TSYS & Virgin Money Ink Payment Agreement

TSYS reached a long-term agreement to provide consumer credit processing services along with value-added capabilities for Virgin Money customers within the United Kingdom. Virgin Money selected TSYS’ market leading TS2® platform to support its UK cards portfolio. TSYS will provide a flexible and reliable card processing solution for Virgin Money with value-added capabilities being provided through various partners, including TSYS Managed Services EMEA.

KitKat Now Supported By NBS Xpressi

NBS Technologies announced that the host card emulation (HCE) feature of Android KitKat is now fully supported by the NBS Xpressi Trusted Service Manager (TSM). With HCE no physical secure element is required. The secure element is implemented completely in the Android application. Therefore, no UICC chip or microSD card is required and no Mobile Network Operator (MNO) involvement is required to personalize and use an NFC enabled phone for contactless payments.

Itonis Sign License Agreement With MyECheck

Itonis, Inc. today announced that it has signed a Licensing Agreement with MyECheck, Inc. for Itonis to acquire a software license for MyECheck’s patented mobile payment app that will facilitate point of purchase transactions for medical marijuana, gambling, and general retail sales. There is no expiration date on that license. The license agreement calls for Itonis to pay a one-time licensing fee to MyECheck as well as a portion of the per-transaction fees collected at the point of sale.

Credit Outstanding Down .3% Y/Y, But Rising

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] With the total outstanding revolving US consumer credit down 0.3% in January from last year to an adjusted $856B from $846B, any positive momentum achieved in 2013 is a fading memory, and its bleeding into 2014. Continuing to grow, January revolving credit outstanding is still not as high as the 2008…

AmEx to Increase Quarterly Dividend 13%, Buy Back +/- $4.4B Common Shares

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] American Express announced its approved plan as part of the 2014 Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review (CCAR). It included increasing the Company’s quarterly dividend to 26 cents per share beginning with the second quarter 2014 dividend declaration, subject to approval by the Company’s board of directors; repurchasing up to $4.4 billion…

VeriFone Welcomes New Member to Board of Directors

VeriFone Systems announced that Richard A. McGinn will leave the board and be replaced by long-time retail and consumer financial services veteran Jane J. Thompson, effective immediately. Thompson has successfully led multi-billion dollar organizations in the financial services, home services, retail, and ecommerce industries. She served at the executive level of Fortune 50 organizations for more than two decades. Most recently, as a strategic consultant, Thompson helped drive strategy and growth for large corporations as well as small, fast-growth businesses. She is the former president of Walmart Financial Services and former executive vice president of Sears Credit and Home Services. Thompson has also served as partner at McKinsey & Co., and in brand management and marketing at Procter & Gamble. She is a member of the board for The Fresh Market and former board member of ConAgra Foods.

American Express and Universal Studios Expand Partnership

Universal Studios and American Express announced an expanded multi-year agreement that brings the strength of Universal’s theme parks and filmed entertainment together with its brand to create exclusive consumer benefits and experiences. Also allowing AmEx to acquire new Card Members directly through Universal theme parks and websites, this expanded partnership presents new and innovative marketing opportunities for both companies. The partnership will now include marketing opportunities that leverage Universal Pictures’ retail partners, consumer licensing and digital media platforms on a global basis. The partnership will continue to set the stage for ongoing offers and promotions for anyone holding an American Express Card, ranging from discounts at the theme parks to special once-in-a-lifetime entertainment experiences.

Merchant Warehouse Acquires Opticard

Merchant Warehouse payment technologies acquired Opticard provider of gift and loyalty programs for organizations worldwide. Merchant Warehouse will now offer deeper mobile and digital engagement opportunities for small and mid-sized businesses through an expanded suite of gift, loyalty and prepaid programs. For nearly 20 years, Opticard has offers solution processing for merchants, ranging from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies, completing more than 20 million transactions annually. Its prepaid offerings, including both gift card and loyalty programs, are designed to meet the unique needs of every retailer, enabling them to build lasting relationships with their customers, while simultaneously encouraging them to return and spend more. Through this acquisition, Merchant Warehouse will continue to invest in the Opticard platform to advance the suite of service offerings to both new and existing resellers and retail customers. Opticard employees will join the Merchant Warehouse team, will continue to invest in Opticard’s solutions, offerings and infrastructure, enabling continuous improvement and growth.

MoneyGram to Connect to the HomeSend Money Transfer Hub

MoneyGram signed a global agreement with BICS to connect to HomeSend. HomeSend, a strategic business partnership between BICS and eServGlobal , is a global technology hub service that enables person-to-person fund transfers. Through the technology of the HomeSend hub, MoneyGram customers in more than 200 countries will be able remit funds to mobile accounts of HomeSend hub members across the globe. MoneyGram has 336,000 agent locations worldwide and also offers money transfer services through kiosks, along with online, mobile, and other channels. The agreement will enable MoneyGram customers and agents to further connect to HomeSend’s substantial network, which includes some of the largest tier one mobile operator groups. Today HomeSend has live deployments in more than 50 countries and commercial contracts with mobile network operators (MNOs) and money transfer operators (MTOs).

Unemployment Rate Catches .1% Blip, Still Well Under 7%

[ihc-hide-content ihc_mb_type=”show” ihc_mb_who=”0″ ihc_mb_template=”1″] Payroll employment was up 175,000 units in February for a subsequent .1% change in the unemployment rate from January, which now sits at an impressive 6.7%. This was led by employment in construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, and mining fields. The number of unemployed persons sits at 10.5 million showed little change…

Breaches Stimulate EMV Migration

The survey of U.S.-based financial industry professionals was conducted in March 2014 at BAI Payments Connect and reports that 44% of customer accounts have been compromised. More than 15% of financial institutions indicated recent breaches put more pressure on fraud operations resources to do more to protect themselves while 12% indicated that they experienced a negative impact on their brand. Over 75% of respondents said they are looking at additional resources to combat fraud in their organizations, of which 50% are looking to invest in fraud detection system technology, 15% are investing in more training for their fraud management teams and 10% are beefing up staff with new personnel. Although data breach-related fraud has a negative impact on the bottom line and on the industry in general, over 40% indicated their customers appreciate the proactive outreach and response to market events.

First Data Adds Latest Developer Programme Member

First Data payment technology and services solutions added Attra Infotech cards and payments services as its first Developer License Program member for the VisionPLUS and AccessPLUS suite of software products licensed by First Data globally. VisionPLUS, is a payment processing solution for financial institutions that enables the issuance and processing of credit, debit, commercial and prepaid cards, as well consumer loans, loyalty and merchant accounts on a single platform. Offered with VisionPLUS is AccessPLUS with a suite of business process management products that drives operational staff efficiency in servicing customers and supports portfolio parameter management. First Data’s Developer License Program further contributes to keeping the VisionPLUS and AccessPLUS suite of products flexible and up-to-date with new market trends and technology.