I-BANKING

The Capital Bank of Haiti has signed an agreement to deploy Euronet Worldwide’s Internet Banking solution. Capital Bank plans to make this service available to its more than 60,000 customers. Internet Banking gives the customers 24/7 access to bank accounts online, featuring account details, history, check inquiries as well as the ability to request a stop payment.

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BPS Acquisition

National Processing Company is acquiring Bridgeview Payment Solutions, Inc. for $32.3 million in cash. BPS processes for 28,000 merchants, generating approximately $1.0 billion in credit card sales volume last year. BPS currently signs 1,500 new merchant accounts per month through a network of ISOs and agents. BPS is owned by Bridgeview Bank and Trust Company, a community bank owned by Bridgeview Bancorp. NPC estimates that the transaction will generate approximately $20 million in annual revenue and will have minimal impact to its earnings for the remainder of 2003.

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April Slowdown

After posting a strong March, the pace of consumer revolving credit growth has slowed. During April, Americans added $1.4 billion in revolving credit, mostly credit cards, compared to $2.6 billion one year ago. According to preliminary figures released Friday afternoon by the Federal Reserve, revolving consumer credit stood at $722.6 billion, at the end of April, compared to $705.0 billion one year ago. Bank credit card debt (excluding store and gas credit cards) at the end of the first quarter was $645.6 billion, or roughly 89% of total revolving credit, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]). This compares to $660.9 billion at the end of 2002. According to the latest government figures, American consumers were $1.755 trillion in debt, exclusive of home mortgages during April.

REVOLVING CREDIT HISTORICAL ($billions)
Apr 03 Mar 03 Feb 03 Jan 03 Dec 02 Nov 02 Oct 02
GRWTH: 2.3% 4.4 5.9 5.2 -6.7 -1.4 1.6
$OWED: $722.6b 721.2 718.6 715.5 712.4 716.8 717.9

Sep 02 Aug 02 Jul 02 Jun 02 May 02 Apr 02 Mar 02
GRWTH: 3.0% 6.2 6.0 4.1 8.0 4.8 2.2
$OWED: $721.3b 719.5 715.6 712.1 708.7 705.4 705.0

Source: Federal Reserve; revised figures as of 06/06/03; For complete historical data visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][2]).

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

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MBNA Canada

RBC Royal Bank has signed an agreement to sell most of its affinity credit card portfolio to MBNA Canada Bank. This portfolio consists of less than one percent of RBC’s credit card account receivables. The cards are mostly with college and university alumni associations, cause-related groups, sports groups and special interest groups. RBC says it will retain certain other affinity partnerships and the associated receivables. MBNA Canada has more than 500 affinity credit card programs in Canada. Meanwhile, Edmonton-based Canadian Western Bank, has signed an agreement with MBNA Canada Bank to offer “Think Western” MasterCards to both its business and personal clients.

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Small Banks ATMs

A new study says that on average, large banks pay $1,500 per month, and small banks $1,100, to establish and maintain each ATM. As a result, the research by Chicago-based Grant Thornton says outsourcing is the effective way for community banks to compete with large financial institutions. Thornton says the trend of non-bank ATM operators and facilitators has been on the rise. With 350,000 ATMs in the United States, 250,000 are in non-bank locations, and 150,000 of these ATMs are owned by non-financial companies. Due to cost and availability constraints associated with expanding an ATM network organically, Thornton suggests that community banks look to the locations and ATM management services provided by third-party providers.

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ADS Buys Portfolio

NM-based American Home Furnishings has sold its private label credit card portfolio to Dallas-based Alliance Data Systems. Alliance Data will provide private label credit card services for American Home stores located throughout New Mexico and Arizona. Alliance Data will convert the existing proprietary card program and own the receivables previously processed and funded in-house by American Home.

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Barnes Banking ATMs

UT-based Barnes Banking Company has inked a five-year agreement with Fiserv that covers check processing and ATM driving. Under a five-year agreement, Fiserv will supply its outsourced Information Technology, Inc. (ITI) core processing system including such applications as the Director document management system and the Prime data analysis solution as well as check processing and automated teller machine driving. Fiserv provides industry leading information management systems and services to the financial industry, including transaction processing, outsourcing, business process outsourcing and software and systems solutions.

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PRECISE & SCHLUMBERGER

Schlumberger and the Swedish firm, Precise Biometrics AB, have renewed their existing agreement on the integration of the biometric security option in the “Cyberflex Access 64K” smart card. The agreement between Precise and Schlumberger, announced in February, has resulted in an upcoming market launch of a new “Java Card” application by Schlumberger. The new application on the “Cyberflex Access 64K” card is designed for corporate and network security applications. To offer the application, Schlumberger licenses Precise Biometrics’ software product with “Precise Match-on-Card” capability, “Precise BioMatch C,” and integrates it into the Schlumberger “Java Card” product.

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Spiegel Update

Spiegel has received bankruptcy court approval to liquidate its First Consumers National Bank subsidiary. The bank formerly issued Eddie Bauer, Spiegel Catalog and Newport News retail credit cards. Under the plan, the bank will discontinue its services June 30 and begin the liquidation process. Cardholder Management Services will take over servicing the accounts from First Consumers National Bank on June 30th.

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