NGCOA & Hypercom

The National Golf Course Owners Association, Hypercom and edatagolf USA have formed a partnership to provide low-cost credit card, debit card processing and loyalty/gift card solutions to over 4,500 NGCOA member golf courses. As part of this special program, state-of-the-art Hypercom ICE 5500Plus credit card terminals, including wireless solutions, will be supplied by Hypercom Corp. These terminals will not only accept credit cards and debit cards, but also loyalty and gift program cards developed by edatagolf USA Inc. in partnership with the NGCOA.

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FDC & CUETS

Saskatchewan-based CU Electronic Transaction Services and First
Data have entered into several agreements in which the companies will work
together to provide advanced card issuing, merchant processing, and
acquiring services to the Canadian financial services market. Under terms
of the deal, FDC will provide credit and off-line debit card processing
services for CUETS’ 500 credit union and other card issuing clients
throughout Canada. FDC has also acquired equity interests in CUETS’
merchant acquiring and merchant processing businesses and agreed to form an
alliance which will assume responsibility for management, operations, risk
and sales activities for the acquiring business. FDC will provide
processing services to CUETS clients and the alliance, including
authorizations, merchant support, settlement and disputes.

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WIRELESS ICICI

ICICI Bank has inked a deal with Air2Web India to use their mobile
Internet platform to provide ICICI Bank customers with wireless access to
their banking and credit card accounts. Initially, ICICI Bank customers
will be able to receive alerts via Air2Web’s “2Notify” technology on their
“Short Message Service” phones, which will give them their checking account
and credit card balances. The second phase of the project will allow ICICI
Bank customers to access their checking account balance, receive a
statement of their account, order check books, and access customer service
agents. With credit card accounts, they will be able to pull up available
credit, payment details, payment status, and request a mini statement, as
well as access customer service representatives. ICICI launched its credit
card programs in January 2000 with three offerings including the “Solid
Gold,” “Sterling Silver,” and “True Blue.” The cards are now available in
36 cities across India and ICICI now has a cardbase of more than 6.5 million.

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Turkey Co-Brands

Turkey has become a hot bed for co-branded MasterCards with more than three million cards issued to-date among 80 programs. The top programs include the “Garanti BONUS MasterCard,” “Isbank Maximum MasterCard,” and “Akbank Axess MasterCard.” The most recent program, “Axess by Akbank,” is the fastest growing co-branded program in Europe, with one million cards issued in just nine months. The Akbank program is a multi-branded program with 119 different partner brands with a chip-based credit card combining real-time rewards and rebate facilities. The “Garanti BONUS MasterCard” is the largest MasterCard co-brand in Europe with 1.5 million cards in circulation. There are ten different merchant categories and 510 partner merchants participating in the program offering “BONUS” points and customized cardholders’ statements, giving suggestions for purchases based on previous spending patterns. “Isbank Maximum MasterCard” offers “MaxiPoints” which are stored centrally by the bank, with the POS device at Maximum merchant locations making the online connection to the bank for every transaction. There are currently 5,000 merchant locations offering Maximum advantages. As an additional benefit, Isbank runs a VIP lounge at Istanbul International Airport, which all “Maximum” cardholders are invited to use, free of charge, prior to any international departure.

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MASTERCARD CO-BRANDING

Turkey has become a hot bed for co-branded MasterCards with more than
three million cards issued to-date among 80 programs. The top programs
include the “Garanti BONUS MasterCard,” “Isbank Maximum MasterCard,” and
“Akbank Axess MasterCard.” The most recent program, “Axess by Akbank,” is
the fastest growing co-branded program in Europe, with one million cards
issued in just nine months. The Akbank program is a multi-branded program
with 119 different partner brands with a chip-based credit card combining
real-time rewards and rebate facilities. The “Garanti BONUS MasterCard” is
the largest MasterCard co-brand in Europe with 1.5 million cards in
circulation. There are ten different merchant categories and 510 partner
merchants participating in the program offering “BONUS” points and
customized cardholders” statements, giving suggestions for purchases based
on previous spending patterns. “Isbank Maximum MasterCard” offers
“MaxiPoints” which are stored centrally by the bank, with the POS device at
Maximum merchant locations making the online connection to the bank for
every transaction. There are currently 5,000 merchant locations offering
Maximum advantages. As an additional benefit, Isbank runs a VIP lounge at
Istanbul International Airport, which all “Maximum” cardholders are invited
to use, free of charge, prior to any international departure.

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TEAMNisca PR5103

NJ-based TEAMNisca has introduced the “PR5103” which laminates standard “CR-80” cards printed from any dye-sublimination printer from NISCA, Fargo, Eltron, etc. Features of the PR5103 include sensitive position adjustment settings to optimally locate the laminate on the ID card. Temperature and speed settings allow the user to configure the laminator to just the correct setting for their specific laminate to ensure a perfect bond.

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VISA 2Q/02

VISA International reported that in the credit card market, it has
experienced a 12% increase globally with total sales volume of US$1.24
trillion for the year ending June 30th. Worldwide debit sales volume
surpassed $1 trillion for the same period, an increase of 22% on the
previous year. Regionally, the strongest growth continues to be in emerging
markets. VISA Asia Pacific saw a 42% increase in overall sales volume while
in Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa VISA saw a 37%
increase. Worldwide, there are currently over 1.2 billion VISA payment
cards accepted at more than 29 million physical locations including 800,000
ATMs. VISA says the contributing factors in the global sales volume growth
was an increase in the number of merchant outlets; new co-branded cards,
such as the “Payback VISA” card in Germany and the “Target VISA” card in
the U.S; launch of new payroll programs in the U.S. and Eastern Europe;
and, usage promotions surrounding VISA’s sponsorship of the “2002 Winter
Olympic Games.”

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Rebound Continues

American use of consumer credit continues to gather steam as data for August shows a remarkable increase in the rate of growth compared to one year ago. During August of this year, consumers added nearly $4 billion to revolving credit compared to a pay-down of more than $4.5 billion during August 2001. According to figures released Monday afternoon by the Federal Reserve, revolving credit is growing at an annual rate 6.5% compared to -2.2% one year ago. Since the first of this year consumer revolving credit has grown by $33.5 billion. Bank credit card debt at mid-year was $611.4 billion according to CardData (www.carddata.com). Bank credit card outstandings at mid-year were growing at an annual rate of 7.8% while overall revolving credit was growing at an annual rate of 2.9% in August. According to the government figures released yesterday, American consumers were $1.730 trillion in debt, exclusive of home mortgages during August. The FRB also reported that average interest rates for all credit card accounts now stands at 13.37% and 13.26% for accounts assessed interest. Rates for 48-month new car loans stands at 5.95% while rates for a 24-month personal loan average 11.28%.

REVOLVING CREDIT HISTORICAL
($billions)
Aug 02 Jul 02 Jun 02 May 02 Apr 02 Mar 02 Feb 02
GRWTH: 6.5% 10.6 6.0 4.1 8.0 4.8 2.2
$OWED: $725.9 722.0 715.6 712.1 708.7 705.4 705.0

Jan 02 Dec 01 Nov 01 Oct 01 Sep 01 Aug 01 Jul 01
GRWTH: 1.8% -9.7 12.7 -7.1 0.6 -2.2 -3.7
$OWED: $702.4 692.4 698.0 686.4 692.7 693.5 698.1

Source: Federal Reserve; revised figures as of 10/07/02; For complete
historical data visit CardData (www.carddata.com).

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American Re-Financing

A monthly consumer survey by the Cambridge Consumer Credit Counseling found that nearly a third of American homeowners who have refinanced their mortgage in the last two years are using the funds to boost savings while 15% plan to pay off credit card debt. In conjunction with the Index, the Cambridge Credit Counseling Corporation is releasing its monthly survey of people who have called in for credit counseling services over the past month.

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Sears Earnings Projections

After forcing out the head of its Credit and Financial Products late last week, Sears announced preliminary third quarter earnings yesterday in the range of $0.80 to $0.82, versus earnings per share of $0.80 in the same quarter last year, and a full-year 2002 projection of $5.15 per share, a 22% increase. The company now expects comparable earnings increases in the low- to mid-thirty percent range in its retail and related services segment and in the mid-single digit percent range in its credit and financial products segment.

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Small Biz QuickBooks

Wells Fargo has enabled its small business customers to access “QuickBooks” financial software which now allows customers to accept credit card payments, manage payroll and organize financial data without needing to manually enter information from banking sessions. Using online banking and Bill Pay through QuickBooks allows small business customers to do the following: — Automatically categorize transactions to accounts previously set up. — Automatically create an accounting double-entry, eliminating the need to go into the software and code manually.

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Canadian Fraudsters Settle

Two Canadian citizens and the five corporations they operated have agreed to pay $436,000 to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that they tricked consumers into paying as much as $299 for one of two worthless credit card protection packages and laundered credit card purchases for other sellers for products including lottery tickets, British bonds, and consumer benefits packages. The stipulated final order bans the defendants from telemarketing credit card loss-protection packages and from credit card laundering. The order also bars them from making misrepresentations similar to those alleged in the complaint and from disclosing their consumer lists to anyone besides the FTC or other enforcement agencies.

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