CardVerify

NY-based CardVerify rolled out its credit card verification and security service for the Internet Wednesday. ‘CardVerify’ allows Internet buyers to register their credit or debit cards on the company’s website, and each time someone uses or attempts to use a registered card at a ‘CardVerify’ enabled merchant, the owner of the card is notified immediately by email as well as on a pager or a cellular phone. Card users can select a credit limit or “netlimit” for their cards based on monthly spending, merchant type and other variables. The system allows registration of any credit or debit card on the market in more than 150 currencies. ‘CardVerify’ does not authorize card transactions with financial institutions, rather it is an additional authorization process on top of the existing infrastructure. Sensitive data is stored in one-way encrypted format on CardVerify’s servers.

SM Deal For IVI

IVI Checkmate announced a $4 million order from Service Merchandise yesterday. Under terms of the deal IVI will supply SM its ‘eN-Check 431’ check readers and ‘eN-Touch 1000’ portable customer-interactive debit/credit terminals. Chain-wide implementation will be completed at the end of this month. SM is replacing its current installed base of electronic signature capture pads and will install the IVI Checkmate check readers in all stores. SM operates 223 Service Merchandise stores in 32 states.

Signio on MarketSite

Commerce One, Inc , a leader in electronic commerce solutions, and Signio, Inc., a leading provider of e-commerce payment connectivity and services, announced Wednesday a strategic partnership to integrate Signio’s Internet payment platform with Commerce One’s MarketSite, the premier business-to-business marketplace portal. Today’s announcement enables Commerce One to provide a broad range of enhanced electronic payment services to streamline electronic payment processing for all MarketSite trading partners.

The integration of Signio payment services and MarketSite means Commerce One customers and trading partners will have access to real-time consolidated payment services for credit cards; debit cards; procurement card (P-card) authorization and capture; digital checks; and automatic clearing house (ACH) transactions. These payment services enable buyers and suppliers to automate commerce and increase efficiencies by replacing traditional paper-based payment processes with an end-to-end integrated payment processing capability that significantly reduces the cost and time associated with traditional billing methods.

Today, buyers and suppliers exchange thousands of purchase orders per month electronically through Commerce One MarketSite. The enhanced integrated electronic payment capability now gives both buyers and sellers an increased choice of payment options and enables them to electronically exchange various payment and invoice transactions with each other and with a network of processors and banks. This capability allows faster and more accurate payment processing and significantly reduces overall order process cycle time for buyers and sellers. Buyers benefit from reduced transaction cycle times and ease in transaction reconciliation. Suppliers benefit from ease in billing processes and reduced cycle times in collecting payment.

In addition, Commerce One and Signio have agreed to collaborate to define XML based payment documents utilizing components from Commerce One’s Common Business Library (CBL) 2.0. This collaboration is expected to help further drive the definition of common payment document standards across key XML industry initiatives. Signio will leverage Commerce One CBL 2.0 elements, XML document framework and XML tools as a basis for its own XML schema-based product development efforts.

Leveraging Signio payment platform, Commerce One is working with several large financial institutions to offer industry leading payment solutions. These companies will participate in defining further financial business services that will be offered through Commerce One MarketSite and in defining related XML-based business and payment documents.

“Our partnership with Signio allows us to offer more sophisticated payment processing services to our global base of customers,” said Chuck Donchess, vice president of marketing and business development for Commerce One.

“Signio and Commerce One are working together to provide a high performance enterprise-class payment processing solution that helps companies use the Internet to cut costs and increase efficiencies,” said Philippe Courtot, CEO and chairman of Signio, Inc. “The integration of Signio’s platform and Commerce One MarketSite not only accelerates transactions between buyers and sellers, but also provides an innovative new capability for processing payments more quickly and accurately.”

XML Payment Standards

Commerce One’s CBL 2.0 is vital to enabling ubiquitous web-based payment services. CBL 2.0 is a set of XML building blocks and a document framework that allow the creation of robust, reusable, XML business documents. It is the industry’s first open XML specification for the cross-industry exchange of e-commerce-related business documents. CBL 2.0 is endorsed by leading industry standards such as OASIS, the UN/CEFACT Techniques and Methodologies Working Group, CommerceNet eCo Framework Project and Working Group, and Microsoft’s BizTalk Initiative.

About Commerce One

Commerce One (NASDAQ: CMRC) is a leading provider of electronic commerce solutions that dynamically link buying and supplying organizations into real-time trading communities. The CommerceChain Solution(TM) by Commerce One, comprising Commerce One BuySite(TM) and Commerce One MarketSite(TM), enables companies to significantly reduce operational costs and increase efficiency by automating the entire indirect goods and services supply chain. As a result, enterprise organizations are able to realize a strategic competitive advantage as well as a rapid return on investment. Commerce One is located in Walnut Creek, Calif., and can be reached by phone at (800) 308-3838 or (925) 941-6000 or via the Internet at or .

About Signio

Founded in 1995, Signio, Inc., (formerly known as PaymentNet) delivers a highly scalable and reliable Internet payment platform to help businesses profit from the rapidly expanding e-commerce market. With its cost-effective flat fee monthly pricing model and growing menu of services, Signio brings affordability and convenience to the process of selling online. Signio provides seamless connectivity across the Internet from e-commerce applications to all major back-end payment processors and quickly enables companies to authorize, process, and manage multiple payment types (including credit cards and electronic checks), multi-currency options and different payment schemes. With solutions for merchants, financial institutions, resellers and developers, Signio has a growing list of impressive customers, with such notables as C/NET Store.com, CBS Sportsline, Network Solutions, Inc., Virtual Vineyards, women.com, KLM Dutch Airlines, and the American Heart Association. Signio is headquartered in Redwood Shores, CA. For more information about Signio, visit [http://www.signio.com][1].

[1]: http://www.signio.com/

South American Oasis

Canada-based Oasis Technology Ltd. announced that it has been selected by Credicard and Redecard, one of the largest POS networks on the South American continent, to develop a transaction capture and authorization environment that supports an expanding array of electronic commerce initiatives targeting Brazilian consumers. Credicard and Redecard have been using Oasis e-payment technology for more than five years to support the routing of card authorization and transaction information between merchants and leading payment authorization networks. Under terms of the new joint development project, the Oasis IST-enabled system will support the processing of online card transactions, batch files of card-not-present transactions, and paper drafts. The new transaction processing gateway also will provide support for traditional credit and debit card transactions, vouchers, check services, and Health Management Services

Currency-to-Go

Chase Manhattan launched the first web site service that enables both customers and non-customers nationwide to order any one of 75 different foreign currencies and travelers cheques online with no fees or commissions for next-day delivery. ‘Currency-to-Go’ offers competitive exchange rates with no exchange fees or commissions. Non-customers can pay by any major credit card. Chase says currency purchases via credit card will not incur cash advance fees or foreign transaction fees. Chase customers can also pay by debiting their deposit accounts. Home delivery is free for orders of $500 or more, with a $10 shipping charge for orders below that amount. Travelers can order up to six different currencies. Orders over $1,000 must be picked up, in person, at a Chase branch.

E-Loan Card

CA-based online mortgage originator E-LOAN boxed itself in on the credit card side yesterday, after signing away an exclusive alliance with Providian Financial. Providian will exclusively market its suite of ‘Aria VISA’ cards on E-LOAN’s Web site. The ‘Aria VISA’ was launched by Providian in May of this year, following Providian’s acquisition of loan aggregator GetSmart.com. Providian says ‘Aria’ has distinguished itself as having one of the highest approval rates on the Web. ‘Aria’ currently offers interest rates ranging from as low as a fixed 7.99% APR to a 23.99% APR. Providian’s ‘Aria VISA Persona’ offers a maximum credit limit of $1,000 in exchange for a one-time processing fee as high as $89 and an annual fee as high as $89. The card also carries a fixed interest rate of 23.99% and no grace period. After three months the account is reviewed for a possible credit line increase which is also subject to a special fee. Providian says its websites draw 10 million visitors annually.

SmartDisk Jackpot

SmartDisk Corporation announced Wednesday that its initial public offering of 3,000,000 shares of common stock has been priced at $13.00 per share. In addition, SmartDisk has granted the underwriters an option to purchase up to 450,000 shares of common stock to cover over-allotments. SmartDisk intends to use the net proceeds from the offering for working capital, potential acquisitions of technology or businesses, and other general corporate purposes.

The shares of SmartDisk Corporation will be listed on the Nasdaq National Market under the symbol “SMDK.”

BancBoston Robertson Stephens acted as the lead manager for the offering. The co-managers were Hambrecht & Quist and U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray.

Home Account Adds CyberBills

Home Account, the leading enabler of Internet-based financial services, announced Wednesday that it can now offer its customers total bill management over the Internet through CyberBills. The addition of CyberBills to its suite of electronic bill payment and presentment solutions highlights Home Account’s ongoing commitment to offer its clients a wide range of industry-leading Internet financial services.

Home Account, which already offers bill payment and presentment solutions through partnerships with Checkfree, Princeton Ecom and Transpoint, has built a growing network of financial service providers that can be tightly integrated with the proprietary services of its bank, brokerage, credit union and card issuer clients to add more value for consumers and generate additional revenues for clients.

“Our relationship with CyberBills opens numerous opportunities for our clients. They can offer CyberBills total bill management as a premium service, or give consumers their choice of Internet bill payment services,” said Charles A. White, president and chief executive officer of Home Account. “Either way, our clients now have another powerful tool for increasing traffic on their Web sites and providing their customers with the most convenient Internet financial services.”

CyberBills gives consumers the ability to view, pay and manage all of their bills over the Internet, regardless of whether the bills originate in electronic or paper form or whether the biller is currently equipped to present bills online. CyberBills handles the entire bill management process, from receiving the bills and presenting them to the consumer over the Internet and managing payment.

“No more opening bills. No more late payments. No more writing checks. Once consumers experience total bill management over the Internet, they’re hooked,” said CyberBills President Murali Chirala. “Many consumers may have tried Internet billing in the past and found it lacking, because only two or three bills could be presented online-the rest still came in the mail. Now, Home Account and CyberBills are offering aggregated bill management services that not only attract new online customers, but also retain them over the long term.”

About Home Account

Home Account delivers patent-protected home banking, financial management and electronic commerce solutions to banks, brokerages and other financial service organizations. Home Account’s products include: Canopy Server(TM), an OFX (Open Financial Exchange) financial services platform that allows distribution of services through multiple channels; Canopy Advisor(TM), a strategic financial planning system for use by individuals and financial professionals; Canopy First(TM), a family of outsourced, scalable and brandable Internet products and services for financial institutions, card issuers and brokerages; Canopy Card(TM), innovative Internet account access programs for card issuers; Canopy Business(TM), Internet-based cash management services for business customers; and Canopy Clients(TM), a series of financial management user interfaces.

Home Account is headquartered in Emeryville, Calif., with offices in Charleston, S.C., Omaha, Neb., Los Angeles and Atlanta.

Please see Home Account’s website at

About CyberBills

Based in Santa Clara, Calif., CyberBills, the creator of StatusFactory.com, is the first company to offer total bill management over the Internet. Founded in 1998, CyberBills has rapidly developed and deployed methods and technology to support a single interface that allows consumers to view, pay, manage and automate all of their bills over the Internet. CyberBills offers its service directly to consumers at StatusFactory.com, as well as through its channel partners. For more information about CyberBills, visit [http://www.cyberbills.com][1] or [http://www.statusfactory.com][2].

[1]: http://www.cyberbills.com/
[2]: http://www.statusfactory.com/

MBNA Signs Ninth Top Ten Alumni

MBNA America announced Wednesday that the Northwestern University Alumni Association has endorsed MBNA to offer its credit card services to its members.

Northwestern, founded in 1851 and located in Evanston, Illinois, is home to six undergraduate schools and seven graduate schools including the Kellogg School of Management and the Medill School of Journalism. It is the ninth university alumni association from the Big Ten to endorse MBNA.

Northwestern joins more than 500 college and university alumni associations that endorse MBNA’s credit card services. More than 3.7 million alumni and students of these endorsing institutions now carry MBNA credit cards.

“We are pleased to have our products endorsed by the Northwestern University Alumni Association,” said John Cochran, chief marketing officer of MBNA. “And we look forward to providing them with a high level of financial products and customer service.”

MBNA Corporation (NYSE: KRB), a bank holding company and parent of MBNA America, N.A., a national bank, has more than $66 billion in managed loans. MBNA, the largest independent credit card lender in the world, also provides retail deposit, consumer loan, and insurance services.

Wal-Mart Cards

Wal-Mart made it official yesterday as it confirmed the launch of its first private label retail card: ‘The Wal-Mart Store Card’. The new store card will be administered and financed by GE Capital. The agreement represents an addition to the current relationship between Wal-Mart and GE Capital, which has provided SAM’s Clubs with a store credit card program. Wal-Mart also markets the ‘Wal-Mart MasterCard from Chase’ under a co-branding agreement with Chase Manhattan. Take one applications are now being distributed to all 2,500 Wal-Mart locations in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Wal-Mart Stores operates more than 2,450 stores and 450 SAM’s Clubs in the U.S. and has 971 units internationally.

Absec Intros SmartCity

ICL, a global IT services company and a world leader in smart card systems, has entered into a distribution agreement with Absec, the cashless payment and control systems company based in Northern Ireland. The agreement will introduce ICL’s SmartCity multi-application smart card system to the Irish and Scottish markets.

Under the agreement, the two companies will focus on selling ICL’s smart card system to universities, corporate campuses and other “closed environment” markets in Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and Scotland. Absec will be the first company in the UK and Ireland to distribute SmartCity within these markets.

As well as adapting their range of products (such as photocopier and vending machine readers) to accept SmartCity’s electronic purse application, Absec will be developing other applications suitable to closed environments, such as time and attendance monitoring through smart cards. Phil Eames, director of ICL’s Smart Card Group said, “This is a natural partnership because of Absec’s in-depth knowledge in these markets and ICL’s expertise in smart card systems. ICL currently operates a similar third-party distribution model in the US, where SmartCity has been implemented in more than 20 sites, including the University of Arizona and Florida State University. The market for closed smart card schemes which incorporates academic campuses is predicted to rise by as much as 300% to 3,500 sites by 2002.”

“This agreement will unite the best aspects of both products, bringing a unified system to the education and corporate markets that is unrivalled in terms of its functionality and security. SmartCity will be integrated with our own ChipNet smart card system to increase its flexibility,” said Absec’s managing director, Colin Foster. “With Ireland currently one of the fastest growing smart card markets in Europe, the timing is very opportune.”

SmartCity

SmartCity is ICL’s end-to-end multi-application smart card system. A multi-application system is one that supports electronic purse, credit and debit cards, loyalty cards, identity cards and many other applications. Recognized as the world’s most advanced smart card system, SmartCity has been installed in over 70 sites worldwide with 1.5 million cards in use every day. These sites include Fort Knox (US), Siam Commercial Bank (Thailand), LukOil (Russia), SouthPark Mall (US).

ICL’s Smart Card Group in the US is based in Middletown, Ct. For more information on SmartCity, visit [www.icl.com/smartcards][1].

Absec

Absec is an internationally renowned provider of both card operated cashless payment systems and cost recovery and expense management solutions. Absec designs, manufactures and distributes cashless payment and control systems. All Absec products which interface to photocopiers, fax machines, computers, network and stand alone printers, vending machines and point of sale terminals are developed and manufactured at the company’s head office in Bangor, Northern Ireland. Absec Worldwide has distributors and dealers in over 40 countries across the globe.

Absec’s website: [www.absec.com][2] About ICL ICL is a global IT services company. It designs, builds and operates information systems and services for customers in the retail, finance, government, telecommunications, utilities and travel markets. The company has operations in over 40 countries and employs over 22,500 people.

Transformed from a manufacturer of computers, today ICL improves business performance and competitiveness through services focused on electronic business, enterprise applications and the implementation and outsourcing of IT infrastructure.

For the 12 months to March 31, 1999, the company’s revenues were $4,458.4* billion (£2.735 billion) which generated a profit before tax and exceptional charges of $105.1* million (£64.5 million). Headquartered in London, ICL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fujitsu and plans to float on the London Stock Exchange in 2000.

[1]: http://www.icl.com/smartcards
[2]: http://www.absec.com/

AmEx Supports NYC Schools

As part of its commitment to NYC 2000, with Mayor Giuliani, Continental Airlines announced yesterday that it is teaming up with American Express to provide $1 million in support of New York City schools. The money will be divided equally between an initiative to re-build libraries in New York City elementary and middle schools and a college scholarship program for graduating seniors.

Continental and American Express plan to fund the Millennium Library Project through a cause-related marketing program. The funds will be used to improve libraries in New York City elementary and middle schools. The program will provide much-needed books and software titles that can greatly enrich students’ learning experience. Targeted schools have been identified by The Board of Education as having low reading scores and needing to significantly improve student performance.

Extending their commitment to students in need, Continental and American Express have also created the Continental/American Express NYC 2000 Millennium Scholarship. Each year, the fund will award fifty $2,000 scholarships to students who have demonstrated superior academic and community achievement. The program is open to graduating seniors throughout the city who attend high schools that have been identified by the Board of Education as in need of significant improvement in student performance.

“It is vital to us and to all New Yorkers that we help educate our youth so they can help us be successful in the next century,” said Gordon Bethune, Chairman and CEO of Continental Airlines, speaking at a press conference at City Hall with Mayor Rudy Giuliani. “As a major employer in the region, with more than 11,000 employees locally, we’re proud to contribute to this pool of future talent that makes the Big Apple a great place to do business.”

“We are so pleased to be joining Continental Airlines in an effort to improve the New York City public schools. Giving back is one of the core values that governs American Express — and there is perhaps no issue that more deeply affects our future than the education of our children,” said David C. House, president, Establishment Services Worldwide, American Express.

“The new millennium is more than a unique opportunity for celebration; it is a chance to redouble our efforts to better prepare our children to face the challenges of the next century,” said Mayor Giuliani. “This public/private partnership with Continental Airlines and American Express will go a long way in educating our children and ensuring that they are ready to face those challenges.”

“I want to thank Continental Airlines and American Express for their generosity in funding these school libraries and college scholarships,” said Schools Chancellor Rudolph F. Crew. “Beyond my sincere thanks, though, are congratulations to both companies for working together to identify two areas of great need for our children in schools that are striving to reach and exceed a higher academic standard.”

Continental is the fifth largest airline in the U.S., offering more than 2,200 departures daily to 130 domestic and 85 international destinations. Operating major hubs in Houston, Newark and Cleveland, Continental ([http://www.continental.com][1]) has extensive service throughout the Americas, and to Europe and Asia. Continental recently initiated a strategic global alliance with Northwest Airlines. Continental is in the top half of Fortune magazine’s, “100 Best Companies to Work for in America,” and has won first or second place FrequentFlyer magazine and J.D. Power awards for the four consecutive years. Continental has received numerous awards for its BusinessFirst premium cabin (Conde Nast Traveler, OAG Official Airline Guides, Entrepreneur and Smart Money magazines), OnePass frequent flyer program (InsideFlyer’s Freddie Awards) and overall operations and management (Air Transport World’s 1997 Airline of the Year).

American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc., is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the American Express Company (NYSE: AXP), a diversified worldwide travel and financial services company founded in 1850. It is a leader in charge and credit cards, Travelers Cheques, travel, financial planning, investment products, insurance and international banking.

[1]: http://www.continental.com/