INSIDE MICROPASS

INSIDE Contactless has shipped over 200 million MicroPass intelligent payment platform product with production volume doubling in the 18 months since reaching 100 million units in November 2008. MicroPass is designed to power open standard contactless and dual-interface bank card payments along with other value-added applications in all global regions. Based upon a RISC architecture and optimized to the demanding requirements of contactless transactions, each of the MicroPass family of products is designed to meet the demands of issuer organizations in the bank card and mobile payments, transit, ID and access control markets. Consumers enjoy added convenience, speed and ease of use afforded by contactless payments, while issuers and merchants enjoy faster transaction times, increased spending per transaction, lower operational costs and penetration into the cash payment market.

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MoBeam Launches Loyalty Data Storage Device

CA-based MoBeam has launched its first
product,the “nümi key”, designed to loyalty/frequent shopper cards on one digital device.
The nümi key’s patented technology converts any bar
code to light that imitates a bar code when beamed into any existing
laser bar code scanner. The nümi key has very successful read rates with
bar code scanners. In contrast, smartphones that generate an image of a
bar code often have less than 50% successful read rates at bar code
scanners. The average US household has more than 14 loyalty/frequent shopper cards
and it is growing.

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2010 WORLD CUP POS

The UK POS Group is launching a “2010 World Cup POS” kit to help retailers maximise their World Cup promotions this summer. Offered at a special rate of GBP225 as a further incentive to encourage retailers to maximise sales during this event period, the pack includes A1 Pavement Signs; Two A1 Snap Frames; 10 A4 Snap Frames; 100 Shelf Talkers; 100 Wobbler Arms; 100 Suspended Ceiling Hangers; and 100 Extending Wire for ceiling posters. The promotion kit also includes some of UK POS’ leading products to maximize the use of space both inside and front of store. The kit provides retailers with the essential tools to fulfil all their PoS requirements and help guide customers through the store.

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U.S. Bank Intros Overdraft Pricing and Fee Revisions

U.S. Bank has introduced a new overdraft policy built on the its commitment to
provide customers a range of choices in how they manage their accounts.
The new policy includes a reduced fee of $10 for transactions that are
$20 or less and drawn on an account that has a negative balance. The $10
fee is far lower than what is currently offered by any other major bank.
The change takes effect in August. In September 2009, U.S. Bank
announced measures to curb the impact of overdraft fees, including
capping the number of overdraft fees to three in one day, waiving fees
if the account is overdrawn less than $10 and expanding same-day
availability for most deposited items. This summer, customers will have the power to “opt-in or out” whether they want
their bank to decline transactions made with their debit cards or at the
ATM if their account is overdrawn or would create a negative balance
Now, in addition to the changes already in effect, U.S. Bank customers
who make a transaction on an account that is overdrawn (including
checks, automatic withdrawals, ATM and check card transactions), will
see a reduced fee of $10 for transactions $20 or less, $33 for anything
over $20. The $10 price point is lower than any other major bank in
the industry.

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ATM MARKET

In 2009, for the first time in more than a decade, absolute annual growth in the CEE ATM market fell year-on-year. Retail Banking Research (RBR) has just published the latest edition of its annual survey, “ATMs and Cash Dispensers Central and Eastern Europe 2010”. By the end of 2009, there were 169,003 ATMs installed in the 15 countries covered by the study. This represents an increase of 16,098, substantially less than the record increase of 33,147 in 2008. Despite the slowdown, the CEE market still grew by a healthy 11%, compared to just 2% in western Europe. Although the growth of Russia’s ATM base fell from 19,375 in 2008 to 11,405 in 2009, this represented 71% of total growth in the region. Several privately owned Russian banks experienced liquidity problems in 2009 following the financial crisis, so growth in the ATM market was driven by state-owned banks. The number of ATMs in Poland increased by 1,866, or 14%, in 2009. IAD activity continued to drive growth, with Euronet and Cash4You expanding their networks by a combined 740 machines. Of the banks, BPS was particularly active in expanding its network during the year, while new entrants to the market also boosted growth. A recent decrease in ATM interchange fees in Poland may slow growth going forward, however.
Only three other markets in the region – Romania, Kazakhstan and the Ukraine – grew by more than 500 ATMs in 2009, and these increases were substantially down on the year before. The Ukraine has suffered the most – its annual growth fell from 5,574 in 2008 to just 520 in 2009. Around 40 Ukrainian deployers saw their number of ATMs fall in 2009 – some due to bankruptcies, and some to the removal of underused terminals. For 27% of ATMs cash is replenished by a third party, up by seven percentage points in 2009. Growth in the popularity of outsourcing is mainly attributed to changing preferences in Poland and Russia, where deployers are now more likely to use independent CIT providers for ATM replenishment services.
First line maintenance, comprising mainly simple repairs and basic maintenance, is outsourced for 40% of the CEE installed base. When it is not kept in house, the region’s deployers tend to call on their CIT partners to undertake such services. Second line maintenance, which encompasses more complex repairs, including the replacement of parts, is outsourced for 90% of ATMs. In 2009, a number of deployers took second line maintenance in-house in an attempt to reduce costs.

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RDC Stepping Up Risk Management to Reduce $1.4M In Fraud

A new report focuses on the fraud and operational risks associated with
remote deposit capture (RDC) and how RDC vendors and financial
institutions can best manage these risks. The report from Aite Group
reviews the overall RDC fraud risk environment, examines the fraud risk
inherent in customer acquisition, and discusses the importance of
customer behavior monitoring for fraud detection.
RDC deployment in the United States continues to maintain momentum. U.S.
banks were quick to adopt this technology as it not only enabled them to
provide greater convenience and cost savings to their customers, but
helped bring the financial industry a step closer to electronic check
clearing. Aite Group estimates that between 300,000 and 350,000 accounts
are enabled with RDC capability today, and a conservative estimate shows
that banks are losing approximately US$1.4 million annually due to fraud
in the RDC channel. While this is a small loss relative to other fraud
losses facing financial institutions, increasing penetration and
deployment yields a growth curve in RDC-enabled accounts and fraud
losses. If the volume of RDC-enabled accounts increases at a rate of 25%
to 50% per year, potential losses could become significant in a mere
four to five years.

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JCB & DBS

JCB International and DBS Bank have signed an
agreement for merchant acquiring services of JCB cards in Hong Kong and
Macau, and that DBS has started to facilitate JCB card acceptance in its
merchant network. The partnership with DBS further expands the JCBI merchant network in
Hong Kong and Macau, allowing JCB cardmembers to enjoy a wider card
acceptance in these two important markets. Through the agreement, DBS
also benefits from giving its merchants access to card transactions
generated by JCB’s over 60 million cardmember base, mainly in Asia.
DBS is a well-capitalised bank with “AA-” and “Aa1” credit ratings that are among
the highest in the Asia-Pacific region. As a bank that specialises in
Asia, DBS leverages its deep understanding of the region, local culture
and insights to serve and build lasting relationships with its clients.
DBS provides the full range of services in corporate, SME, consumer and
wholesale banking activities across Asia and the Middle East.
JCB is a major global payment brand and leading credit card issuer and
acquirer in Japan. JCB launched its card business in Japan in 1961 and
began expanding overseas in 1981. Its acceptance network includes 13.26
million merchants and over a million cash advance locations in 190
countries and territories.

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Heartland Payment Plans to Hire 1,198 Sales Professionals Before 2011

Heartland Payment Systems payments processor plans to increase its sales force by hiring 1,198 sales professionals nationwide in the next 18 months. Seeking to increase its sales engine to effectively penetrate key vertical markets, drive organic growth and maximize productivity among its sales force, Heartland has developed an Industry Specialization Model unique to the payments industry, With this, Heartland focuses sales organization on specific industries and geographic areas. Heartland plans to hire 409 sales professionals focused on the restaurant industry, 669 focused on healthcare and 120 on lodging. Heartland delivers credit/debit/prepaid card processing, gift marketing and loyalty programs, payroll, check management and related business solutions to more than 250,000 business locations nationwide.

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MOBIBUCKS & EMIRATES NET

Mobile payment solution provider Mobibucks, a leading global provider of mobile payment solutions, announced Emirates Net Systems LLC in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, as its latest certified partner. Emirates Net, the leading IT solutions and integration company in the UAE, will support Mobibucks growth in the UAE and North Africa. Mobibucks is a unique mobile payment solution for making purchases using a mobile phone number. Its virtual, secure and credentialed platform allows banks to give customers convenient and affordable access to their money from any mobile phone. It lets consumers use their phone to make secure payments at locations such as cafes, gas stations, grocery stores, movie theaters and convenience stores. It allows merchants to capture, inform and motivate consumer spending. The strategic partnership with the UAE’s leading system’s integrator builds on Mobibucks’ fast-growing payments business in MENA over the past 12 months. Mobibucks offers unique payment and incentive products for making purchases using a mobile phone number.

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UMB Acquires CardPartner Card Service from Serverside

UMB Bank, n.a., the lead bank of UMB Financial Corporation has acquired
CardPartner from Serverside Group. The agreement was
signed in the first quarter 2010 and terms of the deal are not disclosed.
CardPartner specializes in helping U.S.-based membership organizations
and charities create custom Visa credit card programs.
The acquisition is a natural evolution of the relationship between UMB
and CardPartner. In 2008, the two companies partnered to create a free,
customized affinity Visa credit card program for organizations and
not-for-profits of all sizes. UMB has been the issuer and financial
custodian of the credit cards, which assist not-for-profit organizations
in raising funds via use of the cards. Serverside has
built a market-leading position by running more than 1,000 card programs
through its network of approximately 200 card issuers in 23 countries.
Its clients include: RBS Group, Banco Sabadell, ING, Permanent TSB, ANZ,
BMW, KBC, Fortis, Eurobank, First National Bank Omaha and Heritage
Building Society.

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MONEYGRAM & VISA

MoneyGram International payment services and Visa have launched the MoneyGram cash-to-Visa card program. Allowing consumers to transfer money from MoneyGram locations in the United States directly to the Visa accounts of recipients outside of the United States, the new program will initially facilitate transfers to Visa-branded cards issued by Guatemala-based Banco Industrial. The MoneyGram cash-to-card service will be available at most U.S. MoneyGram locations, including the 20 top agents for remittances to Guatemala. The cash-to-card money transfers are processed through Visa’s secure network and funds are transferred directly to eligible Visa debit and credit accounts via Banco Industrial. Once funds are sent to the card, recipients can access the money 24-hours-a-day, anywhere Visa is accepted.

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MoneyGram and Visa Introduce Cash-to-Visa Card Program

MoneyGram International payment services and Visa have launched the MoneyGram cash-to-Visa card program. Allowing consumers to transfer money from MoneyGram locations in the United States directly to the Visa accounts of recipients outside of the United States, the new program will initially facilitate transfers to Visa-branded cards issued by Guatemala-based Banco Industrial. The MoneyGram cash-to-card service will be available at most U.S. MoneyGram locations, including the 20 top agents for remittances to Guatemala. The cash-to-card money transfers are processed through Visa’s secure network and funds are transferred directly to eligible Visa debit and credit accounts via Banco Industrial. Once funds are sent to the card, recipients can access the money 24-hours-a-day, anywhere Visa is accepted.

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