Lender Identity Suit

A judge for the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana granted the motion to dismiss filed by ACE and Goleta National Bank in a lawsuit where the plaintiff alleged that GNB’s loans were made by ACE rather than GNB, and were therefore made in violation of Indiana law. TX-based ACE, a check cashing concern, specializes in short-term loans such as pay-day loans. The firm has an agent relationship with GNB. The judge said that after reviewing the plaintiff’s complaint and her loan documents, that GNB was the lender and that Section 85 of the National Bank Act, not Indiana law, regulated the permitted interest on GNB’s loan to the plaintiff. The decision is the first one to specifically address the issue of the lender of the GNB loans and the federal preemption of state law regarding those loans. ACE has a total network of 1,191 stores, consisting of 1,003 company-owned stores and 188 franchised stores in 35 states.

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Oberthur Mid-Year

Oberthur reported this week that its net loss for the first half of this year reached 20.7 million euro compared to a net profit of 200,000 euros one year ago. The smart card manufacturer says profits were affected by variations in exchange rates (2.2 million euros) and the impact of a declining stock price on shares owned by the company (2.5 million euros). However sales revenues were only down 4.7% from 228.2 million euros in the first half of 2001 versus 217.8 million euros for the first half of this year. The company noted it has reduced its net debt by 18 million euros since the first of this year. Oberthur says payment card activity increased by 3% during the first half of 2002, with a considerable increase in microprocessor cards and personalization services, compensating for the slowdown observed in the magnetic cards market. This segment now represents 52% of the company’s sales revenues, compared with 48% in the first half of 2001. For complete details on Oberthur’s performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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LOW COST FINGERPRINT SENSOR

Gothenburg-based Fingerprint Cards AB has launched the world’s smallest
and lowest cost fingerprint sensor. The robust “FPC1030” sensor meets the
requirements for 15 KV repeated air discharges of electrostatic electricity
and can withstand a wear cycle test of one million touches. The “FPC1030”
measures by sending electric impulses through the fingertip, reaching the
living structures in the skin’s
lower layers. The “FPC1030” is a capacitive swipe sensor that can scan the
entire fingerprint pattern. It is only 3 mm x 11 mm making it ideal for for
integration into high-volume devices such as PC peripherals, portable PCs
and mobile phones. The complete fingerprint verification system will be
available to customers at less than US$10/unit for volumes of 500K. The
swipe sensor FPC1030 can also be purchased as a separate packaged component
at US$11/unit at volumes of 10K.

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One Stop Processing

Hypercom’s Golden Eagle Leasing and Creditdiscovery have teamed to develop a program that will for the first time allow ISOs, MSPs and acquirers to enable their merchants to simultaneously apply for merchant credit card processing and POS equipment lease financing via the Internet and receive a decision within seconds on both their acceptance for merchant processing and the terms for leasing their Payment Terminal/POS equipment. Paperless contracts can be instantly generated and electronically signed. Creditdiscovery’s “ISOExpress” will accept on-line electronic credit applications from merchants on a 24/7/365 basis, authenticate the identity of the merchant, obtain the merchants credit report, return a decision for credit card processing and lease financing, and obtain legally binding electronic signatures on contractual documents, virtually instantaneously. CT-based Golden Eagle Leasing is a lessor engaged primarily in micro-ticket leasing (under $5,000) in the credit card transaction market.

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EURONET DATA CENTER

Euronet Worldwide has opened a new data processing facility in
Budapest, almost tripling Euronet’s capacity for transaction processing
in Europe, the Middle East and Africa regions. The operations center
features state-of-the-art security and protection plans. The EOC and the
backup processing center are in separate locations and are connected to
two separate power grids with diesel generators for both centers. Should
a hardware or software failure occur in the primary location, the system
would redirect the processing functions to the backup processing center.
Similarly, if a natural disaster occurred, the backup site would be
operational with replicated data and redundant networks and operations.
As of June 30th, Euronet owned and/or operated a total of 2,840 ATMs
compared to 2,548 ATMs on March 31st. The company owns and/or operates
ATMs in Hungary, Poland, Germany, Croatia, the Czech Republic, the U.K.,
Greece and Egypt.

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NPC & Target

National Processing Company has renewed a multi-year EBT, credit and debit card processing agreement with Target that includes all MasterCard and VISA transactions, accepted via in-store sales for all company locations, except those related to the “Target VISA” card. The company operates over 1,435 stores in 47 states under the brand names: Target, Marshall field’s and Mervyn’s.

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GLOBAL PAY-PLUS

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group has launched Fundtech’s Global
“PAYplus” payment system in New Zealand. The platform will enable the bank
to offer Web-based, real-time automated processing services across its
international network. In 2001, ANZ Bank began using the “Global PAYplus”
solution in Melbourne. Fundtech has sold payment solutions to more than 750
financial institutions around the globe.

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Health Care Debit Card

PacifiCare Health Systems has rolled-out a “Flexible Spending Account” service and health care debit card which works off the Cirrus network. PacifiCare’s new service includes a stored-value card that charges health care services directly to an employee’s FSA, much like a bank-issued debit card that charges retail purchases to a checking or savings account. The FSA and debit card services will be available Jan. 1, 2003.

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ICMA 2003

The International Card Manufacturers Association’s EXPO currently
being held this week in Vancouver announced it will hold next year’s event
in Cancun, Mexico. The “12th Annual Card Manufacturing EXPO” will be held
November 9 – November 12, 2003 at the Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach.
The EXPO will include a full conference program consisting of both
management and technical topics, and will feature an exhibition of
suppliers of card manufacturing and personalization equipment, materials,
components and services. The “Fifth Annual Global Market Survey” results
will be announced, which unveils how the card manufacturing industry has
grown or changed and reveals major trends for the future. Additionally, the
“Second Annual ICMA Spiritus Award” will be presented to an ICMA member
company that has implemented outstanding programs that have had significant
impact on society or their own community. The EXPO will conclude with the
“Final Night Awards Dinner” featuring the presentation of the “Seventh
Annual Elan Awards” for “Card Manufacturing Excellence” recognizing card
manufacturing achievement for both “Outstanding Card Design” and “Technical
Achievement.”

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