The third largest bottler in the U.S. is installing cashless payment technology in vending machines. AL-based Coca-Cola Bottling Company United has begun equipping its vending machines with USA Technologies’ “e-Port G6” to accept “MasterCard PayPass” contactless payments as well as traditional magnetic stripe credit card payments. The cashless vending machines will be deployed in multiple markets in the Coca-Cola Company’s home market, reaching consumers from Atlanta, Georgia, to Baton Rouge, Louisiana. In November MasterCard announced that 5,000 additional self service POS terminals, including vending machines, will be equipped with USA Technologies’ “e-Port” cashless transaction solution to begin accepting “PayPass.” The 5,000 “e-Ports” will be deployed in New York City, Dallas, Chicago, Las Vegas, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Boston, Washington D.C., Denver, Seattle, Miami and Orlando. The deployment follows a successful trial of 1,000 vending machines in the greater Philadelphia area. Last month Taco Bell announced plans to test “MasterCard PayPass.” “PayPass” is now accepted at more than 46,000 merchant locations worldwide and there are nearly 13 million “PayPass”-enabled cards now in the market.
Kabira Technologies has appointed Chris Clabaugh, former VP of CollabNet, as its VP of business development. Prior to joining CollabNet, he was VP of Application Partner Market Development for Progress Software and was the was co-founder and CEO of Allegrix. Chris has a BS in Computer Science from Tulane University with graduate studies in technical management at the University of California at Irvine. Kabira provides high performance transaction processing software for global enterprises to manage high volumes at a substantially lower cost.
MasterCard Incorporated’s Board of Directors approved an amendment to its certificate of incorporation for the conversion of Class B common stock into Class A common stock, the conversion of up to 13.4 million shares of Class B common stock into Class A common stock, and the repurchase of up to $500 million of Class A common stock in open market transactions. Under the terms of the Company’s existing certificate of incorporation, holders of Class B common stock are permitted, subject to a right of first refusal, to convert their shares into an equal number of shares of publicly traded Class A common stock at any time after May 31, 2010, the fourth anniversary of the Company’s IPO. Class B common stock, which is held by the Company’s financial institution customers, currently represents approximately 41% of the total outstanding common stock of MasterCard Incorporated.
Denver-based IP Commerce and Dallas-based TransFirst will release a new commerce services for merchants, delivered via IP “Payments Framework” (IPPF). TransFirst will broaden its market reach in client-side commerce offerings with three new desktop commerce applications: bankcard processing for Microsoft Office Accounting 2007 and QuickBooks , and credit card processing for a leading golf pro-shop management solution. IP Commerce’s IPPF is an open platform that connects payment processors, service providers, licensees and commerce application developers. TransFirst is a provider of transaction processing services and payment enabling technologies, currently processes approximately $23 billion in annual sales volume for more than 160,000 merchants and more than 965 financial institutions. IP Commerce provides software that enables open payments to allow banks and service providers to deliver payments services.
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The National Retail Federation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association, along with the FBI, have teamed up to launch a secure national database that will allow retailers to share information through the Web to fight organized retail crime. “LERPnet’ was launched yesterday. In their report, retailers can also include photos and video footage to assist in the detention of and prosecution of criminals. The database will also contain information on burglaries, robberies, counterfeiting, and online auction fraud. Data can be imported from virtually any database and LERPnet already links to case management software programs such as LPSoftware. According to the NRF 81% of retailers said they have been a victim of organized retail crime. Nearly half of those polled also had seen an increase in organized retail crime activity in their stores.
Starting next week U.S. and U.K. American Express cardholders can bid online for nine declining-price travel packages, offered in varying quantities, ranging from 10 to 30. AmEx will auction off one travel package a day – and once a trip goes on sale, the price drops every twenty minutes. The deals will continue to drop in price until 7:00 pm ET or until the packages sell out, whichever comes first. The “Going Once” Web site will also feature 19 fixed price packages under $3,000 and more than 150 travel deals. The first package up for bidding on April 17th is a six night trip to Florence which starts at $7,740. The promotion will end on April 27th.
The first EMV contactless transaction in Europe, according to Swiss technology standards and rules, took place March 29th, using OTIÃ¢Âs “Saturn 6000” and HypercomÃ¢Âs “T2100.” The transaction took less than 0.5 seconds. The transaction was initiated by MasterCard Europe and the Swiss Bank Aduno Group, in collaboration with a McDonald’s restaurant, in Stadelhofen, Zurich. The market launch of contactless card payment technology in Switzerland is projected to commence this year, following pilots in Zurich, Lausanne and Lugano. The “Saturn 6000” supports “VISA Contactless,” AmEx’s “ExpressPay,” Discover’s “Zip” as well as programs for mass transit ticketing, MIFARE, loyalty, and third party applications. The “Optimum T2100” is a high-speed countertop terminal based on a 32-bit RISC processor with 12 megabytes of memory and dial communication.
Pay By Touch and AR-based Harps Food Stores have introduced “Harps Rewards with S&H greenpoints”. Harps’ shoppers will earn 10 greenpoints for every dollar they spend at participating Harps Foods Markets and be able to redeem their greenpoints either in-store, through the print greenpoints catalog or online at http://www.greenpoints.com. Pay By Touch’s S&H greenpoints Reward Program is the digital reinvention of the Sperry & Hutchinson Company’s Green Stamps, the nation’s first loyalty marketing program (circa 1896). The S&H greenpoints program rewards millions of consumers with points for every dollar they spend at participating merchants. Pay By Touch provides biometric authentication, personalized marketing and payment solutions.
A new report estimates that procurement card revenues will grow from $2.3 billion this year to $3.6 billion by 2010. The research says the growth will be driven as banks recognize the competitive differentiator these cards offer and begin to promote them beyond use as a controlled payment mechanism and into the realm of supply chain procurement. Boston-based Aite Group says its report recognizes that changes will have to be made to procurement cards’ supporting infrastructure in order for the model to be adopted by merchants, as interchange fees on large purchases may prove prohibitive and the introduction of card payments may be disruptive to the pre-arranged shipping and payment terms that exist between buyers and suppliers. Aite notes that P-card issuers need to adjust the pricing model to make it beneficial for suppliers as well as buyers and they need to effectively articulate those benefits.
Ukash is now available for an estimated 226 million
internet users in the UK, Ireland, Spain and Germany, Austria, Belgium,
Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Hungary, Italy,
Latvia, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Poland, Slovakia and Sweden who
don’t have or don’t wish to use credit or debit cards online. Users
access Ukash at their nearest bank branch by completing a paying-in
slip. They will then receive an email or SMS message with their unique
and secure 19-digit Ukash voucher number to be used online for payment.
Lighthouse1 and Evolution Benefits have formed a partnership for healthcare benefits administration solutions. The Evolution Benefits solution combined with Lighthouse1 “OnDemand” allows members to have more than one account on a single card, essential for employers with multiple consumer driven healthcare options. Evolution Benefits’ primary product, the “Benny Prepaid Benefits Card”, applies advanced payment and patented auto-substantiation technologies to FSAs, HRAs and HSAs. Lighthouse1 provides Consumer Driven Healthcare (CDH) administration software solutions to resolve challenges in the administration of Section 125, 105, 132 and other pre-tax spending programs in the healthcare and employee benefits industry.