Experian Tops 30 Million Web Visitors

Experian Consumer Direct reported that its second quarter Web traffic increased 15% over 1Q/03, to reach 30.1 million unique visitors. Experian Consumer Direct(SM) offers consumers quick, easy and inexpensive access to their credit histories, to help them better manage their financial lives. The division was created in 2002 when Experian North America, Inc. combined CreditExpert L.L.C., its consumer credit management group, with ConsumerInfo.com Inc., the largest provider of online credit reports and other credit-related information to consumers.

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National Do Not Call Registry Opens to Telemarketers

The Federal Trade Commission announced last week that telemarketing organizations will have access to the “National Do Not Call Registry” starting today, one day later than the opening date originally announced. As of today, organizations that complete application information, pay any applicable fees, and certify under penalty of law that they are accessing the registry solely to prevent telephone calls to telephone numbers on the registry, will be granted access to the consumer telephone numbers included in the registry. The annual cost for organizations to access phone numbers in the registry will be $25 per area code, with a maximum annual fee of $7,375 to access numbers for the entire country, including U.S. territories. There will be no charge for companies to access the first five area codes of data.

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An Outsourcing Service for Card Issuers Launched

CAPXCEL, a privately held division of Virginia-based System Engineering Services, with offices in Virginia, Georgia, and Colorado, has launched an outsourcing service for credit card companies. In association with R.K. Hammer, the firm serves as an outsourcer for portfolio conversions, serving those financial institutions that need additional resources to complete the integration of purchased portfolios to their platforms.

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MMI & CCCS San Diego Merge

CCCS San Diego has merged with Houston-based Money Management International. Consumer Credit Counseling Services of San Diego has been serving the residents of the San Diego community as a non-profit credit counseling agency for more than 37 years. MMI is the largest full-service non-profit credit counseling organization in the United States with more than 90 branch offices in ten states. The combined organization will operate locally under the CCCS name and nationally under the name MMI.

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Commercial Federal Bank Goes to Voyager 3.0

Portland, OR-based Corillian announced that Omaha-based Commercial Federal Bank has converted its online banking customers to the “Voyager 3.0” platform. Corillian Voyager meets the demands of Commercial Federal’s online customers for real-time account information and seamless, single sign-on access to all of their financial products and services. Commercial Federal is a $12.9 billion federal savings bank that currently operates branches located in Nebraska, Missouri, Kansas, Iowa, Colorado, Oklahoma, Arizona and Minnesota. Corillian is a premier provider of enterprise software and services for the financial services industry. Empowered with Corillian solutions, some of the world’s most visionary financial institutions provide their customers with the tools to manage their finances more effectively.

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US Bank Launches Malibu Affinity Card

U.S. Bank and the City of Malibu, California have teamed to issue an affinity card. The new “City of Malibu VISA” generates a donation to city based on cardholder volume. The card is available in the classic and platinum versions, and offers a low introductory rate on purchases and balance transfers for the first six months. There is no annual fee on the “Platinum” card with one purchase per year, otherwise, $40.00. The “Classic” card also offers no annual fee with one purchase per year, otherwise, $20.00. The go-to interest rate for “Classic” is between 10.24% to 19.24% and the go-to APR for Platinum is between 8.24% and 17.24%.

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Los Angeles-based Bentley Changes Name

Los Angeles-based Bentley Communications Corporation is planning to change its name to Bentley Commerce Corporation on October 30th. The purpose of the name change is to accurately reflect the company’s focus on ecommerce and associated financial transactions, and to confirm its entrance into the $12 billion U.S. barter industry. As part of its new name, it will also be changing its CUSIP number. Bentley is positioning itself to be the domestic leader in the fast growing trade and barter industry. It has an ideal opportunity to apply its expertise in alternative financial transactions and ecommerce services to enable barter exchanges, and the companies that barter through them, access round the clock to a user-friendly, online trade exchange, tailored to their needs.

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Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce Selects Chordiant Software

Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce has selected Chordiant Software to furnish its customer service processing for its “Card Products Division.” Chordiant’s system automates and manages key business processes from the initial point of customer contact through to the various back-office systems, contact center agents will be provided with real time information from a variety of different sources. Furthermore, the integration of Chordiant “Enterprise Contact Center” with CIBC’s deployment of Chordiant “Marketing Director” will allow marketing campaigns to be directly connected with the contact centers that execute them.

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MBNA Does Fishy Deal in NASCAR Winston Cup Race

Bass Pro Shops and MBNA America have teamed to co-sponsor Atlanta Motor Speedway’s fall NASCAR Winston Cup race for the next four years, known as the “Bass Pro Shops MBNA 500”. Bass Pro Shops and MBNA also sponsored the spring Winston Cup race this season, providing some of the most memorable moments of the racing season, including a unique largemouth bass winner’s trophy. Bass Pro Shops leads the nation in outdoor retail sales while MBNA America is recognized as the world’s largest independent credit card lender.

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Global eTelecom Gets New COO

FL-based Global eTelecom has named Ron Williams, former founder and President of EZ-Check, as its new COO. Ron Williams joined Global eTelecom as President in April 2002. He was elected to erve on the Board of Directors in March 2003. Combined with CEO John H. Beebe, Williams’ vision and direction has been a key force behind the operational efficiencies and recent evolution of Global eTelecom’s product offerings and increased customer service and satisfaction.

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Capital One in Talks to Issue Debit Card in India

The Life Insurance Corporation of India is reportedly in talks with Capital One to issue a debit card in the country. The insurance concern also fielded proposals from SBI Card and Corporation Bank, but preferred the Capital One proposal. LIC wants to issue a debit card linked up to its insurance policies. However, the firm wants a competitively priced card. According to the Business Standard, LIC has asked for a waiver of joining fees and annual fees for card holders, plus a reduced rate of interest for cash advances. LIC was asking for rates that were as low as 0.9% to 1.0% per month against the existing rates of 1.9% to 2.2% per month.

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