CardData 4Q/02

As usual, early portfolio reports paint a mixed bag of bank credit card results for the fourth quarter. Among the four significant credit unions reporting yesterday, all showed a solid increase in outstandings and volume from the third quarter, with two reporting little, if any, growth compared to the year ago quarter. Alaska Federal Credit Union soared from $84 million in outstandings in 3Q/02 to $113.4 million for the fourth quarter. On a year-over-year basis, Alaska FCU’s outstandings nearly doubled. Meanwhile Pennsylvania’s largest credit union was flat for 2002. For real-time data of 4Q/02 portfolio information visit CardData ([][1])

PA State Employees CU $211,546,087 $212,117,831 -0.3%
Alaska FCU $113,387,105 $ 58,393,300 +94.2%
Randolph Brooks FCU $ 91,220,731 $ 87,849,119 +3.8%
Publix Employees FCU $ 26,452,995 $ 22,429,475 +17.9%
Source: CardData (



FDMS TranFort

First Data Merchant Services has signed an a multi-year agreement to provide Arcot’s “TransFort for Merchants” solution to its online merchants. First Data will offer the TransFort Merchant Software as a hosted service for merchants and will also license and resell the solution to merchants for in-house use. With this agreement, Arcot can enable several hundreds of thousands of First Data merchants, including those acquired directly, through alliance partners and through processing customers.



Paris-based Groupement des Cartes Bancaires and US-based CardSoft have
announced the launch of the “eAppliance FINREAD Platform eAFPv1.1” product
which implements the “FINREAD 1.1” specifications for intelligent smart
card readers. The “FINREAD” specification, utilizing a PKI, ensures
authentication of the applications and validates their interoperability,
which means that “FINREAD” stiplets developed by any card issuing entity,
such as a payment scheme, or official governmental body or a social welfare
organization will run on any “FINREAD” compliant reader, independent of the
“CardSoft eAFP v1.1” supports the “FINREAD v1.1” specifications where
financial applications — “FINREAD” stiplets (special Java applets) signed
andcertified by a certification authority, may be distributed over non
secure networks, downloaded and deployed into “FINREAD” card readers around
the world.


NextCard Sale

A Webcast auction of NextCard’s physical assets is set for next week. DoveBid will conduct the NextCard auction which includes high-end IT equipment, servers, routers, computers, furniture, and telephone equipment. NextCard filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in mid-November, shortly after the end of its service contract with FDIC. At that time, NextCard was down to 19 employees and had assets of about $18 million. Among its creditors is the FDIC with a debt of $140 million. Since its exit from the credit card business in July, the company has been trying to re-invent itself as a consultantcy to other financial services firms. Unable to find a buyer and facing an early amortization of NextCard’s securitized credit card assets, the FDIC decided in July to shut down about 800,000 NextCard credit card accounts. NextBank has previously sold its non-securitized credit card accounts to CardWorks and Merrick Bank. The FDIC estimated that the cost to the Bank Insurance Fund for the failure of NextBank will run between $300 and $400 million. The OCC closed NextBank on Feb. 7th and the FDIC was appointed the receiver. The auction will be held on January 15 beginning at 9:00 a.m. PT on or may be attended in person. (CF Library 2/8/02; 2/11/02; 3/14/02; 6/10/02; 7/3/02; 7/11/02; 11/18/02)


[1]: /graphic/dovebid/nextcard.jpg


Experian & ClearCommerce

Experian and ClearCommerce have partnered to integrate Experian’s “Authentication Solutions” with the ClearCommerce “Risk Management” software platform to fight fraud. Scalable to peak order volumes, the automated process will replace the time-consuming and often inaccurate manual process currently used by many online merchants, and enable tiered review techniques to efficiently resolve questionable orders and minimize costly and often unnecessary calls to customers to obtain additional information.


Wirca and MICROS

KS-based Wirca is teaming with MICROS Systems to offer a cashless, mobile-phone initiated payment option for use in the “MICROS 3700” and “8700” systems. MICROS is a leading provider of information technology solutions for the hospitality industry. When the diner is ready to pay his or her bill, it takes just a few seconds to use a mobile phone for the Wirca network to authorize a transaction. In just a few more seconds, the restaurateur completes the process at the MICROS 3700 or 8700, and the diner may leave.


Latin Debit

VISA International reported that debit card transaction volume in Latin America and the Caribbean hit 339 million transactions in the twelve month period ending September 30th, for a 66% year-over-year increase. Debit card purchase volume also increased to $8.6 billion, a 43% increase. In Brazil debit purchase volume grew 48% to $3 billion. In Mexico debit purchase volume hit $3.4 billion, a 27% increase.


CellBucks Golf

Toronto-based CellBucks Payments Network has installed a new wireless payment service at Georgia USA’s Laurel Springs Golf Club. The CellBucks service enables golfers to order food and beverages via their mobile phones and have it caddied to them on the golf course. Once the customer has selected their menu items, they’ll dial the toll free telephone number provided on the menu and enter their pass code. The customer then selects numbered items that correspond with the menu selections, routing them through an automatic validation and credit card authorization process, with a final order transmission through to the kitchen. The refreshments are delivered to the customer and an e-mail detailing the day’s transactions will also be sent to the customer. The Laurel Springs Golf Course is owned and operated by a joint venture between ClubCorp and Golden Bear International.


Tidel & Chase

Houston-based ATM manufacturer, Tidel Technologies, has renewed its senior revolving credit facility with JP Morgan Chase until June 30th. Tidel Technologies, Inc. is a manufacturer of automated teller machines and cash security equipment designed for specialty retail marketers. To date, Tidel has sold more than 40,000 retail ATMs and 150,000 retail cash controllers in the U.S. and 36 other countries.



The British Computer Society has released a new report that reveals that
UK executives are spending upwards of two hours per day wading through
e-mail. The report says nearly a third of e-mail received is irrelevant and
of poor quality. Respondents to the survey were asked to approximate how
much time they spent on a list of seven common management tasks in an
average working day of 8.5 hours. Whilst meetings took up the largest
amount of time (2.8 hours on average), dealing with e-mail came second with
an average of 1.7 hours spent on this activity. Accessing information from
the Internet accounted for a further 0.75 of an hour. Respondents reported
receiving on average 52 e-mails per day while 7 per cent received 100
e-mails per day or more. Four out of five respondents have remote access to
their e-mail account and only a minority of 14 per cent uses a PA to manage
their e-mails. Managers reported that less than half of e-mails (42%)
warranted a response. About 35% were read for information only and nearly a
quarter were deleted immediately. On average only 30% of e-mails were
classified as essential, 37% as important and 33% as irrelevant and