Bloomberg Eurozone Retail PMI Remains Weak

The latest Bloomberg Eurozone “Retail Purchasing Managers’ Index” indicates that month-on-month sales at Eurozone retailers continued to fall in April. Last month, the Eurozone “Retail PMI” registered 48.7 and remained below the no-change mark of 50.0 for the fourth month running and for the eighth time in the past nine months. Of the three major Eurozone nations that comprise the survey, France and
Italy remained the worst performers. The Italian retail sector
registered the sharpest drop in sales and French retail sales also declined. Meanwhile, German retail sales grew for the fifth time in the past six months. The index, compiled exclusively for Bloomberg by NTC Research Ltd, questions more than 1,000 retail executives in Germany, France and Italy.

Hypercom Revenues Climb 10% in 1Q/05

Hypercom reported a nearly 10% increase in net revenue for the first quarter, however, gross profit declined more than 9% due to $3.7 million in special charges. First quarter revenue was $54.5 million, compared to $49.6 million for 1Q/04, driven by increased POS terminal sales in the U.S. and Asia-Pacific. Gross profit declined from $20.5 million for 1Q/04 to $18.6 million. During the quarter, Hypercom took special charges for warranty related reserves related to older POS equipment, reserves for slow-moving or obsolete inventory and its U.K. lease portfolio. The Company closed the first quarter with a sales backlog of $36.8 million versus $35.4 million at year-end. Hypercom says it is still conducting a business review and may take additional charges of about $2.5 million during the second quarter. For complete details on Hypercom’s first quarter performance, visit CardData ([][1]).

1Q/04: $49.6 million
2Q/04: $63.1 million
3Q/04: $62.8 million
4Q/04: $79.7 million
1Q/05: $54.5 million
Source: CardData (



MBNA Canada has been selected by the newly-formed Alterna Savings to issue two MasterCards. CS CO-OP and Metro Credit Union merged last month to create Alterna Savings and Credit Union Limited, Ontario’s newest financial institution. Alterna will offer MBNA’s “Platinum Plus MasterCard” and the “WorldPoints MasterCard.” Alterna Savings has 190,000 members and 24 branches. MBNA Canada is the second largest MasterCard issuer in the country with nearly 500 agents or partners.

SDIA Endorses Heartland Payment Systems

The South Dakota Innkeepers Association has selected New Jersey-based Heartland Payment Systems as their preferred provider for payment processing services. The partnership offers SDIA members credit/debit card and payroll processing services, including a simplified credit card processing price structure with fully disclosed, competitive pricing. The SDIA is a non-profit incorporated association governed by a board of directors to foster and promote lodging and tourism in South Dakota. Heartland Payment Systems Inc. delivers credit/debit card processing and payroll solutions to more than 90,000 small to medium-sized merchants throughout the United States.

Mobile Payment Forum Names Bakhshi to its Board

Two executives were elected to the Board of the Mobile Payment Forum at the group’s Spring Member Plenary in Tokyo. Nandita Bakhshi of First Data Mobile Solutions, the mobile payments arm of First Data, and Christopher Bierbaum of Sprint were elected to the Board. First Data and Sprint join continuing Board members American Express; JCB; MasterCard; Nokia; NTT DoCoMo; Orange World; TIM ITALIA; T-Mobile; VISA; and Vodafone. The MPF seeks to create a foundation for standardized,
secure and authenticated mobile payments.

TNB Purchases its 60th Portfolio

Dallas-based TNB Card Services has purchased the credit card portfolios of AZ-based Banner FCU, First Edition Community CU of Phoenix, Desert Energy CU of Tucson, and City CU of Independence, MO. Banner Federal Credit Union, based in Phoenix, Arizona, has 10,000 members and assets of $46 million. First Edition Community Credit Union of Phoenix, Arizona,has 8,000 members and assets of nearly $50 million. Desert Energy Credit Union of Tucson, Arizona, has 7,200 members and more than $50 million in assets. City Credit Union of Independence, Missouri has 4,250 members and assets of $17 million. TNB Card Services serves more than 450 financial institutions and manages more than 1.6 million cards.

Now Prepay Inks an Agreement with GPN

Global Payments has certified VendTek’s “e-Fresh Now Prepay” client software on selected Canadian POS terminals and will make the service available to Global Payments’ Canadian customers. By using “Now Prepay,” merchants can offer their customers an extensive selection of prepaid services more easily and efficiently and without the need
to hold or manage a physical inventory of prepaid cards. Additionally, the elimination of large on-site card inventory reduces security risks and out of stock concerns, providing “just in time” availability, thereby increasing merchants’ cash flows and allowing them to only pay for the product they sell, when they sell it.

Shell Accepts Fuelman Fleet Cards

Shell will now accept FleetCor’s “Fuelman Fleet Card”. As a result of the agreement, Fuelman cards now will be accepted at Shell’s network of 13,000 gasoline stations, offering convenience to more than 1 million active Fuelman cardholders. The Fuelman card authorizes, controls and tracks fleet fueling and maintenance purchases at thousands of locations in the United States. Atlanta-based FleetCor is a provider of fleet card processing solutions serving over 130,000 fleets. Shell Oil Products US is a subsidiary of Shell Oil Company, an affiliate of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group of Companies.

CTL Signs the Trade Bank of Iraq

The Trade Bank of Iraq has signed a deal with UK-based Card Tech Limited for card issuing and acquiring processing services. TBI is planning to issue a range of VISA cards. The suite of products will include a “VISA Classic” card targeted for travel and entertainment usage and a “VISA Electron” salary card. Following the launch of its card portfolio, the bank will deploy 10 ATMs in Baghdad. Trade Bank of Iraq became a principal member of VISA in 2004. More than 170 banks from 70 countries use CTL solutions.

Catalfano to Head Fiserv CBS Worldwide

Tony Catalfano, former president and COO of Fiserv EFT, has been named president of Fiserv CBS Worldwide. In his new role, Catalfano will lead one of Fiserv’s primary business lines with more than 280 in-house and outsourced clients in 42 countries. CBS Worldwide is a financial information systems provider serving the global marketplace. Fiserv, Inc. provides information management systems and services to more than 16,000 clients worldwide and reported $3.4 billion in processing and services revenues for 2004.

LEGIC and VMC Install Gedas Payment System

LEGIC Identsystems has supplied their technology to enable license
partner VMC to install a cashless payment system for Gedas UK. Around 350 employees at the Gedas UK operation in Milton Keynes will use the payment system. The LEGIC contactless cashless payment system will be
used to make food, snack and refreshment purchases via individual smart
cards. Employees have an electronic purse to add a cash value to their
cards which can then be used at tills in the staff restaurant and at
vending machines, while a data management system tracks all
transactions. VMC designs and manufactures hardware and
software solutions for all the major vending and catering operators as
well as the end user.

U.S. Bank Introduces B2B Partner Cards

U.S. Bank has launched a program to enable a partnering business to market itself and extend rewards to its business customers. Patterson Dental has become the first partner in the program with the launch of a “VISA Business” card this month. The “Patterson Advantage VISA Business Card” offers reward points for all purchases and extra points for Patterson Dental product purchases. Under the program, Patterson receives compensation for each card issued and on purchase volume. The new card will be marketed to 130,000 dental professionals. Patterson Dental has nearly 1,300 sales reps serving the USA and Canada.