iDine Picks Affinium to Streamline

FL-based iDine Rewards Network has selected Unica’s “Affinium” to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their on- and off-line marketing initiatives. The company also will use Affinium to track and measure campaign effectiveness for rapid learning and continual strategic improvement. Affinium will replace an older system that has become too restrictive and limiting. iDine will also be using Affinium’s Universal Dynamic Interconnect technology, which will allow it to seamlessly connect to and interact with multiple data sources on various platforms.

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Global Axcess Branded Cash Program Signs VA Bank

VA-based Rockingham Heritage Bank has signed a two-year deal with Global Axcess Corp. and its Nationwide Money Services for an ATM “Branded Cash Program”. Under the terms of the agreement, Nationwide Money will install ten branded ATM sites in high-traffic areas, including nine Food Lion supermarkets. EFT Integration, Inc., Global Axcess’ subsidiary, will drive the transaction processing.

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Citigroup European Cards Up 32%

Citigroup reported that credit card outstandings for the EMEA region were up 32% for the second quarter, while card loans in Latin America fell by 20% and down 9% in Japan. At the end of 2Q/03, Citigroup had 14.0 million credit card accounts outside of North America, a 7% increase over 2Q/02. Charge volume for international credit cards was up 10%, to $9.0 billion for the second quarter. Total outstandings for international cards were $12.2 billion as of June 30th, a 13% gain over one year ago, according to CardFlash International. In Japan, credit card loans were dipped below $1.0 billion. In the rest of Asia, credit card loans grew 9% to $6.3 billion. Citigroup holds $4.1 billion in card loans for the EMEA region and $400 million in Latin America. Delinquency and charge-offs increased during the second quarter for international cards. Delinquency (90+ days) increased from 1.97% in 1Q/03 to 2.04% for 2Q/03. Charge-offs increased from 4.09% in 1Q/03 to 4.60% for the second quarter.

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SCA Promotions to Offer AmEx STV Cards

Dallas-based SCA Promotions, a specialist in contests and promotions, has teamed with American Express Incentive Services to offer a stored-value gift card. Under terms of the deal, SCA assume the risk of over-redemption, enabling it to offer the cards at very attractive pricing. Cards are available in a multitude of denominations. Sponsors determine the values, expiration date, graphics, logos and the delivery mechanism. AEIS’ patented filter technology also allows sponsors to determine whether cards are redeemable everywhere AmEx is accepted, or limited to a particular retailer or even store location. This feature supports sponsors’ co-marketing and trade marketing efforts. SCA clients include AT&T, Coors Brewing Company, Cumulus Media, General Mills, Grab.com, Hershey’s, Pepsi and Sony.

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TowerGroup Membership Program Launched

MA-based TowerGroup has launched a “Membership Program” to offer financial services institutions greater flexibility in accessing research reports. The Program allows the institutions the to choose the research they need from all of TowerGroup’s research categories, as well as direct access to all of TowerGroup’s industry-leading analysts. The TowerGroup Membership Program is designed to address the unique needs of financial institutions as they look to compete in an increasingly converged and competitive marketplace.

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Usage Patterns in China Have No Pattern

Cardholder activities among consumers in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenyang, Deyang, and Hangzhou vary widely according to a new research report. Holders of credit cards in Shanghai and Guangzhou use their cards more frequently for purchase transactions than do their counterparts in other major cities, with 71.7% of card holders in Guangzhou using their credit card at least seven times per month over a six-month period compared with just 25.5% in Deyang and around 30% in Shenyang. According to the study by the School of Management at Fudan University in Shanghai and underwritten by MasterCard, cardholders in Shanghai and Guangzhou use their cards more frequently for shopping than their counterparts in Shenyang, Hangzhou and Deyang, with cardholders in those three cities spending comparatively more, and using their cards more frequently, on hotel accommodation. Not surprisingly, taken across all cities expenditure on shopping and dining out accounts for most of the credit card transaction volume.

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MBNA European Cards Up 45%

MBNA reported that managed loans in Europe increased 45% during the second quarter to $14.5 billion while managed loans in Canada grew 43% to $3.2 billion. During the second quarter MBNA added 460,000 new accounts in Europe and 260,000 in Canada, a 50% increase over the second quarter of 2002. The card issuer also added 16 new affinity programs in Europe, and 46 new affinity programs in Canada, during the quarter, according to CardFlash International. To-date, MBNA has 910 card programs in Europe, and 510 card programs in Canada. In April MBNA announced plans to market credit cards and related products in Spain through offices located in Madrid. Spain is the fourth international market entered by MBNA preceded by the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Canada. Since operations began in Spain the issuer has signed 29 affinity programs in the country.

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Cardinal Systems Hires Evans as RSM

AR-based Cardinal Systems, has hired Raymond Evans, formerly with Aurum, as Regional Sales Manager. Evans new responsibilities include introducing the Cardinal/400 core bank system to community banks throughout Florida and Georgia. Mr. Evans has over 15 years of experience in sales and sales management in the financial and utility industries. Prior to joining Aurum, he served as regional vice president at First Commerce Technologies, where he was in charge of sales and marketing of the company’s core and item processing solutions.

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NCR’s ATM Revenues Up 2% in 2Q/03

NCR reported Thursday that its ATM division generated second-quarter revenue of $260 million, a 2% gain over the year-ago period. The company says revenue growth in the Americas region offset continued market weakness in Europe and the impact of SARS in China. The Retail Store Automation unit produced $204 million in revenue, up 17% from the second quarter of 2002. During the quarter, NCR signed $25 million of orders for NCR’s advanced-function ATMs for five large US banks. Internationally, the company inked a deal with the State Bank of India to install and manage 1,500 ATMs and also signed an agreement with the Bank of Communications and Agricultural Credit Union Bank in China for “Personas” ATMs and “APTRA” software. In the Company’s Retail Store Automation business, NCR was awarded a $40 million contract during 2Q/03 with the USPS for POS terminals and services including software development, project management, installation, help desk and maintenance. NCR also signed an UK deal to refresh Sainsbury’s POS technology in all of its 500 supermarkets and 200 gas stations with “RealPOS 80c” terminals and “RealScan” bar-code scanners. For complete details on NCR’s 2Q/03 results visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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Metris Takes a Beating on Wall Street

Metris is taking a beating on Wall Street this morning as its stock tumbled another 23% to $2.50 per share, after a shakedown yesterday. Yesterday the company released its 2Q/03 report showing lower losses, and also announced it would eliminate $565 million of insured deposits at its bank subsidiary by the end of September in response to a request from the OCC. On Thursday, the company reported a second quarter loss of $15.7 million, compared with a $36.4 million loss last year. S&P cut its credit ratings on Metris yesterday citing concerns about the Company’s ability to replace the funding derived from the $565 million of insured deposits. According to CardData, Metris’ 2Q/03 managed net charge-off rate was 19.1%, compared to 18.0% for the prior quarter, and 14.9% for the second quarter 2002.

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EMV CARDS

Smart cards are gaining momentum in Asia Pacific, as evidenced by more than 12 million VISA-branded EMV smart cards issued regionally, alongside over 120,000 EMV POS terminals. VISA aims to migrate the majority of payment cards and terminals to EMV chip standards in Asia Pacific by end 2008. VISA recently sponsored a “VISA Smart Vendor Conference” in Kuala Lumpur yesterday attended by more than 120 chip and technology professionals from 70 international companies. More than 70 leading vendors already participate in the “VISA Smart Program,” and many are actively supporting VISA members in their coming launches of VISA EMV card programs. Besides global vendors, an increasing number of Malaysian vendors, such as Cassis, have recently joined the program. The migration to smart cards is gaining speed in Malaysia and the country could very well be the first country in the region to complete national migration to EMV. In Asia Pacific, VISA has a greater market share than all other payment card brands combined with 59% of all card purchases at the point of sale being made using VISA cards. There are currently more than 365 million VISA cards in the region. During 2002, US$700 billion was spent at point of sale or withdrawn from ATMs in Asia Pacific using VISA cards, an increase of 43% over the previous year.

FULL STORY:

Smart cards are gaining momentum in Asia Pacific, as evidenced by more than 12 million VISA-branded EMV smart cards issued regionally, alongside over 120,000 EMV POS terminals. VISA aims to migrate the majority of payment cards and terminals to EMV chip standards in Asia Pacific by end 2008. VISA recently sponsored a “VISA Smart Vendor Conference” in Kuala Lumpur yesterday attended by more than 120 chip and technology professionals from 70 international companies. More than 70 leading vendors already participate in the “VISA Smart Program,” and many are actively supporting VISA members in their coming launches of VISA EMV card programs. Besides global vendors, an increasing number of Malaysian vendors, such as Cassis, have recently joined the program. The migration to smart cards is gaining speed in Malaysia and the country could very well be the first country in the region to complete national migration to EMV. In Asia Pacific, VISA has a greater market share than all other payment card brands combined with 59% of all card purchases at the point of sale being made using VISA cards. There are currently more than 365 million VISA cards in the region. During 2002, US$700 billion was spent at point of sale or withdrawn from ATMs in Asia Pacific using VISA cards, an increase of 43% over the previous year.

More than 120 chip and technology professionals from 70 leading international companies gathered at the Visa Smart Vendor Conference in Kuala Lumpur yesterday to discuss the latest developments and strategies for managing and delivering EMV chip-based products and services to Visa member banks and merchants regionally.

Focusing on ‘Driving EMV and Beyond’, the conference aims to share relevant information on the implementation of Visa chip products and services in Asia Pacific and to ensure that the move to chip is fully supported by the various industry players.

Bruce Mansfield, Head of Chip Implementation for Visa Asia Pacific, said, “ In recognition of the continued strong progress in the deployment of Visa smart cards and terminals in Asia Pacific, Visa hosts the conference annually for vendors to educate them on the latest policies and strategies, as well as to help shape the successful introduction of chip infrastructure, hardware, software and applications.”

Bruce added that the industry participants must play their role in educating their audiences about the benefits of chip with regard to fraud reduction and the introduction of new services on multi-application cards. He also stressed how essential it was for national governments, vendors and banks to cooperate in order to make chip migration a success.

“The Visa Smart Vendor conference was an excellent opportunity for like-minded professionals to engage in productive discussions and to exchange their knowledge and experiences in the various stages of EMV implementation. It further reinforces the need for collaboration by all industry players to ensure migration is completed within schedule,” Bruce said.

Strong Global and Local Vendor Support

As part of the industry collaboration, Visa has been working with leading global and local vendors in developing EMV chip products and services for its members. More than 70 leading vendors already participate in the Visa Smart Program, and many are actively supporting Visa members in their coming launches of Visa EMV card programs. Besides global vendors, an increasing number of Malaysian vendors, such as Cassis, have recently joined the program.

Smart cards are gaining momentum in Asia Pacific, as evidenced by more than 12 million Visa-branded EMV smart cards issued regionally, alongside over 120,000 EMV POS terminals. Visa aims to migrate the majority of payment cards and terminals to EMV chip standards in Asia Pacific by end 2008.

Bruce added, “We have been making great strides globally in our EMV migration efforts and more than 30 member migrations are now underway in Asia Pacific with the same number again planning to implement shortly. We are glad to have the entire industry supporting our initiatives for EMV chip migration. Our Visa Smart Program has expanded to include more vendors supporting a wide range of activities including manufacture and personalization of EMV compliant smart cards and terminals, as well as consultation and support services. We are also looking at future offerings in areas such as ATMs and host systems. Ultimately, our goal is to equip our Visa Smart vendors to better serve our member banks in ensuring the success of their chip implementations.”

Malaysia’s Migration on Track

The migration to smart cards is gaining speed in Malaysia, which was among the earliest adopters of smart cards through its government-sponsored programs.

Jack Pan, Visa’s head of chip implementation in Southeast Asia said given the heightened interest in and stronger focus on the pace of migration, Malaysia could very well be the first country in the region to complete national migration to EMV. He said,

“Visa has seen encouraging progress in Malaysia with its members’ chip migration efforts. HSBC recently launched its Visa EMV card issuance program in June and we are anticipating subsequent member announcements in the coming weeks. Our members can also expect more in-country support with additional card manufacturing and personalization bureaux to help them efficiently and cost effectively mass produce Visa EMV chip cards. This will enable them speed up EMV card issuance and accelerate the migration process in Malaysia.”

He said Visa would continue to strengthen its collaboration with regulators, vendors, and member banks in Malaysia in this vital migration exercise.

The Visa Smart Program is a comprehensive set of products and services on chip migration for Visa member banks. The program aims to significantly reduce financial, technical and time-to-market barriers currently faced by card issuers and acquirers in their chip migration efforts, and to accelerate the adoption of Visa Smart debit and credit cards in the region. Many Visa members have benefited from the cost-effective chip products, wide choice and flexibility in customizing smart card products to serve specific segments of consumers, while generating savings from reduced card fraud.

The Visa Smart Program supports member banks in all key functions of the chip migration process, including
·Visa Smart Cards:34 vendor offerings from as low as $0.99
·Visa Smart Devices: 3 vendor offerings from as low as $145
·Visa Smart Personalization:Solutions from as low as $0.50 per card
·Visa Smart Vendors:0ver 70 vendors actively supporting EMV

About Visa International

Visa is the world’s leading payment brand with more than 1.1 billion cards in circulation worldwide. Visa-branded cards are used to purchase over US$2.5 trillion worth of goods and services every year and are accepted at more than 30 million merchant locations and over 810,000 ATMs in more than 150 countries. Visa is a leader in Internet based payments and is pioneering the creation of universal commerce – the ability to conduct commerce anywhere, anytime, and any way.

Visa in Asia Pacific

In Asia Pacific, Visa has a greater market share than all other payment card brands combined with 59 percent of all card purchases at the point of sale being made using Visa cards. There are currently more than 365 million Visa cards in the region. During 2002, US$700 billion was spent at point of sale or withdrawn from ATMs in Asia Pacific using Visa cards, an increase of 43 percent over the previous year. Visa Asia Pacific’s Internet address is www.visa-asia.com.

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Diners Launches Summer Promotion

Diners Club has launched a “Summer Family Rewards” promotion, offering seasonalized and customized redemptions for cardholders with 100,000+ points. From shopping the Club Rewards Catalog or customizing vacations through a travel consultant, Diners Club Cardmembers’ redemption options are endless. Diners Club serves more than 8 million Cardmembers worldwide, and is issued in more than 200 countrises and 67 local currencies.

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