William Blair Begins V/MC Coverage

William Blair & Company initiated research
coverage of Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) ($73.32) and MasterCard Incorporated
(NYSE:MA) ($234.20) with Outperform ratings and Core Growth company
profiles. Visa, based in San Francisco, operates the largest global
payment card network, while MasterCard Incorporated, based in Purchase,
New York, runs the second-largest global payment card network.

Analyst David Long estimated that Visa would earn $2.24 per share in
fiscal 2008, $2.75 per share in fiscal 2009, and $3.40 per share in
fiscal 2010. Long expects MasterCard to achieve earnings per share of
$8.85 in 2008, $11.20 in 2009, and $13.75 in 2010.

“We believe payment card volume is poised for attractive growth as a
result of the continued move toward card-based payments, the development
of new payment solutions and categories, the modernization of payment
infrastructures in developing nations, and the increase in cross-border
travel,” Long said. “In our opinion, Visa and MasterCard are positioned
to capitalize on these positive trends to produce robust growth and
strong financial results.”

“We expect Visa to produce attractive top- and bottom-line growth
relative to other large-cap companies and believe the company will
benefit from positive industry trends and expense rationalization
opportunities as it integrates its global franchise. We forecast revenue
growth of 14% per year and EPS growth of 23% per year over the next five
years,” Long said. “We expect MasterCard to uniquely benefit from
opportunities in Europe (particularly as a result of SEPA), and forecast
revenue growth of 13% per year and EPS growth of 22% per year over the
next five years.”

Long concluded, “We view Visa and MasterCard as compelling investment
opportunities in the financial services sector. They have unique growth
opportunities; are less exposed to the weak U.S. economy, which has been
negatively affected by deteriorating housing market conditions; and have
significant operating leverage.”

William Blair & Company, L.L.C. intends to seek or expects to receive
compensation for investment banking services from Visa Inc. and
MasterCard Incorporated in the next 3 months.

William Blair & Company, L.L.C. is a market maker in the security of
Visa Inc. and MasterCard Incorporated and may have a long or short position.

William Blair & Company, L.L.C. (www.williamblair.com) is a
Chicago-based investment firm offering investment banking, asset
management, equity research, institutional and private brokerage, and
private capital to individual, institutional, and issuing clients. Since
1935, we have been committed to helping clients achieve their financial
objectives. As an independent, employee-owned firm, our philosophy is to
serve our clients’ interests first and foremost.

For important disclosures and information regarding the firm’s rating
system, valuation methods and potential conflicts of interest, please


Low Limit Credit Cards Help Credit Building

A new report has found that nearly 35% of consumers with low limit cards improved their credit scores and more than 60% of consumers with an increase of 40 or more points in their credit score “graduated” to higher limit cards over a two-year period. The two-year study by TransUnion, on behalf of Citizens for Equal Access to Credit, found that of those that improved their credit score, 20%-24% of consumers opened prime credit cards with at least a $1,000 credit limit and 58% of consumers received prime promotional credit offers providing important opportunities to access credit. The study was based upon a sample of 360,000 consumers.


Syntellect’s Voiyager is Recognized

Contact center management solution provider Syntellect was recognized by Speech
Technology magazine for its “Voiyager Dynamic Application Discovery”. The Voiyager solution
focuses on defects in
applications that negatively impact customer service. Its VoiceXML testing solution
provides 100% analysis to uncover bugs in the application before
customers do. Voiyager enables the automation of test-driven development
processes and allows for testing and validation in a fraction of the
time typically needed for VoiceXML applications.


Pilot Travel Centers Expand PaySpot

Prepaid payment processor PaySpot has teamed with TN-based Pilot Travel Centers for an exclusive
agreement to expand Pilot’s in-store prepaid services.
PaySpot will introduce its extensive bill payment service into Pilot
stores. Through the bill payment program, Pilot can quickly and easily
accept cash payment for hundreds of utility, telecom, cable, satellite,
and other service providers. PaySpot went live in 304 Pilot locations mid-July, integrating its
electronic prepaid product delivery system with Pilot’s existing
point-of-sale (POS) system, enabling Pilot to expand its prepaid product
portfolio to include PaySpot’s industry-leading products and services.


Visa and BB&T Sign a Deal Through 2013

BB&T inked a multi-year partnership renewal agreement for the issuance of Visa-branded payment cards to its clients. The agreements concern consumer and small business credit, debit, prepaid, and commercial cards until 2013. N.C.-based BB&T Corporation has assets of $136.5 billion through its nearly 1,500 financial centers in 11 states and Washington, D.C. while Visa Inc’s retail electronic payments network provides processing services and its payment product platform to consumer credit, debit, prepaid and commercial payments through Visa, Visa Electron, Interlink and PLUS brands in more than 170 countries.


Plastic Jungle Announces its Board

Web-based gift card exchange service Plastic Jungle has announced Gary
Briggs, previously with eBay,
Lou Ryan, Charlie Smith ,Will Stewart and CEO Tina Henson as founding
members of its Board of Directors. Ryan, who will serve as Chairman,
is an entrepreneur and business leader with more than
25 years experience with technology companies including Borland
Corporation, Delrina Corporation, Entercept Technologies and Foundstone
Technologies. Ryan was president, CEO and founder of Entercept Security
Technology, acquired by McAfee in 2003. Ryan also played an instrumental
role in negotiating McAfee’s acquisition of Foundstone, where he was an
early investor and board member. Plastic Jungle makes gift cards more
valuable for consumers who want
to buy gift cards at substantial savings, sell them for cash, or trade
pre-owned gift cards for others. Plastic Jungle guarantees all
transactions and offers gift card
replacement protection in case they are lost or damaged, and instant
alerts via text or email. Users may list gift cards for free on Plastic
Jungle – successful transactions are only charged a 10% fee when
their gift card is sold or traded.



SEB Kort and EDB’s subsidiary CEKAB have extended an existing contract
to supply card services for SEB Kort’s
activities in Sweden. CEKAB will continue to be
responsible for processing all card transactions carried out through
payment terminals used by SEB’s customers in Sweden. The contract gives
CEKAB responsibility for operating
transaction authorisation and capture of card transactions carried out
through payment terminals, known as Point of Sale (POS) transactions.
and runs for two years with a total contract value of SEK 20 million.
CEKAB’s core services include both authorisation of card
transactions and transaction processing for merchants and issuers of
cards. SEB Kort operates through the international card
networks of MasterCard, Visa and Diners Club International. At the
close of 2007, SEB Kort had issued 3.2
million cards to its customers in the Nordic countries with merchant
agreements in
229,000 locations in the Nordic countries. SEB
Kort reported transaction volumes of SEK 237 billion in 2007.


OrbitalPay is Certified with MPA3

CA-based PSP online payment technology provider
OrbitalPay is now certified with the MPA3 affiliate program software platform.
The primary markets for OrbitalPay,LLC’s alternative payment system are
online service providers and retailers, such as online adult content
providers and high risk online retailers or in situations where smaller
discrete transactions are desired as well as personal information kept
private. At present, MPA3 has provided significant potential visibility
for the OrbitalPay.com payment option, providing brand awareness for
future diversification into Internet retailing. The integration also
offers the OrbitalPay.com merchants direct access to the thousands of
sites that use these platforms and allows OrbitalPay to
seamlessly work with these affiliate programs.


Wells’ Oman to Retire

Wells Fargo & Company Senior EVP Mark Oman has announced
plans to retire by the end of next year.
Oman, who heads Wells Fargo Home Mortgage, Wells Fargo
Financial, and Card Services and Consumer Lending and a
30-year veteran of the company joined Norwest Financial, the consumer finance subsidiary of
the former Norwest Corporation (now Wells Fargo & Company), in 1979 in
financial reporting, then as manager of treasury and audit services. He
was named Norwest Mortgage’s chief financial officer in 1985, president
and CEO of Mortgage in 1989, a group head in 1997 and a senior EVP in
2005. The first year he led Mortgage it had 1,850 team members, 52
locations in 23 states, originated $4.4 billion in mortgage loans and
serviced $800 million in loans. Last year, Wells Fargo originated $272
billion in mortgage loans and had an owned mortgage servicing portfolio
of $1.53 trillion. Today Wells Fargo serves eight million mortgage
customers nationwide from some 2,400 mortgage and banking stores, and
has almost 26,000 team members.



WhiteGold Solutions has been designated the Australian distributor for
VASCO Data Security International and its “DIGIPASS/VACMAN”
authentication solutions for the enterprise software security market.
With such big name financial institution clients as Commonwealth Bankof
Australia, National Australia Bank, Bendigo Bank and Bank of Queensland,
and enterprise sector clients which include Australian Customs,
Panasonic and Mazda, VASCO Australia has been widely used for business
security applications since 2001, namely its “DIGIPASS” solution.
WhiteGold Australian IT distributor specializes in security solutions
for the SME, education, government, corporate and enterprise markets.


TSYS Signs First Citizens Bank

TSYS announced has inked an agreement with First Citizens Bank to exclusively manage its commercial and consumer credit card processing needs. The multi-year agreement also includes fraud detection services, as well as card and statement production. First Citizens Bank has been a client of TSYS Acquiring for more than 10 years. The bank operates 340 branches in more than 200 cities and towns in North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee and Maryland.



NEBS Canada has partnered with DCR Strategies to make available its
prepaid “TruCa$h MasterCard” debit card as a payroll alternative to cash
through its “PAYweb.ca” web portal. Primarily targeting employees and
laborers without bank accounts, the new card solution provides
reloadable, PIN-protected electronic access to deposits for employees
and is available free of charge to employers. Additional benefits to
employees include increased security, cash access at millions of ATM
locations worldwide, online retail/bill pay access and card-to-card
money sharing while the DCR Strategies marketing company specializes in
loyalty, stored value, payroll and gift card solutions.