LONE STAR & HSBC

Private equity firm Lone Star Funds confirmed that HSBC has terminated
the agreement to acquire Lone Star Funds’ 51.02% interest in Korea
Exchange Bank. Lone Star Funds is a global private equity firm. Since 1995, the principals of Lone Star Funds have organized private equity funds totaling more than $23 billion to invest globally in corporate secured and unsecured debt instruments, real estate related assets and select corporate opportunities.

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VIDEOSPHERE HOSTED BI

IP video and business analysis provider March Networks has launched the
“VideoSphere Hosted Business Intelligence (BI) Services” for retail
organizations to benefit from advanced loss prevention and operations
management tools while eliminating large, upfront capital investments
and IT infrastructure costs. The subscription-based hosted solution
provides retailers with POS exception reporting and operations analysis
to reduce shrinkage and improve store performance. Customers can access
and customize their reports at any time using a secure, web-based
dashboard, or receive reports regularly via email. Applications include
a standard set of up to 40 policies designed to identify unusual
transactions, detailed store performance reports, top product analysis,
and transaction management capabilities. The solution has been designed
to meet Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI-DSS) to
protect the privacy and security of credit card data.

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Cap One Expands its Canada No Hassle Cards

Capital One Canada has launched two new “No Hassle Rewards” credit card
products. The “No Hassle Miles Plus Platinum MasterCard” and “No Hassle
Cash Back Plus Platinum MasterCard” offer no hidden redemption fees and
no travel restrictions, plus there is no limit to how many rewards
customers can accumulate and rewards never expire. The new “No Hassle
Miles Plus Platinum MasterCard” offers two reward miles for every dollar
spent on purchases. The new “No Hassle Cash Back Plus Platinum
MasterCard” offers up to 2% cash back on purchases. Rewards can be
redeemed in the form of a cheque or statement credit any time once the
rewards balance reaches $15. These two new products complement the
existing “No Hassle Rewards” cards from Capital One, which include the
Miles Platinum MasterCard, that has the same features as above, but
offers one reward mile for ever dollar spent on purchases and no annual
fee. Likewise for the “Cash Back Platinum MasterCard,” which offers up
to 1% cash back on purchases and no annual fee.

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CHASE PAYMENTECH & NBS

Chase Paymentech Solutions and e-payment solution provider NBS Payment
Solutions have released two new wireless chip-and-PIN enabled
payment devices for restaurants and mobile businesses. The payment terminals
are certified by Chase Paymentech to support the latest industry standards
including Interac, Visa and MasterCard, as well as new requirements for
chip-and PIN card acceptance in Canada. Chase Paymentech Solutions is a
global payments firm and the world’s largest merchant acquirer – transacting
all types of payments in 140 currencies. In 2007, the company processed
approximately 19.7 billion payment transactions, with more than $719 billion
in annual bank card and debit volume. NBS Payment Solutions provides
secure, high speed, electronic financial payment solutions to banks and
processors serving the transaction processing needs of North American
retailers.

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Ceridian Hires a New SVP/General Counsel

HR outsourcing provider Ceridian has named Albert J. Bart, previously
with Sherrard & Roe, as senior vice president and associate general
counsel. He will be responsible for
representing Ceridian in corporate, financing and other commercial
transactions.Bart was formerly a partner at the Nashville law firm
Sherrard & Roe, PLC, where he practiced in its corporate, securities,
and M&A groups. Previously, Bart was a partner in the Nashville firm of
Stokes, Bartholomew, Evan, and Petree, P.A. (now Adams and Reese LLP).
Bart holds a bachelor’s degree from Vanderbilt University and a
doctorate of jurisprudence, cum laude, from the University of Tennessee
College of Law. He was recognized by his peers in Nashville Business
Journal’s “Best of the Bar” for both 2007 and 2008 and has been named a
“Rising Star” by Mid-South Super Lawyers.

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Lifelock Names a New Chief Financial Exec

Identity protection service LifeLock has named John Feehan, previously
with Virgin Mobile, as CFO. As CFO with Virgin Mobile, Feehan was
instrumental in helping to set the
business and financial course that led the organization to its current
position in the market, with more than $1 billion in growth in less than
three years. Prior to his position with Virgin Mobile, Feehan served in
similar capacities with SAGE BioPharma, Faro Pharmaceuticals and
Stadtlander Drug Distribution Co. He began his career in Philadelphia at
Price Waterhouse after receiving his bachelor’s degree in accounting
from St. Joseph’s University.

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TOTAL UNIVERSAL VISA

Fuel retailer Total in partnership with Sofinco, a subsidiary of the Crédit
Agricole bank is launching a “Universal Visa” that offers users instant rebates of 3 to 9% on purchases at Total service
stations, up to a ceiling of EUR1,200 a year at all
Total branded service stations in France. The international Visa card can be used to withdraw cash and as a
deferred debit card, and holders will not have to change banks. In
addition to the standard Visa insurance coverage, they will also be
entitled to as well as free roadside
assistance for two weeks after any purchase exceeding EUR40. At the
express request of the holder, a credit option can be activated. The
annual fee for the card is EUR12.50 the first year (no fee for the first
six months) and EUR25 subsequently.

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Visa Projects Halloween Spending to Rise 18%

A recent survey commissioned by Visa reveal that 75% of Americans plan
to celebrate Halloween and that on average, plan to spend $ 47 on candy
and decorations. Consumers under the age of 45 will spend $17 more
than those 45 and older with
Urbanites intend on spending $51, compared to $43 by suburbanites and
$39 for rural dwellers.
Parents with children 18 or under living at home are planning on
spending an average of $57 on Halloween candy and decorations compared to
$40 for anyone without children living at home. To help consumers
budget for holidays or other financial events, Visa
offers parents, teachers and consumers of all ages free access to a
financial education program called Practical Money Skills for Life, an
award-winning, teacher-tested and
teacher-approved financial education program that is available in English,
Spanish and Chinese. The program contains three comprehensive sections,
complete with money management resources and lesson plans tailored for use
at home, in the classroom or at work.

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JULY DEBT

Credit card debt flattened in July, dipping slightly to A$44.4 billion, after hitting a record A$44.5 billion in the prior month. However, credit card volume rebounded strongly in July hitting A$19.0 billion, a 4% sequential gain. Year-on-year credit card debt growth has slowed to 8%, compared to 10% in June. Card volume is up 9% year-on-year. However, credit card volume has been slowing over the past year due to merchant surcharges imposed on consumer card transactions. Three months ago credit card volume was up 16% year-on-year. Credit card limits reached a new high at A$120.7 billion, marking the 23rd consecutive month of A$100+ billion. According to the Reserve Bank of Australia there are currently 14.2 million credit card and charge card accounts in Australia, compared to 13.7 million one-year ago.

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Expedited Payments Will Drive Bank Fees

A new research report projects that financial institutions must
incorporate expedited payments now or risk losing $5 billion in fees to
third party billers. Last year 38% of U.S. consumers went online and 32% used the phone to make rush payments, compared to 17% for in-person payments and 8% for overnight delivered payments. Javelin Strategy & Research found that nearly 32 million consumers are active users of
online banking bill payment in the U.S., and the volume of expedited
bill payments will reach as high as 400 million transactions by 2013.
The report also highlights the implications for mobile expedited
payments, citing that currently 45% of existing mobile bankers use
expedited payments at least once a month and certain age groups are
poised to drive mobile channel growth. Javelin notes that nearly one-third of all consumers have engaged in expedited payments
activity within the past year, a substantial portion of the consumer
population and a solid base from which to build transaction volume for service providers.

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Elan Acquires Columbia River Bank Portfolio

Elan Financial Services has acquired the credit card portfolio of OR-based Columbia River Bank with balances
totaling $7.0 million. Under the terms of its agreement with Elan, Columbia River Bank will
continue to sell and support credit card products and services and the
credit cards will continue to be issued under Columbia River Bank’s name to expand its
overall credit card customer base by offering a more competitive product
line to both existing and new markets. The enhanced product menu will
include both a cash-back rewards program and cards specifically designed
for the bank’s business clients. The agreement also includes strong
marketing support from Elan. The sale component of the transaction is expected to result in a 2008
pre-tax gain of approximately $770,000.

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