Still Little Activity on the Unemployment Front

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Payroll employment was up a mere 96,000 employees in August as the unemployment rate maintained its stagnant 8.1%, where it has held the narrow range of 8.1-8.3%. However, this is down a full percentage point from the year ago period, but the number of unemployed Americans has held at 12.5 million…

American Giving Awards Presented by Chase to Air in December

Chase, dick clark productions and Intersport announced their joint effort to produce the second annual American Giving Awards (AGAs), a televised celebrity tribute to community heroes. The awards will grant a total of $2 million to the five featured charitable organizations, which will be voted on by Chase customers and Facebook users from a list of 25 previous Chase Community Giving (CCG) grant recipients. The organization with the most votes will receive a $1 million grant, the first runner-up will be granted $500,000, a second runner-up will receive a $250,000 grant and third and fourth runners up will be given $125,000 grants. The winning organizations will represent one of five pre-determined categories recognizing the “building blocks” of our communities for an Educators & Mentors Award; a Heroes & Leaders Award; a Champions of Health & Wellness; a Community Builders Award; and Youth Developers Award.

Kuapay Expands mWallet Solution

Kuapay mobile payment solution that incorporates coupons, reward cards and loyalty cards made available its mobile payments application to New York City merchants. Kuapay allows users to store various coupon offers, reward programs, and credit and debit cards in a digital wallet that features a patented encryption process. The company offers the lowest per-transaction rate in the industry to merchants, enabling merchants of all sizes to present attractive offers and integrated loyalty rewards. It gives complete control of the digital wallet to the consumer, allowing them to store their preferred credit card, loyalty program, and custom coupons for free.

Five Small Businesses Win AmEx Marketing Makeover

Five small businesses will be trained by American Express OPEN and Facebook on how to build their brands, better market products and services, and target new customers. With a growing need for training on social media marketing, evident with more than 12,000 small businesses having entered the 2012 American Express “Big Break”- up from 11,000 in 2011- marketing experts from American Express OPEN and Facebook will travel to each of the five winner’s small businesses to provide in-depth marketing and strategy sessions as well as $25,000 in cash to put the strategies into action.

Each winner will also receive practical and personal training on best practices using Facebook Pages, Ads and Social Plugins, and will receive consultation on how to maximize their current usage of Facebook. The winning small businesses will have the opportunity to share their winnings and pay it forward by inviting other small business owners within their communities to meet a panel of social media and marketing experts from Facebook and American Express OPEN to teach them how to best utilize social channels for their businesses.

Safeway Shoots for Blackhawk Network IPO

Safeway plans to file a registration statement in the United States for a potential IPO of a minority ownership stake in Blackhawk Network Holdings. The company anticipates executing a transaction in the first half of 2013. Blackhawk Network Holdings operates Blackhawk Network, a prepaid payments network for consumers and businesses. The company offers the industry’s most popular prepaid gift cards and payment services from leading brands through a network of leading grocery stores, big box, convenience, pharmacy, specialty stores and Internet retailers including GiftCardMall.com.

Giesecke & Devrient Expands Production Facilities

Giesecke & Devrient (G&D) mobile security solutions is expanding their production plant. This expansion is the second in three years and will allow the production facility to support the growing needs of the payment, transit and identification markets, which G&D serves in the U.S. The facility expansion furthers G&D’s innovation strategy, providing the added capability to manufacture and personalize microprocessor smart cards to support the migration to EMV technology from traditional magnetic stripe cards. The new capabilities allow G&D to also offer the full service portfolio of personalization, including EMV data generation, PIN printing, inline carrier printing and fulfillment, and Online Services. G&D has been printing and manufacturing plastic cards from this facility since 1987, following their acquisition of Cardtech, Inc. in the mid-nineties.

Neiman Marcus and Visa Launch Mobile Messaging Platform

Neiman Marcus partnered Visa to test a new Neiman Marcus mobile offers “nmbuzz” program to connect fashion-minded shoppers to real-time offers. To deliver offers, up-to-the-minute fashion news from Neiman Marcus experts, and insider updates on sneak previews and designer appearances directly to the mobile phones of Neiman Marcus customers who enroll their eligible Visa account in nmbuzz, the “nmbuzz” solution lets customers enroll with their eligible Visa account and mobile phone number. Then shoppers simply use that Visa account as they normally would.

CSR To Demonstrate Compliance Programs at PCI SSC Meeting

CSR data compliance solutions is set to share the “PCI ToolKit” Mobile Merchant Module and the addition of the P2PE-HW Self-Assessment Questionnaire (SAQ) at the 6th annual PCI SSC North American Community Meeting at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. CSR invites attendees to meet at Booth #212 in the Vendor Showcase where CIPP privacy professionals, certified by the International Association of Privacy Professionals, will address the needs of acquirers and merchant service providers to find new ways to increase revenues while preserving the integrity of their portfolios.

FIS Sees 150% Growth in mClients

FIS banking and payments technology announced its client base for mobile has increased more than 150% since the year ago period thanks to recent launches of solutions for tablets, mobile wallet and business mobile. FIS also said that adoption by bank users or consumers of its mobile offerings has climbed more than 200% year-over-year. Bank customers have enjoyed the convenience of using their smartphone cameras for check deposits, reflected in the more than $1 billion in deposits made with FIS’ client institutions since those clients made mobile banking services available to their customers.

Acculynk Acquires PayLeap, Forges New Division

Acculynk has acquired PayLeap e-commerce payment gateway platform and merchant services ISO to form Acculynk “Direct.” Providing an acquirer with the ability to offer Internet PIN debit to small and mid-market merchants, Acculynk Direct will provide full service payment processing and payment gateway solutions to small and mid-size merchants, and a full affiliate program to partners and resellers. Additionally, Acculynk Direct plans to provide a full suite of developer-oriented tools to provide simple integration of the service into mobile merchant applications and e-commerce sites. PayLeap brings to the table fraud management tools, tokenized cardholder data vault, hosted payments page, online secure checkout, recurring payments, and a co-branded virtual terminal.