Bank One and the World Wildlife Fund have renewed their affinity credit card relationship which has raised over $7.5 million for WWF programs since its inception in 1995. One percent of net retail purchases made with every WWF Platinum MasterCard or Visa card goes back to WWF, which uses the funding to help protect endangered spaces, save endangered species, and address global environmental threats.Details
VISA has named Doug Michelman of Fleishman-Hillard as EVP/Corporate Relations effective January 2003. He will have ultimate oversight of all corporate communications and reputation management activities in the U.S. In addition he will serve on Visa U.S.A.’s executive management committee. He replaces Barie Carmichael.Details
Fitch Ratings has lowered the senior debt and bank credit facility ratings of Metris Companies to ‘B-‘ from ‘B+’. The short-term deposit rating of DMCCB is unchanged at ‘B’. Approximately $250 million of senior unsecured debt and $100 million of bank debt are affected by this action. The company’s earnings and profitability have been negatively impacted by higher levels of provisions coupled with reduced revenues from a smaller portfolio.Details
Royal Bank’s Streamline Merchant Services reports that holiday volume in
the U.K. on debit and credit cards is maintaining last year’s record
levels. Last weekend Streamline processed Â£630 million in more than 10
million transactions. Withdrawals from NatWest and The Royal Bank of
Scotland cash machines were also at high levels last weekend. Over 4.7
million withdrawals were made, with a total value of Â£302 million which
compares with a figure of Â£281 million for the same weekend last year. The
Royal Bank of Scotland Group has over 5,500 machines in the UK.
Pennsylvania-based Integrated Data Corp. has acquired 41% of DataWave
Systems, Inc., a Yukon Canada company. IDC paid $1.8 million to six selling
shareholders, consisting of various individuals and companies, who acquired
the shares in a distribution that same day from Cash Card Communications
Corp., Ltd, a privately held Bermuda company. IDC says it is considering
the acquisitions of further shares of DataWave in the near future. Shares
if IDC are currently trading at a mid-price of approximately $4.15 per
share on the OTCBB.
India’s United Insurance Company Ltd has developed a customized insurance
product that covers the risk of credit card misuse over the Internet.
Mumbai-based Rediff.com has become the first business to contract the
insurance coverage. The Rediff.com policy covers online Indian credit card
transactions undertaken by Indian nationals, up to Rs 10,000 per
transaction for any product shopped on its Web site.
Claims arising from fraudulent use of credit card on Rediff.com are
refunded within 15 days. For the third quarter, online shopping in India
grew by 238% over the same quarter last year.
NJ-based EBPP systems provider, Incurrent, has been selected New Jersey’s “Growth Company of the Year” by the New Jersey Technology Council. The growth company award program was established to pay tribute to the region’s most outstanding technology companies in recognition of growth, achievement and excellence within the diverse technology sectors of New Jersey. Companies are judged on the basis of market penetration, growth in sales, and employee expansion.Details
Seoul-based IC Korea Co., Ltd has become a Principal Member among card
manufacturers in the International Card Manufacturers Association. Also
joining IC Korea are Huangshi G & D Wanda Security Card Ltd. (Branch
Member) of Huangshi, Hubei and US-based Travel Tags / Xtreme Graphics. New
personalizer members includeÂ·Discover Financial Services of Riverwoods,
Illinois. Associate Members among suppliers include: API Foils: Lawrence,
KS, USA; Â·Hanwha L & C Corp. Seoul, Korea; Kora-Packmat Maschinenbau GmbH,
Villingendorf, Germany; and Unifoil Corp.of Passaic Park, NJ, USA. ICMA is
a non-profit association of plastic card manufacturers, personalizers and
related industry participants and has more than 230 members globally.
Global Payments reported that revenue for the quarter ending November 30th grew 12% to $129.5 million. Net income for the quarter grew 17% to $13.6 million compared to $11.6 million in the prior year. For the six months ended November 30th, revenue grew 14% to $257.2 million compared to $226.6 million in the prior year. Organic revenue grew approximately 8% to $245.7 million. GPN says it expects to achieve fiscal 2003 full year guidance of $495 million to $514 million in revenue. For complete details on Global Payments latest performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]).
Samsung Electronics’ 64KB smart card with crypto functions has received “EAL4+” level Common Criteria certification. EAL represents the level of confidence of an IT security product or system. The advanced security requirement makes the new smart card an attractive solution for security-sensitive applications such as SIM cards, E-money, Java and MULTOS cards.Details
Tukwilla, WA-based BECU, with 300,000 members has converted to the Corillian “Voyager” Internet banking platform. The conversion to the Corillian Voyager platform provides BECU members with quicker and more reliable access to their financial accounts to allow them to manage their finances online more efficiently.Details
The regulatory scrutiny of credit card issuers this year along with the continued malaise of the U.S. economy are seen as key factors indicating that bankcard charge-offs will not begin to show sustainable improvement until the economy gets better traction during the second half of 2003. That conclusion was drawn yesterday by Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services. S&P says the weak consumer is likely to raise the losses for the credit card industry going forward. While the worst may be over, (charge-offs have declined from a record 7.6% in March to 6.5% in October), the unemployment rate is still creeping higher, and charge-offs are likely to rise further before finally falling later next year. Charge-offs are likely to move back above 7% in the first quarter 2003. S&P notes the two bright spots for the credit card industry are the relatively high levels of excess spread and stable payment rates.Details