The Globe 100

Pegasystems has been named for the first time to The Boston Globe’s annual edition of “The Globe 100,” which ranks the best-performing publicly held companies based in Massachusetts. The Globe describes its list as a compilation of ‘The Best of Massachusetts Business’ and ‘The Most Enduring Companies.’ Pegasystems was one of only nine first-time members to the Globe 100, achieving the rank of 63 based on such criteria as return on average equity and one-year percentage change in revenue and profit margin.

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Adams on NetBank Board

Atlanta-based NetBank has named Eula Adams, former senior EVP of First Data, to its board of directors. The board, made up of 11 directorys, recommended Adams as a candidate after completing a candidate search and preliminary interview process. The company’s full board voted unanimously to approve his appointment, citing his extensive background in financial services and his experience as a certified public accountant.

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GEMPLUS S-TRAVEL

Gemplus has been selected to supply smart card technology to the “S-Travel” initiative sponsored by the EC and the Swiss Office for Education and Science. The “S-Travel” initiative, aims at defining and developing international security standards and procedures based on smart cards and biometrics to better identify frequent travelers. The program is scheduled to pilot in 2003/2004. The “S-Travel” initiative will combine digital certificates, smart card solutions, and biometrics technology integration.

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Web Security

A new study of the top 10 Internet banking sites has found the majority made only poor attempts to communicate key points about Internet security, preventative measures and bank policies about security breaches. TowerGroup says that while most online banking sites tell consumers about security technologies like 128-bit SSL encryption, this kind of technical data does little to communicate the broader measures in place to protect consumers, or the responsibilities a bank has if something goes wrong. And it does nothing to help consumers understand what they can do to keep personal information from inadvertently falling into the wrong hands. TowerGroup says to better assure customers, banks must prominently address three key areas in plain, non-technical language: 1) the security measures in place to protect consumer data, and how those measures work; 2) the steps consumers must take to product their own personal information; and 3) a bank’s indemnification policy for any unauthorized activity.

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AmEx Aeroplan

American Express Bank of Canada has been selected as the winning bidder to partner with Air Canada to offer “Aeroplan” frequent flyer points to its holders. Under the terms of the LOI, AmEx will prepay Air Canada for the “Aeroplan” points in the form of a cash advance, similiar to the deal it struck earlier with CIBC. The LOI gives Air Canada and AmEx the exclusive right to negotiate a deal until July 31st. Under the arrangement, “Aeroplan” will become a partner in American Express’ “Membership Rewards” program and the two companies will work together to develop a range of co-branded charge cards for consumers and corporations. The deal is subject to definitive agreements and approval of the court overseeing Air Canada’s restructuring. CIBC has been the exclusive credit card partner of Air Canada in Canada. Last month, Air Canada and CIBC agreed to extend their “Aeroplan” air miles contract from 2009 to 2013. Under terms of the deal, CIBC agreed to boost its prepayment to Air Canada for air miles from $200 million to $350 million, and agreed to pay Air Canada a 19% more per “Aeroplan” mile. CIBC also agreed to share the program with another credit card issuer.

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ACE CMO

ACE Cash Express has named Jake Schroepfer as chief marketing officer. Mr. Schroepfer has held leadership positions with leading Omnicom Group Inc. marketing communications agencies, including DDB Worldwide and Tracy-Locke in Dallas. ACE Cash Express, Inc. is headquartered in Irving, Texas and is the largest owner, operator and franchiser of check-cashing stores in the United States.

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VISA Debit

VISA’s “Check Card” segment was up 17.3% in the first quarter with total dollar volume of $100.2 billion. During the quarter VISA processed 2.1 billion debit card transactions versus 1.5 billion credit card transactions. VISA’s off-line debit card base was up 11.2% to 132.6 million cards. The number of “Check Card” accounts grew 13.4% to 100.9 million. Based on first quarter 2003 data, VISA’s average purchase on a debit card was about $39 compared to $85 for a credit card purchase transaction. For the first quarter of 2002, VISA’s average credit card purchase transaction was $81 while the average debit card purchase transaction was $39. For complete details on VISA’s 1Q/03 performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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mbi CEO

MA-based mbi, a provider of health care debit cards for pre-tax benefits administration, has named Robert Natt as CEO. Mr. Natt was recently executive vice-president for the New England region of Oxford Health Plans. He also has more than 20 years of health care management and administration experience. mbi introduced the debit card to the healthcare industry for pre-tax benefit administration of FSAs, HRAs, TEAs, DCEAs and other defined contribution plans.

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EP2 & VERIFONE

VeriFone International Partner CCV-CardPay has successfully deployed its first VeriFone “Omni 3740” terminals and “SC 5000” programmable smart card PINpads at leading retailers in Zurich, where the “ep2” pilot is taking place. VeriFone is only the second terminal supplier to have its solutions integrated in the “ep2” pilot phase. The “ep2” system supports the full functionality of EMV, including offline authorization of transactions. A major result of the “ep2” pilot is the proof of much faster transaction processing times at the point of sale for off-line transactions. CCV, the Holland-based parent company of CCV-CardPay, developed the software for the terminals, which will be deployed throughout world-renowned brand outlets in the city, including restaurants Down Mexico Way and Churrasco Steakhouse, and the Central Plaza Hotel.

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Do-Not-Call

The Federal Trade Commission yesterday announced that telephone registration for the National “Do Not Call” Registry will be accelerated, and will be available to consumers coast-to-coast during July. Online registration will be available nationwide on or around July 1. Telephone registration will open for consumers in states west of the Mississippi River ­ including Minnesota and Louisiana ­ on the same date. Telephone registration will be available one week later to the entire country. Telemarketers will be required to access the registry to “scrub” their calling lists beginning in September. In October, the FTC and the States will begin enforcing the national “do not call” provisions of the Amended TSR. Violators will be subject to a fine of up to $11,000 per violation. (CF Library 3/26/03)

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