VSDC & FeliCa

Sony, Infineon, and VISA International have teamed for the joint development of a single-chip “GlobalPlatform” multi-application chip product that supports both “VISA Smart Debit/Credit” payment and “FeliCa” contactless applications. According to tomorrow’s edition of The RAM Report ([www.ramreport.com][1]), more than 60 million VISA smart cards based on EMV contact payment technology have been issued worldwide (9 million in Asia-Pacific) and over 35 million contactless cards employing Sony’s “FeliCa” operating system have been issued, mostly in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Japan. VISA plans to work with Sony and Infineon to jointly develop a single-chip “GlobalPlatform” product that supports all industry standard contact and contactless interfaces. VISA’s ultimate goal is the achievement of cross-platform interoperability across the “GlobalPlatform” and “FeliCa” operating environments, which would allow cardholders to use “FeliCa-based” applications to take advantage of special discounts or accumulate loyalty points when making purchases on their VISA cards and enable service providers to offer cardholders the convenience of using “VSDC” payment functionality to top-up the value on prepaid transit or e-purse applications in one simple transaction.

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

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UK Volume Slows

Credit card volume in January for the UK was pounds 8.2 billion, an 8.0% increase over January, 2002. According to data released by the London-based Credit Card Research Group, credit card spending has more than tripled since 1993, reaching pounds 101.8 billion last year, but has slowed over the past two years. Meanwhile, debit card spending growth has slowed from its peak in the mid-1990s, with pounds 8.7 billion expenditure in January, representing a 14.3% increase over January 2002. Combined plastic spending in January of pounds 16.9 billion was 11.2% up on January 2002 but, not surprisingly, 14.1% down on December. The CCRG also noted that spending on credit and debit cards in the UK is equivalent to 20.3% of GDP, compared with an EU average of 9.6%.

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VISA Debit 2002

Growth in off-line debit card volume in the USA slowed last year to an 18% rate, after racking up an increase of 39% and 38%, in 2001 and 2000, respectively. VISA remained the king of the off-line debit card market with a market share of 76% at EOY 2002. More than 56% of VISA’s total 2002 transactions of 14.4 billion were “Check Card” transactions. In 2001, VISA’s off-line debit card transactions began outpacing credit card transactions. Last year, VISA’s debit card volume grew 17.2%, from $324.3 billion to $380.0 billion. MasterCard’s off-line debit card volume was $116.4 billion for 2002. At end of year 2002, VISA had 127,766,000 off-line debit cards in-force while MasterCard had 47,100,000 off-line debit cards in-force according to CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

VISA’S CHECK CARD SNAPSHOT
2001 2002 CHANGE
Purchase Volume: $205.5b $248.1b +20.7%
Cash Advances Volume: $118.7b $131.9b +11.1%
Purchase Transactions: 5.5m 6.5m +18.0%
Cash Transactions: 1.5m 1.6m + 9.3%
Total Accounts: 85.4m 97.0m +13.6%
Total Cards: 115.0m 127.8m +11.1%

Source: CardData ([www.carddata.com][2])

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

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Hypercom & Bridgeview

Bridgeview Bank & Trust and its Bridgeview Payment Solutions subsidiary, which provides services for more than 27,000 merchants nationwide, have signed a contract with Hypercom’s Golden Eagle Leasing unit to offer payment terminal leases. Bridgeview Payment Solutions is well known nationally as one of the top merchant bankcard processors in the U.S.  BPS has been processing credit card transactions as a subsidiary of Bridgeview Bank & Trust since 1993 and provides services for more than 27,000 merchants nationwide.

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InterCept Lawsuit

A shareholder lawsuit has been filed against InterCept, alleging the company made material misrepresentations that the adult pornography Internet portion of their merchant processing business was insignificant and failing to disclose that new VISA regulations, which were targeted specifically to address risks of Internet pornography card processing, had caused a material loss of business.  A shareholder lawsuit has been filed against InterCept, alleging the company made material misrepresentations that the adult pornography Internet portion of their merchant processing business was insignificant and failing to disclose that new VISA regulations, which were targeted specifically to address risks of Internet pornography card processing, had caused a material loss of business.

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VSDC & FELICA

Sony, Infineon, and VISA International have teamed for the joint
development of a single-chip “GlobalPlatform” multi-application chip
product that supports both “VISA Smart Debit/Credit” payment and “FeliCa”
contactless applications. More than 60 million VISA smart cards based on
EMV contact payment technology have been issued worldwide (9 million in
Asia-Pacific) and over 35 million contactless cards employing Sony’s
“FeliCa” operating system have been issued, mostly in Hong Kong, Singapore,
and Japan. VISA plans to work with Sony and Infineon to jointly develop a
single-chip “GlobalPlatform” product that supports all industry standard
contact and contactless interfaces. The alliance leverages VISA’s
leadership in the payment industry, Sony’s strength in contactless IC
technology, and Infineon’s expertise in the design of secure smart card
solutions. VISA’s ultimate goal is the achievement of cross-platform
interoperability across the “GlobalPlatform” and “FeliCa” operating
environments, which would allow cardholders to use “FeliCa-based”
applications to take advantage of special discounts or accumulate loyalty
points when making purchases on their VISA cards and enable service
providers to offer cardholders the convenience of using “VSDC” payment
functionality to top-up the value on prepaid transit or e-purse
applications in one simple transaction.

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COF CFO

Capital One confirmed yesterday that one of its senior executives received a notice from the SEC alleging personal trading in the company’s stock while in possession of material nonpublic information. The news drove Cap One’s stock down by nearly 11% before closing down 9% for the day at $28.25. Cap One said its EVP/CFO, David Willey, received the “Wells” notice two weeks ago and has since resigned. In the interim, Dave Lawson will assume the role of acting CFO. Capital One emphasized to the investment community that no other company executives, including its two top executives, Richard Fairbanks and Nigel Morris, have received a similar notice from the SEC. The potential civil charges that may be filed against Willey by the SEC apparently center around $5 million in trades that he and his wife made in May, 2002. Two months later, Capital One disclosed it had signed an informal MOU with bank regulators addressing its loss reserves and sub-prime credit card business. The July 16th MOU sent the company’ stock down by more than 40% and class action shareholder lawsuits quickly followed. One lawsuit alleged that Cap One insiders sold more than $8.2 million in Cap One common stock at artificially inflated prices. Cap One’s stock traded as high as $66 per share and as low as $24 over the past year. (CF Library 7/22/02)

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ADVANTEX 4Q/02

Toronto-based Advantex Marketing International reported fourth calendar
quarter revenue of $24.3 million, about the same as the year ago quarter.
Net loss for the quarter was $584,000, compared to a net loss of $556,000
one year ago. The company says the latest quarter reflects the costs
associated with the expansion of the “CIBC Aerogold ADVANTEX Benefit”
program and the startup of the “Bank of America/US Airways Dividend Miles”
program. During the quarter, the Company also announced the launch of its
third loyalty e-mall program and the beginning of a new relationship with
its third airline partner, “United Mileage Plus.”

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Portfolio Monitor — Owner Notices

Experian has introduced “Portfolio Monitor — Owner Notices,” an online tool which provides users with daily alerts when changes are recorded on the accounts of small business owners or guarantors whose credit history may be linked with that of a business.  The accounts are monitored for bankruptcies, liens and judgments, major derogatory payment information, new inquiries and trades on file and collection information.  Client settings may be customized to filter selected accounts and the types of notices preferred, and messages can be sent automatically via e-mail.

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New Wincor Nixdorf Kiosks

TX-based Wincor Nixdorf this week unveiled two new POS kiosks for the hospitality and retail markets including the small-footprint “CERTO” kiosk and the futuristic looking “Orbiter” kiosk. The CERTO kiosk is powered by Wincor Nixdorf’s industry-standard BEETLE platform and is available in freestanding, desktop or wall-mounted configurations. CERTO’s small footprint and attractive design make it particularly suitable for use in locations where space is at a premium.

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