Dhanalakshmi Bank Limited has signed an ATM outsourcing agreement with Euronet Worldwide. The deal involves 100 ATMs in South India. Euronet will also be providing VISA gateway services and help the Dhanalakshmi Bank launch its debit card program. The Dhanalakshmi Bank will also connect to Cashnet, which is a shared ATM network owned and operated by Euronet. Cashnet operates approximately 3,000 ATMs across 200 cities through its membership bank participation with IDBI Bank, UTI Bank, Citibank and Standard Chartered Bank.
Diebold Systems has secured a contract for professional and managed services to the Jammu and Kashmir Bank. Under terms of the deal, Diebold will provide around-the-clock, real-time remote monitoring and management from its dedicated Managed Services Centre in Mumbai for Jammu and Kashmir Bank’s network of more than 100 ATMs. Diebold also offers Jammu and Kashmir, a leading private sector bank, an electronic journal uploading service which transmits data to a central location and facilitates online analysis. The Jammu and Kashmir Bank’s 110 ATMs have also been supplied by Diebold, including a solar-powered machine at Leh. Jammu and Kashmir Bank is India’s first state government-owned bank and has over 450 branches across the country.
Citibank has launched the limited edition “Citibank VISA 2004 Olympic Card,” the first of its kind in India. “Go Athens! Card” members who sign up the card before July 15th can enter a slogan contest which will give them the opportunity to win the grand sweepstake prize Â a fully paid four-day package to Athens including tickets to watch some of the events live. VISA is an official sponsor of the “2004 Olympics” being hosted in August, in Athens, Greece and is also the exclusive payment card and official payment service.
The Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology, the technology arm of Reserve Bank of India, has signed a deal for Euronet Worldwide to implement a national financial switch in the country. IDRBT selected Euronet to provide the two-part turnkey solution for the NFS, which will create a neutral platform that enables banks to connect their own switches to the NFS. The NFS will contain both an integrated inter-ATM switch and an Internet and e-commerce payment gateway, which will act as an e-commerce facilitator to authenticate and route payment details between banks and various parties. This two-part solution is believed to be the first of its kind at a national infrastructure level. The installed base of ATMs in India is estimated to be over 15,000 units and this number of ATMs has been growing at over 50% for the last three years. New private banks have been the biggest deployers and more recently public sector banks and old private banks are implementing aggressive plans to install ATMs. Euronet operates a shared Indian ATM network, called “Cashnet” that includes nine member banks. These banks are connected with more than 3,000 ATMs serving over 9 million cardholders across 250 cities in India.
UTI Bank has placed a minimum order for 600 ATMs from Diebold including turnkey auxiliary services such as site preparation, ATM managed services and ATM upgrades on a contract
basis. It is Diebold’s third consecutive order from UTI Bank. Diebold ATMs now comprise 85% of the 1,250 ATMs owned by UTI. In addition to providing 600 new ATMs, Diebold Systems will also upgrade UTI Bank’s existing ATMs to the new “EPP4.0” standards. The company also secured a managed services contract from UTI Bank for remote electronic journaling and content distribution for the bank’s current
and new ATMs. The electronic journal solution will provide daily uploads of data to the central server online. The managed services contract also encompasses remote content distribution
for services such as delivering new screens and icons to ATMs in the network, as well as managing deployment of these services from the central server instead of service engineers working manually at the ATM.
The UK’s Dione and the USA’s NCR have teamed to offer a turnkey “MasterCard/Maestro Terminal Implementation Program” in India. MasterCard members are expected to issue over 5 million new “Maestro” debit cards in the country this year. The new MasterCard “M-TIP” program is designed to build global acceptance of “Maestro” through low cost terminals. Dione is offering its “Xtreme” EMV1 and EMV2 payment terminal as part of the “M-TIP” program. In addition, Dione has launched a new portable payment terminal, the “Xplorer,” which uses “Bluetooth” wireless technology which is of particular interest in markets such as India, where GSM mobile networks predominate. Hypercom and Verifone are also part of the new MasterCard “M-TIP” initiative.
Euronet Worldwide has signed a multi-year ATM outsourcing and deployment agreement with Citibank India. Euronet will install 100 off premise ATMs for Citibank in major cities across India over the next six months. Euronet will select the sites, install the ATMs and all related equipment, drive the ATMs from Euronet’s operations center in Mumbai and provide all of the day-to-day outsourcing services. Citibank is a member of Euronet’s Cashnet shared ATM network for its existing ATMs and these off premise ATMs will be added to the network. Cashnet is the largest nationwide ATM shared network in India today with
more than 2,800 ATMs.
London-based Amicus reports that Capital One has terminated its contract with Wipro Spectramind, India’s largest call center operator, after the staff offered US customers unauthorized credit limits. The Company says the move is the latest in a line of companies deserting India including Littlewoods, Dell and Lehman Bros. There are increasing fears around the safety of data being processed in India after the Evening Standard reported that criminal gangs are bribing Indian staff with a years wage to steal credit data from UK customers. Amicus says several unions have come recently together to launch an independent
commission of inquiry into offshoring.
Standard Chartered Bank and ICICI Bank have introduced the first miniature credit cards in the country. The roll-out of the “VISA Mini Card” follows recent introductions of the cards in Thailand, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. The miniature VISA was first launched in the USA in October 2002. To-date there have been approximately 10 million “VISA Mini Cards” issued. Standard Chartered Bank says it is aiming the card at its 100,000 “Gen Y” cardholders. It will initially target about 30,000 young cardholders in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and Ahemdabad. The issuer has more than 1.4 million total credit cardholders. Standard Chartered Bank is charging a fee of Rs.349 to issue the card to existing cardholders. ICICI Bank is issuing the miniature VISA card in conjunction with its “Sterling VISA Gold” card program.
The country’s second largest bank has launched a Canadian banking subsidiary. ICICI Bank Limited inaugurated ICICI Bank Canada to offer a range of products targeted at retail and commercial banking clients.
The Toronto-based subsidiary will initially leverage its brand awareness within the Indo-Canadian community, moving into the South Asian communities across the Greater Toronto Area and in Vancouver. In the first phase, ICICI Bank Canada will offer a comprehensive mix of transaction accounts, term deposits, lines of credit, remittances, and trade finance services for personal and commercial segments. ICICI Bank Canada will
build on the multi-channel banking franchise established in India through branches, ATM network, mobile banking, call center and Internet banking to serve the retail and commercial needs.
The first ATM conceived and designed specifically for the Indian market has been introduced by NCR. The new “EasyPoint 57i” or “ASAN” is designed to offer cost-effective ATM convenience to untapped non-urban areas, as well as to open up opportunities in newer urban locations such as corporate offices and factories, newly emerging multiplexes and malls and branch extensions. “ASAN” supports wireless connectivity through GPRS and CDMA communication technologies for areas with poor conventional telecommunications connectivity. Its balanced pressure system and enhanced dust filtration mechanism facilitates deployment in non-air-conditioned environments. The new ATM also utilizes the NCR “Intelligent Power Management” system, with an integrated UPS, which ensures that in case of power failure the ATM completes the ongoing transaction before shutting down. NIPM can also help the ATM to be automatically switched off or on at pre-decided times every night and morning if located at sites that do not require 24-hour availability.
Jet Airways and Citibank have expanded their co-branding relationship to issue a “Silver” version of their MasterCard program linked to the “Jet Privilege” program. Two years ago the companies launched the “Jet Airways Citibank Gold Credit Card,” offering three “JPMiles” for every Rs.100 charged to the card, and a complimentary upgrade voucher for every 4500 “JPMiles” earned on the card. The new “Jet Airways Citibank Silver Card” is targeted at leisure travellers, buying coach class seats. Pricing details are not currently available. The annual fee for the gold card is Rs. 2000. Additional cards carry an annual fee of Rs. 1000 each. “JPMiles” can be redeemed for free flights on Jet Airways in India or for free flights on the international sectors of British Airways, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Northwest Airlines. Citibank says it expects to sign-up 50,000 cardholders for the new Silver card. The “Jet Airways Citibank Gold Credit Card” currently has 22,000 cardholders.