National City Launches a VISA STV Card

OH-based National City has launched its new “Stored-Value VISA Debit Card” and has signed IN-based Kimball International to offer the card to reimburse employees for their sales incentive program. The National City Stored-Value Debit Card simplifies the employee payment process for employers by providing a flexible option for use in a variety of activities. In addition to the payroll option, the card allows employers to streamline the reimbursement process, enabling them to distribute funds to immediately reimburse their staff for such expenses as insurance claims, out- of-pocket expenses for travel and entertainment, and incentive compensation. National City Corporation is one of the nation’s largest financial holding companies.

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CITGO Offers Access to IP Processing

Alliance Data Systems, Datawire Communication Networks, and CITGO Petroleum have teamed to offer IP-based payment card processing services to CITGO-branded marketers nationwide. Alliance Data currently provides credit card processing for CITGO locations, including authorization and data capture services. The network is Visa CISP certified, equipped to maximize the benefits of the Internet, cost-effective, easy to install and works with VeriFone Ruby and Pinnacle Palm POS systems utilizing the CITGO payment card network. CITGO Petroleum Corporation, based in Tulsa, Okla., is a refiner, transporter and marketer of transportation fuels, lubricants, petrochemicals, refined waxes, asphalt and other industrial products. Alliance Data Systems is a leading provider of transaction services, credit services and marketing services.

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Benny Card Get a New CIO

Evolution Benefits has hired Richard Bucchi, formerly with CT-based American Payment Systems, as SVP/CIO. Just prior to joining Evolution Benefits Mr. Bucchi held a similar position at American Payment Systems in Wallingford, Conn., a company recently acquired by CheckFree Corp. Mr. Bucchi earned his Master of Science degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Hartford, Conn. and his Bachelor’s degree from Central Connecticut State UniversityEvolution Benefits was founded in 2000 with a commitment to supporting the movement toward greater consumer choice in and responsibility for employee benefits.

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MBS Selects Ingrian’s DataSecure Platform

Merchants Billing Services has selected Ingrian Networks’ “DataSecure Platform” to help secure their customers’ credit card data. MBS provides payment processing services for merchants and bank partners worldwide. In addition to the potentially devastating consequences that data thefts pose, MBS must also comply with more stringent security policies set forth by credit card issuers-like Visa’s Cardholder Information Security Program (CISP)-and adhere to legislation like California’s Database Security Breach Notification Act, SB 1386.

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iPayment’s Charge Volume Doubles in Q2

Nashville-based iPayment reported that its second quarter charge volume more than doubled to nearly $3.2 billion, compared to $2.9 billion in the previous quarter, and $1.6 billion one-year ago. Second quarter revenues jumped by 65% to $89.4 million compared to $80 million for the first quarter, and $54 million for 2Q/03. Second quarter net income increased to $5.7 million, compared to $5.0 million for 1Q/04 and a net loss of $800,000 for 2Q/03. The Company noted that its purchase of a portfolio of agent bank agreements and 18,000 merchant accounts from First Data performed well during the first six months due to relatively modest attrition. iPayment expects annual revenues of approximately $350 million to $355 million for fiscal 2004. For complete details on iPayment’s second quarter performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

iPayment Charge Volume Historical
2Q/03: $1.6 billion
3Q/03: $1.7 billion
4Q/03: $1.9 billion
1Q/04: $2.9 billion
2Q/04: $3.2 billion
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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

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SecurePipe Earns SDP Clearance

Chicago-based SecurePipe has successfully completed the MasterCard “Site Data Protection” compliance testing process. The SDP Compliance Testing program is an expansion of MasterCard’s Site Data Protection Program(TM), a comprehensive, proactive and cost-effective set of global e-commerce and financial security services designed to help protect the Web sites of its member financial institutions, online merchants and other payment processors holding MasterCard account information. SecurePipe delivers Managed Network Security Services to organizations wrestling with lean budgets and the increasing demands of a strong network security posture.

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Retalix Revenues Up 34%; R&D Investment Grows

Ra’Anana-based retail POS specialist, Retalix, reported that global second quarter revenues jumped 34% compared to one-year ago, and up 11% sequentially. During the second quarter, US-based Costco installed its 200th site with the Retalix “StoreLine Fuel” solution and US-based Cumberland Farms installed its 200th site with the Retalix “StorePoint POS” solution. Internationally, Tesco agreed to install Retalix “BackOffice” across all sites in U.K., Europe and Asia and, Tussauds Group selected Retalix “StorePoint” for the group’s international theme parks. Revenues for the second quarter were $28.7 million, compared to $21.5 million in the second quarter of 2003 and $25.8 million reported in the first quarter. The Company reported net income for the quarter of $1.3 million, compared to a net income of $1.4 million in the second quarter of 2003.

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Kawasaki Motors Renews Household’s Contract

Household’s retail services business has signed Kawasaki Motors USA to another multi-year, private-label financing agreement. The agreement extends and strengthens Household’s long-term relationship with Kawasaki. Household has extended credit through Kawasaki’s private label credit program since 1989, providing Kawasaki dealers multiple credit products that offer quick and efficient processing, exciting credit promotions that drive customers to purchase and enables customers to make repeat purchases without having to re-apply. Household Retail Services is the third largest issuer of private label credit cards in the United States.

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NO EGG SALE

Prudential has decided to end discussions regarding a possible sale of
its majority interest in Egg. Egg says the latest results from its UK
operations show that the world’s largest pure online bank is on the
right track in building a profitable business. Egg confirmed last week
it is withdrawing from the French market, which has offset much of the
gains achieved in the UK. In October 2003, Egg announced that its French
management team had developed a revised business plan to reverse the
huge losses. However, the level of investment required to execute the
plan was greater than Egg was prepared to take on a stand alone-basis.
Egg then sought potential partners, but was then superseded by
Prudential announcing in January that it was considering proposals for
its approximately 79% shareholding in Egg. When it became clear that
there was no potential purchaser who valued the option in France, Egg
announced that it intended to take the necessary steps to withdraw from
the French market. For the second quarter, Egg produced an operating
profit for its British “Egg VISA” card of $35.3 million versus an
operating loss of $30.0 million for its French “la Carte Egg VISA.”
Overall, the Egg plc Group made a profit of $1.8 million in the second
quarter leading to an overall loss before tax for the first half of 2004
of $7.3 million, down from a loss of $41.9 million in the same period
last year. For complete details on Egg’s latest performance visit
CardData (www.carddata.com).

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