Everlink Payment Services electronic transactions has signed agreements
with Monitise Americas to provide a first-of its-kind commercially
available mobile banking and payments service to financial institutions
throughout Canada. This will provide access to the Monitise Americas
platform through the Everlink network architecture for switching
services for banks and most of the national credit union systems with a
mobile banking/payments service compatible with multiple wireless
carriers. Among the institutions to implement the solution are 375
credit unions, several subsidiary banks and various ISOs. Monitise
Americas was launched in 2007 and serves over 30 financial institutions
and prepaid card issuers while Everlink Payment Services formed in 2003
to provide the delivery of electronic transaction switching services in
the Canadian Financial Services marketplace and eventually plans to
provide bill and person-to-person payment solutions through its new
mobile solution.

Web Merchants to Increase E-Commerce Investments

Art Technology Group has released the results of a survey focusing on e-commerce that indicates that 96% of respondents plan to either maintain or increase their level of investment in e-commerce strategies or tools to strengthen the online experience for customers. The survey collected data from representatives of more than 50 global brands in industries ranging from retail, media and entertainment, financial services and insurance, telecommunications, consumer product manufacturing ,healthcare, and technology consulting. While all respondents reported annual Web sales of at least $10 million, 58% reported annual Web sales of $100 million or more. Within the majority, 26% reported annual Web sales of $1 billion or more. Despite the reported decline in consumer spending, a majority of survey respondents believed that the slowing U.S. economy would either not significantly impact their e-commerce business overall, or it might even have a positive impact resulting in e-commerce growth.

Emerald Prepaid MasterCard Goes Mobile

H&R Block Emerald Prepaid MasterCard cardholders will have access to mobile phone text messaging to check their balances and receive account reload mobile alerts. This tax season, H&R Block issued 2.6 million cards. H&R Block customers continued to use the cards for purposes beyond receiving their tax refund, loading payroll direct deposit and other funds on the card. In addition to text message balance inquiry, the Emerald Card offers clients payroll direct deposit; connection to line of credit;access to a savings account; link to money transfer services and nationwide ATM access and point-of-sale purchasing wherever MasterCard debit cards are accepted. H&R Block will start piloting the text messaging capabilities made available by Metavante Mobile Financial Services, powered by Monitise Americas technology.


Montise and Metavante have partnered with Carphone to launch a “mobile
money” scheme with the “Carphone Warehouse Prepay Card.” Managed from
the user’s mobile phone, the prepaid card, which will be generated and
provided by Metavante Technologies, can be used for transactions with
millions of outlets worldwide, while Monitise will offer access to
mobile banking and the payments network. Over a secure application
stored on the mobile handset, this mobile management allows customers to
“top-up” the card directly from their bank account and the ability to
spend up to the value of credit at the time, protecting users from
overspending. Metavante Technologies provides banking and payments
technologies to over 8,000 financial firms and businesses around the
world while Monitise is a specialist in mobile banking, payments and
commerce technology.


For EUR2 million, including shares and restructuring costs, Keynote
Systems has acquired the Zandan software company, bringing with it
big-name customers such as Telefonica and Bouygues Telecom.
Zandan supplies customer simulation solutions across the mobile service
life cycle, including monitoring, alerting, troubleshooting and SLA
management, while Keynote MAP allows wireless operators to measure
mobile content from 22 geographic locations worldwide through more than
1,000 wireless device profiles. Keynote implements 2,400 measurement
computers and devices in over 240 locations serving 160,000 consumers
through its 2,700 corporate clients.


Montise has launched the “MoniGive” solution to facilitate the
contribution of charitable donations using mobile banking and payments.
Serving as a ‘virtual collection box’, “MoniGive” will allow respective
organizations to connect to the Montise network for the acceptance of
donations from caring consumers. Moreover, the payment system minimizes
integration for participating charitable organizations to ensure up-front
costs are kept to a minimum.


Vodafone has signed agreements with Yodlee for the re-selling
distribution of the latter’s mobile bank solution through its “Target”
program. The mobile banking solution, “Yodlee Mobile,” provides
customers with access to accounts through a mobile WAP browser
with alert options and is set for deployment before 2009. Among
the key features of Yodlee Mobile is its security, convenience,
alerting for various purposes and versatility with a range of cell
phones. Yodlee provides online banking support to over 100
financial institutions for millions of customers worldwide and has
operations in the United States and Europe.


Montise mobile banking and payment technology has appointed Ron
Drakeas as the VP of Business Development, bringing with him over
20 years’ experience in financial services. In his newly-appointed role,
Ron will oversee the development of the Company’s SEPA strategy
and lead electronic payment provider relationships. Drakeas’ 13-year
career as Managing Director of eFunds International, succeeding
managing director positions with Cincom Systems Ltd and Platinum
Financials respectively, has afforded the new VP well-established relations with
European retail banks and processors. Montise services span UK and
US territories with its “MONILINK” and Monitise networks in
partnership with VocaLink and Metavante Corporation, providing
secure mobile banking & payment services.


Renewing their partnership agreements, Citi and Vodafone have teamed
to launch the “Citi Vodafone One VISA”. With this new card, the
partnership organizations are offering a free-of-charge option to
accumulate 1 “Vodafone One” point for each EUR20 spent, 100
points awarded immediately upon activation, insurance coverages
including “Theft and Loss” and “Security Purchases”, and the “Citi
Alerting Service,” affording the user 24-hour account updates. Citi
provides financial products and services through its nearly 200 million
customer accounts across more than 100 countries.


Citi and Vodafone have renewed their the partnership and have launched the “Vodafone One VISA” credit card exclusively for subscribers of the “Vodafone One” reward program. The free co-branded card combines the advantages offered by all Citi credit cards together with the possibility to accumulate one “Vodafone One” point for each 20
euros spent. Furthermore, upon activation of the card, the cardholder
receives 100 points as a welcome bonus. The card also offers several free insurance coverages: “Theft and Loss,” which protects the holder in case of fraudulent use of the card, including on-line shopping 24 hours before the complaint; “Security Purchases” covers in case of damage or theft of the goods purchased with “Citi Vodafone One VISA,” up to 90 days after the date of purchase or delivery.


Monitise Americas has appointed Jeff McLaughlin as the Executive VP
of Mobile Strategy to drive accelerated mobile banking use in the US,
Canada and Mexico. McLaughlin brings with him over 13 years’ experience
in the wireless industry, having worked with such organizations as
McCaw Cellular/AT&T Wireless, BCGI, GetConnected and Refresh
Mobile, and is the author of “Consumer’s Guide to Cell Phones & Wireless
Service”. Since its inception in the Fall of 2007, Monitise Americas has
agreements with 20 financial institutions to provide customers the
of “Mobile Financial Services”, which includes account review, funds
and text message alerts.

Monitise Americas/NYCE Expands Further

Monitise Americas has signed five additional financial institutions with NYCE Payments Network to provide mobile services to their customers and members. These new agreements bring the total number to 20 financial institutions that have chosen the Monitise Americas solution for their mobile needs. The signing of these agreements comes on the heels of 10 financial institutions that were announced earlier in January. The most recent institutions to offer mobile banking and payment services from Monitise Americas and NYCE include: Commerce Bank of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.; Forest Park National Bank & Trust Co., Forest Park, IL.; Industrial Credit Union, Boston; Patriot State Bank, Fuquay-Varina, N.C.; and Wedbush Bank, Los Angeles.