$2 Smart Cards

MasterCard International said last week it has picked up a number of technology vendors to support its 16K, multi-application “MULTOS,” $1.99, smart card program. Supporting vendors in the “OneSMART MasterCard” initiative include KeyCorp (Australia), ORGA Card Systems (Singapore), AMS Co (Korea), DZ Card (South East Asia), FoongTone Technology (Taiwan), KBC Corp (Korea), Kyodo Printing (Japan), Security Plastics (New Zealand), Shoei Printing Co (Japan), Taiwan Name Plate (Taiwan), Toppan Form HK (Hong Kong) and Versatile Card Technology (USA). MasterCard first introduced its MULTOS-based multi-application smart card under its $2.99 chip program in December 2000.

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PaymentOne & ProactiveNet

ProactiveNet, Inc. announced that PaymentOne has selected ProactiveNet to maintain service excellence and reliability for the payment solutions it provides clients worldwide. PaymentOne provides a host of payment strategies and services that fuel new subscriber acquisition, increase revenues, and improve operational efficiencies to many of the industry’s most prominent Internet and digital content providers.

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MasterCard China Board Meeting

MasterCard recently held its Asia/Pacific board meeting in Beijing, the first time that the organization has held a regional board meeting in Beijing. MasterCard was the first international payments organization to enter China in 1988. MasterCard has been working closely with China UnionPay to extend its services to cardholders. There are currently over 7,000 ATMs accepting MasterCard international cards. In December, MasterCard cards were accepted for the first time in Beijing by Starbucks. Today, 17 Starbucks outlets in Beijing accept MasterCard credit cards.

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Mobile Banxafe

Banksys, Mobistar, and Gemplus have launched the first national mobile payment application in Belgium. When using the new “mobile banxafe,” the customer will receive a description of the transaction, displayed directly on his/her mobile phone screen. To authorize this, the customer will enter his “mobile banxafe” PIN code, or digital signature, which is then verified by the applet. If the PIN is correct, the signature is sent to the authentication server via the SMS channel, which authorizes the transaction to be processed. Payment commissions are fixed and shared in collaboration with the banking sector, which is responsible for the authorization, risk management, clearing and settlement. Mobistar had a total of 2,305,390 active customers at year-end 2002.

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Rewards Gift Card

AL-based AmSouth Bank has launched an innovative VISA card that converts reward points into “VISA Gift” cards. The new “AmSouth VISA Rewards Card” rewards cardholders with points equal to 1% of card purchases. The points can be redeemed in the form of an “AmSouth VISA Rewards Gift Card,” in denominations ranging from $25 up to $1,000. Cardholders may accumulate up to $1000 annually in “VISA Reward” points. AmSouth is offering a six-billing cycle fixed APR of 1.9% followed by APRs from prime +4.9% to prime +11.9%. AmSouth is offering the card in “Gold” and “Platinum” versions. The card also offers an optional link to an AmSouth personal checking and/or investment account. At the end of 2002, AmSouth had 310,000 credit card accounts and $385 million in card outstandings, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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Debit Suit Severance

MasterCard International Friday asked U.S. District Court Judge John Gleeson to sever the plaintiffs’ claims against MasterCard in the Wal-Mart antitrust suit against MasterCard and VISA. MasterCard says a joint trial with VISA would be prejudicial to MasterCard and could cause substantial jury confusion. In its motion to sever, MasterCard says the law clearly states that evidence concerning one party cannot be offered against the other unless it is first established by a preponderance of the evidence that there was a conspiracy between the two organizations. MasterCard says this is a standard that is higher than that required in the summary judgment motion currently before the court. MasterCard has a motion pending before Judge Gleeson to dismiss the case on summary judgment. The trial has been scheduled for April 28th in Brooklyn, NY. VISA has a 75% share of the off-line debit card market, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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VISA EMV Cards

VISA Asia Pacific reported this week that thirty members are implementing EMV chip programs, more than ten million VISA EMV smart cards have been issued in the region, and over 70,000 EMV point-of-sale terminals have been deployed in eight markets. In the Australia/New Zealand market, ANZ Bank has issued more than 400,000 EMV-compliant VISA cards and deployed 35,000 EMV terminals. In Japan more than 10% of VISA cards now carry an EMV chip, with over 7 million cards in circulation. In South Korea, five VISA members and SK Telecom have collectively issued 1.1 million “Moneta” EMV chip cards and are now issuing “GlobalPlatform” chips on mobile handsets known as “Moneta Plus” phones.

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BOARD MEETING

MasterCard recently held its Asia/Pacific board meeting in Beijing, the first time that the organization has held a regional board meeting in Beijing. MasterCard was the first international payments organization to enter China in 1988. MasterCard has been working closely with China UnionPay to extend its services to cardholders. There are currently over 7,000 ATMs accepting MasterCard international cards. In December, MasterCard cards were accepted for the first time in Beijing by Starbucks. Today, 17 Starbucks outlets in Beijing accept MasterCard credit cards..

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