CARD MANUFACTURING

The number of cards manufactured was essentially flat last year. The latest ICMA survey reveals 19.4 billion cards were manufactured globally, up 60 basis points from 2007. The dollar market also increased by 4.3% to $9.7 billion in 2008. North America held its position as the largest producer of cards, with more than 8.8 billion cards manufactured in 2008. The Asia Pacific region continues to gain global share with 4.9 billion units manufactured. Europe remained in the third position with 4.1 billion units manufactured, followed by Latin America with one billion units manufactured and the Middle East/Africa (MEA) with half a billion units manufactured.

Card Manufacturing Hits a Sluggish 2008

The number of cards manufactured last year was essentially flat last year. The latest ICMA survey reveals 19.4 billion cards were manufactured globally, up 60 basis points from 2007. The dollar market also increased by 4.3% to $9.7 billion in 2008. North America held its position as the largest producer of cards, with more than 8.8 billion cards manufactured in 2008. The Asia Pacific region continues to gain global share with 4.9 billion units manufactured. Europe remained in the third position with 4.1 billion units manufactured, followed by Latin America with one billion units manufactured and the Middle East/Africa (MEA) with half a billion units manufactured.

U.S. Bank and Firethorn Unveil an M-Wallet

U.S. Bank has collaborated with Firethorn Holdings and launched “Mobile Wallet” free downloadable mobile banking application. The Mobile Wallet allows U.S. Bank customers to check balances, review transaction history, transfer funds between accounts, check rewards balances and view special offers from U.S. Bank. The downloadable application is optimized and certified for a variety of the most popular mobile devices, and U.S. Bank and Firethorn are adding new supported devices each week.

OpenTable to Implement Braintree Pay

OpenTable real-time online restaurant reservations will be implementing
Braintree Payment Solutions payment processing and credit card data
storage solutions to ensure PCI DSS Compliance of its “Electronic
Reservation Book” software. For restaurants that take credit card
numbers to secure reservations, PCI DSS requires the information be
stored in a secure environment, just as the card information would if
used to conduct a payment transaction. The Braintree solution stores the
credit card data in unique tokens, useless to unauthorized users, and
will protect the 11,000 OpenTable partner restaurants with the increased
security of never actually processing or storing credit card data in
their environment.

ACADEMY WORKSHOP

The International Card Manufacturers Association (ICMA) has announced it
will now be hosting its Academy Workshop Series in its new MEA workshop
in Dubai, UAE to provide members an opportunity to learn of new industry
trends and techniques to compete in the current economic environment.
Addressing issues affecting professionals throughout the card
manufacturing industry, topics reflecting industry trends, innovations
in security, material alternatives, card testing options, NFC,
personalization and print technology, the MEA workshop in Dubai is to be
held September 30-October 1 of 2009 and will target such card
manufacturing professionals as personalizers, issuers and card
manufacturers. NJ-based ICMA non-profit association of card
manufacturers, personalizers, issuers and related industry participants
has more than 240 members globally.

ICMA Schedules MEA Workshops for the Fall

NJ-based International Card Manufacturers Association is set to hold its “Academy Workshop Series”
in the U.S. and Europe this fall. The Workshops will discuss the latest issues affecting professionals
throughout the card manufacturing industry, as well as offer topics that reflect
industry trends in each market. Topics will cover a variety of areas pertinent to each
region including innovations in security, material alternatives, card testing
options, NFC, personalization and print technology. The Workshops are suitable for card manufacturing professionals from
around the world including personalizers, issuers, card manufacturers and other
industry stakeholders. A variety of speakers from JDSU, Oberthur, DataCard, SMARTRAC,
Waytek, Mirel, HID Global, CFC International and Bayer MaterialScience
will also be featured at the Workshops who will share their insight on new industry
processes and applications and offer their perspectives on the future of the
industry. The Workshops are only open to members of the association.

ICMA Green Summit II Slated for Sept

The International Card Manufacturers Association will hold its “Green
Summit II” September 16, 2009 in Schaumburg, Illinois.
Following the success of last year’s Green Summit, the association
formed a Green Task Force to continue the discussion on environmental
issues affecting the card manufacturing industry. The Task Force is comprised of card manufacturing
professionals from around the world who aim to develop an
industry-specific system of eco-labeling by the end of 2009. Several
Task Force meetings have already been held in Europe and the U.S.
The Green Summit II will provide attendees with techniques needed to
reduce their carbon footprint and ultimately reduce operational costs.
Topics will include the carbon footprint of cards, authentic
sustainability, recycling solutions, energy efficiency and secondary
packaging. Attendees will also have the opportunity to hear from a card
manufacturers panel featuring speakers from Travel Tags, Oberthur,
Plantaplast, PSA and Arthur Blank and Company (ABN).

Chenault Ranked Among Top Black Executives

American Express CEO Kenneth Chenault has been named a ” BLACK
ENTERPRISE 100 Most Powerful Executives in Corporate America”.
The final tally includes nine CEOs, 11 division chief
executives, and a host of top executives that significantly contribute
to their company’s revenues. Each executive holds a senior management
position at one of the top 1,000 publicly traded companies or at an
international corporation grossing revenues of $1 billion or more.
Nineteen companies have multiple executives on the list.
AmericanExpress and General Electric lead the way with four companies that
boast two executives on the list, Citigroup has two. The selection
criteria and comprehensive profiles of the 100 Most
Powerful Executives in Corporate America is available in the February
2009 issue of BLACK ENTERPRISE

CARD MANUFACTURING

For the tenth consecutive year, the North American Region leads the world in the total number of cards manufactured with 9.1 billion units. Worldwide the unit market reached 19.2 billion cards last year, a 12% increase over 2006. The “Annual Card Manufacturing Global Market Survey” by the International Card Manufacturers Association also found that Asia Pacific manufactured 4.5 billion cards. Europe remained in the #3 position with just over 4 billion cards manufactured. Latin America reached the 1 billion mark in 2007 and Middle East/Africa manufactured 489 million cards last year. The ICMA noted that the value of the dollar affected the value of the overall global card market in 2007.

U.S. Bank Launches Mobile Banking Nationwide

U.S. Bank has launched its mobile bank account access solution for its
internet banking customers. Targeting the 220 million Americans who
currently subscribe to wireless services, the m-banking solution allows
users to check balances, obtain transaction history and transfer money
using any major mobile phone carrier that provides mobile internet
access. The Bank will eventually enhance the solution to allow customers
to pay bills through its Internet Bill Pay and provide text
message-based alerts/services. U.S. Bancorp has $247 billion in assets,
operates 2,542 banking offices and operates 4,895 ATMs throughout the
Unites States.