Entourage Provider

Montreal-based Sigma Assistel has become the provider of travel assistance and business concierge services for two of the new CIBC entourage American Express cards. The ‘Travel Assistance Service’ enables cardholders to receive forgotten documents from home or the office, have prescriptions filled, find lost luggage or send messages. ‘Business Concierge Service’ provides information on cultural customs and weather; business hours; hotel, restaurant, conference room and golf course reservations; access to entertainment and special events; and forwarding of documents in the event of loss or theft. CIBC launched its new line of entourage American Express cards on Jan. 9. The credit card line includes the first smart chip credit card available nationally in Canada, as well as the business card and an exclusive Platinum offer. CIBC is the first Canadian bank to issue American Express credit cards in Canada. (CF Library 1/10/02)


Spiegel Card Sale

The Spiegel Group confirmed Thursday afternoon it is looking to unload its credit card business following rapid deterioration and a significant earnings shortfall in its credit card portfolio. Spiegel’s card business, which includes its OR-based First Consumers National Bank subsidiary, was particularly hard hit in its private-label credit card programs as charge-offs escalated last year. The company reported Thursday a total loss from discontinued operations of $396.3 million in the fourth quarter, which primarily consists of a $310.5 million anticipated loss on the sale of the credit card portfolo. Spiegel says its 4Q/01 net loss from discontinued operations was $85.7 million, compared to 4Q/00 net earnings from discontinued operations of $42.9 million. As a result of the 4Q/01 loss, the company said it is not in compliance with certain of its 2001 loan covenants and is currently working closely with its bank group and its majority shareholder, the Otto family, to restructure its credit facilities. Spiegel traced its problems back to 1999 when it aggressively entered the sub-prime market. At that time, the company adopted a risk-based pricing policy. However, in the fourth quarter of 2000, in response to rising delinquencies and charge-offs in its private-label credit card programs, Spiegel implemented more restrictive underwriting policies, more aggressive collection efforts, and selectively re-pricing certain segments of the portfolio. However, the 2001 recession, combined with the high account growth that was heavily weighted toward higher-risk accounts, led to an accelerated decline in credit quality and profits. Spiegel says it will form a relationship with a third-party to provide private-label credit card programs to its customers. First Consumers National Bank, which offers secured and unsecured bank credit card products, currently has approximately $1.3 billion in credit card receivables and 1.6 million accounts, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com][1]). For complete details on Spiegel’s 4Q/01 performance visit CardData ([www.carddata.com][2]).

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


Wireless Food Stamps

The Farm Bill passed last week by the Senate included a provision for wireless transaction processing at outdoor farmers’ markets. The Senate provided $3 million in the bill for projects including wireless EBT. The bill must now be reconciled with a version passed by the House of Representatives on October 5. The move will open the door for wireless payment providers to provide POS terminals to the tens of thousands of farmers participating nationwide in the farmers’ market program. It will extend the ‘Food Stamp Program’ to farmers nationwide. Congress approved similar funding for landline POS terminals for grocery store owners under the ‘Food Stamp Fraud Reduction Act of 1993’. U.S. Wireless Data chairman and CEO Dean Leavitt testified before the United States Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry on the benefits of wireless EBT POS. USWD now handles more than 500 million transactions each year through its data centers and nationwide network.


Card Bond Yields Decline

Fitch Ratings’ Credit Card Index showed mixed results for the December collection period as credit quality measures continued above prior-year levels. Despite some signs of economic improvement in recent weeks, Fitch anticipates layoffs to continue over the near term as companies try and find ways to restore profitability, a trend that will lead to higher chargeoffs in 2002, according to the latest edition of ‘Credit Card Movers & Shakers’.

‘A prolonged recession may cause households to reign in credit card debt as consumer confidence falls,’ said Rui Pereira, Director, Fitch Ratings. ‘As such, concerns remain focused on consumers’ ability to service their debt through a prolonged downturn, particularly for more vulnerable high-risk consumer segments that have begun to exhibit weakening trends.

Fitch’s Excess Spread Index posted a third straight record high, increasing 0.38 basis point (bp) over last month to 7.44%, while the Chargeoff Index held steady with a decline of 7.0 bps from the prior month. However, Fitch’s Gross Yield Index fell to 18% from month- and year-earlier levels of 18.25% and 19.50%, respectively, its lowest level in almost five years.

For a copy of ‘Credit Card Movers & Shakers’ please visit Fitch’s web site at ‘www.fitchratings.com’ or contact Market Services at 1-800-853-4824.

Fitch NewsAlert, an e-mail notification service, is now available for the monthly ‘Credit Card Movers & Shakers’ report. If you would like to receive e-mail notification on a monthly basis as to the availability of this report, which includes a hyperlink to the adobe acrobat file, please contact Ileana Sayago via e-mail at ‘ileana.sayago@fitchratings.com’ or by phone at 1-212-908-0752.


GCA Renews Infonox

To demonstrate its ongoing commitment to provide unsurpassed technology and innovative cash access services to gaming properties, Global Cash Access has announced the continuation of its technology partnership with Infonox, a software company that focuses on transaction and payment products. GCA is the leading supplier of cash access, financial management and customer relationship marketing technologies to the gaming industry.

The partnership involves the development and delivery of a new suite of products and services from Infonox, named SupportNox, through which Infonox will provide GCA with new support systems for its latest products including the Automated Cashier Machine (ACM(SM)) and QuikCash Plus (QCP) Web. SupportNox will include device monitoring, reporting, call center management, biometrics and telephony systems.

GCA also will continue to use Infonox’s Active Payment Platform (APP), which enables GCA casinos to access patron records and interact with patrons in real time through a suite of sophisticated marketing and transaction processing services.

“Infonox’s technology platform has allowed us to take cash access services for the gaming industry to the next level by consolidating ATM, credit card cash advance, POS debit, check cashing, credit services and money transfers through one architecture and integrating a customer relationship marketing component as transactions occur,” said Kirk Sanford, chief executive officer of GCA. “The continuation of our partnership ensures customers and casino patrons will have the latest technology available when using GCA’s products and services.”

In 2001, GCA delivered 10 unique products and services to the gaming industry that use the Infonox Active Payment Platform, including QuikReports, QuikMarketing, QuikCredit, QCP Web, Central Credit Real-Time, ACM and the QuikPlay ATM, which was unveiled at Global Gaming Expo in October 2001.

“Over the last 30 months, we have proven that the Active Payment Platform works in the most rigorous financial environments and provides the framework necessary for delivering the next generation of transaction products,” said Safwan Shah, chief executive officer of Infonox. “With SupportNox, we are extending the APP. This will enable GCA to maximize value to its customers and maintain its leadership position.”

About Global Cash Access

Global Cash Access is a joint venture of First Data Corp. and M&C International, Inc. Providing access to the gaming industry’s largest patron database, Global Cash Access uses Internet technologies to deliver funds transfer, financial management and customer relationship marketing services to more than 1,000 gaming properties in the US, Canada, Caribbean and Europe. More information on the company is available at [ww.globalcashaccess.com][1].

About Infonox

Infonox provides infrastructure software for businesses to deploy, aggregate and manage transaction services. Infonox’s Active Payment Platform (APP) enables businesses to rapidly build and aggregate transaction services on PCs, POS terminals, mobile devices and ATM machines. An integrated suite of products and services handles application deployment and configuration, transaction processing, security, risk management, reporting, monitoring, device and terminal handling, identity verification and media delivery systems. Infonox partners with leading transaction service providers, banks, non-bank financial institutions, acquirers, ISO’s and enterprise customers. For more information, please visit [www.infonox.com][2].

[1]: http://www.globalcashaccess.com
[2]: http://www.infonox.com



First Data Europe, Europe’s largest card transaction processor and subsidiary of First Data Corporation, and Fair, Isaac and Company, Incorporated, announced that FDE has completed implementation of an upgraded version of TRIAD(TM) adaptive control system, Fair, Isaac’s leading account management system. The greatly enhanced TRIAD enables the card transaction processor to provide issuers with more profitable account management strategies.

Fully integrated with FDE’s host system, this recent TRIAD upgrade improves client decisioning capability in numerous ways, including extensive management information to facilitate better analysis of the potential for reducing risk and/or maximizing profitability; an estimator feature for assessing new strategies before actual promotion; a greatly enhanced number of selectable decision keys; and minimized administrative effort involved in maintaining risk strategies. In summary, this upgrade provides greater flexibility and speed in terms of developing a wider variety of actions according to risk, profitability and other considerations for building customer lifetime value.

Gerald Hawkins, CEO of FDE commented, “TRIAD has proven to be a very reliable account management tool in helping our clients attract and retain more profitable customers. We are very excited to provide this upgraded version of TRIAD as part of our outsourced offering. This will enable our clients to access Fair, Isaac’s latest strategy tools and decision capabilities.”

“Fair, Isaac and FDE share a decade of delivering TRIAD as a high-quality account management solution to card issuers in Europe, and TRIAD has delivered huge benefits to their clients,” said Andrew Jennings, Vice President, Global Processor Alliances market, Fair, Isaac. “Our ongoing commitment to upgrading and enhancing TRIAD ensures that the system will continue to help issuers deal with their evolving account management demands, and we look forward to working with FDE to expand the availability of TRIAD further into Europe and new markets.”

A representative of the Co-operative Bank, which has been processing with TRIAD through FDE since 1997, considers the upgrade highly significant and timely. “To maintain a competitive advantage and to ensure that we provide the best service possible to our customers, we’re always looking ahead for advanced solutions in the market,” said Dave Hill, Credit Risk Manager of the Co-operative Bank. “This is especially true in today’s uncertain economy. TRIAD’s highly improved functionality and flexibility will help us improve individual account level treatment in strategic decision areas and increase our overall portfolio profitability.”

FDE first offered TRIAD in 1991 and is currently processing in excess of 14 million customer accounts through TRIAD each month. The system allows users to apply Fair, Isaac’s analytics and decision technology to optimize key areas of account management, including credit lines, delinquent collections, over-limit balances, transaction authorization, card reissue, performance-based pricing and marketing communications.

The TRIAD upgrade is part of FDE’s ongoing “Project Genesis,” a series of IT initiatives designed to bring additional flexibility and functionality to the First Data Europe platform.

About First Data Europe

FDE is the leading independent third party transaction processor in Europe and Europe’s leading Internet-only processor. FDE services major banks and financial institutions in the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, the Netherlands and the Middle East. It has been active in the UK for 10 years and is part of the US First Data Corporation. For more information, please visit the company’s Web site at www.firstdata.co.uk.

About First Data Corp.

First Data Corp. (NYSE:FDC), with global headquarters in Denver, powers the global economy. As the leader in electronic commerce and payment services, First Data serves approximately 2.8 million merchant locations, 1,400 card issuers and millions of consumers, making it easier, faster and more secure for people and businesses to buy goods and services using virtually any form of payment. With 29,000 employees worldwide, the company provides credit, debit, smart card and stored-value card issuing and merchant transaction processing services; Internet commerce solutions; Western Union(R) money transfers and money orders; and check processing and verification services throughout the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Mexico, Spain and Germany. Its money transfer agent network includes approximately 120,000 locations in more than 185 countries and territories. For more information, please visit the company’s Web site at www.firstdata.com.

About Fair, Isaac

Fair, Isaac is the pre-eminent provider of creative analytics that unlock value for people, businesses and industries. The company’s predictive modelling, decision analysis, intelligence management and decision engine systems power more than 14 billion decisions a year. Founded in 1956, Fair, Isaac helps thousands of companies in over 60 countries acquire customers more efficiently, increase customer value, reduce risk and credit losses, lower operating expenses and enter new markets more profitably. Most leading banks and credit card issuers rely on Fair, Isaac’s analytic solutions, as do insurers, retailers, telecommunications providers and other customer-oriented companies. Through the www.myfico.com Web site, consumers use the company’s FICO(R) scores, the standard measure of credit risk, to manage their financial health.

Headquartered in San Rafael, California, Fair, Isaac is traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE:FIC) and for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2001, reported net income of $46 million on revenues of $329 million. For more information, visit www.fairisaac.com.


VISA’s Computer Initiative

As part of a national effort by Visa U.S.A. to build financial literacy in students across the country and help bridge the digital divide, Visa U.S.A. donated a computer lab this week to East Bay High School, located outside of Tampa.

The lab, which consists of six new Internet-equipped computers and Visa U.S.A.’s online bilingual financial literacy program Practical Money Skills for Life, is part of a nationwide program that involves giving away ten computer labs to selected high schools. The computer lab donation to East Bay High School was made in partnership with Visa Member financial institutions Bank of America and Capital One.

Congressman Jim Davis (D-FLA-11) worked with Visa U.S.A. to nominate East Bay High School. During the ceremony he praised Visa U.S.A.’s efforts to support the Hispanic community and provide parents, teachers, and students with resources in English and Spanish that teach basic money management skills, like budgeting and balancing a checkbook.

“America’s future business leaders will not be able to manage a corporate account if they have not learned how to balance a family checking account,” said Rep. Davis. “Visa should be commended for their efforts to teach our children the importance of sticking to a budget and saving for the future. Thanks to Visa’s innovative Practical Money Skills for Life program, students at East Bay High School will learn financial management skills that they can carry from the classroom to the family room and the boardroom.”

“There is a great need nationwide to provide young people with financial literacy education,” said Rep. Davis. “I’m pleased to be a part of a program that will have such an impact on the lives of our young people and I think Practical Money Skills will equip students with the skills they need to handle their finances.”

East Bay High School principal Sue Croley hosted the ceremony, which included an online demonstration of Practical Money Skills for Life materials. The event featured Superintendent Earl Lennard, East Bay High School teacher Roy Rogers, and Lilia Mojica, financial literacy expert and Visa spokesperson. Students also had the opportunity to log onto practicalmoneyskills.com to experience the curriculum firsthand.

“Visa’s goal is to ensure everyone has equal access to financial literacy resources,” said Lilia Mojica, financial literacy expert and Visa spokesperson. “That’s why Visa is giving away computers to schools in need so that students can be better equipped with the skills they need to handle their finances.”

Visa U.S.A.’s Practical Money Skills for Life currently reaches more than 22,000 schools. The program includes preschool-to-12th grade lesson plans for teachers, a resource center for parents, and interactive games and quizzes for students. The materials were designed in conjunction with Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy and the National Consumers League to increase financial literacy — regardless of language preference. They are available in Spanish at www.vidaydinero.com, and in English at www.practicalmoneyskills.com.

Practical Money Skills for Life is just a part of Visa’s commitment to improve the nation’s financial literacy. Additional efforts include:

— Because it understands the critical role of public libraries in education Visa U.S.A. has partnered with Libraries for the Future to make the materials available at libraries in low-income neighborhoods and support librarians in their work with youth and families.

— Visa also supports efforts to pass legislation in Congress to help provide financial literacy education to more schools. An amendment that would provide funding to states to develop and implement financial literacy courses for our children recently passed both houses of Congress as part of the education reform bill. Visa praises these efforts led by Representatives David Dreier, Earl Pomeroy, and Senators Jon Corzine, Michael Enzi, and Daniel Akaka.

“People often ask why Visa is so committed to financial literacy,” said Kelly Presta, vice president of public affairs, Visa U.S.A. “The answer is simple, not only does it make smart business sense, but it’s also the right thing to do.”

About Visa U.S.A.

Visa is the world’s leading payment brand and largest consumer payment system, enabling banks to provide their consumer and merchant customers with the best way to pay and be paid. More than 14,000 U.S. financial institutions rely on Visa’s processing system, VisaNet, to facilitate over $810 billion in annual transaction volume — including more than half of all Internet payments — with virtually 100 percent reliability. U.S. consumers carry more than 353 million Visa-branded smart, credit, commercial, stored value and check cards, accepted at approximately 22 million locations worldwide. Visa has long led the industry in developing payment security standards, and has been named the most trusted payment brand online. Visa’s people, partnerships, brand and payment technology are helping to create universal commerce – the ability to safely conduct transactions anytime, anywhere and by any device. Please visit www.visa.com for additional information.



Loblaw Companies had another record year in
2001, realizing net earnings per share of $2.04, representing a 19%
improvement over last year’s $1.71. Fourth quarter net earnings per share
increased 16% to 79 cents from last year’s 68 cents (18% increase excluding
the 2000 fourth quarter federal and provincial budgeted income tax rate

Sales for the fourth quarter increased 7% over last year to $5.3 billion.
For the full year, sales were $21.5 billion, 7% ahead of last year (over 8%
excluding the sales of certain non-core Cash and Carry status tobacco and
Quebec food service operations, both of which were discontinued in 2000 and
cycled as we entered the fourth quarter). Solid sales growth was experienced
across the country with continued positive improvements in Quebec. Same-store
sales for the quarter and the full year increased 4% for the Company,
including the effects of some food price inflation, which eased during the
second half of the year. During the fourth quarter of 2001, 18 new corporate
and franchised stores were opened (2000 – 37 stores), bringing the full year
total to 61 new corporate and franchised stores opened (2000 – 71).

Operating income (earnings before interest, taxes and goodwill charges)
for the quarter increased $54 million or 16% to $397 million. Operating margin
(operating income divided by sales) improved to 7.6% from 7.0% in 2000, while
trading margin (EBITDA, operating income before depreciation, divided by
sales) improved to 9.0% from 8.4% in 2000. For the full year, operating income
increased $160 million or 16% to $1.14 billion with an operating margin of
5.3% as compared to 4.9% in 2000 with a corresponding increase in trading
margin. Throughout the year operating margin improvements were generally the
result of stable or strategically reduced retail pricing offset by better mix
management and cost control programs.

Interest expense for the quarter remained constant at $34 million and
increased 10% year-to-date as a result of increased net average borrowing
levels partially offset by lower average effective borrowing rates. Interest
coverage (operating income divided by interest expense) of 11.7 times for the
quarter improved from 10.1 times for the comparable period in the prior year
(7.2 times, up from 6.8 times on a year-to-date basis). The effective income
tax rate for the quarter and on a year-to-date basis decreased as compared to
the prior year, in line with statutory income tax rate reductions, to
approximately 39.7% year-to-date.

The financial position and cash generating capability of the Company
remain strong. The .76:1 total net debt to equity ratio at the end of the year
strengthened from the third quarter as the normal cyclical investment in
working capital decreased, consistent with prior years. Operating cash flows
improved consistent with EBITDA growth offset somewhat by a strategic
investment in non-cash working capital, principally non-food inventory.

Capital investment of $378 million during the quarter and $1.1 billion
for the year was as planned and reflects the Company’s continuing commitment
to maintain and renew its asset base and invest for growth across all banners
and regions of Canada.

During the first half of the year, the Company issued an aggregate amount
of $1.04 billion of Medium Term Notes with interest rates ranging from 6.0% to
7.1% and maturity dates ranging from 2008 to 2016. Throughout the year, the
Series 1991, 11.25% Provigo Inc. Debentures of $100 million matured, the
Series 5, 10% Debentures of $50 million were redeemed and $100 million of
7.34% Medium Term Notes matured.

In last year’s first quarter, the Company adopted, retroactively without
restatement, the new Canadian accounting standards for “Income Taxes” and
“Employee Future Benefits”. The combined effect of the initial adoption was a
decrease in retained earnings of $152 million in 2000.

During the first quarter of 2001, the Company renewed its Normal Course
Issuer Bid to purchase on The Toronto Stock Exchange or enter into forward
contracts for up to 13,812,265 of its common shares, representing
approximately 5% of the common shares outstanding. The Company, in accordance
with the rules and by-laws of The Toronto Stock Exchange, may purchase its
common shares at the then market prices of such shares.

Corporate Profile

Loblaw Companies Limited is Canada’s largest food distributor, with
operations across the country. Loblaw concentrates on food retailing with the
objective of providing consumers with the best in one-stop shopping for
everyday household needs. Loblaw strives to provide superior returns to its
shareholders through a combination of share price appreciation and dividends.


Charge-Offs 4Q/01

Charge-offs among the top ten issuers of VISA and MasterCards increased by nearly 20% during the fourth quarter compared to 4Q/00. Providian and Citigroup reported the largest jump in losses over the past twelve months. However, American Express and Discover also posted significantly higher losses during 2001, surging 34.1% and 28.9%, respectively. American Express’ charge-off rate increased from 4.4% one year ago to 5.9% for 4Q/01. For the third quarter, AmEx reported charge-offs of 5.6%. For the fiscal quarter ending Nov. 30, 2001, Discover reported a charge-off rate of 5.89% compared to 5.79% for the prior quarter, and 4.57% for 4Q/00. Discounting Providian, the average 4Q/01 loss rate among the top nine VISA and MasterCard issuers would be 6.01%, compared to 5.24% for 4Q/00, a +14.7% change. Including American Express and Discover, the average charge-off rate among the top 12 players would be 6.55% for 4Q/01, compared to 5.39% for 4Q/00, a 21.5% increase. For complete portfolio details on the top U.S. issuers visit CardData (www.carddata.com).

4Q/01 3Q/01 4Q/00 CHNG
1. Citigroup: 5.91% 5.48% 4.22% +40.0%
2. MBNA: 4.86% 4.90% 3.87% +25.6%
3. First USA: 5.59% 5.89% 5.41% + 3.3%
4. Chase: 5.48% 5.64% 4.86% +12.8%
5. Cap One: 4.42% 3.92% 3.98% +11.1%
6. Providian: 12.70% 10.33% 8.49% +49.6%
7. BofA: 4.90% 4.81% 4.32% +13.4%
8. Household: 6.69% 6.75% 5.83% +14.8%
9. Fleet: 5.38% 6.26% 4.97% + 8.2%
10. Dir Merch: 10.90% 10.70% 9.70% +12.3%
AVERAGE: 6.68% 6.47% 5.57% +19.9%
Source: CardData (www.carddata.com)



At this year’s 3GSM World Congress in Cannes (France), Oberthur Card Systems unveiled for the first time the ‘SIMphonIC™ 3G Composer’, its latest software tool for developing and simulating applications and services on both 2G and 3G networks.

The 3G Composer, the most recent addition to Oberthur’s world-leading “SIMphonIC™ Composer” family, is intended to help mobile operators as well as content and service providers in modelling, designing, developing and simulating new applications and services for UMTS networks. The new tool enables Java™ programmers to develop applets not only for 3G SIM cards, but also for handsets.

To showcase its 3G Composer, Oberthur Card Systems will demonstrate three types of application development on both Java™ SIM cards and handsets: – Standard authentication with the user WIM application for mobile gambling (lottery); – Digital rights management, when downloading music onto a wireless terminal; – Payment via mobile phone (m-commerce), complying with the Europay-MasterCard-Visa (EMV) standard using debit / credit applications

Commonly used to secure access on mobile phones, SIM cards will play an even more critical role with the arrival of 3G networks. In a world becoming more open, SIM cards will be a key element for authentication and data integrity transmission, securing payments made via mobile devices (m-commerce), or digital rights management (DRM) when accessing multimedia content.

About Oberthur Card Systems

Oberthur Card Systems (listed on the Euronext Stock Exchange – Code Euroclear 12413) is a leading provider of card-based products, software and applications including SIM and multi-application smart card-based solutions, consulting, personalization and card services.

A global player and innovator in the smart card industry, championing EMV and open standards, Oberthur maintains a leading position in the payment cards market as the world’s number one supplier of Visa and MasterCard branded cards as well as in network security, m-commerce and Pay-TV fields.

With unrivalled expertise in JavaTM and GSM technologies, Oberthur delivers the most advanced, open and interoperable SIM, WAP and 3G (IMT-2000/UMTS) solutions to mobile operators thereby transforming the nature of mobile communications.

With revenues of EUR 484.2 million in 2001, Oberthur Card Systems has an international reach with an industrial and commercial presence in 21 countries across the five continents.

www.oberthurcs.com; www.oberthurusa.com


Global Rings the Bell

Global Payments Inc., one of the largest electronic transaction processors in the world, announced that it will mark its first anniversary of regular trading on the New York Stock Exchange by ringing the “Closing Bell” at the exchange on Friday, February 22, 2002. The occasion also marks the anniversary of the company’s spin from National Data Corporation, now NDCHealth(TM) (NYSE: NDC).

In the year since it began trading, the company has become a world leader in payment processing solutions, as well as Canada’s largest publicly held, independent VISA(R) and MasterCard(R) acquirer.

Ringing the Closing Bell on February 22 will be Global Payments’ Chairman of the Board, Robert A. Yellowlees and Global’s President and CEO, Paul R. Garcia.

Global Payments Inc. began regular trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on February 1, 2001, one day after the spin from National Data Corporation on January 31, 2001. At that time, President and CEO, Paul R. Garcia rang the Opening Bell to announce the occasion.

“We have had a strong year,” said President and CEO, Garcia, “and we are proud to announce that our market capitalization has more than doubled over the previous twelve months, reaching a high of $1.365 billion from just over one-half billion prior to our first trade.”

“In addition, we have introduced a number of new products that broaden merchant payment opportunities. These include our Web-based reporting tools, Global Access @dvantage(TM) and Merchant Enrollment @dvantage. We have also significantly expanded our ISO and direct merchant businesses through strong organic growth of our core products and services.”

Contributing to Global’s achievement of these milestones were the acquisitions of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce’s (CIBC) and the National Bank of Canada’s merchant acquiring businesses. Global also formed ten-year marketing alliances with these financial institutions to provide merchant payment-related products and services to their respective customers and offer a one-stop source for their VISA, MasterCard and debit card processing needs.

Global Payments Inc. (NYSE: GPN) is a leading provider of electronic transaction processing services to merchants, Independent Sales Organizations (ISOs), financial institutions, government agencies and multi-national corporations located throughout the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom and Europe. Global Payments offers a comprehensive line of payment solutions including credit and debit cards, business-to-business purchasing cards, gift cards, Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards, check guarantee, check verification and recovery, terminal management and funds transfer services.


Omni 3210

VeriFone has introduced a new version of its ‘3200’ series terminals and has received ‘Class A Certification’ from Vital Processing Services for the new terminal. The new ‘Omni 3210’ includes an internal PINpad and printer in a unique swivel design that “twists” to support a dual clerk/consumer interface. VeriFone’s ‘Omni 3210’ terminal is certified with Vital’s ‘Merchant Management System’, which results in streamlined deployment. The system supports online merchant registration and automated terminal downloading, eliminating errors caused by manual data entry and data manipulation. The ‘Omni 3210’ builds on the success of the ‘Omni 3200’, with the addition of an internal PINpad to support debit and EBT transactions. Additionally, the ‘Omni 3210’ and ‘SoftPay’ support software features such as account truncation to meet state regulations for receipt printing, and ‘DUKPT’ key management to meet advanced security standards. The terminal also supports ‘AVS’ and ‘CVV2’.