Online Holiday Spending to Top $17 Billion

Jupiter Research forecasts that online holiday retail sales will be $17 billion, a 21% increase over online consumer spending last year. Despite the fact that 46% of consumers stated they will shop more than four weeks before the holiday, Jupiter Research expects the convenience of online purchasing, the primary reason consumers shop online, to push purchasers to the very edge of the buying season. Jupiter Research’s Holiday 2003 Executive Survey shows that retailers have taken measures to improve their fulfillment and customer service capabilities this year, and to ensure they are ready for the last minute rush.

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Digital Insight’s AXIS Teams with BankServ

BankServ has been named Digital Insight’s preferred partner for wire transfer processing, integrating its back-office wire transfer technology with Digital Insight’s front-end “AXIS” cash management solution. Digital Insight and BankServ will develop a real-time interface between their products enabling a complete end-to-end wire processing solution. The solution will facilitate a greater number of transactions with enhanced reporting and data exchange and will also provide a comprehensive customer experience for Digital Insight clients and their business customers.

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Gemplus and Plastkart Team to Deliver Financial and Government Smart Cards

Smart card manufacturer Plastkart has formed a partnership with Gemplus International. Under terms of the deal, Gemplus will work closely with Plastkart to provide the necessary
technological support to enable Plastkart to produce smart cards for use in financial and governmental applications. Gemplus will deliver modules with related Operating Systems and the necessary know-how to meet the most stringent business needs. Plastkart will embed the modules and print the card bodies in its high-tech factory in Silivri-Istanbul. The company’s production capacity exceeds 45 million smart cards and is certified by BVQI, TSE and TUVIT TU4. About 40 million payment cards are in circulation on the Turkish market.

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Mosaic’s Postilion Powers New InsPac Card

Atiam Technologies has selected Mosaic Software’s “Postilion” for its new VISA/MasterCard stored value card that distributes insurance payouts. The “InsPac” card is geared towards the claims payments of workers compensation, short term disability, long term disability and annuity payments. Cardholders can access funds through ATMs or at the POS. “Postilion” drives payments and other financial transactions through ATMs, POS terminals, phones and Internet access points. This multi-channel architecture provides consistent cross-channel branding and integration, consolidated management information, integrated debit card management, EMV enablement and loyalty software solutions.

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WorldPay Web Site Attacked by Ukrainian Hackers

Cambridge-based WorldPay was hit this week with an online attack involving millions of emails from the Ukraine that resulted in a denial of service for many of its customers. WorldPay has about 27,000 merchant clients in 70 countries. The majority of the clients are in Europe. Major clients include Sony Music UK and Vodafone. The Company says the attack was disruptive in nature and not to commit fraud. WorldPay is a subsidiary of The Royal Bank of Scotland Group.

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VISA USA 3Q/03 Volume Up 13%

In a surprise move yesterday, VISA USA released third quarter data less than six weeks after the close of the quarter. VISA says total volume on its U.S. cards grew nearly 13% to more than $285 billion for the quarter. VISA debit card volume hit $118 billion in the third quarter, a 22%+ increase over the same period last year. VISA’s third quarter credit card volume grew 7% over 3Q/02 to more than $167.8 billion. VISA volume in automatic bill payments, quick service restaurants and government spending collectively grew to more than $21 billion in the third quarter, a 29% increase over the same period last year. VISA says it is confident it will hit its 2003 volume projection of $1.1 trillion.

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Advantex Annual Revenues Up 4% This Year

Toronto-based Advantex Marketing International reported that its revenue for the year ending June 30th was $96 million, a 3.8% increase of the prior year. Advantex’s net loss for fiscal 2003 was $2.2 million, compared to a net loss of $3.3 million for fiscal 2002, a 32% year-over-year improvement. Results from the Company’s established loyalty marketing business improved year over year despite the effects of SARS and merchant and consumer uncertainties surrounding Air Canada and its Aeroplan subsidiary. Advantex is a developer of syndicated loyalty marketing programs throughout North America. Clients include Aeroplan, Bank of America, CIBC, The New York Times, United Mileage Plus, and US Airways.

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InstaPay Systems’ Kryptosima Signs International Processor

Atlanta-based InstaPay Systems Kryptosima subsidiary has signed a patent license and equipment purchase agreement with an undisclosed payment processor outside the USA. The agreement also provides for Kryptosima to sell PIN pads/card readers to the processor. InstaPay’s focus is on the implementation of new payment services, such as ATM card payments from home or office to make Internet purchases or fund brokerage accounts.

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Bibit Opens Office in Japan and Adds Asia-Pacific Capabilities

Bibit Global Payment Services has expanded its payment platform with Asia-Pacific capabilities. Bibit has established a corporation in Japan, which also serves as regional HQ. The payment screens, where shoppers are invited to submit their payment details, now support Chinese, Japanese and Korean characters. Settlement in all major Asia Pacific currencies is already supported by Bibit. Bibit supports more than 70 payment methods worldwide, including all European and Asian currencies required by merchants. Bibit’s client list includes Dell, Expedia, TUI / Hapag Lloyd, Transavia, The Financial Times, Vodafone, and NEC Computers International.

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More Than 30 Top Banks Join VISA’s Multinational Program

VISA International says that more than 30 global commercial banks have now officially committed to the “VISA Multinational Program.” This network of banks now allows “VISA Purchasing” and “VISA Corporate,” to be issued and locally supported in over 50 countries and territories. For multinational enterprises, this enables CFOs and senior executives to review and manage employee spending across the entire organization and its locations. Based on internal reporting by participating issuers, VISA estimates that some 500 multinational corporations are utilizing “VISA Purchasing” or “VISA Corporate” cards either as part of a cross-border “VISA Multinational Program” or through a single-country program. VISA expects strong expansion over the next 12 months, with VISA issuers currently in discussion with more than 50 multinational corporations on either purchasing or travel card programs or both. VISA does not directly track card sales volumes by multinational corporations, although it is estimated that multinational usage represents US$40 billion or more of VISA’s commercial product sales volume on an annual basis. VISA plans to dramatically expand usage by multinational corporations by 2006, winning as much as US$25billion in new volume.

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Terra Payments Revenues Up 57% in the Third Quarter

Montreal-based Terra Payments reported net earnings of $1.4 million for the quarter ended September 30th, compared to $600,000 in the previous quarter, and a loss of $21.8 million one-year ago. Revenue increased by 11% from $14.4 million in the prior quarter to $16.0 million in the current quarter. Compared to the prior year, revenue grew by 57% from $10.2 million. The revenue and earnings growth resulted primarily from increased volume of electronic cheque and mail-order telephone-order processing. For the quarter, the Company processed $335 million in payment volume compared to $316 million in the quarter ended June 30, 2003 and $206 million in the same quarter of the previous year. The sequential growth in payment volume of $19 million or 6% was as a result of increases in electronic cheque and MOTO volume of 23% and 7%, respectively, due to increased penetration into these high margin areas.Terra Payments was formerly SureFire Commerce Inc.

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Columbus Data Services Offers IP ATM Access

Columbus Data Services has deployed “TNS TransXpress Secure” to further the migration from legacy processing protocols to an IP infrastructure by enabling ATM operators to access TNS’ private transaction data network via the Internet. TNS, one of the world’s leading providers of fast, cost-effective data communications services for transaction-oriented applications, recently began offering TransXpress® Secure to support access to TNS’ secure data networks via the Internet. Columbus Data Services was formed to provide small to mid-size financial institutions and ATM deployers with state-of-the-art technology at cost effective prices to enable them to compete aggressively in the ATM marketplace. Transaction Network Services is one of the leading providers of fast, cost-effective data communications services for transaction-oriented applications.

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