RBS Becomes the 3rd Largest Merchant Acquirer

The Royal Bank of Scotland has become the third largest merchant acquirer in the world after completing its acquisition of Atlanta-based
Lynk Systems for $525 million. RBS’ interests also includes Citizens Bank, one of the 10 largest commercial holding banks in the USA. Lynk is considered the 6th largest non-bank acquirer and the 9th largest merchant acquirer in the U.S. market. In addition, Lynk is the 3rd largest processor of ATMs in the USA.

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Credit Cards and Shoes Come Together

As card issuers physically downsize payment cards to fit on keychains, a Seattle-based firm has inked a deal to distribute a patented shoe wallet designed to carry payment cards. San Francisco-based Jamba Juice will nationally distribute the new product produced by Internet retailer shoewallet.com. The Company initially developed the product to address the need for joggers to carry ID and/or medical information. The wallet now has a credit card sleeve and is large enough to accommodate keys, driver’s license, and other wallet items.

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MasterCard to Name the Best Co-Brands in Europe

MasterCard will be naming the best co-branded MasterCards in Europe during its “5th MasterCard Europe Affinity and Co-Branding” scheduled for Athens on September 23-24. From 17 nominees, MasterCard will select the “Best Program Launch,” “Best Usage/Expansion Program,” and, the “Long-term Achievement Award.” The judging panel includes Bob Hand, Managing Director of Affinity Solutions Ltd; Alan Leach, Director and Co-Founder of Finaccord; and Peter Trembling, Managing Director of The Affinity Company. Winning nominees will be invited to speak as MasterCard’s guests at either the Asia Pacific or North America MasterCard Co-Brand conference in 2005.

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The Rewards Network Signs its First Canadian Bank

Canada’s RBC Royal Bank has signed an agreement with Chicago-based Rewards Network to provide its VISA cardholders with additional rewards points when dining. The is the first Canadian bank alliance for the Rewards Network. Last month, Hudson’s Bay Company introduced the “Hbc Rewards Dining & Hotels Program” in partnership with the Rewards Network. With plans to add non-dining merchants throughout Canada, Rewards Network currently includes more than 10,400 restaurants in Canada and the U.S. Under the arrangement, once registered, “RBC Rewards VISA” cardholders in Canada will automatically earn one additional point for every dollar spent when they dine at participating restaurants and pay using their card. These points are earned in addition to the “RBC Rewards” points cardholders already collect for these purchases, and for most cardholders, that means doubling their points.

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ActivCard Tackles the Phishing Problem

ActivCard has rolled-out two solutions to thwart phishing-related fraud that is currently plaguing the credit card and general banking industry. The solutions are token-based or public key infrastructure-based, ensuring that a customers’ password cannot be stolen or used without their knowledge. The “Token Protected Online Consumer Banking” solution adds immediate password protection for online customers through a time-limited, one-time use password. The second solution uses PKI, the ActivCard USB Key, smart cards, and “ActivClient” middleware to support high value, high risk transactions for commercial banking customers.ActivCard is based in Fremont, California.

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Philippine Regulators Attack Card Practices

The Monetary Board of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas has approved new rules to stop what it calls “excessive practices” by credit card issuers. The new rules will also extend to affiliates that are not currently regulated by the BSP in the Philippines. The “excessive practices” include abusive treatment by collection agents, poor disclosure of foreign transactions fees, and deceptive marketing of lower interest rates. The BSP reports that credit card outstandings were P57.7 billion as of March 31st, a 20% increase over the year ago period.

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RBS Becomes the 3rd Largest Merchant Acquirer

The Royal Bank of Scotland has become the third largest merchant acquirer in the world after completing its acquisition of Atlanta-based Lynk Systems for $525 million. RBS’ interests also includes Citizens Bank, one of the 10 largest commercial holding banks in the USA. Lynk is considered the 6th largest non-bank acquirer and the 9th largest merchant acquirer in the U.S. market. In addition, Lynk is the 3rd largest processor of ATMs in the USA.

Details