OTI to Issue Mass Transportation Calypso Cards

On Track Innovations has been awarded a contract for supplying “Calypso” compliant contactless smart cards for payment in public transportation in Israel. Calypso is an electronic ticketing standard for mass transit marketing and supports multiple applications on one card. The mass transit ticketing solution is one of OTI’s payment products where OTI provides solutions for both cards and readers. The contract was awarded by the Ministry of Transportation of the State of Israel and managed by Adalya Economic Consulting Ltd., a private economic consulting firm.

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Pay By Touch Web PIN-Debit Takes Off

The J. Paul Company, a promotional products provider, has become the first Web-based retailer to offer Pay By Touch’s new Internet PIN-debit payment service. Offered via Pay By Touch’s ATM Direct division, the new service offers Internet retailers lower processing fees and reduced fraud. ATM Direct’s technology provides a complete framework of multi-factor authentication, advanced PKI, secure communications and behavioral analytics that enhance transaction security. ATM Direct is the only service in the world that provides Internet PIN debit with software-only technologies that have been certified by leading EFT networks. Pay By Touch services over 154,000 retail clients worldwide.

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SCA Inks Liberty Safe for a Card

Utah-based Liberty Safe and Security Products has selected TD Banknorth’s Shoppers Charge Accounts to develop and administer a private label credit card program for its direct-to-consumer sales. SCA became a division earlier this year of TD Banknorth, N.A., following the TD Banknorth’s acquisition of former SCA parent Hudson United Bank. At January 31, 2006, TD Banknorth had over $40 billion of total consolidated assets and provided financial services to more than 1.5 million households in the Northeast.

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SafePay Volume Triples Sequentially

NY-based SafePay Solutions reported gross processing transactions for May of more than $4 million, nearly triple over April. For May, SafePay booked $4.1 million in gross processing transactions. Credit card gross processing for May was $1.3 million, compared to $786,000 in April. Instant E-checks in May increased to $671K from $436K in April. SafePay Solutions enables anyone with an e-mail address to send and receive payments.

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Gemplus and Axalto Complete Their Merger

Axalto and Gemplus International have completed their merger. Gemalto will launch a voluntary public exchange offer for the remaining
Gemplus shares at the same exchange ratio of 2 Gemalto shares for every
25 Gemplus shares. An offering circular for the offer has been filed
with the French stock market authority, the “Autorite des Marches
Financiers” in Paris. The Board of Directors of Gemplus has recommended
that Gemplus shareholders tender their shares to the public exchange offer.

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Cabela’s VISA Debit Card Launched

U.S. Bank and Cabela’s have teamed to introduce the “Cabela’s VISA Check Card” offering rewards for signature purchases redeemable for Cabela’s “Gift Cards.” Cabela’s Check Card Points are earned on all signature purchases. Cardholders earn one point for every $2 spent at Cabela’s stores, online or by phone using the Cabela’s Visa Check Card. Cardholders also earn one point for every $3 spent at other merchant locations. Customers receive a $10 Cabela’s gift card for every 1,000 points. Cabela’s Incorporated is a direct marketer and specialty retailer of hunting, fishing, camping and related outdoor merchandise.

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Yield Stays Strong Despite Rising Rates

Despite the climb in short-term interest rates, credit card issuers have been able to preserve their portfolio yields via the variable nature of interest rate terms. During April, the average portfolio yield, which includes interest and fee income, approached 19% rising 90 basis points from the prior month and 154 basis points from one-year ago. Although there is usually a 30-day to 60-day lag in implementing a new variable rate, fee income continues to be a significant component to yield. According to FitchRatings, the prime portfolio yield among credit card-backed bonds in April was 18.81%, compared to 17.91% in March and 17.27% one-year ago.

ABS HISTORICAL
Prime Rate Yield
Nov 7.00% 17.89%
Dec 7.25% 17.26%
Jan 7.50% 17.96%
Feb 7.50% 17.56%
Mar 7.75% 17.91%
Apr 7.75% 18.81%
Source: FitchRatings

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Chelsea Football Launches Chip & PIN Card

The Chelsea Football Club has partnered with 3C International and Dione
to create the “Xtreme” terminals for bar and hotel applications and
mobile “Xplorer” terminals for payment at the table. The Club needed to
implement an integrated, EMV “Chip & PIN”
compliant card payment system to service all areas of the leisure
center. The terminals were all connected into a central payment
application resident on a business-wide server, providing a fully
integrated payment solution with full resilience powered by 3C “Integra”
software to all areas of the business. 3C International is a card
payment processing company. Dione, a fully owned subsidiary of
Lipman Electronic Engineering, is a supplier of secure “Chip & PIN”
smart card payment terminals and managed services.

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Yodlee and Equifax UK Launch Account Watch

Yodlee and Equifax have teamed up to create “Account Watch” to help
consumers proactively manage their financial accounts and protect
themselves from fraud and identity theft. “Account Watch”, available
from Equifax UK, leverages Yodlee’s “OnCenter Alerts Service” to monitor
real-time online account activity, such as bank accounts, savings
accounts and credit card transactions and automatically sends consumers
alerts of any unusual or suspicious activity. It is estimated that more than 100,000 people are affected by identity theft in the UK each year, costing the British economy over GBP 1.7 billion annually

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SEC Scrutinizes Tier Technologies

VA-based Tier Technologies has been subpoenaed by the Philadelphia District Office of the SEC requesting documents relating to financial reporting and personnel issues. Tier says it intends to cooperate fully in this investigation. Last week Tier confirmed that James Weaver has resigned as Chairman and CEO. The decision followed a recommendation by the audit committee of the board of directors that Weaver’s employment be terminated. Tier provides information technology solutions and through its Official Payments Corp. subsidiary.

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Overstock.com Deploys AuctionCheckout

Salt Lake City-based Overstock.com Auctions has fully integrated San Diego-based AuctionCheckout.com’s online payment service. After a seller enrolls in and is approved for AuctionCheckout.com, all of that seller’s listings will display the secure payment link “O-Auctions Checkout”, which speeds winning bidders through a simple checkout with no fees or registration requirements. After completing the transaction, sellers automatically receive funds into their checking account, usually within 2-3 days. AuctionCheckout.com is a provider of payment services specializing in credit card transactions for online marketplaces.

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