STM 2Q/03

STMicroelectronics reported that net revenues for the second quarter were $1.7 billion, a 5.2% sequential increase over first quarter and
11.2% above last year’s second quarter. Gross profit was $607.3 million, a 7.2% sequential increase from the prior quarter, and 5.5% above the
2002 second quarter. Revenues for memory products declined 12.9% to $286.7 million however Consumer and Microcontroller revenues increased 8.3% to $312.5 million. On May 22nd, STM announced the acquisition of the assets and business of Incard SpA, a smart card maker that specializes in the telecom market.

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MBNA 2Q/03 Profits Up 20%

MBNA reported net income for the second quarter of $543.3 million, an increase of 20% compared to the second quarter of 2002. Managed loans were up 11% and charge volume was up 15%. Total managed loans at the end of 2Q/03 were $110.5 billion and charge volume was $45.4 billion. Managed charge-offs were 5.35%, compared to 5.47% in the previous quarter, and 5.09% one year ago. Delinquency on managed loans were 4.46%, compared to 4.74% in 1Q/03, and 4.80% in 2Q/02. During the quarter MBNA added 3.0 million new accounts, compared to 2.3 million in the first quarter. The issuer signed 125 new affinity card deals during the quarter. The issuer also renewed 318 affinity group contracts during 2Q/03. For complete details on MBNA’s second quarter results visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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Corillian Reaches Accounting Profitability in 2Q/03

OR-based Corillian posted net income of $1.8 million in the second quarter on revenues of $11.5 million. Cash and investment balances at the end of the second quarter were $24.5 million, compared to $21.4 million at the end of the first quarter of 2003. Corillian anticipates third quarter 2003 revenues will be in the range of $10 to $11 million and reaffirms that revenues for 2003 will be in the range of $43 to $45 million.

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E-Chex Names CFO

Texas-based National E.Commerce Corporation, developer of “E-Chex” and “E-Chex PC,” has named Charles Cunningham as CFO. Cunningham has served in a variety of corporate financial capacities over the past 20 years, including serving as Chief Financial Officer for both public and private companies. Prior to E-Chex, he erved as Chief Financial Officer for e resources inc until its merger with Central Wireless in June of 2002.

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CREDIT CARD USAGE

Cardholder activities among consumers in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenyang, Deyang, and Hangzhou vary widely according to a new research report. Holders of credit cards in Shanghai and Guangzhou use their cards more frequently for purchase transactions than do their counterparts in other major cities, with 71.7% of card holders in Guangzhou using their credit card at least seven times per month over a six-month period compared with just 25.5% in Deyang and around 30% in Shenyang. According to the study by the School of Management at Fudan University in Shanghai and underwritten by MasterCard, cardholders in Shanghai and Guangzhou use their cards more frequently for shopping than their counterparts in Shenyang, Hangzhou and Deyang, with cardholders in those three cities spending comparatively more, and using their cards more frequently, on hotel accommodation. Not surprisingly, taken across all cities expenditure on shopping and dining out accounts for most of the credit card transaction volume.

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Best Buy Launches Reward Zone Card

After an eight-month pilot program in southern California, Best Buy, this week, launched the “Reward Zone” loyalty card nationally. The card rewards members with 100 points for every dollar they spend at its 550 retail stores in the USA. Members earning 12,500 points will receive an automatic $5 discount on future purchases. New members receive a 5,000-point enrollment bonus the first time they use the card. The card comes with a $9.99 annual fee. Best Buy’s most loyal customers have been automatically enrolled in the program this year for a waived fee. To kick-off the launch of the new card, Best Buy is offering a $1 million sweepstakes for consumers between now and August 23rd. Best Buy is using Frequency Marketing’s proprietary “Loyalty Solutions Platform” for the card. FMI provides the technology platform, technical services, print fulfillment and ongoing program support for the “Reward Zone” program. The technology platform includes “MemberNet”, FMI’s Web interface. Print fulfillment includes member welcome kits, quarterly statements and award certificates. Best Buy manages creative development and media buying through its existing vendors and runs member services using FMI’s platform at its existing call centers.

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XIGN & PANTELLOS

Ontario-based RDM and Xign announced that Texas-based Pantellos has been selected by Cinergy and FirstEnergy to implement the “Pantellos eSettlement Network,” to automate their procure-to-pay processes. Based on the “ePayables” solution from Xign, the “Pantellos eSettlement Network” is an electronic invoice and payment service that helps utilities automate their financial settlement processes. The “Pantellos eSettlement Network” also supports the “MasterCard e-P3” electronic payment and information management service, which helps utilities broaden their use of “MasterCard Corporate Purchasing Card” programs to settle large-value transactions for direct materials and services. Pantellos was founded in June 2000 by some of North America’s largest utilities.

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iDine’s 2Q/03 Profits Rise 67%

Miami-based iDine Rewards Network reported second quarter pre-tax income of $6.5 million, a 67% increase over 2Q/02. The Company also reported sales for the quarter of $87.7 million, a 34.1% gain over the prior year. The Company closed the quarter with more than 3.0 million active members and in excess of 11,100 total merchants. Transactions for the quarter were 2.6 million. The iDine Rewards Network currently has 20.4 million credit cards registered through 15.4 million enrolled accounts. Currently, more than 10,700 restaurants throughout the USA participate in iDine programs, and the company in May launched its hotel rewards program with more than 400 hotels in 25 markets. For complete details on the iDine Rewards Network’s second quarter results visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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INGENICO & MSL

Paris-based Groupe Ingenico has selected Massachusetts-based MSL as its primary worldwide strategic supplier, providing global support for Ingenico’s electronic payment terminals. As part of the multi-year agreement, Ingenico’s subsidiary Telesincro, located in Barcelona, Spain, will transfer to MSL its manufacturing employees with technical expertise in EFTPOS and secure payment products, as well as certain assets and manufacturing space. The Barcelona plant, formerly Ingenico’s only internal manufacturing site, manufactures approximately 600,000 terminals annually, approximately 40% of the company’s global demand. MSL will provide manufacturing, build-to-order (BTO), order fulfillment, and repair services to Ingenico from Barcelona and from additional locations worldwide.

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Chase Introduces PerfectCard

Chase has introduced the “PerfectCard VISA and MasterCard” offering bonus rebates on all gasoline purchases as well as a rebate for all card purchases. Originally introduced in January as the “Chase Freedom Card” in response to the loss of its Shell co-branded credit card to Citibank, the new card offers a 6% rebate on all gasoline purchases for the first 90 days. Thereafter, cardholders receive a 3% rebate on all gasoline purchases, regardless of the brand, according to CardWatch ([www.cardwatch.com][1]). The card also offers a 1% rebate on all other purchases. There is no annual fee for the first year. The $19 annual fee is waived thereafter if the cardholder makes at least nine purchases in the prior year. Chase is also offering a 0% interest rate on balance transfers for the first nine months. However, Chase charges a 3% balance transfer fee with a $50 maximum. The card carries a prime +9.74% APR for some low-risk customers, but most customers will pay a prime +11.74% or prime +14.99% rate. Higher risk consumers may pay prime +19.99%. (CF Library 1/27/03)

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

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VENDTEK & TIBC 3.0

VendTek’s unattended load terminals for “VISA Cash TIBC 3.0” loading of smart cards and credit/debit associated accounts have complied with VISA International Latin America and Caribbean Region’s requirements. VendTek may now load the latest “TIBC 3.0” or “Advantis” smart cards using cash as well as credit/debit associated accounts in addition to the earlier “TIBC 1.0” products. VendTek Systems also develops and licenses “e-Fresh” software and related technologies, which provides electronic distribution of prepaid telecommunication and financial services.

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Verified by VISA Comes to China

VISA’s cardholder authentication service for Internet payments is now available in China. VISA Asia/Pacific says there are already 59 million Internet users in China, ranking second in the world. Among these Internet users, 33.8% or close to 20 million users have used the Internet in the past year to make a transaction or purchase. China Construction Bank is the first acquiring bank in China to offer the “Verified by VISA” service to online merchants. CCB expects that within the next six months, there will be more than 300 online merchants participating in this secure online payment service. Bank of China and China Merchant Bank are the first card issuers to offer “VbV” to its cardholders.

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