Providian Nears $20B

Providian reported $19.0 billion in managed credit card loans for fourth quarter 99, a stunning 58% increase over 4Q/98. Providian also reported Thursday that revenues from membership services nearly tripled last year from $238.5 million to $674.9 million. Overall fourth quarter net income totalled $159.4 million, an increase of 68%, over $94.9 million, for the fourth quarter of 1998. During 4Q/99, Providian added 1.1 million net new accounts bringing total customer accounts to 12.4 million. For the full year, the sub-prime specialist added 4.5 million net new accounts, a 57% gain over the 7.9 million total accounts at year-end 1998. The managed net credit loss rate increased to 6.78% in the fourth quarter, compared to 6.40% in the third quarter of 1999, and was better than expected. For the full year, the managed net credit loss rate was 6.94%, compared to 7.58% for 1998. The 30+ day managed delinquency rate was 5.66% at year-end 1999, compared to 5.20% at the end of the third quarter of 1999 and 5.33% at year-end 1998. For complete current and historical stats on Providian’s credit card portfolio, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

PROVIDIAN’S RAPID RISE
98-4 99-1 99-2 99-3 99-4
CARD LOANS: $12.1b $13.1b $14.8b $16.6b $19.0b
TOTAL ACCTS: 7.9m 9.0m 10.1m 11.3m 12.4m
Source: Providian 4Q/99 Earnings Report

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

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CardSelect Patent

CardSelect International, a provider of consulting services to the banking, telecommunications and smart card industries, announced this week that it has received a United States Patent for its “Gateway Apparatus for Designing and Issuing Multiple Application Cards”.

This invention essentially provides an Internet-based apparatus and method to link card issuers, service providers and consumers in the effort to create multiple applications from different vendors on one card. Services can include credit, debit and loyalty, which can be combined on virtual cards, magnetic stripe cards and/or smart cards. Applicants choose from a menu of services on a network, thereby generating a data file that is used to issue their personalized card.

According to Holger Mackenthun, president of CardSelect International, the Internet is changing the way customers purchase their goods and services, and as a result, card issuers must rethink the way they attract new customers. “Low interest rates on credit cards are no longer enough because there are too many offers out there and margins are squeezed to the limit,” Mackenthun says. “Tailored programs on the Internet that deliver added value to specific customers will achieve success, from which banks and merchants will benefit.”

CardSelect has developed a business strategy that parallels the growing trend in the industry to utilize the Internet to build vertical sales channels, thus bringing customers, service providers and card issuers together. When CardSelect’s plans to create an e-commerce network are fully implemented, customers will be able to customize their own preferred services and vendors on virtual cards or ones they receive through the mail. Other Internet developments for adding more value to cards include Citibank’s “CitiWallet” and the “KlickReward” program as well as the Internet credit card from NextCard, which allows personalized photos on cards.

About CardSelect International

Founded in 1997, CardSelect International (CSI) is a start-up organization that has developed a patented technology for personalizing and issuing financial transaction cards, credit cards, smart cards and multiple application cards over the Internet. Headquartered in the Great Valley Corporate Center near Philadelphia, PA, the company also provides a broad range of consulting services to the global banking, telecommunications and card industries. More information on CSI can be found on the company’s web site at [http://www.cardselect.com][1].

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

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Aussie Smart Card Proc

Businesses in the UK and Ireland which trade via the Internet are being offered unprecedented levels of fraud and risk control by National Australia Bank Group, which includes Clydesdale, National Irish, Northern and Yorkshire Banks.

The Group has beaten-off competition from rivals and linked up with market-leading specialists Digital Courier Technologies, Inc. (Nasdaq: DCTI) to offer selected business customers and those who trade with them the chance to make payments via smartcards, including Mondex Electronic Cash.

National Australia business customers accepting payments via conventional credit and debit cards will also have the chance to enhance their security, thanks to the link-up.

Smartcards contain computer chips, rather than the magnetic strips of conventional credit and debit cards, and are the most secure means of on-line payment available.

National Australia customers accepting on-line payments via credit and debit cards will be offered Digital Courier’s transaction monitoring and fraud detection software, which contains information from credit card companies, card issuing banks and merchant banks. The software is easy to install and use, and works with a wide variety of hardware platforms and operating systems. It contains a range of tools which allow businesses to monitor and change transactions, at any point in their life-cycle, with data available in real time, and authorisation requests being answered in five seconds or less.

The Digital Courier link-up will also mean reports of transaction volumes and values being available to businesses, 24 hours a day, from a secure, password-protected Internet site. It is expected that businesses will find these useful for reconciling and managing accounts, as well as monitoring transactions for fraud.

Digital Courier currently manages half a million credit card transactions a month for merchant banks and Internet-based businesses. It aims to make credit card transactions safe and profitable for its clients, from card authorization, through transaction settlement, to robust fraud control.

Mr. Don Marshall, president of Digital Courier Technologies, Inc. said, “Digital Courier’s agreement with National Australia Group brings us a very important partner in our emerging Internet payment’s business.

“Developing this relationship, with one of the world’s leading banks, further solidifies the important role Digital Courier plays in the global market for Internet payment solutions that emphasize risk control, affinity marketing and smartcard technology innovations”.

Mr. Andrew Douglas, Head of Payments, Europe, National Australia Group, said, “National Australia Group has recognized the specialized capability which Digital Courier brings to select merchants and clients.

“Our respective strengths in the financial and Internet industries will deliver significant benefits for our customers”.

Mr. Brent Skeffington, Head of Smartcards Europe, National Australia Group, said, “National’s agreement with Digital Courier brings us an important partner in emerging areas of our Internet payments business. We expect our joint smartcard program to offer our customers a solution that lowers payment costs, reduces chargeback exposure and creates an affinity relationship between merchant and consumer.”

National Australia Bank Group is an international financial services group providing a comprehensive and integrated range of financial services across four continents and 15 countries including Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and throughout Asia. National Australia Group has an asset base of over A$250 billion, assets under administration of over A$400 billion, almost nine million customers globally and is ranked as one of the 50 largest banks in the world. National Australia Group Europe Limited includes four regional banks (Clydesdale Bank PLC, Yorkshire Bank PLC, National Irish Bank Limited and Northern Bank Limited). For more information, visit the National web-site at [http://www.national.com.au][1].

Digital Courier is a payments organization supplying financial institutions, businesses and Internet merchants with sophisticated e-commerce and payment processing software as well as customized services to meet their needs. Data feeds, data management and business intervention are combined to provide a complete real time suite of Internet and physical payment services. Digital Courier specializes in risk management including chargeback and fraud control. Digital Courier’s broad array of software tools and database information is unmatched in enabling merchants and merchant banks to aggressively pursue electronic commerce opportunities. Digital Courier helps reduce the merchant cost of doing business by limiting incremental merchant discount and bank reserve increases. Merchant banks are given assistance to satisfy their fiduciary need to control and limit merchant risk. Beyond risk control services, payment authorization is available and merchant acquiring and settlement. This complete solution provides an unparalleled platform to the electronic commerce environment and because it is based on new technology, it is reliable, secure and cost-effective. For more information about this product, visit [http://www.dcourier.com][2].

[1]: http://www.national.com.au/
[2]: http://www.dcourier.com/

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Barnes & Noble Card

MBNA and barnesandnoble.com signed agreements yesterday to develop and market a co-branded credit card that allows customers who use the credit card to earn rewards at barnesandnoble.com and at Barnes & Noble retail stores. Under the terms of the agreement, MBNA will have the exclusive right to market credit cards to barnesandnoble.com’s customers and barnesandnoble.com will have the right to market its products to MBNA’s 20 million+ cardholders. Also as part of the agreement, barnesandnoble.com will be featured on MBNA’s three Web sites: MBNAnetaccess.com, MBNAwallet.com and MBNAoffers.com. MBNA will also become an affiliate of barnesandnoble.com, whose affiliate network now exceeds 300,000 members. No date has been set for the card’s release.

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ImageCard HiFX

Datacard Group launched a new desktop card printer that will dramatically increase end-user expectations and industry-wide standards for full-color plastic card printing. In addition to true “edge-to-edge” printing, the new Datacard ImageCard HiFX card printer offers color saturation and image resolution that is comparable to offset printing.

“Initially, we intended to introduce a high-resolution printer for mission-critical photo ID applications, such as issuance of driver’s licenses, national IDs and high-security employee badges,” said Eric Freudenheim, Vice President of Product Marketing for Datacard Group’s Credentia company. “And we succeeded. The printer is ideal for those applications–including more complex applications that require high-quality printing on proximity cards or smart cards.

“But the color saturation and image quality have exceeded our most optimistic expectations,” Freudenheim said. “So, we believe it’s a perfect fit for a number of consumer, government and business-to-business applications.”

Freudenheim said he expects those broader applications to include retail gift cards, multi-application campus cards, taxpayer IDs and multi-function visitor IDs for theme parks, resorts and hotels. In addition to end-users, the new ImageCard HiFX will also change card printing paradigms for authorized Datacard Channel Partners around the world, according to Freudenheim.

“We work with very innovative and forward-thinking channel partners,” Freudenheim said. “They’re anxious to get their hands on this printer and start developing new solutions for their traditional customers and entirely new markets.

A new category for plastic card printers

While Datacard Group is incorporating the ImageCard HiFX into its Ultima(TM) Class of card printers, Freudenheim said the new printer is not just a revamped or more feature-rich model.

“HiFX isn’t a simple line extension,” Freudenheim said. “It’s a whole new classification of printer. We offer the world’s largest selection of plastic card printers, but there’s nothing like this in our line.

“We’ve integrated this new printer with ID Works(TM), our modular and most advanced photo ID software package, and a wealth of image capture solutions to create a powerful, fully integrated system,” Freudenheim said.

In contrast to traditional technology that prints images directly onto the surface of a card, ImageCard HiFX first prints a composite, full-color image on a clear, intermediate transfer material, which is then bonded to the card surface using pressure and heat.

This process dramatically improves color saturation and allows for true edge-to-edge printing on a broad range of card types and thicknesses–including PVC, ABS, PET and polycarbonate, as well as proximity cards, smart cards and other cards with uneven surfaces. In addition, a highly durable topcoat layer can provide added image protection and card security.

The ImageCard HiFX prints at 300 dpi resolution. Standard features include duplex printing, magnetic stripe encoding, an external smart card connection, Datacard(R) TruImage(TM) color enhancement capabilities (up to 16,700,000 shades of color) and Datacard(R) TruEdge(TM) printing (edge-to-edge coverage).

Options include inline application of holographic topcoats and integrated contact and contactless smart card couplers. Like all Datacard card printers, ImageCard HiFX is backed by an aggressive warranty that includes printhead coverage with no pass restrictions and no prorating of printhead replacement costs.

Part of a seamless, fully integrated system

Datacard Group plans to sell the new ImageCard HiFX printer as part of a fully integrated system, including Datacard(R) photo ID software, cameras and workstations.

“We’ve thoroughly tested all system components–software, cameras, signature pads and other peripherals–to ensure 100% compatibility,” Freudenheim said. “No other card printer manufacturer offers fully integrated systems like Datacard Group.

“This guaranteed compatibility becomes more and more significant for high-profile, mission-critical applications,” Freudenheim added. “And we think that’s where we’ll see most of the initial interest for this printer.”

Datacard Group is a world leader in innovative plastic card personalization and identity management solutions. Datacard Group provides customers around the world with fully integrated systems for a variety of financial, identification and healthcare applications. The company offers a broad range of card-related products and services including the world’s best-selling plastic card personalization and printing systems. Datacard Group also offers smart card personalization systems and applications, custom solution development, and products designed to improve the efficiency and profitability of card issuing operations. Datacard Corporation, doing business as Datacard Group, is privately held and based in Minnetonka, Minn. Datacard Group serves customers in more than 120 countries. ([www.datacard.com][1])

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

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SPYRUS & VISA Team

SPYRUS, the Internet ID company for secure e-business, announced a strategic development agreement with Visa International enabling SPYRUS to develop Public Key Infrastructure products that support the Open Platform, a comprehensive system architecture for rapid development of globally interoperable smart card systems. SPYRUS and Visa will also work cooperatively in promoting and marketing Open Platform products to Visa member financial institutions.

The agreement is a natural extension of SPYRUS’ smart card and PKI business, which targets the high-assurance auditable requirements of financial risk management operations. By providing comprehensive integration of the installation and operation of the Open Platform smart cards with its Internet Enabling Security (IES) PKI systems, SPYRUS will provide a one-stop solution to Visa members, enabling more rapid, secure and economic deployment of business applications to the members’ customers. SPYRUS, a leading supplier of public key-based products and solutions that provide the critical foundation for secure Internet commerce, has been a primary contributor in defining security specifications for the Open Platform architecture since 1997.

“The Open Platform provides financial institutions with a broad choice of application suppliers so that Visa cardholders can be offered a range of different products and services on their smart cards, such as credit and debit functions, electronic purse, identification, and network and building access,” said Jim Lee, senior vice president, Emerging Technologies, Visa International. “Key to the success of the Open Platform is high-assurance smart card security. SPYRUS, as a leader in PKI and smart card technologies, will be able to offer our member institutions a totally integrated high-assurance solution for Open Platform transactions.”

“Smart cards will become ubiquitous as personal, portable financial services tools across all global institutions,” said Sue Pontius, President and CEO of SPYRUS. “By delivering technology based on the Open Platform, SPYRUS will offer financial institutions the most secure and complete method of integrating smart cards and PKI solutions into their business environment.”

User Security for Multiple Services

Smart cards will allow financial institutions to offer customers secure “anytime, anywhere” access to financial and value-added services. The Open Platform provides Visa member institutions the ability to implement a wide variety of applications, including

— Credit card services,

— Debit services,

— E-purse services, and

— Unique value-added services such as mass-transit applications, loyalty programs, and identification services.

The Open Platform eases development of smart card solutions by providing a rapid development environment, including card specifications, terminal specifications, and workbench tools. For example, Visa Cash will allow financial institutions to pre-load money onto a customer’s smart card; the smart card can then be used for transactions such as pay phone calls, bridge tolls, and Internet purchases, with the amount being debited from the cash stored on the card. To protect a customer’s money, the smart cards and the supporting PKI system require the highest level of secure authentication and authorization using digital signatures and certificate management technologies. SPYRUS delivers these capabilities to VISA member institutions with its IES solution.

High-Assurance SPYRUS Smart Card Solutions

With delivery scheduled for the third quarter of this year, Visa member institutions will also be able to use SPYRUS’ plug-and-play Portico product solution for the Open Platform. This bundled product application, which extends the ease and convenience of installation and integration of the smart cards with the PKI system, includes SPYRUS Personal Access Readers for secure Personal Identification Number (PIN) entry on Open Platform-based smart cards, and browser-based software components to securely support Internet transactions.

SPYRUS’ integrated Open Platform solution is also complemented by the SPYRUS SmartStation, an IES system component that combines Open Platform smart card issuance and management with digital certificate registration. To provide the most secure environment for deploying Open Platform smart cards, the SmartStation securely loads each customer’s digital identity onto the smart card without PC or browser software involvement. The Portico bundle adds to these features by providing a stand-alone Personal Access Reader that securely authenticates a user’s identity before communicating with the Internet browser.

“SPYRUS IES support of Open Platform smart cards with the SmartStation and Portico products will allow financial institutions to deploy the highest level of personal and portable security in the industry,” Pontius noted. “We will offer a single vendor responsibility for Visa members wanting to rapidly deploy highly secure smart card system solutions and the enabling PKI system solutions to enforce a robust chain-of -trust to all of their customers.”

About SPYRUS

SPYRUS, the Internet ID Company, is the leader in securing the Internet as a medium of exchange for valued data and transactions for businesses and their customers, and for federal and local governments. SPYRUS’ public key system solutions are designed for organizations that have unique business policy management requirements, valued digital information content and transactions to protect and operations that require auditable risk/liability management. SPYRUS Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) solutions have been deployed in health care, utilities, government, financial and law enforcement markets, with operational systems scalable to millions of users worldwide.

The company’s flagship product line is the SYRUS Internet Enabling Security (IES) solution. SPYRUS IES is an integrated public key product suite comprised of its SPYRUS PKI, Rosetta smart cards, PAR smart card readers, cryptographic tool kits and professional services. The SPYRUS IES provides timely and cost-effective deployments with customizable public key solutions to meet unique customer and industry requirements.

SPYRUS, Inc. is headquartered in Santa Clara, California, with offices across the United States, Canada, Europe and Australia.

SPYRUS has recently been named in the latest Deloitte & Touche “Technology Fast 500” technology growth company list. For more about SPYRUS and its public key system solutions, please visit our web site at [www.spyrus.com][1].

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

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Active-Charge Deal

IVI Checkmate Corp. announced an agreement with ShopNow.com Inc., to re-market ShopNow eBusiness Division’s Active-Charge payment application to value added resellers and distributors serving the upper and middle tier retail marketplace.

ShopNow eBusiness Active-Charge is a robust and proven payment management application based on Microsoft’s ActiveStore(TM) Framework. In addition to supporting credit, debit, and electronic benefit payment transactions, Active-Charge also supports check guarantee and check verification services, making it a total payment application solution for retailers that are either using or migrating to Windows-based point-of-sale systems.

Per a 1998 Retail Automation Research Office report, there are approximately 693,000 store locations in the U.S. middle tier retail market that are potential users of Windows-based in-store application software. These retailers are migrating their point-of-sale installations from proprietary software to “open system” based solutions that reduce their cost of ownership while enabling them to implement new and innovative value-added applications which increase customer loyalty. The key to this migration is Microsoft’s ActiveStore, a development framework that defines standards of interoperability for the diverse number of applications, database and communication methods found in a store system environment.

“Retailers want store automation applications that work together and interface easily with payment terminals, scanners and other in-store peripherals as well as their enterprise applications. Microsoft has responded to this need by enhancing the Windows NT platform with ActiveStore. The combination of ShopNow’s Active-Charge software and IVI Checkmate’s payment terminals provide an open, yet robust, solution that has enormous benefits for retailers,” stated Bill Pittman, Executive Vice President and Chief Technical Architect, of ShopNow’s eBusiness Division.

Jim Troy, Vice President, of IVI Checkmate’s Integrated Transaction Solutions business unit stated, “ShopNow eBusiness’ Active-Charge payment application provides IVI Checkmate with a superior payment management application based on Microsoft ActiveStore. The ActiveStore framework is fast becoming the standard by which point-of-sale applications are developed.” Troy continued, “The largest processors, debit providers, and check services providers in the U.S. have certified ShopNow’s Active- Charge application, positioning IVI Checkmate with a comprehensive and simple-to-integrate payment solution for our VAR and distributor network.”

About ShopNow.com

ShopNow.com Inc. is a leading e-commerce enabling company for business-to-business and business-to- consumer e-commerce. ShopNow.com operates an e-commerce network known as the ShopNow Network, which is comprised of online access to over 40,000 businesses and over 6 million shoppers. The ShopNow.com portal ([http://www.shopnow.com][1]) is an online marketplace for connecting buyers and sellers worldwide and provides a range of business-to-business e-commerce products and services. ShopNow.com Inc. is headquartered in Seattle, Washington, with additional offices in Georgia, Arizona, Kansas and California.

About IVI Checkmate

IVI Checkmate is the third largest electronic transaction solutions provider in North America. The Company designs, develops, and markets innovative payment and value-added solutions that optimize transaction management at the point-of-service in the retail, financial, travel & entertainment, healthcare, and transportation industries. For more information on IVI Checkmate, visit its web site at [http://www.ivicheckmate.com][2].

[1]: http://www.shopnow.com/
[2]: http://www.ivicheckmate.com/

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Hypercom Up 8%

Hypercom reported Wednesday record net revenues for the quarter ending Dec. 31, 1999 of $76.6 million. This compares to $70.6 million recorded in the year-ago period. However net income was $2.0 million compared to $6.6 million in the same period last year. The company attributes the reduction in earnings principally to a delay in transferring Hypercom Network Systems technology and resources to Cirilium Corp., the joint venture it recently formed with Inter-Tel Inc., Phoenix. Earnings were also depressed by the deferral of $1 million in Brazilian revenue. Cirilium will target the worldwide ‘Voice over Internet Protocol’ telephony system and equipment market. During the latest quarter Hypercom introduced ‘ePic’ and acquired CT-based Golden Leasing. For complete current and historical data on Hypercom please visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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Metris Rolls On

The Metris steamroller is doing double speed as the company reported last night that net income grew 100%+ for the fourth quarter and for full year 1999. Metris Companies earned $34.0 million for the fourth quarter and $115.4 million for full year 1999. During the fourth quarter, the Metris credit card portfolio added $596 million in receivables, 330,000 new accounts and produced $2.0 billion in card volume. At year-end Metris had about $7.3 billion in card receivables and 3.7 million accounts. For the fourth quarter, the managed net interest margin was 13.2% compared with 13.3% for the third quarter and 12.3% for the fourth quarter of 1998. For the year ended Dec. 31, 1999, the managed net charge-off rate was 9.0% compared to 10.1% for 1998. The managed delinquency rate (30+ days) was 7.6% at year-end 1999, compared to 7.5% at Sept. 30, and 6.8% at Dec. 31, 1998. Besides its sub-prime credit card portfolio, Metris continued to plow forward in fee-based services for its own customer base as well as other third party portfolios. At year-end, combined active fee-based members totaled approximately 4.9 million, with approximately 1.1 million new fee-based relationships formed in the fourth quarter. Combined fee-based services revenues increased to $51.6 million for the fourth quarter, a 16% increase over the third quarter. This increase was driven by the hot performance of Metris’ debt waiver product and its ‘PurchaseShield’ product. For complete current and historical data on Metris Companies please visit CardData (www.carddata.com).

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UA Signs NPC

National Processing Company announced Wednesday that it has entered into an exclusive long-term agreement with United Airlines, the largest air carrier in the world, to process its Air Travel Card transactions worldwide. National Processing is the nation’s second largest provider of credit and debit card transactions for merchants and the largest processor of airline tickets in the world.

United Airlines will replace its in-house system with the NPC InControl(TM) system to address Air Travel Card billing needs and offer additional corporate programs tailored to its customers’ needs. InControl is a comprehensive solution that processes Air Travel Card receivables and account billing information — the main financial functions required for issuing the card. The InControl service is a consortium of The Air Travel Card Association, NPC and QSP Inc, (Quality Software Products).

The system will allow United to tailor its marketing programs to expand the Air Travel card franchise. Additionally, the flexible real-time reporting capabilities of InControl will allow United Airlines’ clients to analyze their travel activity by passenger, route segment, corporate customer and other variables.

“After an extensive review of various alternatives, United Airlines is very pleased to have selected NPC as its business partner for this important function,” said Lynn Hughitt, Vice President and Controller of United. “We believe NPC and InControl offer the most cost-effective and comprehensive billing solution in the marketplace.”

InControl is the first non-airline affiliated system to provide airlines with a complete solution for their Air Travel Card billing needs. InControl gives airlines direct access to valuable market information, allowing airlines to build customer loyalty to increase market share. InControl has multiple advantages over competitive solutions including: cross-platform architecture which allows it to run natively on mainframe as well as client/server environments commonly used by airlines; full service processing capabilities; interline accounting and settlement processing. InControl also has the added advantage of being offered by a third party vendor unaffiliated with any airline, which is extremely important in the highly competitive airline industry.

“We are delighted to have the opportunity to provide this state of the art billing service to United Airlines and its cardholders,” said Clif Valentine, Senior Vice President of NPC. “InControl gives airlines the flexible infrastructure they require to access valuable marketing information, increase market share and reduce operating costs.”

About United

As the largest air carrier in the world, United Airlines offers more than 2,300 flights a day to 135 destinations in 27 countries and two U.S. territories. United also is an industry innovator with breakthroughs such as E-Ticket Service, United Connection, Airport Gate Readers, Mobile Airport Chariots, United Shuttle, and the introduction of the technologically advanced Boeing 777. More information about United Airlines and its parent company, UAL Corporation (NYSE: UAL), can be found at [http://www.ual.com][1].

About NPC

NPC is the operating company of National Processing, Inc. (NYSE: NAP) and is a leading provider of merchant credit card processing services and corporate outsourcing solutions. NPC serves as the processing and settlement agent for approximately 80 percent of all airline tickets sold in the U.S. It is also a major provider of other travel related services. In addition, one out of every six Visa and MasterCard transactions are processed by NPC’s Merchant Card Services Division. Approximately 88 percent of NPC is owned by National City Corporation (NYSE: NCC), a Cleveland based $87 billion bank holding company.

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

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Netscape MasterCard

AOL’s Netscape Communications and Citibank’s affinity credit card unit joined up yesterday to rollout the official ‘Netscape Platinum MasterCard’. The program comes with the choice of two enhancements: ‘Netscape Values’ and ‘Netscape TravelerMiles’. The no-annual-fee ‘Netscape Values’ card offers cardholders one reward point for each dollar charged with redemptions available for electronics, sports equipment, music, books and apparel. For 21,000 points cardholders can obtain a free copy of Windows 98. Netscape ‘TravelerMiles’ card, which has a $39 annual fee, offers air mileage good toward travel on over 140 airlines worldwide. Cardmembers earn a $100 travel certificate for every 8,000-points they receive. Both programs feature a six-month 0% APR on purchases followed by a prime +5.9% APR thereafter. The Netscape card was created as part of the broader relationship between Citigroup’s e-Citi unit and Netscape Communications. Citigroup has been an anchor tenant in Netscape Netcenter’s Personal Finance Center since August 1998.

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