Synovus Financial has launched a free online service that allows customers of its affiliate and correspondent banks to view their monthly personal credit card statements in extensive detail. ‘CardView’ presents real-time account summaries and daily transaction details online. In addition to basic information, like the merchant’s address, phone number and date of purchase, ‘CardView’ also allows customers to sort their transactions by date, merchant or amount, or even connect directly to merchant websites for information and online shopping through an ‘Illuminated Statement’. The statement itself also provides targeted, customized offers for cardholders. Customers with personal credit cards issued by Synovus affiliate or correspondent banks are eligible for the free service when they register at ‘CardView’ was developed through a partnership among Columbus Bank and Trust, DotsConnect, and Encirq Corporation, the San Francisco-based online marketing services company that developed the ‘Illuminated Statement’.


Global ATM Net

A global alliance is being formed to provide international bank customers with free access to ATMs. Bank of America, Barclays, Deutsche Bank, Scotiabank, and Westpac have teamed to offer their combined customer base free access to more than 20,000 cash machines on three continents. The 36 million customers of these five banks can begin using the alliance’s cash machine network without charge on July 1. The network of ATMs is located throughout the US, UK, Germany, Canada and Australia. In all of these countries, customers who use their debit card at cash machines that display the banks’ logos will incur no access fee. The ATM stats for the founding members show that Bank of America has more than 12,000 ATMs in the U.S. while Barclays has more than 3,000 ATMs throughout the UK. Deutsche Bank has more than 1,800 ATMs in Germany, Scotiabank has more than 2,100 ATMs in Canada, and Westpac has about 1,500 ATMs in Australia. In the coming months, the alliance will expand its service coverage to include their international ATMs (more than 2,500 ATMs in 58 countries) and actively pursue other members, targeting Mexico, Spain, Asia, South America and South Africa.


PSCU Realignment

Payment Systems for Credit Unions announced Thursday it will open a new operations center in Phoenix and will close regional offices located in Jacksonville, Florida; Herndon, Virginia; Novi, Michigan; and Honolulu, Hawaii. Employees in the regional offices will have a choice of relocating to either St. Petersburg or Phoenix. The changes are part of a strategic alignment to meet significant expected growth in its western U.S. operations and in its e-commerce business. Under the realignment, which is expected to be complete by mid-year 2002, PSCU will maintain its national headquarters and operations center in St. Petersburg, Florida where more than 600 of PSCU’s 750 employees work. PSCU is a cooperative owned by more than 500 credit unions and serves more than six million cardholders nationwide. PSCU had a record year in 2000, with net income rising 19% to nearly $122 million.



VendTek Systems Inc. (announces a restructuring with new strategic business
focus for selling its
e-Fresh technology in North American and on the deployment of a North
American e-Fresh Network.

As a result of delays in orders for e-Fresh stations from its principal UK
customer as well as a decline in traditional product orders the Company is
accelerating its plans for e-Fresh sales in North America and on an e-Fresh
Network in North America.

“Although we are frustrated with the delays in product roll-out through our
existing UK customer we are nonetheless excited about the opportunities our
technologies present. If the ongoing delays persist it will mean that we
will likely not meet 2000 revenue levels so we have implemented layoffs,
work sharing and are optimizing infrastructure to reduce overhead during
this transition.” says VendTek CEO Paul Brock. “Even though the Company will
now increase its focus on the North American business opportunity we do
expect an upturn in international e-Fresh sales and in traditional sales by
first quarter 2002. We plan to continue our technology development for
licensing and to look to our overseas partners to create value from our
technologies in international markets.

To fund the Company through this restructuring and to implement the new
strategic focus we are in the process of sourcing additional equity

About e-Fresh

The e-Fresh Network enables cellular and other service providers to
distribute prepaid services electronically to consumers via a proprietary
real time network and self-serve kiosks called e-Fresh Stations. The e-Fresh
Network consists of a central server running VendTek’s transaction
processing software connected to multiple e-Fresh stations. The system
includes proprietary encryption technology for securing the transmission of
the transactions and significantly reduces the operating costs for
companies, improving efficiencies and profits.

About VendTek

VendTek uses its expertise in payment and self-serve technologies, smart
cards and networking to develop systems for transaction automation.
VendTek’s secure proprietary systems reduce shrinkage, improve access for
consumers, increase the number of selling outlets and selling hours, and
enhance overall security making the systems superior to traditional
distribution and alternative channels.



CIBC, together with Advantex Marketing
International Inc. announced the launch of the CIBC Aerogold
ADVANTEX Benefit Online, an innovative Internet-based shopping rewards program
developed by Advantex for CIBC.

CIBC Aerogold cardholders will register online for the ADVANTEX Benefit
Online program at, and thereafter earn Aeroplan Bonus
Miles on their purchases at dozens affiliated leading e-retailers, including,,, and Bonus
miles earned are in addition to the one Aeroplan Mile per dollar cardholders
receive when making purchases with their CIBC Aerogold card.

“We are very pleased to launch the CIBC Aerogold ADVANTEX Benefit Online
program, the first of our major Internet cardholder benefit initiatives,” said
Christine Croucher, executive vice president, CIBC card products division.
“This exciting new program demonstrates our ongoing commitment to enhancing
cardholder value through expanded reward opportunities.”

“This represents a significant long-term opportunity for Advantex,” said
G. Randall Munger, chairman of Advantex. “Our programs turn frequent flyers
into frequent buyers at participating merchants.”

The program features the handy CIBC Aerogold SmartBar, an online shopping
guide to more merchants, more miles, more often.

CIBC Aerogold SmartBar feature – Never Miss a Mile(TM)

The CIBC Aerogold SmartBar online shopping guide travels with cardholders
as they navigate the Web, delivering valuable site-specific shopping alerts on
where they earn Aeroplan Bonus Miles online. CIBC Aerogold cardholders never
miss a mile(TM) with their SmartBar online shopping guide. The guide also
features quick access infolinkx(TM) to participating e-retailers, CIBC
services, Advantex Benefit dining, golf and hospitality directories, as well
as a range of other travel, business and lifestyle information web sites. The
built-in Aeroplan Miles Meter displays a running total of the bonus miles
earned through the program.

The CIBC Aerogold Visa Card is the number one premium credit card in
Canada with more than 500,000 cardholders. The Aerogold Visa, celebrating its
10th anniversary in 2001, was the first Aeroplan co-branded financial product
introduced by CIBC. Three other products are also offered as part of the
CIBC’s Aeroplan family of products. CIBC’s alliance with Aeroplan allows
cardholders to earn additional Aeroplan miles, redeemable for free flights on
Air Canada and its partner airlines.

About CIBC

CIBC is a leading North American financial institution offering more than
eight million personal banking and business customers a full range of products
and services through its comprehensive electronic banking network, branches
and offices across Canada, in the United States and around the world. CIBC is
a leader in electronic banking, with more than three million e-banking
customers accessing Telephone and Internet banking. CIBC is also Canada’s
leading credit card issuer and offers the broadest range of choice and value.
To find other news releases and information about CIBC, visit our Media Centre

About Advantex Marketing International Inc.

Advantex Marketing International Inc. is a leading consumer marketing
firm, specializing in private label customer relationship marketing programs.
Advantex programs strengthen the relationships between major organizations and
their valued customers, while building new and ongoing relationships between
those customers and networks of affiliated merchants. Advantex partners
include The Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, Air Canada, US Airways, The
Bank of Nova Scotia, The New York Times, and other major North American
corporations, as well as an extensive list of retailers, restaurants, golf
courses, and resorts. Advantex is a public company, traded on the Toronto
Stock Exchange under the symbol “ADX”. For additional information on Advantex,
please visit


Online Biz Banking

Speer & Associates, Inc., a leading financial services consulting firm, released the findings of its first study on the effectiveness of banks in serving the small business segment needs through Internet banking services. Based on an analysis of 100 sample commercial bank web sites, S&A found most banks lack a compelling online small business banking offering that has a clear focus on targeted marketing and commitment to execution. As a result, the ability to form deeper partnerships with small business customers on a value-added basis is not being optimized.

Richard N. Speer, Jr., S&A’s Chief Executive Officer, commented, “While some of the largest banks in North and Latin America demonstrate a commitment to the small business banking segment, on balance there is a wide range of opportunities that have yet to be leveraged.”

S&A’s Survey focused on six categories most critical to small businesses based on their heavy adoption and use of personal computing and telecommunications technologies. The Survey measured the percentage of banks within the sample that “delivered” on core banking needs of the small business segment. The percentage of banks in the sample offering online services based on S&A’s six key evaluation categories were:

* Cash/Investment Management (33%)

* Access to Credit (32%)

* Advisory Services (19%)

* Revenue Enhancing Services (14%)

* Bill Payment & Expense Reduction Services (36%)

* Administration & Operational Assistance (21%)

For many institutions in the Survey, S&A found the Internet was used to display “brochure-ware,” relying on traditional channels such as the branch, telephone or calling officer for fulfillment. Speer continued, “Given the increasing adoption of the Internet by the small business segment, many mid- size and some large banks are leaving themselves threatened by larger and non- bank competitors.”

Survey Findings by Banking Segment

* The Major Diversified Segment, banks with asset size over $100 million, had the most compelling sites, with a full array of financial and value-added services and are well ahead of the U.S. and Canadian banks in delivering to the small business segment. Fleet Bank, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and Bank One are examples of leading sites that position the banks as integrated partners to the small business segment.

* Large U.S. Regional Bank small business online offerings have transactional functionality that is well behind the overall sample banking segment. Their offerings are centered on marketing financial services, rather than broader value-added features and functionality. Most noticeably, S&A observed only 25% of the banks in this group offered key credit products on a transactional basis.

* Although the mid-size institutions, ($9 to $40 billion in assets) claim a more traditional banking approach toward small businesses, this segment is delivering online services to the segments less frequently than the North American sample in all six areas reviewed. The mid-size banks are keeping up in traditional services such as account access, online customer service and online lockbox services. The widest gaps in offerings are found in the non-retail features such as online investments, merchant processing or escrow accounts.

* Canadian banks demonstrated an overall strong commitment to small business web offerings. They provide either online loan applications or online loan transactional capabilities for small business customers in greater frequency than observed in the overall North American sample.

* The 20 Major Latin American bank sites reviewed offered transactional functionality similar to their North American counterparts with a less brochure-ware orientation. Many banks focused on the value-added services by offering access to vertical procurement portals, account aggregation and access to business exchanges and portals.

Compared to the development of retail web sites, Speer estimates most banks are 12 to 18 months behind in the development of online offerings to small businesses. “This is a risky position for banks considering their non- bank competitors and the generally profitable nature of the small business customer.”

Mr. Speer concluded, “This first S&A Small Business Internet Banking Survey reveals the wide range of online offerings available to the small business customer in today’s environment. The winners will be those banks that understand the needs of their small business customer and fashion online offerings that are responsive. S&A’s next Survey in June will further explore their progress.”

For more information, contact Laura Lloyd at 770.396.2528.



A large majority of online shoppers give their
credit card number out over the Internet, despite concerns about this
practice, suggests an annual Credit Card Tracking Study conducted by CF Group

The study found that six in ten Internet users, and one-third of recent
online buyers, are “very concerned” about giving their credit card number over
the Internet. However, three-quarters of online buyers paid for their most
recent purchase this way.

“Paying for goods online by credit card is often the only payment method
that is offered by retailers on their Web sites, forcing shoppers to put aside
any anxiety they feel about this practice,” says Rhonda Grunier, vice-
president of CF Group. “However, new developments in online payment, such as
single use credit card numbers and person-to-person e-mail payments should
help to overcome the security concerns of many Internet users.”

The study also found that personal credit card ownership has grown over
the past year and is now at its highest level since CF Group began tracking it
in 1994. Currently, 77 per cent of Canadians 18 and older hold at least one
credit card issued by a financial institution, retailer or gas company, up
from 73 per cent a year ago. And Canadians are using their cards more often
45 per cent of cardholders report using a credit card at least once a week, up
from 41 per cent a year ago. The average cardholder charged $6,010 on all
credit cards in 2000, up from $5,040 in 1999.

“One of the strongest motivators for Canadians to use their credit cards
more often is the ability to earn loyalty rewards, such as airline points,
discounts on merchandise and rebates. Overall, 43 per cent of Canadians report
using a credit card to accumulate rewards, up from 34 per cent last year. And
a growing proportion of Canadians claim to maximize their card usage so that
they can rack up as many points or rewards as possible,” says Grunier.
The study also reveals that half of all cardholders surveyed admit to
carrying over a balance on their credit cards at least once in the past 12
months, while 15 per cent admit to carrying over a balance in every month over
the past year. These figures have not changed much over the past few years.
Credit card use is not the only payment method that has increased over
the past year. Debit card payments are also on the rise. Currently, 69 per
cent of Canadian adults claim to have made a debit card payment in the month
prior to the survey, up from 66 per cent one year ago and 61 per cent in
January, 1999.

“Debit cards have surpassed cash as the most popular mode of payment at
department stores and supermarkets,” says Grunier.

For its annual Credit Card Tracking study, CF Group interviewed 2,032
Canadian adults by telephone between January 29 and February 12, 2001. The
sample is nationally representative of Canadian adults 18 years of age and
older. A survey sample this size is considered accurate to within 2.2
percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

CF Group Inc. is Canada’s first – and one of the largest – full-service
marketing, opinion and social research organization. It is a member of the NFO
WorldGroup family of companies.

NFO WorldGroup is one of the world’s leading providers of research-based
marketing information and counsel and is a worldwide leader in Internet-based



More than a quarter of all Internet users (26.9 per cent) earn less than (pound)600 per month, according to new figures from Internet monitoring company NetValue.

Those who earn (pound)4000 or more per month make up 8.3 per cent of all Internet users.

“The Internet is not reserved for a rich elite,” NetValue’s Alki Manias said. “These figures show that the web is being welcomed by low income earners. Online businesses have to recognise that the Internet market is every bit as diverse as the high street market, and not limited to big earners.”

The UK gained 800,000 new home Internet users in April, taking the national total to more than 13,500,000 home users. More than 2,300,000 have gone online at home since the beginning of the year.

The total number of people who accessed the Internet anywhere in the UK in April (home, work, school, university, Internet cafe etc) was just under 18,000,000. Of these, 45.5 per cent connected only from home and 18.2 per cent connected both from home and work. 12.6 per cent of users connected only from work.

Men make up 59.1 percent of users and almost one in five users (19.2 per cent) is aged over 50.


Three quarters of Internet users (10,220,000) visited an e-commerce site in April. Of these, 46 per cent (4,746,000 users) went to a secure section of the site, where customers hand over their credit card details. continues to be the top retail website in the UK, attracting 1.6 million visitors. More than a quarter (28.9 per cent) of visitors entered the secure section of the site. During April, 39.8 per cent of Internet users visited a music and literature site.


Dell was the most active advertiser for the second month running, reaching 40.3 per cent of all Internet users, with the next most active. More than five million home users (5,084,000) clicked on a banner ad during the month, 37.4 per cent of the total home online audience. The average user saw 97.3 ads, seeing each one on average 2.5 times.

Top domains continues to be the most visited website in the UK, attracting 56.1 per cent of all Internet users. The number of users visiting has increased from 6 million in January (53.5 per cent of all Internet users) to 7.6 million in April.

April 2001

About NetValue

NetValue, a global leader in Internet intelligence, delivers unprecedented insight into online user behaviour, e-business, Internet trends and activity, by incorporating its superior technology and pristine research methodology.

NetValue’s technology provides us with the unparalleled flexibility and scalability to customise our offerings and tailor our products to meet clients’ specific business needs. It delivers the greatest depth and breadth of protocol measurement, capturing all Internet protocol activity including web, email, chat, audio, video, games, instant messaging, FTP, etc. NetValue’s aggregation and categorisation technologies provide the most concise panel-based service providing real-time intelligence about Internet activity.

Founded in France in 1998, NetValue has operations in the UK, France, Germany, Sweden, Spain, Denmark, Norway, US, Mexico, Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea, China and Taiwan. NetValue clients include AOL, MSN, T-Online, Wanadoo, Mastercard, Procter & Gamble, Danone, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, SG Cowen, Qualcomm and Harvard Business School. NetValue can be reached at http//

Panels are recruited by Taylor Nelson Sofres (TNS) globally and Central Viewer Survey and Consulting Centre (CVSC) in China, and are fully representative of the Internet universe in each country. The process for implementing and managing the user panels is consistent globally, thereby ensuring comparability between each market. An establishment survey quantifies and profiles the number of Internet users in each country. The survey gathers both Internet related data (e.g. level of Internet penetration, main ISP used, how long the household has been connected etc.), as well as demographic and socio-economic data. TNS determines the characteristics of the Internet user population through weekly telephone interviews.

Base Representative sample of UK population aged 15 and above. Omnibus telephone survey carried out by Taylor Nelson Sofres between April 1st to 30st on 1990 persons. Total Household population in the UK 24,290,000



Are defined as a group of Web pages under the same name (i.e. comprises one domain).


Length of time (in minutes or hours) spent by an Internet user on pages from a domain or property.


Very low less than(pound)600 Low (pound)600-(pound)999 Middle(pound)1000-(pound)1999 High (pound)2000-(pound)3999 Very high(pound)4000+

Internet user

A NetValue Internet user is an individual who has connected to the Internet at least once during the reference period.


Reach is the percentage of unique visitors who visited a particular site at least once in the month.

Secure connections

Secure connections, such as SSL, are used to ensure the confidentiality of information exchanged, in particular

— when entering and transmitting credit card information

— when accessing online bank accounts

— when trading online



American Express Canada announced that Alitalia, British Airways and
Cathay Pacific Airways will provide Platinum Cardmembers with a free companion
ticket with the purchase of a full-fare ticket in specified classes and routes
on each airline.

The Platinum Card International Airline Program (IAP) is the only benefit
of its kind in Canada and provides unmatched value to Cardmembers. The offer
is available year-round, with no blackout periods and no limits to the number
of times Cardmembers can take advantage of a complimentary companion ticket.

“This is one of the most exciting and exclusive travel programs ever
designed for our Cardmembers,” said Alan Stark, President and Chief Executive
Officer of Amex Bank of Canada. “Our customers can literally save thousands of
dollars in travel costs. This new program reinforces the value of the Platinum
Card and Amex’s position as the ultimate brand in the premium card market.”

Through the new program, the participating airlines offer Cardmembers
regular flights from major Canadian cities to their destinations in Europe,
the United Kingdom, Asia and beyond in first, business and premium economy
classes on British Airways, and in business class on Alitalia and Cathay

The airlines say the arrangement provides an opportunity to build
relationships with Amex’s affluent Cardmembers and grow their businesses in
the Canadian market. Amex expects new carriers to join in the program in the
coming year.

American Express revolutionized the premium card industry in Canada by
becoming the first to introduce a Platinum Card in 1984. Since then, Amex has
added innovative benefits like the International Airline Program as well as
automatic access to a host of other privileged services and features

– Membership Rewards – earn 50% more Membership Rewards points for
virtually every dollar spent and redeem for a wide array of rewards

– Fine Dining Program – provides preferential access to tables at some
of the most sought after restaurants in North America

– Fine Hotels, Resorts and Spas Program – receive special treatment at
some of the world’s finest properties

– Platinum Card Concierge – assists Cardmembers with virtually any
request, anywhere at any hour with a toll-free telephone call

– Personalized Travel Service – a full-service travel agency exclusively
for Platinum Cardmembers

– Front Of The Line Entertainment- provides preferential ticket access
to some of the hottest events in Canada

Typically, the Platinum Cardmember is a well educated executive or
entrepreneur who dines out at least once a week and travels extensively on
business, spending about two months every year away from home. They also take
several personal trips each year, with almost half travelling to destinations

To book travel and a free companion ticket using this new benefit,
Platinum Cardmembers can use Amex’s Personalized Travel Service – a full-
service travel agency specifically for Platinum Cardmembers – at 1-800-668-
9147 or can book through any American Express Travel Services office in Canada
by calling 1-888-414-8747 to be connected to the nearest location. Some terms,
conditions and restrictions apply.

About American Express

American Express in Canada operates as Amex Canada Inc. and Amex Bank of
Canada. Both are wholly owned subsidiaries of the New York based American
Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc., the largest operating unit of
the American Express Company, which provides a range of financial and travel
related services for consumers and companies. Amex Bank of Canada is the
issuer of American Express Cards in Canada. Amex Canada Inc. operates the
Travel Services Network, Corporate Travel and Travellers Cheque divisions in
Canada. American Express opened its first offices in Toronto and Hamilton in
1853 and now employs over 3,000 Canadians.


UniCard ICE

Hypercom and Las Vegas-based have teamed up to offer a prepaid, stored value card for online and offline use. The program offers consumers the ‘UniCache’ online payment system and the ‘UniCard’, which can be used with any brick & mortar merchant equipped with Hypercom’s ‘ICE’ touch screen-based card payment terminals.With ‘UniCache’, consumers can completely manage their account online, checking balances, viewing transaction history, adding funds as desired, and even tracking delivery of shipped products. The ‘UniCard’ can also be used at any ATM machine using the STAR, PLUS or INTERLINK network. The ‘UniCache’ system with Hypercom ‘ICE’ card payment terminals will be rolled out throughout the U.S. in July.



Visa International, the leading payment service, and Yahoo!, a leading global Internet communications, commerce and media company, have signed a global agreement that leverages the companies’ brands and extensive global networks to promote the ease and benefits of making online purchases.

This relationship complements an agreement made between Visa USA and Yahoo! last year, which promoted and helped create a more convenient and secure shopping experience for consumers in the United States.

Under the agreement, Visa will serve as the default payment option within international versions of Yahoo! Shopping, Yahoo! Travel and Yahoo! Wallet covered in the relationship. Visa will also be the preferred brand of any co-branded credit or debit card offered by Yahoo! in participating regions.

To support and promote the agreement, Visa will develop and execute co-branded Yahoo! and Visa offline-marketing initiatives, which may include television advertising, regional print advertising and select statement insert programs, outdoor posters and airport signage by region. Visa International will showcase special Yahoo! offers on its Web site,, in the Offers & Promotions section and will also feature Yahoo! on its regional sites and in its “World’s Best Offers Program” catalog. In addition, participating international Yahoo! properties will host Visa-Yahoo! co-branded content pages.

Visa Regions included under the new agreement are Visa Asia Pacific, Visa Canada, Visa Latin America/Caribbean, and Visa Central Europe, Middle East and Africa. Yahoo!’s international properties covered in the relationship include Yahoo! Japan, Yahoo! Korea, Yahoo! Hong Kong, Yahoo! Kimo (Taiwan), Yahoo! Singapore, Yahoo! Canada, Yahoo! Australia & New Zealand, Yahoo! Argentina, Yahoo! Brazil, Yahoo! Mexico, and Yahoo! en espanol.

“Visa’s strategic global relationship with Yahoo! helps enhance customer and merchant benefits on all sides, and further expands two prominent international brands within the global marketplace,” commented Tom Shepard, executive vice president, Global Marketing Partnerships for Visa International. “By working with leading Internet players such as Yahoo!, Visa continues to be a major player in Internet-based payments and the pioneer of u-commerce – or universal commerce.”

U-commerce is Visa’s vision of the future in which cardholders can conduct commerce conveniently and securely, anywhere, anytime, and over any type of device.

“By further expanding our global relationships, Yahoo! continues to build the Internet’s leading consumer and business services company by delivering programs, content and services that meet the needs of our broad audience,” said Jasmine Kim, vice president, international marketing, Yahoo!. “In working together with Visa, we are helping to increase consumer confidence in making online purchases and provide a more convenient experience for shoppers around the world.”

About Visa International

Visa is the world’s leading payments brand and the largest payments system worldwide. Visa-branded cards generate more than US$1.8trillion in annual volume and are accepted at over 22 million locations around the world. The Visa organization plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 21,000 member financial institutions and their cardholders. Visa is a leader in Internet based payments and is pioneering the creation of u-commerce, or universal commerce – the ability to conduct commerce anytime, anywhere, over any type of device. Visit Visa at Visa, Latin America and Caribbean Region’s Internet address is

About Yahoo!

Yahoo! Inc. is a global Internet communications, commerce and media company that offers a comprehensive branded network of services to more than 192 million individuals each month worldwide. As the first online navigational guide to the Web, is the leading guide in terms of traffic, advertising, household and business user reach. Yahoo! is the No. 1 Internet brand globally and reaches the largest audience worldwide. The company also provides online business and enterprise services designed to enhance the productivity and Web presence of Yahoo!’s clients. These services include Corporate Yahoo!, a popular customized enterprise portal solution; audio and video streaming; store hosting and management; and Web site tools and services. The company’s global Web network includes 24 World properties. Yahoo! has offices in Europe, Asia, Latin America, Canada and the United States, and is headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif.



First American Payment Systems announced that it has selected eConnect, manufacturers of the eCashPad, as an integral part of its MMEC (Member Money Exchange Center).

MMEC (Member Money Exchange Center) is a jointly developed venture of FAPS and the Sygenics Corp.,

FAPS is purchasing an initial 10,000 eCashPads to correspond with eConnect’s rollout. In addition, FAPS will aggressively market the eCashPads to their existing merchants and consumers in the ensuing months according to Anthony Varvaro, president of FAPS.

Varvaro further stated “As a leader in Internet payment solutions, we are proud to integrate eConnect’s technology into our system. The ability of the MMEC consumer to send real cash payments by ATM card with PIN entry, combined with the total security and ease of use of the eCashPad, will benefit all of our merchants and give peace of mind to our customers.”

eConnect will drive the Canadian MMEC eCashPad originated transactions to FAPS and will generate a transaction fee per eCashPad usage as MMEC customers use their eCashPads for a variety of transactions ranging from bill payment to online gaming. MMEC is a full-service online cash transfer system specializing in online gaming.

MMEC has targeted the launch date for public access in July 2001. MMEC expects to have 15,000 registered users within the first 6 months of operations. The MMEC system will allow customers to track all of their online gaming transactions as well as transfer funds directly to or from their personal bank accounts.

FAPS is a leading payment facilitator in the online gaming market with offices in Montreal; Las Vegas; Birmingham, Ala.; and Margarita, Venezuela. In 2000, FAPS processed over $25,000,000 in transactions for its customers.