InCharge Warns on Min Payment Impact

Orlando-based InCharge Institute of America warns that higher minimum payments will be too much to bear for heavily indebted consumers. InCharge offers a “survival guide” for individuals that will most feel the impact of increasing minimum payments. Creating and adhering to a budget is key to alliviating the burden. InCharge Institute of America, Inc. is a national non-profit organization specializing in personal finance education and credit counseling.

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Axalto Opens Advanced Payment Card Center

Axalto has opened a new advanced payment card personalization
center outside of Toronto, Ontario and will start deliveries immediately
to one of Canada’s largest financial institutions. At the new
personalization center, Axalto will assist each bank in preparing and
personalizing EMV banking cards. This mass customization includes
loading appropriate cardholder data and then packaging and sending the
cards to banks or directly to cardholders. Axalto shipped more than 70
million microprocessor banking cards worldwide last year. Axalto is the
world’s leading provider of microprocessor cards and a major supplier of
point-of-sale terminals.

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Coinamatic to Use Hypercom’s T7Plus

Coinamatic, Canada’s largest multi-housing laundry route operator, has agreed to purchase Hypercom’s new “T7Plus” credit/debit card terminals for use with their “SmartCity” smart card platform. The Hypercom terminals will be integrated into Coinamatic’s “SmartCity Card Reload Centre” kiosks and installed in or near the buildings where Coinamatic supplies smart card-activated laundry, parking and vending equipment as well as access control devices. Coinamatic has issued over 450,000 reloadable smart cards. Hypercom’s “T7Plus” terminals are the newest generation of the company’s 3-million-selling T7 series of point-of-sale devices with integrated printers.

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Net1 Provides POS Equipment to NedBank

Net 1 UEPS Technologies will provide Nedbank Limited with 9,080
pin-pads and 7,280 point-of-sale terminals for Nedbank’s new
business requirements. Net1 expects to generate revenue of approximately
$4.6 million (ZAR 30 million) at the current exchange rate. Net1 is the
exclusive provider to Nedbank of POS terminals and pin-pads.
The POS terminals have the functionality, flexibility and industrial
strength to support Nedbank’s existing acquirer base and will facilitate
the continued deployment of Nedbank’s Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV)
rollout. Net1 provides its universal electronic payment system, or UEPS,
as an alternative payment system for the unbanked and under-banked
populations of developing economies.

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AmEx Kicks-Off its Chicago Centric Card

American Express formally launched its “IN:CHICAGO Card” this week. To assist the card kick-off, AmEx is sponsoring “Fashion Focus Chicago 2005” through September 29th. Under the card program, cardholders earn one point for every dollar spent and double points on dining, movies, mobile phone service, cable and satellite TV service, Internet service, gym membership and magazine/newspaper subscriptions. Rewards points can be redeemed for certificates for use at 60 Chicago establishments. In addition, cardholders receive discounts from some local partners. The IN:CHICAGO Card is the second city-centric credit card from AmEx following the launch one year ago of the “IN:NYC Card.” (CF Library 9/30/04)

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Hypercom T7Plus Selected for Coinamatic Smart Card

Coinamatic, Canada’s largest multi-housing laundry route operator, has
agreed to purchase Hypercom’s new “T7Plus” credit/debit card terminals
for use with their “SmartCity” smart card platform. The Hypercom
terminals will be integrated into Coinamatic’s “SmartCity Card Reload
Centre” kiosks and installed in or near the buildings to which
Coinamatic supplies smart card-activated laundry, parking and vending
equipment as well as access control devices. Coinamatic provides exact
change micropayment processors and both coin and smart card
operated vending equipment. Hypercom provides card payment terminals,
network access devices, servers and transaction networking solutions.

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BullGuard Joins the GreenZap Network

BullGuard, with a reported 26 million registered users for its security products, has joined the GreenZap Storez network. GreenZap Storez will be an online shopping venue where consumers can shop for electronics, music and sporting goods to hotels, theater tickets, and toys. The Storez will feature preferred merchants that in exchange for visibility on GreenZap’s website, will accept a portion of their sale price in WebCash, GreenZap’s loyalty rewards dollar. GreenZap rewards its account holders with up to $50 in WebCash for opening an account, and further rewards them $5 in WebCash for referrals to GreenZap. GreenZap Inc. enables any business or consumer with an email address to send and receive monetary payments securely and cost-effectively online.

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OTI Earns Company of the Year Award

Frost & Sullivan presented On Track Innovations with the “2005 Company of the Year” award. OTI’s exceptional sales and marketing strategies for its microprocessor-based smart cards have given it the scale and growth required to succeed in the global contactless card solutions market. Frost & Sullivan, a global growth consulting company, has been partnering with clients to support the development of innovative strategies for more than 40 years. The company’s industry expertise integrates growth consulting, growth partnership services and corporate management training to identify and develop opportunities.

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GE Money Canada Launches its 1st MC

GE Money Canada has launched its first MasterCard and the only no fee business MasterCard with cash rewards in the Canadian market. The new “GE Money Business MasterCard” offers cash rewards of up to 2.0% on purchases and interest rates beginning at 13.9%. The card is targeted at small and medium businesses. Last month, GE applied to Canada’s Minister of Finance to set up a bank. The bank will carry on business in Canada under the name GE Money Bank Canada in English and Banque GE Money du Canada in French and its principal office will be located in Mississauga, Ontario. GECF has recently been expanding its bank credit card businesses in Australia, Span, Turkey and Russia. (CF Library 8/25/05; 8/30/05)

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WESTPAC TITANIUM

Westpac New Zealand has introduced Australasia’s first Titanium credit card and New Zealand’s first ever mini card. The new “Westpac Titanium MasterCard,” and its accompanying “Titanium SideCard,” targets high income earners and offers a minimum credit limit of $15,000. The mini card has a daily purchasing limit that can be set by the cardholder. Cardholders earn 1.5 “Hotpoints” for every dollar spent using the card and also receive exclusive offers such as accommodation packages at luxury resorts and various concierge services. Westpac says its new “Titanium” card is the only card in New Zealand to score 100% for card premium facilities using Cannex’s credit card star ratings methodology.

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ACE Cash Acquires 111 Stores for $36MM

Dallas-based check casher ACE Cash Express is acquiring 111 stores owned by Popular Cash Express for $36 million and noted the Company will take a $1 million charge this quarter for Katrina losses. The Popular Cash Express stores being acquired offer check cashing, money order, wire transfer and bill pay services. The Cash Express stores do not currently offer short-term consumer loans, but ACE plans to introduce this product in approximately 95 of the acquired stores. ACE Cash Express is a leading retailer of financial services.

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Oberthur Moneytic Gets EMV Certified in China

Oberthur Card Systems announced the certification of its “Moneytic
Chrysalis” payment card product range by the Chinese Bank Card Test Centre
(BCTC). This new product is fully compliant with the recently “PBOC1 V2
Debit Credit” card specifications which will be used by Chinese Banks in
the forthcoming EMV migration. Both Visa and MasterCard current EMV card
specifications are supported in order to manage the requirements from
“dual currency” issuers. To date, Oberthur Card Systems has supported
over 100 EMV programs and has delivered over 150 million EMV compliant
cards at that time.

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