Hypercom Horizon

Hypercom said Thursday it has created a warranty repair and refurbishment center for Hypercom POS terminals at The Horizon Group. Under the agreement, The Horizon Group will house Hypercom technicians to perform on-site repairs at their facility in St. Louis, MO. Hypercom offers a five year warranty on new terminal equipment, and historically has required repair at its own facilities to maintain the integrity of that warranty. Four Hypercom technicians will be deployed on-site at The Horizon Group which will expedite repair and refurbishment of Hypercom terminals, reducing service turn-around times to under one-week.


Bio ID

Biometric Identification announced it has finished collaborating with I/O Software Inc. to integrate Bio ID’s ridge recognition algorithms and silicon fingerprint verification sensor technology with I/O Software’s Biometric Application Programming Interface.

Bio ID has integrated I/O Software’s SecureSuite product with its Veriprint 1000/11000 fingerprint systems. SecureSuite is a 3-in-1 software package that provides a suite of biometric security applications for Microsoft Windows 95/98, which include logon, screensaver unlocking, file and folder encryption, and a password bank utility. SecureSuite will also provide support for smart cards using readers compatible with the Microsoft PC/SC standard.

“Our shared technology provides a highly secure authorization and verification scheme which will safeguard access to Internet, intranets, local area networks, electronic commerce, VPNs and other sensitive data applications,” Kamm said.

“We are very pleased,” said William Saito, president of I/O Software. “The Veriprint technology adds another dimension to the products we can offer our customers. The combination of I/O Software and Bio ID products provides enterprise customers insurance that their corporate assets and confidential information are well protected.

“We’re teaming with Bio ID because they are at the forefront of silicon sensor integration and offer ridge recognition algorithms that could set the standard for the next century.”

Bio ID has developed the first completely standalone silicon sensor-based verification unit, with a form factor about the size of a business card. This compact form factor is a perfect fit for many of the company’s customer applications, ranging from Smart Cards to BIOS Boot-up protection.

I/O Software Inc. is the leading developer of software applications and device drivers for biometric devices used in a wide array of architectures and platforms. More information about the company is available at [www.iosoftware.com][1].

With headquarters in Sherman Oaks, Biometric Identification () is an innovator in creating and applying fingerprint authorization and verification technology. The firm is a subsidiary of Arete Associates, a highly focused Department of Defense think-tank, which specializes in sophisticated image analysis of satellite and high-altitude-derived visual imagery.

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


EDS ATM Strategy

Even though EDS is selling 2,000 retail-based ATMs to American Express, the company will continue to operate them, as well as provide AmEx with comprehensive retail services including all vendor and retailer management, cash management, maintenance, cash replenishment and information management. The new EDS agreement extends a business relationship that EDS Electronic Business forged with American Express last year.  EDS has installed and provided complete driving, transaction processing and settlement services for more than 80 AmEx-owned ATMs located at major U.S. airports, rental car offices, and restaurants. EDS continues to own more than 4,000 ATMs around the country and operates more than 14,000 machines. EDS says it continue to take the technology lead with ATMs as it develops video advertising, cardless technology and satellite delivery of products to ATMs.


Noonan to Head FL Bank

Thomas P. Noonan, a veteran banker and bank director, was named president and chief executive officer of Popular Bank of Florida recently, according to Carlos Pellas, Chairman of the Board. Noonan, a board member of the Bank since 1995, has taken charge of the $370 million dollar bank, headquartered on Brickell Avenue in Miami.

In his opening message to the staff of the bank, Noonan said, “The bank has a fabulous pedigree and enormous potential. I am looking forward to working with you in a tough competitive environment to diversify our revenue base and bring added value to our considerable clientele.

“Our goal will be to build on our core strengths as a provider of credit and non-credit services to Latin American banks and as a mortgage lender to non-residents of the United States. We will be looking for new opportunities to leverage our membership in the BAC Financial Group, of which we are an integral part,” he continued.

Noonan, who spent 26 years at Citibank in managerial positions in New York, Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Paris, Manila, Miami, and Los Angeles, was most recently President and Chief Executive Officer of SurFin Ltd., the finance company arm of DirecTV Latin America.

Among his Citibank assignments was that of Senior Vice President/General Manager for Citibank France, General Manager and Senior Corporate Officer for the State of Florida, and Division Executive for World Corporate Group/Latin America.

Commenting on the appointment, Mr. Pellas said, “Tom Noonan has been a director of our bank for 3 1/2 years, and he has an intimate, professional knowledge of the industry, the market and the dynamics we face. We are very fortunate to have someone with his background in banking and business available at this time, and I am highly optimistic about the results we can expect under his direction.”

Popular Bank of Florida, is a FDIC-insured, Florida chartered private commercial bank, part of the BAC Financial Group. Through common elements of ownership and significant business relationships, the Bank is closely associated with an extensive network of financial services companies operating throughout Latin America.

Among these is Credomatic, the largest and most sophisticated credit card company in Central America. The bank is associated as well with BAC International Bank, based in Panama, BAC Corp. Securities, and GBM, an IBM Alliance Company. Additionally, the Group operates local banks in each of the countries in Central America.



American Express revealed plans yesterday to significantly expand its ATM program throughout the U.S.. AmEx confirmed it has acquired three ATM businesses: Zions Bancorp, which includes 140 ATMs at Maverik Country Stores in seven states in the western U.S.; AmeriCash, which includes approximately 650 ATMs in a variety of retail mall locations including Simon Property Group, General Growth Properties and a variety of supermarkets; and Electronic Data Systems, from which American Express purchased a portion of its ATM business, including approximately 2,000 ATMs in a wide range of retail outlets including A&P/Food Emporium supermarkets and Target stores. The new acquisitions add more than 2,740 ATM machines to American Express’ ATM network which currently has more than 200,000 ATMs worldwide. AmEx has 13 million cardholders enrolled in its ‘Express Cash’ program.


Drinking Card

The Michigan Food and Beverage Association is handing out free phone cards to holiday revelers who need a ride. Proprietors of taverns, restaurants, party stores and grocers will distribute the free five-minute telephone cards to patrons who have had too much to drink. Participating organizations include Pepsi-Cola, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Michigan, The Salvation Army,  and many others. MFBA is the largest food and beverage trade association in the state with more than 3,100 members.


Indonesian Platinum Card

MasterCard International and Bank Internasional Indonesia Wednesday announced the introduction of the BII Platinum MasterCard card. The BII MasterCard Platinum card is the first Platinum card to be launched in Indonesia and the first Platinum MasterCard in the world to employ smart card technology.

Platinum cards continue to attract a niche market, particularly upscale consumers who are attracted to the exclusive benefits and image the Platinum card confers. Despite the current economic turndown in Asia, Platinum cards are expected to make their mark in Asia’s payments market, with four other markets having launched Platinum programs this year.

“There exists a sizable group of high net-worth individuals who, not matter what the economic conditions are, who value and prefer superior benefits, privileges and services,” said Rudy N. Hamdani, Senior Vice President, BII Card Center. “The vision for our financial institution is to offer products that allow consumers to make ‘one stop’ for all their financial needs — the BII Platinum MasterCard program rounds out our product portfolio.”

“MasterCard’s strength has always been its ability to provide payments products to meet the various and specific needs of our cardholders in any part of the world. The MasterCard Platinum card offers among the most exclusive benefits available and there is a market that seeks these special benefits. MasterCard’s Platinum program is the program of choice for these discerning consumers,” said Bambang Gunawan, Country Manager, Indonesia, MasterCard Asia/Pacific.

Smart Card Rewards Program

The BII MasterCard Platinum card is the first in the world to use smart card technology. The chip-based rewards program will track bonus points: cardholders will receive a “Bonus Rupiah” reward of 5% of every purchase when the purchase takes place at any of the 300 participating outlets of “BII Merchant First Club”. Cardholders making purchases at any of the 15 million MasterCard acceptance locations worldwide will receive a 0.5% reward of the value of the purchase and this reward can be redeemed at any of the 300 “BII Merchant First Club”.

Premium Benefits

BII MasterCard Platinum card cardholders will be entitled to Preferential Treatment, MasterCard’s premium privilege program. With Preferential Treatment, cardholders enjoy a wide range of benefits, including free room upgrades and welcome gifts at exclusive, high-end hotels among them, Summit Hotels and Resorts.

BII Platinum MasterCard cardholders may also avail of the special concierge service which provides entertainment and dining referrals and reservations, valuable travel information and assistance, and a personal shopping service.

The Platinum MasterCard card, a program developed by MasterCard International based on member-bank feedback and consumer research, is already in use by upscale cardholders in fifteen countries: the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, South Africa, Colombia, Venezuela, Guatemala, Peru, Chile, Brazil and Saudi Arabia.

BII Platinum MasterCard card features also include a high credit limit, 24-hour concierge service, Masterphone calling card, Global Cash Access, year-end account summary, travel insurance of up to 5 billion Rupiah, MasterCard Global Service, and access to airport lounges around the world.

The Platinum card features a distinctive “P” design that will assist the Platinum MasterCard Collection partners in providing special treatment to cardholders at the point-of-sale.

“The BII Platinum MasterCard Collection’s exceptional

offerings combine uncommon quality and superior value. With the broad array of benefits offered, this card program meets the diverse needs and discerning lifestyles of upscale consumers, from exceptional shopping and cultural experiences to dining and travel,” added Gunawan.

MasterCard International has the most comprehensive portfolio of payment brands in the world. With 23,000 member financial institutions, serving consumers in 220 countries and territories, MasterCard is the industry leader in quality and innovation. More than 600 million MasterCard, Maestro, Cirrus and Mondex” cards are accepted at more than 15 million locations worldwide. In 1997, gross dollar volume exceeded $600 billion. MasterCard can be reached through its World Wide Web site at .


Cross Border ACH

Sanwa Bank California became the first bank in the U.S. yesterday to utilize VISA Net’s ‘Cross Border ACH’ to collect payments in Canada for deposit in U.S. dollars to a business account in California. Earlier this fall, First of Omaha Merchant Processing handled a cross border transfer of corporate debit for deposit in Canadian dollars to a business account in Toronto. Software provider E-Z Data used Sanwa’s proprietary ‘SanLine PC ACH’ service to automatically collect payments in the U.S. and deposit them into its Sanwa account. The payments take two business days from request to settlement.


VISA Tx Record

VISA International says it set a new world record this week by processing more than 110 million payment transactions in a single day on ‘VISANet’. On Monday, Dec. 14, VISANet processed 110,086,395 transactions worldwide compared to 88 million last year. VISA said yesterday its ‘VISANet’ system sustained more than 3,000 transactions per second for nearly fourteen continuous hours. On average, VISA processes 50 million transactions per day. About 25% of VISA’s annual transaction volume occurs between Nov 19 and Jan 4, VISA’s peak season.


MBC Installed

WV-based One Valley Bank is installing the new ‘Merchant Banking Center’ from Diebold this month. The ‘MBC’ integrates Diebold’s ‘1062ix’ ATM, the ‘Securomatic After Hour Depository’ and a rolled coin dispenser module which together automate routine commercial banking transactions. Using a One Valley Bank debit card, retailers can enter a ‘Merchant Banking Center’ vestibule any time of day or night and access the self-service system to withdraw currency from the ATM, exchange larger bills for denominations of coins or cash, or deposit any combination of currency and checks from that day’s business. The system can also be configured in an off-line mode.  In addition to providing currency exchange and deposit capabilities, it can provide batch data transactions to the bank’s host computer and calculate transaction fees as part of the statement cycle.


SCF Board

The Smart Card Forum added to two industry leaders to its Board of Directors yesterday. The new Board members, both of whom will serve three-year terms, are: Jerry Smith, Opportunity Manager, IBM Global Smart Card Solutions Randy Vanderhoof, Director of Product Marketing, Schlumberger DANYL. Vanderhoof has been involved with smart cards for nearly a decade. Smith spearheaded the implementation of the American Express corporate travel smart card program involving Hilton Hotels and Continental Airlines.


CCS Captures NACS

OR-based Card Capture Services announced Wednesday it has acquired LA-based North American Cash Systems, the country’s sixth largest independent ATM provider. The purchase is the largest completed by CCS over the past year, and brings the company’s total number of installed ATMs to 5,770. Under terms of the agreement, NACS will operate as a regional office for CCS.  For the time being, NACS ATMs will continue to operate under the NACS brand. NACS has a portfolio of 800 ATMs located primarily in the southeastern U.S.. CCS also recently purchased 196 deployed ATMs from two smaller independents in CA and MD.