Elan Inks Pacific Coast Bankers’ Bank Deal

Elan Financial Services has entered into an agreement with Pacific Coast Bankers’ Bank to provide ATM, debit, prepaid card and merchant processing services to the bank’s financial institution clients. Elan also provides the Fastbank ATM network and its surcharge-free option Fastbank Free, which has over 3,700 locations in 38 states. Pacific Coast Bankers’ Bank has over 114 shareholder banks and has relationships with over 70% of the community banks located in the western United States. Elan Financial Services supports more than 7,700 ATMs, 15 million ATM/POS cards, and 2 million credit cardholders.

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BPO Zenta Acquired by H-Cube

Mumbai-based Zenta, the sixth largest business process outsourcing company in the country, has been acquired by Dallas-based H-Cube. Zenta’s current services include credit card servicing. H-Cube was formed in January by GTCR Golder Rauner in partnership with Henry Hortenstine, the former EVP Affiliated Computer Services. GTCR plans to invest up to $100 million in equity capital in H-Cube’s expansion. Zenta, with 2,600 employees in Pennsylvania and India, is H-Cube’s first acquisition. Priya Hiranandani, the founder of Zenta, will continue to serve as CEO. GTCR also has investments in TNS, VeriFone, Syniverse, TransFirst and Retriever Payment Systems.

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MasterCard Expands its Debit Team

MasterCard has named three SVPs to lead its global debit and prepaid programs. Nik Banerjee, formerly with Charles Schwab, has been named SVP for Debit in the Americas. Scott Galit, formerly with First Data, has been named SVP Global Prepaid Programs. Laura Kelly, formerly with Southwest Business Corporation, has been named SVP for Debit Product Management and Administration. MasterCard’s signature debit card business jumped 29% in the first quarter, compared to 1Q/04, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]). (CF Library 5/3/05)

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

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RBS Lynk OneLynk Alliance Expands

RBS Lynk has signed Foremost Business Systems as the newest member of the “OneLynk Alliance.” Foremost is the largest reseller of Radiant Systems’ Aloha POS solutions and supplies Aloha systems to restaurant clients. RBS Lynk’s electronic payment processing integrates with Aloha POS software, eliminating the expense of separate restaurant management equipment and payment terminals. RBS Lynk is a single-source provider of electronic payment processing services and is a member of The Royal Bank of Scotland Group.

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7-Eleven Joins VISA Contactless

7-Eleven has agreed to accept “VISA Contactless” payments. The c-store chain will install contactless card readers at all of its 5,300 U.S. stores. VISA’s contactless payment platform became operationally ready for the U.S. market in February. MasterCard launched its “PayPass” pilot in Orlando during January 2003. In August of last year, McDonald’s inked a deal to accept MasterCard “PayPass” nationwide. American Express first piloted its “ExpressPay” program in early 2003 in Phoenix. In December 2004, AmEx inked a deal with the CVS pharmacy chain for a full roll-out of “ExpressPay” for 5,300 stores by mid-year. (CF Library 2/25/05; 5/14/03; 7-17-03)

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CATHAY PACIFIC VISA

Royal Bank of Canada and Hong Kong-based Cathay Pacific have teamed to launch a co-branded VISA card. Under the program, “RBC Cathay Pacific VISA Platinum” cardholders will earn one “Asia Mile” for each Canadian dollar spent on the card. Cardholders will also receive 5,000 bonus miles upon enrollment. Additionally, cardholders earn two “Asia Miles” for every Canadian dollar spent on flights booked online. RBC and Cathay Pacific are also awarding a free companion ticket with the purchase of a qualifying round-trip Cathay Pacific business class ticket from Canada to Southeast Asia. Plus, cardholders receive complimentary Green membership to Cathay Pacific’s “Marco Polo Club,” and enjoy special benefits like preferred check-in and access to a 24-hour toll-free member services center. “Asia Miles” has more than 230 partners and more than 2.3 million members worldwide.

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Winslet Joins the AmEx Ad Campaign

Actress Kate Winslet has joined the American Express “My life. My card.” ad campaign with a 60-second TV spot to premier on tonight’s “CSI”. Print ads shot by Annie Leibovitz will run in targeted publications this summer. Each installment of the campaign depicts a storyline that reflects personal aspects of the featured individual’s life. American Express Company is a diversified worldwide travel, network, and financial services provider founded in 1850.

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Paymentech Lands the Gulf Oil Contract

Gulf Oil has inked a multi-year settlement processing contract with Paymentech for its $1 billion in annual card volume and approximately 46 million transactions generated from 2,000 Gulf-branded retail locations. Paymentech’s chargeback imaging system allows merchants to respond to disputed transactions via a fully automated system. Gulf Oil Limited Partnership is a wholesaler of refined petroleum products and distributes motor fuels through a network of 2000 Gulf branded stations. Paymentech, L.P. is a payment processor for businesses and processed 8.5 billion transactions and $200 billion in card volume in 14 currencies in 2004.

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VISA USA’s Q1 Purchase Volume Up 12%

VISA’s credit card and off-line debit U.S. purchase volume grew 12% during the first quarter, compared to one-year ago. Online debit purchase volume, via “Interlink” cards, more than doubled to $22.5 billion during the first three months of 2005. Overall, VISA USA’s total volume (sales and cash) for the quarter was up 16.3% to $346.3 billion. VISA said the growth was driven by debit/prepaid cards, “VISA Signature,” the small business market segment and expanded acceptance in new and emerging markets. VISA check card purchase volume grew 17.6% to $93.2 billion. VISA consumer credit card purchase volume increased 6.3% to $123.1 billion. VISA commercial credit and debit card purchase volume jumped 26.4% to $31.9 billion. VISA noted that the quick service restaurant category grew by $3.5 billion in volume during 1Q/05, a 59.3% increase over the same period a year ago. For complete details on VISA’s first quarter performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

PURCHASE VOLUME HISTORICAL
1Q/04: $221.1 billion
2Q/04: $242.0 billion
3Q/04: $248.5 billion
4Q/04: $266.3 billion
1Q/05: $248.2 billion
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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

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ATM GROWTH

The number of ATMs has increased by nearly 8,000 last year in the U.K. to a total of 54,412. The number of withdrawals from cash machines reached 2.53 billion in 2004, with an average value of GBP64 from bank-owned ATMs and GBP45 for withdrawals at independently-owned machines. Since 1997, the number of ATMs in the country has doubled from 23,200. According to APACS, the cash machine-using public has withdrawn a total of GBP1.0 trillion in cash from machines across the UK during the last ten years. APACS says the volume of cash typically withdrawn from different machines differs greatly, with an average of GBP13,000 per day from bank and building-society owned machines – which by and large have free access – compared to just GBP800 from those independently-owned machines that charge. The report also reveals that more people than ever are now regularly using cash machines – with 32.9 million using them to withdraw cash, check balances and even to top up mobile phones. Users now account for more than 75% of all plastic cardholders in the UK.

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Chase Introduces Contactless Cards

Chase Bank has become the first issuer to make a national roll-out of contactless general purchase consumer payment cards. The new “blink” card enhancement will be phased-in market-by-market in tandem with merchant acceptance. PA-based convenience store chain, Sheetz, will be Chase’s first partner to launch a co-branded credit card with “blink” functionality. Initially, Chase cardholders will be able to use the contactless function at major movie theaters, convenience and specialty retailers such as 7-Eleven, QSRs and drug stores. To support “blink,” Chase will launch a fully integrated marketing and advertising campaign to help educate and excite local consumers. The local campaigns will encourage cardholders to “blink lunch,” “blink a drink” or “blink a movie.” The campaign will leverage television, radio, newspaper and billboard advertising to reach consumers and will be complemented by several cardholder communications about the new card functionality.

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Cardtronics Buys Bank Machine Ltd

Hertfordshire-based Bank Machine Ltd has been sold to Houston-based Cardtronics. Bank Machine has more than 1,000 ATMs and its
clients include McDonalds, Spar, Mitchell’s and Butlers, the Post Office, Tesco, RoadChef and Odeon Cinemas. Cardtronics’ ATM portfolio will now include 10,000 owned and 16,000 managed units. Cardtronics will operate Bank Machine as a wholly-owned subsidiary, retaining its current management and staff of 50 employees. Bridgepoint owned 73% of BML after a management buyout of the U.K. ATM operations of Euronet Worldwide in January 2003. Last June, CardTronics purchased the E*TRADE ATM portfolio of 13,100 ATMs for $106 million in cash.

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