Advantex Reports FY05 Earnings

Advantex Marketing International has released its performance report for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2005. Highlights and important
developments of the year include the sale of the “Samplex Group”,
generating initial net proceeds of $2.2 million, renewal of its
long-term agreements with CIBC and United Airlines, strong performance
of “Online Shopping Mall” programs and suspension of the “U.S. Retail”
pilot programs. Overall, sales and fees from continuing operations in
FY 05 were $71.8 million compared to $76.6 million in fiscal 2004. The
change reflects the impact of migrating certain merchants during fiscal
2005 from a “Pre-Purchase” model to a “Post-Settlement” model. Advantex
Marketing International specializes in integrated marketing solutions
for its merchant and channel partner clients.

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Alaska CHARR Selects Heartland Payment Systems

Alaska Cabaret, Hotel, Restaurant & Retailers Association has selected Heartland Payment Systems as their preferred provider to process their credit/debit cards, including VISA and MasterCard cards. Heartland’s fraud prevention methodology limits consumers’ exposure to identity theft by obscuring credit card numbers and card expiration dates on all receipts, safeguarding sensitive consumer data, and providing training for merchants and their employees on identifying stolen cards and enables CHARR members to monitor irregularities in their card transactions in real time. Alaska CHARR is a statewide organization serving the hospitality industry. Heartland Payment Systems delivers credit/debit card processing and payroll solutions to more than 100,000 small- to medium-sized merchants throughout the United States.

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TOP COBRANDS

MasterCard Europe announced the results of the “2005 European Co-Brand Partners of the Year Award.” The winners are the “Citibank – Megafon MasterCard”; “Barclaycard – SkyCard”; “Marks and Spencer – &More Card from M&S Money”; and “AKBank – Axess MasterCard.” The “Best Launch in 2004/5” was the “Citibank – Megafon MasterCard.” Launched last May in the fast growing Russian card market, the “Citibank MegaFon MasterCard” card is the first co-branded credit card to offer a grace period in the country. The “Most Innovative Use of Technology” was “Barclaycard – SkyCard.” “SkyCard” is a brand new kind of credit card which launched in the UK in April and is the first of its kind to offer interactive television payments and entertainment based rewards. The “Best Usage/Expansion Program” was the “Marks and Spencer – &More Card from M&S Money.” Between April and August, M&S Money embarked upon a program to reissue all credit cards to their account base upgraded with “Chip & PIN” functionality. The “Long Term Achievement Award” went to the “AKBank – Axess MasterCard.” “Axess” was launched in November 2001 with a highly successful launch campaign which resulted in one million cards being issued within eight months. As of mid 2005, cards in issue in the
country exceeded three million. “Axess” was acclaimed by MasterCard
International as the fastest-growing credit card brand in Turkey and
Europe in 2002. The four “Co-Brand Partners of the Year” award winners were selected by a panel of independent judges that includes Bob Hand, Managing Director of Affinity Solutions Ltd – a specialist partnership marketing consultancy, Alan Leach, Director and Co-Founder of Finaccord – a research based consultancy company focused on affinity and partnership in European financial services and Peter Trembling, Managing Director of The Affinity Company – independent affinity and co-brand consultants.

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VeriFone Brings Virus Protection to the POS

VeriFone announced the availability of McAfee “VirusScan Mobile for Verix,” the first virus protection for payment solutions at the point of sale in the USA. McAfee VirusScan Mobile for Verix will provide real-time monitoring and attack pattern update services for VeriFone Internet-connected payment solutions at the point of sale. The virus protection software is currently offered on the VeriFone Omni 3750 Ethernet-enabled payment solution and will be offered on all IP-enabled systems using the Verix and Verix V operating systems in the future; merchants can order a new system with the software pre-installed or easily download the upgrade software to existing systems. McAfee provides intrusion prevention and security risk management VeriFone Holdings,provides secure electronic payment technologies.

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HSBC and Trent Launch a Co-Branded Card

HSBC and retailer Trent have launched a cobranded private label card that offers 10% off the monthly grocery bill. The new card has drawn some criticism since it does not require proof of income. The Reserve Bank of India recently issued draft guidelines on credit cards calling for better income verification. Nevertheless, HSBC is targeting 46.4 million households for the new card. The minimum credit limit is Rs 3,000.

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Cardtronics Names a New Chief Marketing Officer

Houston-based Cardtronics has hired Drew Soinski, formerly with First Horizon Merchant Services and National Processing Company, as Chief Marketing Officer. As head of National Sales for First Horizon Merchant Services.Soinski exceeded revenue goals exponentially through market expansion, and by adding top-tier accounts to his prolific portfolio. From 1997 to 2002, Soinski led the sales team for NPC (now BA Merchant Services). Soinski successfully led NPC to become the leader in the Travel and Entertainment, Retail and Petroleum segments and effectively launched card acceptance in six of the top ten Quick Service Restaurants (QSRs) in the United States. Soinski graduated with a B.S.B.A. in Marketing from the University of Central Florida. Cardtronics is the world’s largest owner/operator of ATMs with a nationwide U.S. network of more than 25,000 locations.

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Web Mystery Finds Cleaner Web Sites Improve Card Apps

A recent study of 850 Internet users found that 80% of them are willing to apply for credit cards online, and 58% say they have already done so. But credit card issuers who make their websites more appealing and easier to use will improve the quality and number of their online applicants, suggests research conduced by website usability firm Web Mystery Shoppers International Inc. Twelve sites were visited by about 70 users each between August 15-23, 2003: American Express, Bank One, Capital One, Chase, Citibank, Discover Financial, First USA, Mastercard, MBNA, Nextcard, Providian and VISA.

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VASCO Digipass Reades Receives EPCI Certification

VASCO Data Security International has announced that it is
the first vendor to receive the “EPCI” (Electronic Payment Certification
Institute) certification. 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. VASCO has clients in more than 390 international financial institutions and approximately 1,700 blue-chip corporations and governments located in more than 90 countries.

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Oberthur Revenues Up 16% in the First Half

Oberthur Card Systems reported that revenues for the first six months of this year were up 15.8%. The Company delivered close to 88 million microprocessor cards compared to 67 million in the first six months of last year, a 30.7% increase on a year-on-year basis. The revenue in the smart cards segment amounted to $191 million with a 20.4% growth at constant exchange rates, whereas the magnetic stripe segment rose by 11.4% to $45.6 million. Smart card shipments increased by +30.7% in the first six months to a volume of 87.9 million cards. The revenue for smart cards in the Banking segment grew by 9.1% at constant exchange rates to $82.3 million. The Americas region grew 10.6% to $64.7 million. The region performed particularly well in magnetic stripe banking cards. For complete details on Oberthur’s latest performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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TD VISA offers Double Rewards on VISA Business

TD Canada Trust is offering a special double rewards sign up bonus on new
“TD Business VISA” cards with the “Travel Rewards Option” or on existing business cards that add the “Travel Rewards” option until September 23rd. These customers will receive double points on net purchases made
until December 31st. This offer is in addition to the existing 3,500
“Bonus Points Offer” currently available to all customers who request the travel Reward Option on their Business Visa card. TD Bank Financial Group serves more than 14 million customers with CDN$368 billion in assets.

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AmEx and Delta Restructure Partnership

In the wake of the Delta Air Lines bankruptcy, American Express says it had to restructure some of its financial arrangements with the airline. Under terms of a new deal, Delta has agreed to repay $500 million that AmEx advanced in the fourth quarter of last year and the first quarter of this year as prepayment for the purchase of “Delta SkyMiles” reward points used in AmEx reward programs. In return, TRS has agreed to lend to Delta $350 million as part of Delta’s post-petition debtor-in-possession financing. Delta has filed a motion asking the Bankruptcy Court to authorize it to continue it relationship with AmEx. AmEx says the “Delta SkyMiles Credit Card” co-brand portfolio accounts for less than 10% of the Company’s worldwide billed business and less than 15% of worldwide managed lending receivables.

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