VISANet Latin America

Bull announced Wednesday that the national VISA networks in Brazil and Peru have placed orders with Bull for 5,000 new EFT-POS retailer terminals. VisaNet do Brazil has ordered 3,000 payment terminals. In Peru, VisaNet has just ordered 2,000 terminals that will be installed before the end of the year. The Bull terminals accept both mag stripe and smart cards. Bull says it has over 100,000 payment terminals installed in Latin America including Mexico, Argentina, Venezuela, Colombia, Puerto-Rico and Costa-Rica.

Details

Metris Closes GE Purchase

Direct Merchants Credit Card Bank, National Association, a subsidiary of Metris Companies Inc., yesterday closed on its purchase of a portion of GE Capital’s consumer bank card portfolio.

The acquired credit card portfolio has approximately 485,000 active accounts, which will convert to the Direct Merchants’ platform later this year, and approximately $1.2 billion in receivables. Terms of the transaction, which was announced May 10, were not disclosed.

“We’re very pleased to announce that we have closed this transaction,” said Ronald N. Zebeck, Metris president and chief executive officer. “What’s more, this portfolio fits our niche focus nicely. We’re positioned to maximize the potential of this portfolio and continue to enhance shareholder value by leveraging our expanded infrastructure in both our consumer credit and fee-based businesses.”

Metris Companies Inc. is an information-based direct marketer of consumer credit products and fee-based services primarily to moderate-income consumers. Based in St. Louis Park, Minn., Metris also has operations in Tulsa, Okla.; Baltimore, Md.; Champaign, Ill.; Phoenix, Ariz.; and Jacksonville, Fla. Metris currently employs more than 2,500 people nationwide.

Visit Metris on the Internet at www.metriscompanies.com

Certain information discussed in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Federal Securities law. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that its expectations will be achieved. Forward-looking information is subject to certain risks, trends and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected. Among those factors are: higher default and bankruptcy rates of the Company’s target market of moderate income consumers; lack of seasoning of the Company’s credit card portfolio, which creates a risk of increasing loss levels; the Company’s limited history as a stand-alone entity; risks associated with acquired portfolios; interest rate levels; dependence on the capital markets and securitization of the Company’s credit card loans to fund operations; and the general economic climate. For further information on factors that could impact the Company, and statements contained herein, reference should be made to the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, current reports on Form 8-K and annual reports on Form 10-K.

Details

Intuit EBPP

Intuit Inc. announced Wednesday that the beta prototype of an online electronic bill payment and presentment (EBPP) service is now available at Intuit’s Web site, Quicken.com.

This online billing service makes it easy for consumers to receive and pay bills via the Web and is currently being tested by both customers and billers. This program simplifies financial management for consumers and small businesses by leveraging the Internet to offer an intuitive consumer service that makes it easy for users to receive, view, pay and record their bills. Intuit expects the program to be fully available to customers later this year. The EBPP program was developed and is owned by a joint venture company in which Intuit is a significant participant. The service is offered on Quicken.com pursuant to a license agreement between Intuit and the joint venture.

Web-Based Electronic Bill Payment and Presentment

The new EBPP program is a Web-based service that provides a central point of access for customers to view, track and pay their bills. For the customer, this means not having to go back and forth between multiple billers’ sites to take care of their finances. Customers will also be able to pay any of their other bills, whether they are electronic or “hard copy” paper bills, using this system.

The program allows billers to securely present bills to their customers, at whatever level of detail billers choose. The bills themselves remain hosted on the biller’s system; customers merely access them through the Quicken.com site. Billers representing a wide variety of industries — including Bell South, Florida Power and Light, Portland General Electric and HomeSide Lending — are participating in Quicken.com’s online beta program, available at www.quicken.com/bills.

One of the Web’s Leading Financial Sites

Intuit’s Quicken.com Web site is consistently ranked as one of the most popular and highly regarded financial services portals. Quicken.com combines a high-visibility presence on the Web with Intuit’s extensive experience in innovative financial technology to create the ideal platform for launching this innovative EBPP program.

“This is really the next logical step in meeting the needs of consumers,” said Mark Goines, senior vice president of Intuit’s consumer division. “The beta of this EBPP program puts Quicken.com and the participating billers on the path to providing a positive customer experience with the full version this fall.”

Intuit is the leading provider of financial connectivity and solutions linking consumers and financial services companies. Banking, brokerage, mortgage, insurance and other financial services companies rely on Intuit’s best-selling desktop financial software and one of the Web’s most popular financial sites to better serve existing customers and also to acquire new customers.

Open Technology Platform

The EBPP program was developed using the Open Financial Exchange (OFX) specification in order to maximize flexibility and connectivity between all of the various participants. Intuit believes an open technology platform built around the OFX specification is key to broad-based industry and customer adoption.

About Intuit

Intuit Inc., a financial software and Web-based services company, develops and markets Quicken(R), the leading personal finance software; TurboTax(R), the best-selling tax preparation software; and QuickBooks(R), the most popular small business accounting software.

Intuit’s Quicken.com Web site (www.quicken.com) is a leading financial Web site, offering a comprehensive set of financial news, information and tools, including insurance, mortgage, investment and tax preparation services. Intuit’s products and services enable individuals, small businesses and financial professionals to better manage their financial lives and businesses.

Details

Smart Card Golf

ORGA Card Systems and Smart Card International, two pioneers and leaders in developing smart card systems and programs, have now successfully designed and delivered the first chip card-based golf course application in the United States for Cantigny Golf & Tennis in Wheaton, Illinois.

The installed system is utilizing ORGA’s Leo customer loyalty technology, which was officially launched at CardTech/SecurTech ’99.

Cantigny is initially incorporating smart cards into its Junior Golf Program, with participants ranging in age from 8 to 15. Upon completion of the training course, each graduate is issued a smart card containing his or her photo, date of birth and a serial number.

In addition to serving as a form of identification at the Course, the card has two electronic purses which can be preloaded with monetary value for purchases in the golf camps, pro shop and dining room.

Opened in 1989, the 27-hole Cantigny layout was voted Best New Public Course in the U.S. The facility is owned by the Robert R. McCormick Foundation. According to Cantigny`s general manager, Mike Nass, the smart card application is working very smoothly, so much so that he envisions expanded uses in the future, particularly for corporate customers.

Gerry Smith, New Business Development Director for ORGA, is pleased with the way Leo integrated into Cantigny`s existing Windows NT environment. “Leo addresses the biggest challenge facing retailers today: how to attract and retain customers. It is proving itself to be the easiest-to-use, most cost-effective smart card-based loyalty application development tool available today.”

Bob Tolley, President of Smart Card International, describes the Cantigny project as the catalyst for the launch of the company’s smart card-enabled golf course program nationally, the only one of its kind in the U.S. “These types of speciality applications represent excellent opportunities for smart card penetration and growth.”

Florida-based Smart Card International is the recognized leader in the design and implementation of smart card speciality programs. These include golf, ski resorts, auto racing, theme parks, numerous medical applications, and development of the unique Smart Rider program, which can be seen at www.smartrider.com. For more information, visit our web site at www.smartcardintl.com.

ORGA USA, the North American subsidiary of ORGA Kartensysteme GmbH Germany, has been a pioneer in the development of microprocessor-based smart card technology since 1985. ORGA enjoys a world-wide presence with subsidiaries, branch offices and joint ventures in China, France, Great Britain, Russia, Singapore, South Africa and the USA.

Details

Mid-Year Snapshot

Delinquency and charge-offs continue to improve this year. Since Jan. 1, delinquency (30+ days) has dropped a total of 19 basis points while charge-offs have declined 27 basis points according to CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]). However bankruptcy related charge-offs, as a percentage of total charge-offs, has edged up to 42.3% at mid-year compared to 41.8% for June 1998 and 41.6% for January 1999.

PERIOD* DELINQUENCY CHARGE-OFFS BANKRUPTCY
Jan 99 5.00% 5.46% 41.6%
Feb 99 4.96% 5.37% 41.9%
Mar 99 4.94% 5.32% 41.9%
Apr 99 4.95% 5.27% 41.9%
May 99 4.89% 5.24% 42.1%
Jun 99 4.81% 5.19% 42.3%

Source: CardData (www.carddata.com) * based on previous months experience

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

Details

PVS Net

CO-based ProCard, Inc. announced this morning the availability of ‘PVS Net Version 3’. ‘V3’ is the next in a series of enhancements to ProCard’s Internet offering that will give clients the ability to put a greater share of enterprise purchasing and travel expenditures on credit cards with no loss of control. PVS ‘Net Version 2’, which became available just a month ago, introduced a key automation tool to the market. For the first time, a web based commercial card application could determine how a credit card transaction should be allocated within an organization based on the expense type. In addition, Version 2 enhanced performance for member banks and their clients, while extending the amount of on-line transaction data to a full 13 months.

Details

ECHO Database Agreement

Electronic Clearing House Inc. Tuesday announced the signing of a Database Access Agreement between Magic Software Development Inc. (“Magic”), a wholly owned subsidiary of ECHO, and Rocky Mountain Retail Systems Inc. (RMRS), a Colorado corporation.

Both companies provide retail merchants with check verification processing from point-of-sale terminals in retail establishments. This Agreement allows both companies to cross market these services, including access to each other’s databases through their respective systems, to their current and prospective members. By accessing both databases, merchants receive an increased level of protection.

“The teaming of these two companies is extremely rewarding in that this relationship will enable us to offer our customers one of the largest, quality, up-to-date databases in the nation at very competitive prices,” stated Kris Winckler, Magic president.

Electronic Clearing House provides credit card processing, check guarantee, inventory tracking services and various Internet services to more than 19,000 retail merchants and U-Haul dealers across the nation. ECHO also designs, develops and manufactures software and point-of-sale hardware that is utilized as credit card processing terminals, automated money order dispensers, inventory tracking devices, and casino cash advance systems.

To take advantage of the new “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, readers you are hereby cautioned that this release contains forward-looking statements that are based upon current expectations and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Actual operations and results may differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements made by the company.

Details

Terabyte Harvesting

NCR Corporation unveiled Tuesday its ‘TeraMiner Stats’ data mining software for ‘Teradata Warehouse’ customers. ‘TeraMiner Stats’ includes scalable pre-processing components that address critical areas of data mining, including data description, derivation, reduction, reorganization and sampling/partitioning. By leveraging the inherent parallelism and processing power of the ‘Teradata’ engine, ‘TeraMiner Stats’ enables customers to use all their detail level data in performing complex data mining analyses, such as customer segmentation, propensity to buy, sales forecasting, attrition and retention. ‘TeraMiner Stats’ runs on the ‘Windows NT’ operating system and is priced from $5,000 to $40,000, depending on the number of nodes in the NCR ‘Teradata Warehouse’. Additional ‘TeraMiner’ products will be released in 2000 and provide statistical and machine-learning algorithms, as well as model deployment, monitoring and lifecycle maintenance.

Details

Cybercash Acquisition

CyberCash announced yesterday it will acquire San Jose-based Tellan Software. The merger is expected to close by July 15. Tellan, a privately held company founded in 1992, produces payment processing software for Internet commerce, as well as global enterprises wishing to consolidate disparate payment applications into a centralized payment platform. The company’s leading brands include ‘MacAuthorize’, ‘PCAuthorize’ and ‘WebAuthorize’. CyberCash says the acquisition will consolidate its dominance in the payment software market, including physical points of sale and integrated enterprise payment solutions, and add to the company’s leadership position in Internet payment software and services.

Details

USPS Contract

The United States Postal Service has awarded NCR Corp. a $67 million ‘Stage IIA Point-of-Service ONE’ contract extension that will enable the Postal Service to continue to expand the services it offers at retail customer windows. As options are exercised by the USPS, the ‘Stage IIA’ program would approach a $176 million contract value. ‘POS ONE’ is a major USPS initiative to replace current retail systems. NCR, along with IBM, was previously awarded the first ‘Stage’ of the ‘POS ONE’ contract. The three stage ‘POS ONE’ program calls for 73,000 POS terminals to be deployed in 20,000 postal retail units. The new retail systems will replace the more than 63,000 outdated retail terminals. The first ‘Stage’ rollout of NCR systems began in Ashland, VA., in January, 1998 and has extended to more than 1,000 post offices in the United States to date. Completion of the entire program is expected within the next five years.

Details

Cardservice Partnership

Cardservice International Tuesday announced a technology- development partnership with Computer Associates International Inc. (CA) that will enable developers and end users to integrate credit card merchant accounts and secure payment gateway services into applications implemented with Jasmine, CA’s intelligent information infrastructure for e-business applications.

“Our partnership with Computer Associates underscores Cardservice’s commitment to providing our partners and merchants with the industry’s most advanced tools for rapidly enabling merchant payment acceptance and securely transporting transactions,” said Todd Whiton, senior vice president of the Internet Commerce Group at Cardservice International.

As a result of the partnership, merchants will be able to quickly and easily apply online for services such as setting up a merchant account via Cardservice WebApp(sm) and credit-card processing directly through Jasmine. These fully integrated payment solutions will enable approved merchants to begin accepting credit-card payments over the Internet within 24 hours of building their virtual storefronts.

Expanded processing services also include authorization, data capture and settlement services, and online reporting capabilities. These services complement the comprehensive suite of tools already offered through Cardservice International’s LinkPoint Secure Payment Gateway.

“The integration of Cardservice’s payment and merchant services enhances CA’s comprehensive e-commerce offerings,” said Mike LaTorraca, vice president, CA development partner program. “This partnership will empower enterprises using Jasmine as their electronic commerce infrastructure to easily and effectively enable credit-card transactions.”

The LinkPoint Secure Payment Gateway provides real-time processing, increased fraud protection and enhanced security. With the LinkPoint Secure Payment Gateway, funds are automatically authorized from the consumer’s credit card and set aside for the merchant to collect.

The collection or capture process is done entirely through the World Wide Web. No longer is there a need for separate credit-card equipment, or for printing orders and manually entering them into credit-card-processing machines. For consumers, the LinkPoint Secure Payment Gateway provides an extra level of security because the credit card is encrypted and is seen only by authorized gateway personnel.

Jasmine is the perfect solution for building and deploying intelligent, next-generation business systems over Internet and client/server computing environments. It offers developers an object- oriented platform ideally suited for dynamic multimedia applications while delivering the integrity and practical data management required for mainstream business solutions.

About Cardservice International

Cardservice International is a technology-driven, customer- focused company that provides merchant account services and secure transport of financial transactions for businesses in both the physical and virtual worlds. Cardservice International has headquarters in Agoura Hills, with 200 field offices throughout the United States. For additional information, visit .

Details

Hypercom Korea

KS VAN, Korea’s leading service provider for issuer and acquirer banks, confirmed yesterday it will deploy 20,000 Hypercom ‘T77G-GS’ high-performance card payment systems to support 18,000 retail merchants throughout Korea. Hypercom’s card payment systems will process approximately 3 million credit, debit and smart card payment transactions per month. The deployment represents one of the largest ever conducted in the South Korean marketplace. It is expected to be completed within 12 months of a phase-one pilot program consisting of 2,000 terminals.

Details