Authorize.Net and Planet Payment have launched a joint venture to provide end-to-end payment solutions for online merchants located outside of the U.S. and U.S.-based merchants who wish to implement a non-U.S. or multi-currency Internet payment solution. The venture will be marketed under the ‘Planet Payment’ brand, and will be powered by Authorize.Net. The ‘Planet Payment Gateway’ and Planet Payment’s Internet payment solutions will allow online merchants everywhere the ability to accept credit card payments in more than 140 currencies. The gateway is scheduled to be available in early April. Authorize.Net currently provides payment solutions for more than 65,000 online merchants.
Discover Financial Services, a business unit of Morgan Stanley Dean Witter & Co., and Switchboard Incorporated, the popular Internet directory and local merchant network, today announced an expansion of their existing relationship that is focused on helping Discover/Novus Network merchants promote their businesses online.
Discovercard.com now features a custom-designed version of Switchboard’s acclaimed yellow pages directory highlighting Discover/Novus Network merchants participating in the Switchboard Local Merchant Program. Discover/Novus Network merchants participating in Switchboard’s Local Merchant Program will have access to a broad range of cost effective services to help them establish, manage and expand their online presence and reach qualified customers. Based on Switchboard’s “What’s Nearby?” guides, this custom designed version of Switchboard’s yellow pages directory features a series of guides that will make it easier for Discover Cardmembers to find Discover/Novus Network merchants.
Switchboard’s “What’s Nearby?” guides on Discovercard.com are designed to help consumers locate shopping and entertainment options and explore college life across the U.S. These provide Discover/Novus Network merchants an additional level of Internet exposure to help them connect with consumers who are ready to buy as they search for products and services in their local market or across the country.
The guides each have a different area of focus. The Campus Guide, which is tightly integrated with the Discovercard.com StudentCenter, lets any college student enter their campus address and quickly get access to local merchants in their area. The Entertainment Guide allows Discover Cardmembers to simply enter their home or work address, or the address of a travel destination, and then easily find a variety of entertainment oriented businesses that are nearby including restaurants, theatres, museums, golf courses, video rental stores and ice cream parlors. The Online Shopping Guide provides Cardmembers with a categorized index of online merchants to help with all of their shopping needs.
“We are extremely interested in providing easy-to-use online services for our Discover Cardmembers to encourage them to do business with our merchant network,” said Colleen Zambole, vice president, Electronic Commerce, Discover Financial Services, Inc. “This directory of businesses is the latest in a series of online initiatives to provide substantive benefits to our Cardmembers and merchants.”
“We are pleased to see our relationship with Discover Financial Services grow in new directions. The Discover directory and guides bring a new level of exposure to the Discover/Novus Network merchants in our local merchant network while simultaneously introducing a new audience of consumers to the power of Switchboard,” said Switchboard president, Dean Polnerow.
About Discover Financial Services
Discover Financial Services, a business unit of Morgan Stanley Dean Witter & Co., operates the Discover(R) Card brands with more than 48 million Cardmembers and the Discover/Novus Network. The Network is the largest independent credit card network in the United States with more than 3.5 million merchant and cash access locations.
About Switchboard Incorporated
Headquartered in Westboro, Mass., Switchboard Incorporated, is a leading Internet-based local merchant network interconnecting consumers, merchants and national advertisers. Its flagship website, CBS Switchboard.com ([www.switchboard.com]) offers a broad range of functions, content and services including yellow and white pages, E-mail and website directories, and interactive maps and driving directions. Viewed more than 50 million times each month, CBS Switchboard.com connects consumers searching for specific products and services with the merchants that provide them. Switchboard also provides local merchants with efficient, cost-effective services to help them establish, manage and expand their businesses online. Banyan Worldwide (NASDAQ: BNYN) and CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS) own approximately 41% and 31% of the outstanding shares of Switchboard, respectively. Switchboard is a registered trademark of Switchboard Incorporated. “CBS” and the CBS “eye” device are registered trademarks of CBS Broadcasting Inc.
Schlumberger unveiled a new modem option for its ‘MagIC 6000’ POS terminal that provides the retail industry with the fastest connectivity on the market. The new modem provides a choice of 9600 and 14400 baud full-duplex transmission rates in both asynchronous and synchronous operation. Schlumberger has also extended the scope of the ‘MagIC Management System’ with remote maintenance capabilities, giving banks, distributors and maintenance organizations the capability to fine-tune performance while reducing maintenance costs. ‘MagIC terminals’ continually log operational information, which can now be accessed remotely and analyzed. Banks and card issuers can now monitor authorization response times, file transfer times and details of any failed transactions to ensure that terminals continue to deliver fast and efficient transactions for both the card user and retailer. There is also capability for detecting potential problems, such as an increase in the number of swipes required to read a magnetic stripe card. Schlumberger also announced Tuesday it has gained certification for its ‘MagIC 6000’ POS terminals for use in health applications in the next phase of France?s national electronic health card program, ‘Vitale’.
First of Omaha Merchant Processing and plaNet Consulting, Inc. Announce Strategic Partnership
plaNet Consulting, a leading provider of e-business solutions, and First of Omaha Merchant Processing a premier processor in the direct marketing industry, announced an agreement to provide integrated e-business solutions. This strategic parnership will allow First of Omaha to leverage its existing infrastructure in delivering settlement data and monthly statement data to its agent banks and merchants via the Internet.
“plaNet Consulting products provide us with the level of security needed for the latest card processing technologies in Internet commerce solutions,” explained Nick Baxter, president of First of Omaha. “The management team and product architects from plaNet Consulting deliver the expertise for us to continue our customer service in a diversified product line.”
“The e-business market is rapidly changing, especially as it relates to the Internet,” said Alan Michels, plaNet Consulting CEO. “Our partnership with First of Omaha extends the quality of service its clients expect for processing in the direct marketing and bankcard industries” plaNet Consulting’s products allow direct access to transaction information from anywhere in the world at any time of day in a secure web-based environment.
About First of Omaha Merchant Processing
First of Omaha Merchant Processing is a wholly owned subsidiary of First National Bank of Omaha. Founded in 1863, First National Bank of Omaha is the 32nd oldest nationally chartered bank in existence. First of Omaha is a premier processor in the direct marketing industry and processes bankcard transactions for large and small retailers, restaurants, lodging merchants, petroleum marketers, associations/franchise groups, and banks as well.
Cardservice International Parners with plaNet Consulting To Provide Merchants with Easy-to-Use E-Commerce Software
Electronic commerce solutions provider plaNet Consulting, Inc. announced today that it is partnering with CardService International, Inc., a premier provider of secured payment processing on the Internet, to provide merchants with a means of accessing information about their accounts at any time and from any place.
Cardservice International is licensing plaNet Consulting’s icFoundation and icAcquirer software products. The two applications are part of plaNet Consulting’s Intelligent Commerce suite of Web-based products. icFoundation is an easily customized application to provide rapid deployment of e-commerce, including intranet, extranet and Internet applications. icAcquirer is geared to the merchant acquiring industry and provides users with a comprehensive view of the transactions, chargebacks, retrievals, batch totals and preformatted statements. Additionally, this information can be accessed from anywhere and any time.
“Providing our customers a self-service channel to obtain the information they need to manage their business was very important to us,” said Timothy Miller, Cardservice International’s senior vice president of operations. “We chose plaNet Consulting because of its knowledge of the industry and because the Intelligent Commerce products are built on a strong architecture that we can further leverage for other business applications.”
“Cardservice International is viewed as a technology leader in the payment industry and we are excited that it has chosen to partner with plaNet Consulting and purchase our icAcquirer and icFoundation products,” commented Alan Michels, plaNet Consulting’s president and chief executive officer. “We look forward to working with this industry leader to better serve its customers and further enable its growth.”
About Cardservice International, Inc.
Cardservice International, Inc., is a global leader in providing real-time secure credit card transactions to merchants. Cardservice offers merchants a cost-effective service tailored to their businesses, enabling them to provide credit card processing over the Internet as well as to the traditional marketplace. The company’s LinkPoint Secure Payment Gateway utilizes state-of-the-art Secure Sockets Layer technology and is easily scalable to any size business. The gateway is designed to communicate in real time with a business core data-processing system to allow online transactions to be posted immediately. The gateway also delivers a full range of capabilities, including sales, returns, authorizations, online check processing and comprehensive real-time reports for easy Web management.
First National Bank of Omaha and plaNet Consulting, Inc. Announce Strategic Partnership
plaNet Consulting, a leading supplier of enterprise e-business solutions, and First National Bank of Omaha (FNBO) announced today an agreement to provide integrated e-business solutions. This strategic partnership will allow FNBO to fully integrate plaNet Consulting’s icFountation web infrastructure product along with its icAcquirer merchant acquiring application for instantaneous access to financial transactions from anywhere in the world plaNet Consulting will utilize FNBO’s new Technology Center in Omaha, Neb. to deliver Total Solution Provider (TSP) solutions to its customer base.
“plaNet Consulting solutions provide the framework and architecture for processing the immense volumes of complex interactions that financial e-commerce applications must routinely handle,” explained Russ Oatman, FNBO’s senior vice president. “The experience and philosophy of plaNet Consulting’s management align with FNBO’s focus on high-volume, mission-critical data systems, and we’re impressed with its list of satisfied clients.”
“The continued rapid growth of the ASP and TSP markets demonstrates that this industry is one of the hottest in the technology sector,” said Alan Michels plaNet Consulting CEO. “The industry has come to expect innovative financial services solutions from plaNet Consulting. Our parnership with FNBO provides an operational capability in item processing that is exceptional in the industry and very strategic in our vision of the marketplace.” ASPs combine traditional outsourcing principles with the Internet to offer a compelling alternative to buying shring-wrapped software and implementing it in-house.
Entrust Technologies Inc., the global leader for solutions that bring trust to e-business, and Authorize.Net Corporation, ([http://www.authorize.net]), a part of the Go2Net Network, ([http://www.go2net.com]), and a leading payment authorization service for online businesses, have entered into an agreement to deliver secure and trusted payment solutions to business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) e-commerce merchants.
The convergence of Entrust’s trust technology and Authorize.Net’s real-time payment processing is a natural evolution in the effort to further secure e-commerce. The combination of the two technologies enables customers to obtain both payment gateway and trust services in one package. This will allow customers to deploy their e-commerce Web sites more quickly, reliably and securely. Additionally, this partnership enables Entrust Technologies to extend the benefits of its trust solutions to Authorize.Net’s broad base of more than 65,200 online merchants.
Both Entrust Technologies and Authorize.Net are committed to developing innovative solutions that provide both financial institutions and consumers with the ability to conduct trusted and secure e-business in the B2B and B2C environments. This will help organizations build, maintain and increase loyal and trusted e-business relationships over the Web, wired and wireless networks.
As the first of many initiatives between the two companies, Authorize.Net will extend its range of products and services to include Entrust.net Web Server certificates, which provide increased security and trust for online transactions. The two e-business leaders will also develop a co-branded Web site, to be accessed from Authorize.Net’s Web site, for the resale of Entrust.net Web Server certificates through Authorize.Net’s partner and reseller channels. Since the partnership provides coverage of a transaction all the way from the user’s browser to the back-end payment authentication, Authorize.Net and Entrust are uniquely positioned to deliver future products and services to enhance the reliability and trust of Internet transactions.
“Entrust has established itself as a leader in providing secure global e-business trust solutions, and we are excited about this partnership as we continue to provide comprehensive payment solutions to our customers,” said David O. Heaps, Authorize.Net president and CEO.
“Both Authorize.Net and Entrust recognize that trust and the ability to secure online transactions, communications and relationships are crucial ingredients in building a successful e-business,” said John Ryan, Entrust Technologies president and CEO. “In delivering these important tools to growing e-businesses, this partnership reinforces Entrust Technologies’ position as the leading provider of trust solutions.”
About Entrust Technologies
Entrust Technologies Inc. is the global leader in providing products and services that allow e-businesses to manage trusted, secure electronic transactions and communications over today’s advanced networks, including the Internet, extranets and intranets. Since 1994, Entrust Technologies has been providing award-winning solutions to global enterprises, government entities, small to mid-sized businesses and individuals. Entrust Technologies Inc. is headquartered in Plano, Texas with offices in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Germany and Japan. For additional company information please visit [http://www.entrust.com].
About Authorize.Net Corporation
Founded in 1996 and acquired by Go2Net, Inc. in July 1999, Authorize.Net Corporation is the preferred payment-processing service for e-commerce, providing secure, reliable and easy-to-use payment solutions that make the Internet a new revenue opportunity for businesses of all sizes. These tools also provide a smarter, faster, more economical method of transaction processing for retail-based storefronts and the services industry. Authorize.Net is the market leader and has grown to include more than 65,200 clients, using a network of more than 1,000 ISOs and acquiring banks to resell its products and services. For more information on Authorize.Net, visit [http://www.authorize.net].
About Go2Net, Inc.
Go2Net ([http://www.go2net.com]) is one of the Internet’s leading networks, providing consumer services, business services, and enabling services. The company offers through the World Wide Web a network of branded properties and aggregated content in the categories of search and directory, personal finance, multi-player games, small business services and e-commerce solutions. The company also develops Internet technologies for its own network and for license to strategic partners. The Go2Net Network is home to many of the Internet’s leading vertical destinations, including: MetaCrawler, Silicon Investor, the HyperMart Network, PlaySite, Dogpile and 100hot.
Pixo, Inc. and PayPal.com are teaming up to enable consumers to send money securely and easily over the Internet to anyone with an email address from any Pixo-enabled smart phone. Current online payment systems often require users to know the bank account numbers of the recipient. With the Pixo-powered ‘PayPal.com’ service, users can conduct a transaction simply by registering online for the free service and entering the recipient’s email address and transaction amount. The new ‘PayPal.com’ solution is enabled by Pixo’s HTML/WML microbrowser. Taking advantage of new packet data networks such as ‘GPRS’ and ‘CDMA2000’, the microbrowser will be capable of accessing HTML-based content on the Web and reformatting this content for effective presentation on a wireless phone display. Through its support of wireless mark-up language, the microbrowser will also be capable of supporting WAP-based content and services over packet data networks.
National InterBank began full operation of its online, Internet-based consumer bank yesterday. The new Internet bank offers no-fee banking which includes no-fee interest checking accounts, no-fee Money Market savings accounts, free online bill payment services and a no-annual-fee credit card. Additionally, the bank provides free ATM/Debit card replacement, free cashier checks, free stop payments, and free account research services, such as past statement reprints and copies of cleared checks. National InterBank also reimburses customers $6 per month for fees incurred during any ATM transaction.
Discover Financial Services today announced the launch of the innovative Discover Desk$hop virtual credit card, which provides Discover Cardmembers with one-click access to their online account, a convenient drag-and-drop mechanism for shopping on the Internet and real-time available credit balance information. Trintech is powering the Discover Desk$hop’s form filling functionality with its PayGate NetIssuer virtual credit card solution. Discover Desk$hop fully supports the Electronic Commerce Modeling Language standard. The privacy of consumer’s card details is protected with the highest level of Secure Socket Layer encryption and credit card security is enhanced by the PIN-protected access used when Cardmembers invoke their Discover Desk$hop virtual card.
GE Capital announced this morning it is launching an Internet-based system that integrates corporate card program management and online purchasing for large-sized and medium-sized businesses and organizations. Available for a March beta release, the first module of the ‘GE Business Marketplace’ will support the administration of travel, purchasing and fleet vehicle corporate charge cards on a Web-based system hosted by GE Capital. The reporting module, called ‘GE NetReport’, allows users to access their accounts online and integrates to the customer’s general ledger system. In addition, the module supports exception reporting, automatically alerting managers to transactions that are outside of the customer’s business policies. In a future e-commerce release, the ‘GE Business Marketplace’ will support online business-to-business buying, custom catalog integration, and workflow approval. Transaction activity for travel, purchasing, and fleet card programs, as well as e-commerce transactions, will be integrated into the ‘GE NetReport’ reporting engine.
Zebra Technologies Corporation, leading manufacturer of plastic card printers and thermal bar code printers, and Polaroid Corporation announced that they have entered into an OEM agreement for Zebra’s Eltron card printers to be a component of the new Polaroid System 75, the new low-cost and easy-to-use digital ID badge making system.
This system allows a customer to quickly and easily design a photo identification badge on a personal computer. The System 75 can capture a picture, print two to three ID badges a minute, and create and maintain an image database and registry. Polaroid will market the on-demand imaging and printing package where there is an increasing need for security and instant identification such as schools and small- and medium-sized businesses.
“Our OEM relationship with Zebra is based on the strength of the Eltron card printer reputation and the exceptional technology and design. Together, we can aggressively expand and build the commercial marketplace,” said Karl R. LaPan, head of Polaroid’s North American Commercial ID and Ventures Group.
Donald Skinner, president of Eltron Card Printer Products, said “Our partnership with Polaroid is a very significant one. Polaroid is the worldwide leader in instant imaging. This is a great opportunity for Polaroid and Zebra to work together. Through this alliance we will be able to bring instant issue card personalization to a greater audience.”
The Polaroid System 75 is comprised of Polaroid PDC digital camera, Polaroid ID Card Maker Imaging Software and the Polaroid 75 Color Card Printer. Eltron Card Printer Products is supplying the Polaroid 75, a custom OEM color card printer. The two companies plan to continue expanding the initial product offering with additional card printer models in the future.
Polaroid has been producing driver’s licenses and identification cards for more than 25 years using both photographic and digital systems. Polaroid currently produces digital driver’s licenses in states including California, Texas, Georgia and West Virginia. Internationally, Polaroid produces identification documents for governments in more than 60 countries including Brazil, the United Kingdom, Bulgaria, the Philippines, Mexico, Botswana, and Saudi Arabia.
Polaroid Corporation, with annual sales of approximately $1.8 billion, is the worldwide leader in instant imaging. Polaroid supplies instant photographic cameras and films; digital imaging hardware, software and media; secure identification systems; sunglasses and polarizers to markets worldwide. For more information about Polaroid, visit [http://www.polaroid.com].
Zebra Technologies Corporation manufactures and distributes Zebra- and Eltron-brand on-demand bar code label printers, secure ID printing systems and plastic card printers used in automatic identification and plastic card personalization applications worldwide. The company also offers software and related supplies, including more than 300 label and ribbon combinations. Zebra’s customers include more than 70 percent of the FORTUNE 500. The company’s stock is traded on the Nasdaq Stock Market under the symbol ZBRA. Information about Zebra Technologies Corporation can be found at [http://www.zebra.com]. The Eltron card printer site is located at [http://www.eltroncards.com].
Mambo.com, the leading online invitations and group payment service, unveiled the Mambo.com Payment Service, a ground-breaking online commerce capability that lets users sell tickets, pay expenses or collect money for all types of activities and events.
Intersecting community and commerce, the Mambo.com Payment Service transforms the way people conduct monetary transactions with each other over the Internet. This new service is a natural extension of commerce into the online invitation space and bridges online convenience with real-world rewards.
“The Mambo.com Payment Service offers a new form of commerce for our users around group activities and events. By offering these capabilities, Mambo.com is taking a leadership role in the category of online invitation and group payment services,” said Madeline Schroeder, CEO of Mambo.com. “Within minutes, our customers facilitate credit card transactions over the Web, so they can collect the money they need to coordinate every kind of gathering. Together with our unique offering of more than 200 invitation designs and our user friendly site implementation we are creating the best user experience for both guests and hosts alike.”
Mambo.com recognized early that all types of forums exist in which people need to exchange money with each other, but no service today offers an easy-to-use solution for facilitating economic interactions surrounding planning and coordinating activities and events. For the first time in the online event planning space, Mambo.com makes it convenient for hosts and guests to plan weekend ski getaways, collect membership dues for alumni organizations, share expenses for group gifts and purchase tickets for fundraising events. With the Mambo.com Payment Service, hosts no longer will struggle to collect money from their harried friends and co-workers, and guests will be able to easily pay for activities without having to carry their checkbook.
Getting Started with the Mambo.com Payment Service
Anyone planning any type of activity or event can choose an online invitation design that reflects the exact personality and tone of their gathering from Mambo.com’s selection of over 200 designs. In just one click, hosts can create a personalized online invitation, a ‘Mambo,’ and can choose to add specific features, including payment capabilities and maps and directions. After sending the Mambo to their guests, hosts can keep track of RSVPs with the Mambo Messenger, coordinate logistics with the message board and collect payments through the Mambo.com Payment Service.
Guests receive a truly personalized and compelling invitation that allows them to respond with one click and provides them with all the information they need to attend the activity or event. In addition, with the new Mambo.com Payment Service, they can pay whatever fees or expenses are associated with a gathering, like chipping in for a friend’s birthday present before a surprise party.
By offering a way to safely and easily exchange money between a group of people, Mambo.com presents the best, most complete online offering for users to coordinate all facets of their real-world activities and events. With the Mambo.com Payment Service, the company brings together cutting-edge, user-friendly features with integrated person-to-person commerce capabilities to offer a full-service solution that helps people get together for real-world activities and events while transforming the way they interact with each other online.
Mambo.com is the leading online invitation and group payment service that offers the broadest range of activities and events. Founded in 1999, Mambo.com brings people together for everyday activities, parties and events, utilizing the Web to build communities and commerce opportunities around these social gatherings. With venture capital funding from Hummer Winblad Venture Partners and angel investors, Mambo.com is well-capitalized, strongly supported by its partners and positioned for long-term growth and success. Mambo.com is a privately held company located in Menlo Park, California. For more information about Mambo.com or to use its services to plan and promote a social gathering, visit the company on the Web at [http://www.mambo.com].
Gemplus and Sonera SmartTrust announced this morning they will enter the market with a ‘GSM SIM’ card, featuring digital signature and Public Key encryption. This is enabled by Sonera SmartTrust technology embedded in the Gemplus SIM card. Mobile operators using this technology with advanced SIM cards will be able to offer their customers a whole new set of secure wireless e-commerce solutions. Analysts predict explosive growth for the mobile device market in the next few years, with most predicting one billion mobile phones in use within the next three to four years.