PPI, and only 10% for secured loan PPI. This represents a median claims ratio of 17% for all PPI policies. Over 50% of underwriter profits appear to be earned from unsecured personal loans (over 70% in 2005). The OFT found that for a GBP 5000 unsecured loan over five years monthly PPI repayments for an accident sickness and unemployment policy (ASU) range from GBP 16 for the cheapest to GBP 40 for the most expensive with very little obvious difference in the coverage provided.
EUFISERV has opened 720 ATMs for China UnionPay cardholders in Switzerland. This follows last December’s opening of ATMs in Belgium, Germany, Spain, France and Luxembourg that are connected to EUFISERV’s network. The EUFISERV CUP gateway offers online and real-time transaction authorization services as well as clearing and settlement of the financial transactions.Details
Hudson’s Bay Company has signed a renewal agreement as a national sponsor in Alliance Data’s Canadian “AIR MILES Reward Program.” Additionally, Hbc will now become a rewards supplier in the program. A
top-15 “AIR MILES” sponsor, Hbc operates more than 570 stores across every province in Canada. Approximately two-thirds of Canadian households actively collect reward miles.
Hartford Public Schools has launched a pilot of the “TeacherDollars” debit card. In cooperation with The Robert & Margaret Patricelli Family Foundation and card technology from Evolution Benefits the school district wants to give teachers special purpose debit cards to buy instructional and motivational supplies for their classrooms. A total of 78 teachers plus the principals and family resource aides from two Hartford area schools have received “TeacherDollar Cards” in the pilot. Each teacher will have $300 on their card to buy needed instructional and motivational materials for their students in the classroom during the school year. Principals and family resource aides will have $1,000 on their cards to buy necessary supplies. A program coordinator will manage the program on-site at each school.Details
YeePay announced the completion of a round of financing led by Draper Fisher Jurvetson, DFJ Dragon and joined by Intel Capital China, WR Hambrecht and several other institutional investors. YeePay also announced the addition of two board members, Tony Luh, Managing Director of DFJ Dragon, and Lee S. Ting, Managing Director of WR Hambrecht and an
independent board member of the Lenovo Group. YeePay is the first company to provide integrated multi-channel payment solutions that not only support online transactions over the Internet, but also facilitate offline payments based on mobile phone or landline, which cover a much broader user base and can be applied to a greater number of traditional businesses in China.
American Express has reached a licensing arrangement with Versatile Card Technology for production of clear payment cards. AmEx issued the world’s first truly clear, transparent card, “Blue” in Australia in July 2001 and then introduced the first truly clear, transparent card product in the U.S. in 2002 with “Blue.” American Express currently is using the technology for “Blue,” “Blue Cash” from American Express and several other card products. AmEx is the owner of numerous patents covering such cards and the processes and components necessary for producing them. VCT is licensed under the American Express patents to produce cards for other card issuers that are truly clear and transparent, using the same patented technology incorporated in American Express’s own card products.Details
Five Indonesian banks are now ready to launch EMV chip technology for use with their credit cards. Bank BCA, Bank Buana
Indonesia, Bank BNI, BII and Citibank have launched their chip
technologies on schedule. However, Bank Indonesia postponed the compulsory use of chip technology for new credit cards and renewals from the initial deadline of September 1st to the end of 2009. This timeframe also applies to replacement of all credit cards and credit card processing equipment, originally scheduled for the end of 2008. In addition, Bank Indonesia has also moved back the timetable for
introduction of chip standards for debit cards, ATM cards and prepaid
cards. The launching of chip technology for debit cards, ATM cards and
prepaid cards has been delayed to allow time for the National Payment
System Communication Form (FKSPN) – Standards and Products Committee and
Card-Based Payment Instruments Sub-Committee and four switching
companies to establish standards for debit cards, ATM cards and prepaid
cards to be applied uniformly throughout Indonesia.
First Data has rehired Todd Strubbe, who was a key member of its leadership team from 1995 to 2000, as president of First Data Debit Services. Strubbe joins First Data from West Corporation, where he has served as president of West Interactive Corp., which delivers outsourced interactive voice response and advanced speech recognition applications for Fortune 1000 companies. Prior to joining First Data, Strubbe was an engagement manager with the strategic consulting firm McKinsey & Company, and was an infantry officer in the U.S. Army. First Data Corp. (NYSE:FDC) is a leading provider of electronic commerce and payment solutions for businesses and consumers worldwide.Details
MA-based Market Platform Dynamics has hired Carl Atsushi Hirano, regarded as the mastermind behind NTT DoCoMo’s “i-mode” alliance and payment strategy, to devise profitable mobile and Internet-based payment and content strategies for its clients. From 1999 until 2006, Carl led DoCoMo’s i-mode Alliances of the Multimedia Service Department and was Managing Director of DoCoMo.com, Inc., a corporate venture capital and consulting firm on mobile content, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of DoCoMo. Prior to joining DoCoMo, Carl worked for the Investment Bank Division of the Industrial Bank of Japan, Ltd (IBJ). Market Platform Dynamics (MPD) is a management consulting firm that designs smart strategies for platform-based businesses.Details
OH-based Nationwide Bank has joined the Allpoint surcharge-free ATM network. This new agreement joins Allpoint’s surcharge-free ATM network to Nationwide Bank’s existing relationship with Visa(R)/PLUS(R) ATM, a network with more than 1 million ATMs in 162 countries. Customers who use an Allpoint ATM will not pay the terminal fee — typically charged by the owner of the ATM — for their transaction. Nationwide Financial Services, Inc. received approval from U.S. regulators to expand the powers of its limited purpose federal thrift, and to operate as Nationwide Bank.Details
Capital One is sponsoring “March of Dimes” fund-raising efforts in Louisiana and the two largest cities in Texas. This new partnership increases Capital One’s involvement with March of Dimes. On July 13, Capital One introduced a new debit card option for its Louisiana and Texas banking customers designed to increase awareness and support charitable giving to the March of Dimes and five other leading national organizations serving children. March of Dimes is a national voluntary health agency with the mission to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. Capital One Financial Corporation (www.capitalone.com) is a financial holding company, with more than 324 locations in Texas and Louisiana.Details