SCA Releases Paper on Mobile Phone POS Payments

A new report from the Smart Card Alliance reveals that market forces and technical advances is driving increased interest in using mobile phones for payment at point-of-sale. The report details mobile payment implementations that have been deployed worldwide and the opportunities and challenges for implementing mobile payment in the U.S. The Smart Card Alliance is a not-for-profit, multi-industry association working to accelerate the acceptance of smart card technology.

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First Data Q1 Profit Slides 23%; Revenues Up 10%

First Data reported this morning that first quarter net income nose-dived by 23% due to the cost associated with the merger of Concord EFS. However, overall 1Q/05 revenues increased 10% to $2.480 billion, compared to one-year ago. Payment Services operating profits fell 4% to $314 million during the first quarter on revenues that grew 7% to $1025 million. Revenue for the Merchant Services segment was up 26% to $935 million with operating profit of $185 million, a 20% gain over the year ago quarter. Card Issuing Services’ revenue was $603 million and operating profit was $109 million, an 8% and 11% gain, respectively. As of March 31st, accounts on file were 409 million domestic and 31 million international. Of the 441 million card accounts on file, 112 million were bank card accounts, 237 million were retail accounts and 92 million were debit accounts. For complete details on FDC’s first quarter performance, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

FDC NET INCOME
4Q/03: $401.6 million
1Q/04: $483.5 million
2Q/04: $466.0 million
3Q/04: $460.6 million
4Q/04: $465.1 million
1Q/05: $374.5 million
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)

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

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Axalto Partners with Al Kharafi for New Plant

Axalto has teamed with Al Kharafi Group of Kuwait to build a smart card plant in Cairo by 2005. Under the deal, Axalto will contribute its know-how in smart card technology and manufacturing
process to enable MAK to manufacture the cards and run the plant in
compliance with the highest quality standards. Al Kharafi manufacturing areas cover a diverse range of products from pre-fabricated homes to brakes on mobility and plastic products. Axalto has 4,500 employees from 70 nationalities and serves customers in more than 100 countries.

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Giesecke & Devrient and Wave Systems Partner

Munich-based Giesecke & Devrient and US-based Wave Systems have
formed a strategic alliance to offer an enhanced security solution to
address the trusted computing market. The collaboration will address the organizations’ joint development activities in the fields of smart card technology and trusted computing software. The aim is to leverage the combination of smart card technology and TPM associated software to offer clients in industry and government a comprehensive, flexible and easy-to-use security solution. Both partners are members of the Trusted Computing Group.

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Rahaxi Processing Names a New Sales Director

Helsinki-based Rahaxi Processing Oy. has named Jyrki Matikainen to the position of Sales Director. Matikainen worked for Lancro Oy., and Akumiitti Oy. Rahaxi currently processes in excess of 1,000,000 card payments per month for an established client base comprised of companies such as Finnair, Ikea, and Stockman. Rahaxi Processing Oy is a subsidiary of FreeStar Technology Corporation.

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Wincor Nixdorf Unveils the BEETLE/V

Wincor Nixdorf has introduced the BEETLE/V, a value-priced POS system. The BEETLE /V is powered by a 1.2 GHz Intel(R) Celeron processor, with a motherboard based on Intel’s embedded chipsets. The system includes a 12-inch LCD display, thermal printer, keyboard and cash drawer. Wincor Nixdorf is a global supplier of POS systems and automated teller machines with net sales of EUR 1,576 million.

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Online Rent Payment Program is Launched

Oakland-based PropertyBridge has teamed with Visa USA to market its Payment Acceptance Platform, an online rent payment service. Currently, the rental income market is estimated at $269 billion, with only 1% of the total processed using payment cards. PropertyBridge LLC is a registered ISO/MSP of Wells Fargo Bank NA. Visa’s processing system VisaNet facilitates $1.7 trillion in transactions every year.

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Wachovia Launches a Latin America Money Card

Wachovia has launched a foreign remittance product for the entire Latin American market. The new “Dinero Directo Card” links a customer’s Wachovia bank accounts to ATMs in the “VISA/PLUS” network. The card is part of the new Wachovia “Cuenta con Todo” package. Wachovia tested the card in 11 financial centers in Naples, FL, and Elizabeth, NJ, prior to introducing it in phases to all markets. Wachovia says 50% of the Hispanic households within Wachovia’s footprint are from countries other than Mexico. The card is the first by a major bank to enable money transfers to friends and family throughout Latin American and Caribbean countries as well as Mexico. In English, “Cuenta con Todo” translates to “account with everything.” In addition to the Wachovia “Dinero Directo Card,” the “Cuenta con Todo” package includes a free checking account, free VISA Check Card, and free online banking with bill pay.

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Wallet Consolidation App Hits the Market

Ostara has acquired the exclusive rights to market a patented wireless “wallet consolidation” application developed by Universal Identity Technologies. The application allows wireless transactions to take place which involve the use of any unique identifying device (UID) that has the capacity to store multiple credit/debit cards. Ostara Corporation specializes in the acquisition and development of emerging technologies and subsequent commercial applications.

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Second Direct Response Forum Upcoming

The Direct Response Forum in Europe will be held in
Amsterdam on April 19-20. This will mark the DRF EU’s second meeting.
Paymentech will be a sponsor. Paymentech has supported the DRF’s U.S.-based conferences and committees for about 10 years. Founded in the U.S. in 1990, the DRF is a trade association for “customer-not-present” merchants selling via Internet, mail, catalog and subscription. In 2004, Paymentech and its Canadian affiliate, based in Toronto, processed 8.5 billion transactions and $200 billion in card volume in 14 currencies.

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