Wire Card Expands CLICK2PAY Services

Wire Card AG next week will be extending the range of services
of its alternative payment system “CLICK2PAY” to include virtual banking
services. This will enable customers to additionally order an eMoney
account in connection with a virtual VISA card from the Group’s member
company Wire Card Bank. This will make more than two million VISA
acceptance locations available to customers on the Web. “CLICK2PAY” is
available in 24 countries and has a global orientation with its seven
currencies and eleven languages and is suitable for industries offering
products and services that require customer registrations like
subscriptions or small purchases such as music downloads.

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Latin American Governments Promote Card Usage

At the 8th annual VISA International Government Services Conference
“Modernizing through Innovation,” government partnerships have
significantly contributed to the realization of economic development goals
for emerging and industrialized nations around the world. Argentina,
Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and Uruguay have
implemented incentives that drive payment card usage to provide greater
transparency of financial transactions and improve tax collection. The
VISA International Government Services Conference (IGSC)provides an
opportunity for government officials, VISA specialists, representatives
from VISA member financial institutions, and industry experts from
around the world to network and discuss new ways to work together to
serve the needs of governments, economies, and their citizens.

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Online Retail Purchases to Rise 10%

The latest IMRG Annual Report indicates that the year ahead for the
e-retail industry will be characterized by 10% of retail purchases being
made online, consumers embracing a broadband lifestyle and retailers
investing in better Web services and predicts an estimated GBP 26
billion will be spent online by UK shoppers with online shoppers who
will spend on average GBP1,000 each. Christmas 2005 online sales were
50% higher than the previous year, exceeding GBP2 billion each month in
November and December, while High Street trade remained flat. Internet
shopping has been the fastest growing area within the retail sector for
more than ten years, and has grown 2,600% during the past five years
alone. IMRG is the industry body for e-retailing, comprised of a large
group of online retailers and facilitators.

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APR DEBT

Credit card outstandings increased to GBP 56 billion in April. The figure is GBP 363 million higher than the prior month and GBP 4.7 billion higher than one-year ago. The Bank of England says that the increase in total net lending to individuals in April of GBP 9.3 billion was slightly higher than the increase in March but below the previous six month average. The twelve-month growth rate was unchanged from March at 10.2%, but the three month annualized growth rate fell by 40 basis points to 9.9%. However, the annual growth rate of consumer credit continued to fall, to 7.3% in April.

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iVeri Introduces iMPi Mobile Phone Card App

iVeri Payment Technologies has released its “iMPi” mobile phone credit card
acceptance application. The iVeri acceptance suite will allow card acquirers to
enter the mobile and low volume card merchant market segments. Banks hoping to
tap into the rapidly growing mobile infrastructure are now able to use “iVeri
iMPi” for low volume, private label and credit card acceptance. “iVeri iMPi”
will work on most Java enabled GSM handsets.

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Auriemma Consulting Opens a London Office

Auriemma Consulting Group announced today that the firm will open its newest
office in London on June 5th. The management consulting firm caters primarily
to the payments and lending industry and has been doing an increasing amount of
international business over the past several years, particularly in the United
Kingdom. ACG Managing Director Michael Lenora, a long-time payments industry
executive with more than 25 years of international payments experience, will
run the day-to-day operations at the London office. The new ACG office will
have responsibilities for ACG client activity in Africa and the Middle East as
well as the UK and Continental Europe.

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High and Low Income Households Incur Debt

A recent study by UK CCCS indicates that clients with take home pay of
less than GBP 10,000 and those making more than GBP30,000 per year all
have debts beyond their control. Accepted wisdom suggests that a
take-home income of GBP30,000 per year is enough to allow most families to
be able to manage the demands on their incomes. But large mortgages,
rising school fees and the increasing availability of credit have made
debt a normal part of life for many of the middle class. For clients
earning less than GBP10,000 a year means that virtually all income is
spent on essentials such as housing, utilities, clothing and food. Credit
is used as a way of bridging the gap between income and essential
expenditure.

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Gemplus Selected for the Vitale 2 e-Healthcare Card

Gemplus International has been selected by G.I.E. SESAM-Vitale as one of the
main suppliers to issue e-Healthcare cards, known as “Vitale 2”. The new smart
cards will further enhance the possibilities of the system, in term of data
processing and secure applications. The scope of the contract includes the
supply of smart cards, graphical and electrical personalization and mailing
services to million of end users in France. The global market for the
personalized Vitale 2 cards represents a total of 50 million units divided
between 3 suppliers. The contract calls for the supply of a minimum of 8
million cards over two years, with possible extension over two more years.
SESAM-Vitale processes over 80 million electronic claims per month.

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CorporationCentre to Offer Aeroplan Miles

CorporationCentre.ca has started offering Aeroplan reward miles on select small
business start-up services to its online customer. CorporationCentre.ca
provides small business owners, start-ups and entrepreneurs with incorporation,
corporate maintenance and governance services, corporate name searches and
reports, trademark services, logo design, credit card processing. Aeroplan
Miles has a network of more than 60 partners, representing more than 100
brands, in the financial, retail and travel sectors. Customers redeem those
miles towards travel to more than 700 destinations worldwide or for lifestyle
rewards.

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Obopay BREWs Some New Payment Options

California-based Obopay reports it will enable a new phone payment option for online retailers and “BREW” mobile application providers to allow consumers to initiate purchases from their mobile phones with a simple touch of the keypad. The Obopay BREW extension will consist of both a dynamic and static offering. The dynamic offering allows BREW developers to integrate a module within their application and back-end infrastructure without any additional development work. Obopay developed the first complete mobile payment service in the U.S.

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Auriemma Consulting Opens a UK Office

Auriemma Consulting Group is opening a London office next week. The management consulting firm, which caters primarily to the payments and lending industry, has been doing an increasing amount of international business over the past several years, particularly in the United Kingdom. ACG Managing Director Michael Lenora will run the day-to-day operations. Over the past several years, ACG has worked with many of the top U.S. and international credit card issuers, on projects as wide-ranging as value proposition development, portfolio analysis and valuation and alliance and partnership development.

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No ATM Fees VISA Card is Launched

ME-based TD Banknorth is rebating any fee charged by any bank in the world when customers use its new “No ATM Fees VISA Card.” The new card is being introduced in the New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Metro New York markets as part of the company’s “Bank Freely” launch. The “No ATM Fees” card is available with any TD Banknorth checking account for new or existing customers in these markets. The “Bank Freely” campaign includes extensive print, television, outdoor and online advertising. TD Banknorth serves more than 1.5 million households in the Northeast.

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