It was announced in Paris at the leading European smart card show ?Cartes ?99?, that the 1999 Sesames Award for the Best New Application in the Banking Sector has been won by Proton World and Gemplus, for the CEPS-based Proton e-purse.
CEPS, the Common Electronic Purse Specifications, provide for the interoperability of electronic purse schemes worldwide and are supported by organisations representing over 90 per cent of all current electronic purse cards. In line with its strategy to be at the forefront of technological evolution in the smart card industry, Proton World declared immediately upon the official release of CEPS in March 1999 its intention to support and implement CEPS in the Proton technology and to be the first to offer CEPS-based solutions to the market.
The Proton CEPS-based e-purse demonstration application was developed by Gemplus and Proton World and has been ported onto the GemProtonCEPS card. The demonstration uses Banksys? C-ZAM/Smash multi-application terminals and two demonstration systems: a ?domestic? system denominated in euros and an ?international? system denominated in US dollars. The e-purses have two currency ?slots? and are loaded via the Internet or a mobile phone. Visitors to the Cartes 99 exhibition in Paris can see the winning application demonstrated at the stands of Proton World (D88), Europay (E20) and Visa International (H48).
This development is important because it is the first demonstration of a CEPS-based transaction using two smart card schemes. It paves the way for global interoperability between e-purse smart cards.
Armand Linkens, Managing Director of Proton World, said ? I am delighted that the hard work of the joint Proton World-Gemplus CEPS development team has been recognised by this award. Having taken the first step, we will ensure that the product is made commercially available as soon as possible so that internationally- accepted e-purse smart cards can become a reality.?
Marc Lassus, Chairman of Gemplus Associates International, said ? Proton World and Gemplus share a common vision and an excellent spirit of partnership on a day-to-day basis. I am proud that this spirit has resulted in a development, whose innovative value has been recognised by the Sesames Award, and which has set the standard for the rest of the industry to follow.?
The Sesames Awards, now in their fourth year, are recognised as the world?s leading smart card innovation awards that each year single out the smart card industry?s most innovative products. The Awards jury is composed of international specialist journalists and market experts.
This is the second time that the Proton technology has received a Sesames Award. In 1996, the Best New Banking Application Award was won by Banksys for the Belgian Proton domestic applications.
Last year Proton World?s shareholder ERG Group won the Best Transport Application Award for its Octopus smart card ticketing system in Hong Kong. ERG Group and Proton World are working together to combine e-purse and contactless mass transit applications.
Notes for Editors
GEMPLUS S.C.A. is the world?s leading provider of plastic and smart card-based solutions with a 37% market share (by units sold, source: Dataquest 1998) Gemplus sells magnetic stripe cards, memory and microprocessor-based smart cards, smart contactless cards, electronic tags and smart objects. The company designs and markets software, development tools and readers. Gemplus also provides consulting, training and personalisation services to deliver the industry?s most comprehensive and flexible card-based solutions to its developers, distributors, partners and customers. With sales of over US $ 648 million in 1998, Gemplus employs more than 4,300 people in 10 manufacturing facilities, 5 R & D centres and 41 sales and marketing offices, located in 27 countries around the world. Founded in 1988, Gemplus has successfully implemented portable and secure smart card-based solutions to simplify applications such as public and wireless communications, financial transactions, loyalty, transportation, education, healthcare, identity, physical access control, pay TV, electronic commerce, Internet security, logical access control and information technology.Details