SMART CARD STUDY

Analysis from Frost & Sullivan’s “Strategic Assessment Of The Asia
Pacific Smart Card Markets Outlook” concludes converging applications
and integration technologies in Asia Pacific are allotting smart card
platforms diverse technologies. Moreover, acceptance of new technology
in the early stages is quite encouraging for smart card participants
while system integrators focus on coordination in order to
increase industry revenues. Furthermore, most of the countries
throughout the region do not have legacy systems, making it easy for the
market to quickly implement these contactless/next-generation converged
applications. Converged technology has provided Japanese end users, for
example, more than 100 types of mobile wallet phones while the
deployment of biometric readers in ATMs is fast-growing in Japan,
Taiwan, and South Korea.

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E-MONEE E-BANKING

E-Monee has been granted a license to provide services from the
government of Sharjah in United Arab Emirates. With this development,
E-Monee can provide its electronic payment and banking solutions to the
more than five hundred thousand construction workers in Sharjah, UAE and
will allow the Dubai headquarters to serve as the hub for business
development and operations for the region. Florida-based E-Monee
provides its Global Electronic Treasury System and proprietary systems
to deliver business models to serve niche markets.

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FINRA Warns About 401k Payment Cards

The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority warned investors about the potential pitfalls of using 401(k) debit cards to borrow money from their retirement funds. FINRA’s new Investor Alert, 401(k) Debit Cards – Think Before You Swipe, explains that a 401(k) debit card is like a debit and credit card rolled into one. It’s like a debit card because it allows you to access and spend your own money, rather than someone else’s. It’s like a credit card because you are billed each month for the charges you ring up. That bill includes a minimum payment due plus interest, fees and an additional interest charge that’s paid to the credit card vendor servicing the account.

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AUSTIN LOGISTICS & CAMELOT

Austin Logistics has partnered with Camelot Information System
business/IT consulting to provide its event-based decision support
solutions and exemplifying its expanding presence in China. Camelot
provides expansion for distribution and delivery of Austin’s decision
support solutions, has 1,700 employees and major business offices
throughout greater China and Japan. Austin Logistics provides predictive
analytic solutions, has done so for over 15 years and provides 80
product installations across North America, the United Kingdom and Asia
Pacific.

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Merchant e-Solutions Beefs-Up Pay Security

Merchant e-Solutions has added “Payer Authentication” security programs to its e-Commerce service offering and include support for Verified by Visa and MasterCard SecureCode, as well as alternative payment brands like Bill Me Later. MeS has developed the MeS Payment Network that includes a direct association connection for authorization. Proprietary payment solutions include the MeS Payment Gateway and MeS Virtual Terminal, which provide for better control of costs, interchange qualification, and service levels. The payment solutions provided by MeS are comprehensive and PCI compliant and designed with features that eliminate the need for merchants to store cardholder data, thereby reducing a merchant’s risk exposure.

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MasterCard Deploys CSC’s CAMS II Card System

VA-based IT technology provider CSC has announced that MasterCard Worldwide is using CSC’s “CAMS II Card & Merchant System” to power its debit and prepaid processing platform, MasterCard Integrated Processing Solutions. CAMS II, which is the functional and architectural foundation of MasterCard IPS, uses a high-performance transaction processing engine that scales to manage the industry’s highest volumes. With the CAMS II rules-driven system, MasterCard IPS enables companies to rapidly design, deploy and operate innovative payment products and services that can be customized by demographics or geography. Specific IPS services include PIN and signature debit and prepaid transaction processing, fraud detection, rewards and loyalty programs, and ATM network management. In addition to the software agreement, CSC is providing MasterCard with related professional services and has provided business domain expertise and program management, testing and Web development services during MasterCard’s development of IPS.

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Shipping Fees Drive Down E-Purchases

A new survey has found that unexpectedly high shipping fees are the number one reason consumers abandon online purchases. Checkout abandonment is a significant challenge for online merchants, with an estimated two out of every three consumers failing to pay for items they put in their shopping carts. The study conducted by PayPal and comScore also revealed that many consumers abandon their purchases for payment-related reasons. Of those surveyed, more than one in five shoppers didn’t complete purchases because their preferred payment option was not offered on the merchant’s Web site. Many shoppers simply think it is too much of a hassle to search for their wallets or purses – 21 percent did not complete online purchases because their wallets were not easily accessible.

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BofA Adjusts Consumer Banking Management

Bank of America is creating a new consumer banking management structure and has tapped Barbara Desoer as President of the consumer real estate operations of Countrywide Financial, Bruce Hammonds as President, Credit Card and Unsecured Lending, and Liam McGee as President of Consumer and Small Business Bank. BofA says the three represent the company’s most seasoned executives. BofA noted that deposits and cards currently account for about 95% of the profit of Global Consumer and Small Business Banking, which itself accounts for well over 60% of Bank of America’s earnings.

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U.S. Bank Will Refund MoneyGram China Fees

U.S. Bank will refund fees for MoneyGram remittances to China made by U.S. Bank consumer customers from any U.S. Bank branch and will match employee contributions made to eligible charities. The free transfers will be available from May 23 through July 31, 2008 in an effort to support relief efforts for victims of the earthquake that hit Sichuan Province in China on May 12.

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E-MONEE

FL-based EFT provider E-Monee is implementing electronic payment systems in Dubai for expatriate construction workers to satisfy a government mandate. Dubai’s Ministry of Labor has been charged with implementing the government’s mandate for employers to pay all salaries including those of low-income workers through the banking channels.
With E-Monee, employers will be able to credit salaries to workers’ accounts automatically, enabling workers to access hundreds of ATMs and thousands of POS units at very nominal costs and with no minimum monthly
balance requirements. In addition to this, they will be able to remit
funds back home in a method that is cheaper, safer and more convenient
than current alternatives. In addition to meeting the current mandate,
E-Monee’s objective is to roll out this solution to all GCC countries,
to enable the entire expatriate workforce servicing that area to benefit
from this convenient and cost-effective technology, as far as securing
their salaries and moving their money is concerned.

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SCOTIABANK BERKLEY VISA

Scotiabank has partnered with Berkeley Payment Solutions to introduce
its suite of prepaid corporate Visa cards to the Canadian market. The
new suite of payment solutions feature branded, re-loadable
prepaid Visa cards, providing the ease-of-use of a credit card with the
appeal of cash with a reward option redeemable anyway,anywhere. Nissan
Canada has selected the 2 organizations to spearhead the “Nissan Rogue
Test Drive Direct-mail” reward program, providing participants with a
Nissan prepaid Visa card, and the “Bonus Days” program in December 2007,
offering customers a choice of a Nissan-branded prepaid Visa gift card
or a rebate upon the purchase of one of four Nissan vehicles.
Additionally, Scotiabank and Berkeley also worked with LG Electronics
Canada for the launch of the “LG Shine” cell phone in October 2007 as
part of its “Born to Shine” campaign.

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