The Dollar Camp Launched for Students

“Student Money Expert” Stephen Epstein has launched “The Dollar Camp” to help high school and college student manage credit and build credit scores. Epstein founded “Dollar Camp” after successfully eliminating his own credit care debt after graduating college. The Financial Survival System’s three-step program consists “The DollarCamp Budgeting System”explains why most budgets fail and shows how to create one that works along with foolproof tools for implementing a budget and tracking spending; “The DollarCamp Foundations” which teaches students and parents critical lessons about credit cards and debt while pointing out avoidable money mistakes and “The DollarCamp Credit Building System” teaches students the importance of credit scores, how to build solid credit and how to save a fortune in wasted interest payments.

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Comdata Names a New SVP of Marketing Management

Ceridian’s fuel card specialist Comdata has promoted Kedran Whitten to SVP/Marketing and Product Management. Whitten joined Comdata in 2006. Prior to Comdata, Whitten was director of marketing for NIC, where she developed and executed marketing strategies for complex Internet products. She also held various marketing and sales leadership roles at Alltel Communications, including director of corporate advertising. Comdata’s fourth quarter was up 13.2% over the comparable period of the prior year. Overall growth was driven primarily by strong Comdata card transaction growth in both the over-the-road and business fleet segments, private label processing and in regulatory compliance. For complete details on Ceridian’s performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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FreedomRocks to Offer the Payoneer MasterCard

NY-based Payoneer has begun utilizing reloadable prepaid MasterCards to pay commissions to direct seller FreedomRocks’ international sales reps. FreedomRocks, whose online investment strategy network program has thousands of independent representatives in over 80 countries, implemented Payoneer after it faced challenges in fulfilling international payments. By choosing a “pay me by plastic” option, FreedomRocks’ reps receive speedy payment via the “Payoneer Prepaid MasterCard.” The cards are issued by First Bank of Delaware.

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CITI ULTIMATE CARD

Citibank has rolled-out two “Black Visa” cards for its entrepreneurial and lifestyle-driven customers in Bahrain. The new
“Citibank Ultimate Visa” earns “CitiDollars” while the co-branded “Emirates-Citibank Ultimate Visa” earns “Skywards” benefits. In February Ahli United Bank and and Bahrain National Insurance Company partnered to issue a Visa credit card offering discounts in insurance premiums plus a rewards program. Last year American Express unveiled its enhanced “Blue” credit card and Al Salem Bank launched the first EMV-compliant chip-based smart ATM card in Bahrain. Credit card usage is growing about 18% per year in Bahrain.

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PayPal Gives Developers a New Tool Kit

PayPal is gearing-up to launch its “Developer Central” portal next month. “Developer Central” will offer 25 free application programming interfaces (API) to enable merchants to send and receive money online, refund transactions, manage subscriptions and track transaction histories. In addition, the site will provide a directory to connect merchants with PayPal Certified Developers. The new portal will offer a complete set of free business and technical kits to help developers market their services, identify customer leads, complete integration projects more easily, and share knowledge with community peers. PayPal also introduced new APIs to give merchants more flexibility to manage their customer transactions. PayPal’s new “Recurring Payments” API offers merchants more options for subscription billing. PayPal has more than 60 million active accounts in 190 markets and 17 currencies around the world.

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NEXTENDIS & GLOBALPLATFORM

Smart card specification provider GlobalPlatform welcomes Nextendis as a
“Consultant Member” to offer strategic advice and implementation
support to new smart card deployments in the telecoms, payment and
public transport markets. GlobalPlatform launched its Consultant
Membership category in March 2008 to encourage small consulting
practices to join the organization, and contribute to the development
and promotion of interoperable and scaleable smart card specifications
that reflect market requirements. To qualify for Consultant Membership,
firms must only employ one or two consultants, who cannot have full or
part time employment at a publicly held company, government agency or
educational institute.

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SMART CARDS

China’s leading research, consulting and IT outsourcing service provider CCID Consulting reports that
the sales volume of China’s smart card market reaches 250 million sets
and the sales revenue reaches 1.32 billion Yuan in 2008Q1, a mild decrease
compared to 2007Q1. Although the shipment of mobile communication cards has
experienced some increase compared to 2007Q1, with the ID card market
becoming mature, smart card market in the field of ID card shrinks, which
affect the development of the whole market. Currently, there are only two foreign manufacturers — Gemalto and
Giesecke & Devrient in China’s top ten manufacturers in the smart card
market. With local manufacturers’ growth, these two manufacturers’
market shares will shrink.

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Payroll Check Cashing Solution Unveiled

GiroCheck Financial has started shipping of its payroll check cashing technology designed for retail merchants seeking a financially safe way of cashing their customers’ payroll checks, but have no check cashing experience. The GiroCheck system utilizes proprietary risk management algorithm-based software, along with an advanced state of the art optical scanning technology. The system requires no keyboard or clerical data input. The merchant simply inserts the customer’s endorsed check and I.D. into the automated scanner. At Internet speed the check data and image are transmitted directly to GiroCheck’s mainframe computer, which performs a 22-point risk analysis of the check and makes a cash, or no cash, decision for the merchant in less than 40 seconds. It is estimated that the un-banked adult population in America is now exceeding 21%. This un-banked population requires non-bank locations that are willing to cash their payroll checks. The GiroCheck system virtually reduces the incidence of NSF, and fraudulent check returns to the merchant by as much as by 99.7%.

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GCA to Acquire Cash Systems for $33MM

Las Vegas-based casino cash advance king Global Cash Access has inked a deal to acquire Cash Systems, also based in Las Vegas, for about $33 million. GCA will gain approximately 120 new customers as a result of the acquisition. GCA reported first quarter revenues of $143.5 million, a 3.2% gain over 1Q/07. Operating income was $18.3 million for 1Q/08, compared to $22.4 million in year-ago quarter. Cash Systems reported first quarter revenue of $27.1 million, an 8% increase over the year-ago quarter. The net loss was $4.6 million for 1Q/08, compared to a net loss of $1.4 million in the first quarter of 2007. Cash Systems previously announced that its Board of Directors decided to explore strategic alternatives to maximize shareholder value. During the first quarter, GCA formally exited the “Arriva Card” business. For complete details on Global Cash Access’ and Cash Systems’ latest performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

GCA REVENUE HISTORICAL
1Q/06: $129.8 million
2Q/06: $133.6 million
3Q/06: $142.9 million
4Q/06: $141.9 million
1Q/07: $148.2 million
2Q/07: $151.5 million
3Q/07: $156.6 million
4Q/07: $144.0 million
1Q/08: $143.5 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

[1]: http://www.carddata.com

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Robust ATM Market in Central/Eastern Europe

A new report shows that the installed base of ATMs in Central and Eastern Europe grew more than 30% last year. Over 3.7 billion cash withdrawals were made at 119,638 CEE ATMs in 2007, although average usage fell to 2,581 cash withdrawals per terminal per month as the increase in the number of installations continues to have a diluting effect on transaction volumes. According to Retail Banking Research’s latest annual survey, high numbers of new machines in Russia, the Ukraine and Kazakhstan, in addition to surprisingly rapid growth in Poland and Serbia, made for a bumper year in the region. The new RBR survey shows that intensive card issuing activity, economic upturn and increased foreign investment have combined to drive the region’s deployers, in particular those in Kazakhstan, Russia and the Ukraine, to install large numbers of new ATMs in 2007. The continued expansion of independent ATM deployers (IADs), and the threat of new ones have also brought about a rise in the number of new installations in some countries, most noticeably in Poland and Serbia. Moreover, IAD ATMs were installed in Serbia and the Ukraine for the first time in 2007.

CEE ATMS
2003: 44,029
2004: 56,375
2005: 71,662
2006: 89,501
2007: 119,638
Source: Retail Banking Research

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GEMALTO STUDENT CARDS

Digital security provider Gemalto has delivered one million
electronic student cards that act as an identity credential in Polish
universities. The company provided the cards to OPTeam, a local Gemalto
Value Added Reseller (VAR), who supplied the personalization solution
for universities to issue cards directly to students. The campus card verifies students’
identity and grants them access to
university premises including libraries, dormitories and sport
facilities. It is also used as an e-ticket for public transportation in
major Polish cities, as well as a means to pay for parking spaces in the
city center. Bearers of the card are entitled to the student discount
wherever it is offered. At some universities, the campus card is featured with digital signature to
enable students to electronically sign documents. Students gain access to specific documents on
the university’s computers and to the information kiosk, which provides
details on the courses held. Large-scale deployment started in the fall of 2007 and to date, 100 universities and
high schools are issuing the e-student card. Another 300 universities
are expected to join in the program.

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TN Government Opens Credit Card Acceptance

The Tennessee Department of Revenue is now accepting online credit card payments for franchise and excise tax minimum returns, estimated payments and extensions directly through its Tennessee.gov website. MasterCard, American Express and Discover Card are accepted and will be charged an associated 2.49 percent processing fee. Online bill pay, professional privilege tax, individual income tax, sales tax and consumer use tax can also be paid by credit card via the site’s secure payment processing system.

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