The Federal Trade Commission indicated last week it wants to ban the use of predictive dialers, which are widely used in the credit card industry. The FTC also wants to prohibit blocking or otherwise subverting the transmission of the name and/or telephone number of the calling party for caller identification service purposes, a widespread practice among telemarkets of ancillary credit card services. The predictive dialers place calls but do not respond immediately to an answered call, resulting in “dead air”. The proposals are part of the FTC’s broad proposal to establish a national “Do Not Call” registry which will make it illegal for telemarketers to call consumers who place their phone number on the national registry. The registry would enable consumers to eliminate most telemarketing calls simply by making one call to the FTC. The FTC also proposes to expand its telemarketing rules to cover calls made to solicit charitable contributions.Details
LaserCard manufacturer Drexler Technology reported net income of $720,000 on revenues of $5.3 million for the quarter ending Dec 31. LaserCard shipments rose 28%, to 1,545,000 cards from 1,206,000 cards the previous year and 18% above the previous record of 1,310,000 cards. Sales during the quarter included card shipments to the U.S. Department of State for southwestern border security; the INS; the U.S. Department of Defense; the Government of Italy (100,000 national ID cards); VISX, Incorporated; and 23,000 cards to China for two different programs. Last month, the Company raised ‘LaserCard’ shipment estimates for fiscal 2003 to 8 to 10 million cards compared to an estimated 5.3 million cards for fiscal 2002, ending March 31. For complete details on Drexler’s latest results visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]).
American Express and China
International Travel Service announced the creation of the first
Sino-U.S. corporate travel joint venture in the People’s Republic of China.
The joint venture company, which has received all required government
approvals, will be known as CITS American Express Travel Services Limited. It
will be based in Beijing and begin its operations in April 2002. The
organisation will provide corporate travel management services and corporate
leisure travel services to clients from multi-national corporations, regional
and domestic companies throughout the country. Services provided by the new
joint venture company include obtaining and handling visas, international and
domestic flight reservations and ticketing, hotel reservations, convention
services and other land arrangements.
Charles Petruccelli, President, Global Travel, American Express Global
Corporate Services commented, “This is our first joint venture in the People’s
Republic of China, and it represents an important step forward for American
Express to better service customers in China with international standard
corporate travel services. Furthermore, we will be better able to meet the
needs of our multi-national clients who operate in, and travel to, China. This
partnership reinforces our already strong presence in the Corporate Travel
market throughout Asia where we are the largest provider of travel management
He continued, “By combining the strength of American Express’ global travel
management expertise and worldwide support with CITS’ extensive local
and operational expertise in the travel business in China, this new company is
exceptionally well positioned to capitalize on the growth potential of the
business travel industry in China.”
This new agreement represents another major step in American Express’ global
strategy to grow its Corporate Travel business. Petruccelli added, “American
Express is committed to expanding its corporate travel interests and this
alliance is very much in line with our strategy for growth. Over the last
years we have made several acquisitions and created joint ventures in the
Europe and other markets in Asia such as Hong Kong and Japan.”
American Express Global Corporate Services
American Express Corporate Services, which includes the American Express
Corporate Card, Corporate Travel and Corporate Purchasing Card, assists
companies in managing and controlling their business travel and purchasing
expenses. It is a unit of American Express Travel Related Services Company,
Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of the American Express Company — a
diversified worldwide travel, financial and network services company
1850. American Express is a leader in charge and credit cards, Travellers
Cheques, travel, financial planning, investment products, insurance and
China International Travel Service
American Express has been in China for over 85 years. Cooperation between
American Express and CITS goes back more than two decades when CITS was
appointed as the ground service provider for American Express inbound group
tours in 1980. In 1993, CITS was appointed by American Express as Travel
Service Representative in China, providing travel services to American Express
customers. Since then, 18 CITS offices have been converted into American
Express Travel Service Representative Offices, covering 12 major cities in the
Datacard Group announced it has entered into a joint marketing agreement with St. Louis-based FormFast Inc., a leading provider of forms automation software for healthcare.
The relationship combines Datacard’s patient identification expertise with FormFast’s advanced forms automation capabilities to offer the Datacard OnDemand Forms solution. OnDemand Forms use a plastic patient ID card with magnetic stripe technology to automate forms management.
The Datacard/FormFast solution converts paper forms into digital templates saved in Adobe Acrobat, Microsoft Word, PCL or HTML format. The forms are automatically filled in when a patient ID card is swiped during registration, sending duplicate forms to other departments via e-mail, fax or laser printer. Bar code technology can also be added for generating patient wristbands and labels during registration.
“This solution is ideal for healthcare enterprises looking to improve care, protect patient privacy and control operating costs,” said Chris Lomax, vice president of marketing for Datacard’s Solutions Division. “It replaces inefficient paper forms with secure, efficient electronic forms, and provides a clear migration path to technologies such as digital imaging, smart cards and biometrics.
“These technologies can be used to automate such areas as patient and staff ID, membership management and provider authentication, now or in the future,” Lomax said. “Since the technologies leverage the same plastic cards that most nurses already use, they require minimal staff training to implement.”
A Datacard/FormFast solution also takes advantage of the Internet to simplify consumer interaction with a healthcare organization. For example, patients can fill out insurance forms online a few days before their appointment, so they are ready to receive care the moment they arrive at a healthcare facility. Edward Novak, director of corporate development at FormFast, sees the relationship with Datacard as an opportunity to expand the scope of the forms and identification solutions both companies bring to the healthcare market. “This synergy between FormFast and Datacard creates the industry’s most extensive digital identification solution that begins in admitting and extends all the way into archiving,” Novak said. “We look forward to working alongside Datacard to help our healthcare customers create an accurate, secure and cost-efficient digital identification solution that spans their entire operation.”
Datacard Group provides software, systems and professional services needed to build profitable card programs. The company’s solutions portfolio also includes a complete line of secure digital identity systems and card personalization systems. Datacard Group is privately held and based in Minnetonka, Minn. Datacard Group serves customers in more than 120 countries. ([http://www.datacard.com]) FormFast, Inc. provides a range of solutions that apply advanced, easy-to-use software toward solving paperwork automation challenges in a variety of industries. Hundreds of healthcare organizations use the company’s FormFast software to help save time and money by eliminating their dependence on pre-printed medical forms.
Novadigm, Inc., a leading provider of adaptive management solutions for
software and content in enterprise and Internet environments, announced
that Italy’s largest bank holding company, IntesaBci, has licensed Novadigm’s
Radia products for 50,000 users.
“This substantial extension of IntesaBci’s previous use of Novadigm’s
e-wrap technology solutions underscores Novadigm’s belief that its
long-term franchise is best built upon a satisfied customer base,” said
Gerald Labie, Novadigm president and chief operating officer. “Novadigm is
focused on customer success and we are completely committed to helping our
customers derive significant business value from our adaptive management
Banca Commerciale Italiana (BCI), which merged on May 1, 2001 with
Banca Intesa, to form IntesaBci had been a Novadigm customer since 1995.
“Banca Commerciale Italiana had achieved impressive results from
Novadigm’s automated software management solutions, managing all branches
which sometimes have low bandwidth characteristics,” said Vincenzo Campanini,
Systems Operations & Network Manager for IntesaBci. “After the merger decision
in 2000, the challenge for IntesaBci’s expanded information technology group
was to select the best and most comprehensive software management solution for
all banks converging to a standard Windows environment. Our competitive
evaluation and benchmarks, along with BCI’s success in achieving business
benefits with Novadigm’s solution, resulted in our selection of Novadigm’s
Radia product family for automated software management of our entire
50,000 devices environment.”
Radia’s Web-based administration and choice of fully automatic or
self-service software management are proven to reduce administrative costs
while increasing end-user satisfaction. Radia customers consistently report
lower total cost of ownership and higher levels of service to users, compared
to manual processes or competing management products.
IntesaBci, the largest Italian banking group, has been created in 2001
through the merger between Banca Italiana Commerciale, Cariplo e Ambroveneto.
Three institutes, among the most prestigious and famous in Italy, which have
put together their own distinctive competences, the professionalism and
commercial networks to meet any customer requirement with products and
services of high quality level. The IntesaBci group also comprises various
savings banks and medium size local banks well established in the respective
territories, as Cariparma, Friuladria, Banca di Trento e Bolzano, in addition
of many services companies. For further information, please visit
Novadigm is a leading provider of software and content management
solutions for enterprise and Internet computing environments that enable
organizations to reduce software management costs, speed time-to-market,
expand marketing channels and open new sources of revenue. Novadigm’s suite of
integrated products, based on the company’s e-wrap(TM) technology, work
seamlessly together as the only end-to-end solution that can efficiently,
reliably and scalably deploy and manage the full range of today’s software and
content, personalized for a wide range of computing devices, across virtually
any network. Novadigm customers — Global 1000 business enterprises, software
vendors and service providers around the world — report software management
savings of 80 percent or more, time-to-market improvements of 70 percent or
more, and reliability typically greater than 99 percent. For more information
on Novadigm, please visit
StatementOne, the industry leader in enterprise financial data consolidation and performance reporting, announced it has formed a strategic alliance with E-Z Data. Their combined efforts will incorporate the E-Z Data Enterprise CRM Platform’s data management capabilities in tracking client and investment information by enabling users to integrate data collected via StatementOne’s sophisticated data consolidation system.
One of the first beneficiaries of this new alliance is ING, who is converting to E-Z Data’s web-based Enterprise CRM Platform (ECP). “E-Z Data’s willingness to partner with us is helping us reach our objectives,” says ING Producer and Field Services Director Chris Eberly. “Our objective is to provide a comprehensive financial view with minimal cost and time commitment on the part of our advisors. Financial Advisors will be able to access StatementOne’s consolidated investment data and performance reporting information through E-Z Data’s front office CRM application. We are excited about what this brings to the advisor.”
“This new alliance capitalizes on the strengths of both firms,” explained Dale Okuno, CLU, president of E-Z Data, Inc. “StatementOne is the leader in sophisticated account consolidation and performance reporting and E-Z Data has the industry-leading front office system specifically designed to increase the marketing, sales and customer servicing capabilities of insurance agents, investment advisors, distributors and the companies they represent.”
Greg Pacholski, StatementOne’s president and chief operating officer, added, “Partnering with E-Z Data will enable us to clearly demonstrate the power of the consolidated database that we’ve developed for ING. They will now be able to automatically populate – and maintain – their CRM system with extremely accurate, detailed and current information about purchasers of their products. To an enterprise like ING, the cost-savings alone are very significant!”
About E-Z Data…
Established in 1986, Pasadena, CA-based E-Z Data, Inc. is the leading provider of front office systems for insurance companies, broker-dealers, general agents, OSJs, and investment advisors. Its web-based Enterprise CRM Platform (ECP) provides a comprehensive solution for synchronizing the efforts of all the key players in sales, marketing, and customer service. The company’s clients include approximately 30 of the largest U.S. and international insurance and financial services companies, including American Express Financial Advisors, AXA Australia, Mutual of Omaha, ING, New York Life, Prudential and Wachovia Bank. E-Z Data’s domain expertise, coupled with mature industry specific business components, results in consistently successful customer implementations. For more information about E-Z Data, visit their website at [http://www.ez-data.com].
StatementOne consolidates data for financial institutions and other enterprises, collecting transaction-level data sets from both legacy systems and external custodians, utilizing direct data feeds. They currently manage account data for over $80 billion (U.S.) in assets, representing more than 18,000 financial advisors and over 1,500,000 investors and 3,500,000 individual accounts. They provide a secure, web-based, turnkey service which delivers securities account aggregation, consolidated statements and performance reporting to branch managers, registered representatives and their clients (investors). Their proprietary software cleans, organizes and reconciles the data, producing a consolidated, unified data structure, with virtually no manual intervention. This scalable database is also used to feed critical, best-of-breed applications for use in business planning, analytics and CRM. Their clients include broker dealers in the ING Advisors Network, the SunAmerica network, ING Aetna Financial Services, Cambridge Investment Research and CalFed Bank.
Online payment services are growing rapidly among auction Web site users. Only 14% of auction buyers reported that they used an online payment for their first online auction purchase however 37% say they have used an online payment service to pay for their most recent purchase. By contrast, checks and money orders combined were used by 50% of auction buyers for their first purchase, but by only 29% for their most recent purchase. The results of ESP Consulting’s recent study also found that 46% of respondents limit their online purchases to the general retail arena, while the remainder are active buyers and/or sellers at online auctions. The payment habits of online auction buyers are dramatically different than online retail shoppers. Among online retail shoppers, 73% used a credit card to pay for their most recent purchase while 18% used a debit card. By contrast, just 1% of online retail shoppers used an online payment service for their most recent purchase.Details
Alliance Data Systems confirmed this morning it has signed a five-year agreement with women’s specialty retailer AnnTaylor Stores. ADS will provide private label credit card services to approximately 541 Ann Taylor, Ann Taylor Loft and Ann Taylor Factory stores nationwide, as well as the Ann Taylor online store. The program will provide includes account acquisition and activation; receivables funding; card authorization; private label credit card issuance; statement generation; remittance processing; customer service functions; and marketing services. Earlier this month, ADS announced a five-year agreement with specialty retailer Williams-Sonoma to provide a full-service, turnkey private label credit card program for about 200 Pottery Barn and Pottery Barn Kids retail stores as well as catalog and Internet sales channels. Last month, ADS and Reeds Jewelers signed a seven-year agreement for Alliance Data to provide a full-service private label credit card program for Reeds’ 115-store chain located in 21 states primarily in the Southeast and Midwest section of the United States. The stores operate under the names Reeds Jewelers, Mills Jewelers, and Reeds Jewelers Outlets. (CF Library 12/11/01; 1/15/02)Details
Gift Check Solutions has been selected by Jamba Juice to provide hosted e-commerce services, which allow Jamba Juice customers to order gift certificates online at [www.jambajuice.com].
Gift Check Solutions’ e-commerce services provide a secure online environment for Jamba Juice customers to order one or more gift certificates in $5 denominations, which are redeemable at any of Jamba Juice’s more than 325 locations throughout the United States. The gift certificates are available online and can be sent to the customer’s location or shipped directly to friends and family.
“Everyone loves smoothies, and our customers are making Jamba Juice smoothies an increasingly popular gift,” said Dan Lester, manager of Sales/AR and Technology at Jamba Juice. “To ensure that we can meet the demand of our customers who want to order online, we selected Gift Check Solutions. “GCS offers a packaged solution that eliminates much of the management and hassle typically associated with coordinating an online gift certificate program over a large base of stores like Jamba Juice. Our gift certificates were a big hit during this past holiday season.”
“We provide our customers with a service that conveniently meets their needs,” said John Bechard, president of Gift Check Solutions.
“Jamba Juice is growing in popularity, and now its customers can give the gift of `Jamba’ to their friends and family by ordering the gift certificates online. This opens a new source of revenues for Jamba Juice by using their Web site as a tool to attract future customers and service existing customers.”
About Jamba Juice
Jamba Juice(R) is the category-defining leader in all-natural, made-to-order fruit smoothies, fresh squeezed juices, and healthy snacks. The company maintains its reputation by providing a stimulating experience featuring unique products made with the highest quality ingredients, vibrant stores and outstanding customer service. Jamba Juice has more than 325 company and franchised/licensed stores in 20 states nationwide, and can also be found at select Whole Foods Markets, college campuses and airport locations.
About Gift Check Solutions
Based in Salt Lake City, Gift Check Solutions provides paper- and electronic-based gift products and services. The company manages the creation, processing, printing and fulfillment of gift certificates and gift cards. Electronic gift cards utilize magnetic swipe card technology, allowing gift card transactions to be processed real-time via a secure network. Gift Check Solutions also offers hosted e-commerce services for online gift certificate and ordering and customized point-of-purchase materials to drive gift certificate and gift card sales throughout the year. For more information, visit [http://www.giftchecksolutions.com] or call 888/739-9971.
Europay International has won five French public sector purchasing card contracts through its partnerships with Cre’dit Agricole, Cre’dit Mutuel/CIC and Europay France. Cre’dit Mutuel/CIC won the contracts for the French Ministry of Defence, the French Ministry of the Interior and the Commune of Issy les Moulineaux, while Credit Agricole has been awarded the contracts for the Laboratoire National d’Essais located at Issy les Moulineaux and the Commune of Meudon. A total of nine contracts were bid according to The RAM Report (www.ramreport.com). The Cre’dit Agricole/Answork purchasing solution and the MasterCard, Cre’dit Mutuel/CIC, Ingenico consortium solution will both offer detailed transaction data and authorization controls that will provide these five public sector organizations with tailored management information programs.Details
Thales e-Security, a leading worldwide provider of e-Business security
solutions, announced a strategic partnership with Tecnocomputacion 3000,
S.A. in Venezuela and Identificacion Plastica, S.A. in Colombia. The two
companies will be responsible for sales and distribution, technical support
integration services of the Thales e-Security solutions in the Venezuelan and
Colombian territories, providing added-value services to customers in Banking,
Healthcare and Insurance.
“Tecnocomputacion 3000 and Identificacion Plastica are very pleased to partner
with Thales e-Security,” said Gabriel Sternberg, Business Director of the
group. “Over the past years we have built an extensive knowledge and expertise
in developing and integrating solutions for financial markets. This makes
ideal partner of choice for Thales in our countries to commercialize and
support its e-Business hardware and software solutions. We are convinced that
our customers will benefit enormously from our partnership with Thales.”
Thales e-Security operates in three main markets covering e-security, card
payment and network security, addressing the business security needs of
corporations and governments alike. “We are very excited about our partnership
with Tecnocomputacion 3000 and Identificacion Plastica,” said Cynthia Provin,
President of Thales e-Security. “With their in-depth expertise in the smart
card area, combined with the Thales e-Security products, they can provide
customers with the personalization and transaction processing solutions
required to support the chip card migration in the region,” she concluded.
About Tecnocomputacion 3000 and Identificacion Plastica
Tecnocomputacion 3000, S.A. and Identificacion Plastica, S.A. are privately
held companies based in Caracas, Venezuela and Bogota, Colombia that belong to
the Grupo Empresarial 3000 Consortium (GE3C). For over 18 years, GE3C and its
companies have been distributing, integrating and servicing in Venezuela and
Colombia hi-tech products (hardware and software) manufactured by companies
around the world. Over the years, they have successfully penetrated the
Banking, Insurance, Healthcare and Oil & Gas industries by implementing and
maintaining different systems and solutions. To learn more about GE3C or
its companies, please visit
http://www.tecnocomputacion.com or write to
About Thales e-Security
Thales e-Security provides e-business security solutions to several thousand
customers worldwide. Over half of the world’s banks, together with the
of the busiest exchanges, currently use Thales e-Security technology.
in three main markets covering e-security, card payment and network security,
Thales e-Security addresses the business security needs of corporations and
governments alike. For more than 20 years the company has been at the
of security and payment technology, co-operating and contributing to set the
industry standards used for financial transactions and e-commerce globally.
Thales e-Security is part of the IT & Services Business Area of the Thales
group, a global supplier of leading-edge electronics in the fields of Defense,
Aerospace and IT & S. Thales has $7.6 bn of revenues and employs 65,000 people
Johannesburg-based Prism Holdings Limited has been contracted by OPW Fuelling
Components Europe to deliver a smart card-based fuel-purchasing system to
Arabia. A R2 million pilot is being launched next month. Under the contract,
fleet vehicles will be fitted with OPW vehicle identification tags that are
transmitted as the nozzle is inserted into the vehicle’s fuel tank. The VIT
determines how much fuel is required and the vehicle odometer reading. This
information is sent to a site controller which is connected to a Prism
terminal. The driver’s smart card is then inserted into the terminal which has
been preloaded for fuel purchases. The terminal validates the driver and pre
authorizes the fuel purchase.