DaimlerChrysler VISA

German-based DaimlerChrysler Bank has changed its legal form to a stock corporation, received a full banking license, and has begun offering new products such as deposit-banking services, as well as a new DaimlerChrysler VISA, both with the special rewards program “RoadMiles.” The DaimlerChrysler VISA is the first German credit card with an EMV chip and carries an annual fee of EUR 29, according to The RAM Report ([www.ramreport.com][1]). Those who pay their bills with the DaimlerChrysler Card automatically collect “RoadMiles,” which can be redeemed for attractive products and services. Gas purchases even get triple points. The bank will initially target its 4 million customers in Germany for the new products. The new banking products will not be offered at car dealerships, but instead via the Internet and the DaimlerChrysler Bank customer service center by telephone, fax, e-mail, or normal letter. The license for deposit-banking services is also valid for market entry into other European countries (Europapass).

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

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EDC & Webify

Edgar, Dunn & Company and Webify Solutions have partnered to combine EDC’s deep expertise in corporate and retail banking, cards and payments with Webify’s integrated Web services solution comprising software infrastructure, applications, business libraries and methodology. This strategic alliance is aimed at delivering a new category of distributed applications that can make it cost effective to automate cross-functional and cross-organizational business processes that have heretofore resisted automation.

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GE 2Q/02

GE Capital Services reported this morning that revenues for its card services segment rose by only 1% during the second quarter, from $956 million for 2Q/01 to $962 million. Net earnings for card services declined by 6%. Net earnings for card services was $176 million for the second quarter compared to $187 million one year ago. For the first half of 2002, GE’s card services revenues have slipped by 10% from $2.0 billion to $1.87 billion. However net earnings year-to-date for card services increased by 6%, from $364 million for the first half of 2001 to $387 million for the first six months of 2002. Overall, GE’s second-quarter 2002 earnings grew 14% over second quarter 2001 to $4.4 billion, the highest of any quarter in the Company’s history. For complete details on GE’s 2Q/02 performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]).

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

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OBERTHUR EAL4

Oberthur Card Systems has received the highest security certification ever granted in France for a multi-application smart card. EAL4+ Common Criteria certification was awarded to Oberthur’s “CosmopolIC” by the Direction Centrale de la Sécurité des Systèmes d’Informations. The “CosmopolIC” smart card is the first Java multi-application card that enables applications to be downloaded or deleted after the card is issued without compromising its security components.

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NextCards Deactivated

Unable to find a buyer and facing an early amortization of NextCard’s securitized credit card assets, the FDIC decided this week to shut down about 800,000 NextCard credit card accounts. The FDIC began notifying cardholders on Tuesday, via email, of the deactivation action, which took effect yesterday. The action has no impact on the NextBank, non-securitzed credit card accounts sold to CardWorks and Merrick Bank last week. The FDIC informed cardholders there will be no refund of annual fees and that all points accrued in the NextCard incentive program have been eliminated. However, Amazon.com, an investor in NextCard, indicated it will honor the points. VISA reportedly said it has lined up two issuers to contact affected customers during the next few weeks to offer balance transfers. The FDIC estimated last week that the cost to the Bank Insurance Fund for the failure of NextBank will run between $300 and $400 million. The OCC closed NextBank on Feb. 7th and the FDIC was appointed the receiver. NextCard tried to find an acquisition partner after regulators determined last year that the bank was undercapitalized. The OCC said NextBank was classifying some delinquent accounts sold into a securitization trust as fraud losses, although the delinquencies were actually attributable to credit quality problems. (CF Library 2/8/02; 2/11/02; 3/14/02; 6/10/02; 7/3/02)

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@POS SIGNS NRT

Toronto-based NRT Technology Corporation has become a certified VAR for @pos’ POS terminals. NRT will implement @pos’ signature capture products, including iPOS 3100, TX.C, and iPOS TC terminals, with its Players Signature Capture System. The turnkey solution allows casinos to be compliant with Canadian government legislation regarding the storage of personal information such as gaming history. Patrons desiring to join a casino’s loyalty program must acknowledge a document that is electronically presented to them. The player’s card is swiped through an @pos terminal and the document is presented. If the patron agrees with the document, they sign on the terminal’s signature capture pad. The digital signature is stored with the player’s card information in the casino database as a cost-effective compliance solution.

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Basketball Card Options

MBNA and the NBA will launch, in October, a new program to enable basketball fans to choose a credit card featuring the logo and colors of any of their favorite NBA, WNBA, or NBDL teams. Fans can sign up for the credit cards on-site at a variety of NBA events and activities including NBA Jam Van, NBA All-Star Jam Session, Yahoo! Sports NBA Rhythm ‘n Rims presented by Reebok, and through NBA.com. MBNA will team with the leagues to market and issue the new team and league credit cards at these NBA events and through a national marketing campaign. The program will also extend outside of the US in the United Kingdom, Spain, and Ireland.

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THALES ACQUIRES CHR

Gloucester-based CHR Design is being acquired by Thales e-Security in an all cash deal. Thales said its flexible cryptography security solutions are already deployed in France, Norway and NATO, but the CHR acquisition will provide an additional range of capabilities in the UK. CHR Design develops technical cryptographic systems for some of the UK’s largest defence primes and a number of high profile UK Government departments. Thales e-Security also announced the expansion of its worldwide capability by investing in a US proxy company that will enhance the company’s offerings for the US Government’s high assurance security market place.

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Genpass Claims Bianco

Genpass has hired Ralph Bianco, formerly with MasterCard and GENSAR Technologies, as SVP of the Genpass Card Solutions division. Bianco will assume responsibility for card product management for Genpass, which has delivered several new specialized card services to the market, including payroll cards — used by corporations to replace check issuance and payroll accounting – and medical payments cards – used by consumers as direct payment from their medical benefits accounts for health care related expenses. Bianco will develop a national strategy for marketing these specialized cards and will play a large role in the development of additional card products for Genpass.

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