WireCard & China UnionPay to Offer Merchant Acquiring

Wirecard Bank AG and China UnionPay have forged agreements to offer online merchant acquiring services. This cooperation will enable Wirecard Group to provide its Asian business clients a further substantial added value with regards to the availability of further payment methods and when it comes to opening up new markets. As a next step, the cooperation with UNIONPAY will be extended to include Europe. UNIONPAY processes payments between banks of merchants and the card issuing banks or credit unions of the purchasers who use the “UnionPay” brand credit, debit and prepaid cards.

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Aconite Appoints EMV Initiative Head

Aconite software and consulting services for managing business applications on chips in smart cards, tokens or mobiles has appointed Mike Vaselenak to spearhead product localization and marketing of for EMV solutions in the Canadian market. Mike’s understanding of this market combined with Aconite’s proven EMV expertise offers banks, credit unions and service-providers support and solutions that will make their migration to and ongoing management of EMV quicker, easier and lower risk. Mike’s previous roles have included strategy, planning, requirements definition, architecting, specification and procurement support for e-business transactional systems. His experience in the Canadian payments market also includes roles as Director of Product Management at Everlink Payment Services Inc. (a third-party processor majority owned by FIS that provides POS and ATM acquiring and issuer processing services to many Canadian banks and credit unions); Vice President, Business Development at Pay Linx Corporation (provider of services and infrastructure enabling the replacement of cash and cheque payments with electronic payment cards); and Director, Alliances and Payment Instruments at Wireless Payment Services LLP (a joint venture, now called Enstream, by Bell Mobility, Rogers Wireless and TELUS Mobility, facilitating secure wireless payment transactions).

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Permata Bank Implements FICO Fraud Manager

FICO announced that PermataBank, with 1.9 million retail banking clients across 55 cities, is adopting FICO “Falcon” Fraud Manager to control fraud in its debit and credit card portfolios. The FICO “Falcon” Fraud Manager will help the bank combat the USD 33 million annual industry loss faced by Indonesian banks. It supports PermataBank’s goals to improve fraud prevention, detection, investigation, recovery and remediation. PermataBank will use Falcon’s real-time fraud capabilities to score debit and credit card transactions as they occur. Based on these scores, PermataBank will be able to stop the highest-risk transactions if needed, without slowing down transaction speeds for legitimate transactions. This approach has been demonstrated to be a powerful deterrent to fraudsters, who can literally be stopped at the point of sale.

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SelectCore Launches Retail Reload Network

SelectCore payment and transaction processor for the prepaid industry is deploying its “ReCash” ubiquitous cash reload network for prepaid stored-value cards. The “ReCash” platform offers consumers a secure way to load cash onto their reloadable prepaid Visa or MasterCard. Cardholders can purchase a ReCash Voucher with any dollar value up to $500 from a participating retail outlet. The funds can be transferred instantly to the customer’s card via text message, online, or toll-free phone number. The launch of ReCash is part of the Company’s growth strategy to expand into high-margin financial transaction processing.

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JCB International Appoints New Deputy President

JCB International has appointed Kimihisa Imada to serve as Deputy President at its shareholders’ meeting held effective immediately. With more than 30 years’ experience under his belt at the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi in corporate banking and business with key enterprises in global markets, Kimihisa Imada spent 8 years all together in Los Angeles as General Manager of the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi from 2006 to 2008 and VP, Union Bank of California’s Pacific Rim Corporate Group. His most recent responsibility before joining JCB was General Manager of the bank’s Jakarta Branch from 2008. Mr. Imada has a bachelor’s degree in commerce from Hitotsubashi University and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Chicago.

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Card Delinquency Down With COFs by Nearly 32% Y/Y

Consumers continue improving their financial situations in the economic recovery. The national credit card delinquency rate was down to 0.82% in 4Q/10 by almost 32% since the year ago period, but down only 1.2% since last quarter.

Credit Card Chargeoffs for January, meanwhile, marked the fourth straight month-over-month improvement, down 62 basis points to 8.37%, down 18% since the year ago period to a two-year low. Meanwhile, late stage delinquencies fell to a 27-month low for what is sure to be continued loss improvement in the coming months as the 60+ day delinquency index decreased 14 bps to 3.23% and 30+ day delinquencies dropped 36 bps to 4.18%.

This, according to Fitch’s Prime Credit Card Index, also shows gross yield improved for the second consecutive month to 21.98%, a 15 bps gain and remains 18% higher than the historical average at inception of 18.67%. The incidence of credit card delinquency was highest in Nevada (1.27%), according to TransUnion, which also showed Mississippi had a delinquency rate 1.13 percent and Florida had an average of 1.07%, the second and third highest in the country, respectively. The lowest credit card delinquency rates were found in North Dakota (0.45%), Alaska (0.54%) and South Dakota (0.55% National average credit card borrower debt (defined as the aggregate balance on all bank-issued credit cards for an individual bankcard borrower) remained flat in the fourth quarter, increasing by only one dollar to $4,965 from the previous quarter’s $4,964. On a year-over-year basis, average cardholder debt was down 8.62%

(Cardflash Library, 2011-2-3).

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80% of Consumers Financially Comfortable, COFs/Unemployment Down

Nearly 80% of consumers now have little-to-no debt or a “comfortable” level of debt while the December Chargeoff rate was the lowest of all months in 2010- falling to 8.3%. Only 12% of those surveyed have “more debt than is comfortable” and 8% “have too much debt and have trouble paying bills,” according to M&T Bank research.

This coincides with and strongly reflects the non-seasonally-adjusted unemployment having hit its second to lowest month of the year in December to 9.1% while it sits at 9.8 for January. Research also indicates credit card defaults within the industry declined during 4Q/10 and the M&T Bank consumer loan COF rate dropped 23% throughout 2010.

According to Cardflash, Charge-offs are expected to continue improving- in conjunction with the unemployment rate- after having peaked in 2Q/10 at 10.4% and in January at 10.6%, respectively. This is compared to a COF rate of 3.82% in the two year leading up to the recession and an unemployment rate of 5%. Meanwhile, the U.S. savings rate has risen from about 2% in January 2008 to 5.3% in December 2010. This might be because 50% think the U.S. economy is “still in a recession,” which is down 6 percentage points from the 56% 10 months ago

(Cardflash Library, 2011-01-31).

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NCR Promotes Senior VP From Within

Michael O’Laughlin has been promoted NCR senior vice president of its Financial Services division. O’Laughlin led NCR’s more than $2 billion global financial services business since March 2009 as VP and GM, growing its global ATM market share after having joined the Company in 2001. Prior to being named general manager of Financial Services, he served as the regional vice president for NCR’s business in the Caribbean and Latin America, where he was responsible for driving growth of NCR’s assisted and self-service solutions across the retail, financial, travel, healthcare, hospitality, gaming and public sectors. He formerly served as vice president of NCR Americas Services Sales and Marketing. Michael came to NCR with 18 years’ in technology sales and engineering, previously served Digiquant as VP, sales and sales engineering for the Americas.

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USA Tech Enhances ePort Connect Service

USA Technologies has made available its “USALive 1.6,” updating its current USALive online reporting system. Designed to provide vending operators with real-time business metrics, transaction and sales reports, machine health monitoring, payment reconciliation and the ability to handle settlement of routes for accurate accounting of the business, “USALive 1.6” offers increased flexibility for sorting information. It also offers a reports archive that enables users to save and search previously generated reports; lets users run a report and retrieve it later; and offers additional format compatibilities for file sharing and exporting. This component of USA Technologies’ ePort Connect Service includes card processing, merchant account services, wireless connectivity, DEX data transfer, online sales reporting, settlement services, level 1 PCI-compliant data security, over-the-air updates, and machine health alerts.

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NCR & Cardtronics Bring Bank-Grade ATMs to Off-Premise Locations

NCR Corporation unveiled a new, compact ATM with the power and reliability of a larger machine, making it perfect for supermarkets, office complexes, convenience stores or other non-bank branch locations. NCR worked closely with Cardtronics to help shape the design and functionality of the NCR SelfServ 16 as the ideal off-premise ATM. Cardtronics already has purchased a significant number of NCR SelfServ 16 ATMs for deployment in various locations around the world. At 0.28 square-meters, the NCR SelfServ 16 is the smallest cash dispenser in the NCR SelfServ family. With components – such as security, cash cassettes, display and software – similar to larger NCR SelfServ models, the NCR SelfServ 16 performs at bank-grade levels, maximizing uptime and reliability and handling mid-to-high transaction volumes with low power consumption. It features a 2,200 note cassette, the proven NCR spray dispenser, a 15″ color TFT LCD display, and options for a touch screen and sunlight-readable display. Featuring the latest Intel Core processors, the NCR SelfServ 16 also reduces energy consumption versus older models.

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Fiserv Debit Network Sees Record 2010 Growth

The Fiserv “ACCEL/Exchange” debit payments network saw record-setting growth in 2010 with an increase in total transactions of almost 29 percent from 2009. ACCEL/Exchange established a new annual record for total transactions with more than 1.2 billion transactions processed in 2010. December 2010 also set a new monthly record with more than 122 million transactions – a year-over-year increase of 26%. With this, POS transactions grew nearly 30% in 2010 to more than 1.15 billion, with ATM transactions also increasing 22% over the same period to 82 million. More than 300 financial institutions joined ACCEL/Exchange as new members in 2010, increasing total membership to almost 2,800 member financial institutions.

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ROAM Data Deploys mCard Reader With Big Names

ROAM Data mCommerce solutions has forged contracts with several large merchant services providers (MSPs) for its mobile card reader and software solution. Because of ROAM’s mobile software and its reader design, ROAM’s solution supports the most number of device platforms in the industry, with one hardware SKU that securely runs on iPhones and iPads, Android phones and tablets, Blackberry devices, as well as PCs, Macs, and Netbooks. Meanwhile, its price point allows MSPs to give away readers to support their small business owners and others to offer extremely competitive rates for their merchant base. The contracted MSPs include Intuit GoPayment, Total Merchant Services, Sage Payment Solutions and North American Bankcard.

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