DaimlerChryslerServices North America announced Tuesday the online launch of three co-branded classic and platinum VISA credit cards targeted to current and prospective Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge owners. Chrysler has been offering the cards on a pre-approved basis to approximately 7 million current customers, as well as through take-ones at dealerships since November 1st. Besides announcing the online marketing extension, the company also announced yesterday a partnership with ExxonMobil and a national sweepstakes. Under the ‘Rewards VISA’ program, cardholders earn one point for every dollar charged. Five points are earned for each dollar spent on purchases charged at participating Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge dealers. Cardholders can now earn three points per dollar at Exxon and Mobil service stations. Points can be redeemed for certificates, which are used in Chrysler Group dealerships like cash for service, merchandise, and parts. Additionally, cardholders can also apply points earned towards the purchase or lease of any new or used Chrysler Group vehicle. DaimlerChrysler also launched a national sweepstake for the new cards, offering the chance to win one of three 2002 model year vehicles a PT Cruiser, Jeep Liberty or the newly designed Dodge Ram Truck. Cardholders are automatic entered for each purchase or cash advance posted to the card. The card carries an interest rate of prime +10.99% with a four month 3.9% intro rate. The card is issued by Columbus Bank & Trust. TSYS has signed a multiyear contract with DaimlerChrysler to provide processing for the new consumer credit card portfolio. (CF Library 7/26/01; 10/29/01)Details
USA Technologies, Inc. announced the
international distribution expansion of its e-Port technology into Canada with
new Authorized Resellers, a new OEM partner and new marketplace opportunities.
USA Technologies President & Chief Operating Officer, Stephen P. Herbert,
said he was delighted over the expansion into Canada with e-Port, but most
excited by the giant Canadian telephone company, Bell Canada, using the e-Port
technology as part of Bell Canada’s new vending program to dispense cell
phones and ancillary supplies. “This important new customer expands a growing
list of very large companies utilizing e-Port technology, including global
giants in the Consumer Products, IT and Telecommunications industries,” he
USA Technologies Authorized Reseller Program has also added two of
Canada’s top vending distributors to distribute the e-Port product line.
Included are Laniel Canada Inc. of Quebec and Brokerhouse Distributors of
Ontario. Both of these new distributors have begun to accept shipments. The
expansion of its Authorized Reseller network into Canada represents the
acceleration of the Company’s international expansion plan.
To further add to the Canadian expansion, USA Technologies has secured an
initial order of e-Ports with Opal Manufacturing of Ontario. Opal is one of
the premier manufacturers of prepaid telephone card vending machines, with
product distribution throughout Canada and the United States. Opal joins a
growing list of vending manufacturers who are enabled to install e-Port
technology for their customers during their manufacturing process.
“We have succeeded in making marked progress against our previously stated
goal of development of a network of distributors of our technology and
services the world over. Simultaneously, we put the infrastructure in place
with the capability to produce e-Port hardware and associated network services
in scale, and now, we are ramping up our mass distribution capabilities.
Finally, we are also gaining traction via our marketing alliances with IBM,
Marconi and others,” said Mr. Herbert. “These activities, all part of a long
standing and well orchestrated plan, which we believe has positioned USA
Technologies for progressive quarterly revenue growth on a go-forward basis,”
added Mr. Herbert.
Over the past 12 months, e-Port has begun to revolutionize the $37 billion
worldwide vending industry with e-Port equipped and connected vending
machines, dispensing everything from traditional consumer products such as
soda and snacks, to frozen gourmet pizza, cellular telephones, eyewear and
telephone cards. “In the future, vending machines will dispense just about
everything, from traditional items such as sodas and snacks, to compact discs,
technology products, even spare parts,” said Mr. Herbert. “And with e-Port’s
additional capability to remotely monitor vending machines, out of stocks will
be minimized and because cash can be eliminated, vandalism is no longer a
major concern,” he said.
e-Port is a device that can be embedded into vending machines, gas pumps,
office equipment and almost any kind of point-of-sale terminal. The technology
enables the conversion of unattended points of sale into intelligent “store
fronts”, connected to the Internet, and capable of communicating operational
data to operators, conducting cashless transactions and mobile commerce. It
can come fitted with an interactive, touch screen that features interactive
media/advertising at point of sale, giving location owners the ability to
communicate with and improve the buying experience of consumers, promote
products, provide free access to web based media such as news, sports and
weather and possibly generate incremental revenues from interactive media.
About USA Technologies:
USA Technologies is recognized as a leader in cashless transactions,
associated financial/network services and interactive media technology. USA
Technologies provides credit card activated and other cashless/mobile commerce
systems. USA Technologies is an IBM (NYSE: IBM – news) Business Partner and an
inaugural member of the Sprint (NYSE: FON – news) Enabling Application Service
Provider Program for e-commerce. It has also established partnerships with a
number of global IT, multimedia, and telecommunications companies including
Marconi Online Systems, RadiSys Corporation, DoubleClick Inc., and Xerox
Corporation. Visit the USA Technologies home page at
Net1 Investment Holdings (Pty) Ltd; a fully
subsidiary of Net1 Applied Technology Holdings Limited (APLITEC) is pleased to
announce the successful launch on Friday 9th November of the national
and smart card payment system on behalf of the Reserve Bank of Malawi, a week
ahead of the six (6) month implementation schedule.
Malawi becomes the fifth African nation to embrace Net1’s smart card
(the UEPS Universal Electronic Payment System) and the FIRST nation to utilise
the technology in a national switching environment with the identification
option being the biometric finger print methodology. The switching system
provides a fully integrated Automatic Teller Machine (ATM) and Electronic
Transfer at the Point of Sale (EFTPOS) management system. The system is
designed to deliver a 24 hour, 365 days a year service at a cost per
transaction that is significantly less than other systems on offer. The card
holders will now benefit in sharing the national infrastructure, perform
banking functions as well as enjoy the additional smart card products which
available to Malswitch.
The UEPS security design has been acclaimed to be the most innovative in this
field as it embodies the strengths of many cryptographic designs under one
algorithm. (See Applied Cryptography-second edition by Bruce Schneier). The
result is that the UEPS can deliver critical elements such as automatic
recovery, transaction cancellation, refunds and cash back at the point of sale
with minimal risk to the issuing organisations. In addition, the UEPS provides
for dual electronic audit trails that ensure accurate auditing and loss
tolerance whilst preventing transaction duplication.
To date, five (5) financial institutions have joined the Malswitch System,
together with BP Malawi, a bulk fuel supplier who intends to use the system to
facilitate its e-purse fuel purchases. Integration to these various banking
applications is underway using the new Net1 morphing technology.
The target market for Malswitch is the banked, under banked and un-banked
market segments of Malawi. The key benefit to Malawi is that the UEPS allows
financial services to be delivered to the greater population as well as
assisting in the combating of fraud. Furthermore, the Malawian Government are
contemplating the usage of smart card technology to facilitate a national ID
system. It would make sense for the Government to utilise the Malswitch
infrastructure as millions of finger prints would have been captured by the
Brenda Stewart, the Africa Project Director for Aplitec is confident that
Malswitch should have close to 1 million cards issued to both the banked and
un-banked markets by December 2002. The successful launch of this project has
resulted in many enquiries from other emerging economies in Africa, the middle
east and other countries throughout the world.
Serge Belamant, Chief Executive Officer of Aplitec says: “Ten years ago we
focused on inventing technology that would serve the needs of the many. Today
we focus on delivering systems based on this technology that are not only rich
in functionality but also generate new sustainable income streams for the
operators; this is the area where most of our competitors fail ”
Revenue for the contract over the past 6 months has been around R24 million
will continue to increase in the new year as the customer take up rate
increases resulting in further orders for smart cards, ATMs, POS etc.
Gloucester Credit Card Trust today announced
that it closed its seventh credit card asset-backed notes transaction in
The notes were offered in two tranches, $295.75 million Variable Funding
Credit Card Receivables-Backed Notes, Series 2001-2 Class A and $54.25 million
Variable Funding Credit Card Receivables-Backed Notes, Series 2001-2
Collateral. Both the Variable Funding Credit Card Receivables-Backed Notes,
Series 2001-2 Class A and the Variable Funding Credit Card Receivables-Backed
Notes, Series 2001-2 Collateral have an expected final maturity of five years
and were privately placed.
Gloucester Credit Card Trust was established to purchase interests in
credit card receivables and related assets from MBNA Canada Bank and its
affiliates on an on-going basis. The notes are governed by Canadian law.
MBNA Corporation, a bank holding company and parent of MBNA America Bank,
N.A., a national bank, has $92.6 billion in managed loans. MBNA Canada Bank is
a wholly owned subsidiary of MBNA America Bank, N.A. MBNA is the largest
independent credit card lender in the world and provides retail deposit,
consumer loan, and insurance products.
First Ecom.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: FECC, BSX: FECC, FECC BH), a company with
interests in gas and oil exploitation and electronic payment solutions
announced the filing of its Form 10Q and financial results for the third
quarter ended September 30, 2001.
First Ecom posted revenue derived from the Company’s payment processing
operations of $205,928 and $242,836 for the three and nine months ended
September 30, 2001 as compared to $17,355 and $27,887 for the respective three
months and nine months ended September 30, 2000. The increase in revenue for
the three months ended September 30, 2001 was mainly due to the consolidation
of revenue from the start of operations at First Ecommerce Data Services
“The third quarter was a good quarter business-wise,” said Gregory Pek,
president and CEO of First Ecom. “We moved quickly and decisively to obtain
quality assets in our new core business of oil and gas, with the
a working equity interest in Gasco Energy which has participation in almost
500,000 acres of land holdings in Utah and Wyoming. Production from the first
wells in Utah has just commenced and Gasco will be reporting revenue in the
“The future of payment processing in Asia also looks brighter and during the
quarter the Company secured a major outsourcing deal with UOB in Malaysia.
While business was just starting at FEDS the Company thought it prudent to
accept the offer to sell it in order to better focus on oil and gas as well as
Asian payment processing. In addition to these successes we were able to
finalize the productization of our payment gateway and MARS products into a
e-Acquiring system. This has the potential to be another significant revenue
source, as we will no longer be selling only to banks that want to outsource
but also to those banks and other businesses that want in-house systems. Our
market is therefore much larger. These are all very positive developments.”
Net Loss for the third quarter of 2001, before charges for impairment of
goodwill and the write down of marketable securities, was $2,308,178 as
compared to the third quarter of 2000 net loss of $3,623,459 and $4,357,248
the nine months ended September 30, 2001 compared to $10,398,602 for the nine
months ended September 30, 2000.
Net loss per share for the quarter, before charges for impairment and write
down of marketable securities, was $0.12 per share as compared to a net loss
per share of $0.19 for the same quarter in 2000.
As previously announced, the Company has decided to change its business focus
to that of oil and gas development and exploitation and the during the quarter
the Company acquired, for $19 million, a 26% equity interest in Gasco Energy,
Inc. (NASD-OTC-BB: GASE) a company which acquires and exploits natural gas
properties in the Rocky Mountain region of the United States. Included in the
Company’s operating results for the third quarter is a $155,701 charge for the
Company’s equity loss from Gasco Energy.
Gasco Energy is one of the leading companies in the development and
exploitation of natural gas reserves in the Rocky Mountain region of the
States. It has land holdings of some 159,000 acres in the Uinta Basin in
northeast Utah and some 332,000 acres in the Green River Basin of southwest
In October 2001 the Company sold FEDS, with a guaranteed receipt of a minimum
of $5 million, resulting in an impairment charge of $3,159,505, which has been
recorded in the three months ended September 30, 2001.
Operating expenses before the impairment charge for the three months ended
September 30, 2001 were 17% lower than for the comparable period in 2000 and
for the nine months ended September 30, 2001 were 33% lower than for the
comparable period in 2000. This reflects the Company’s concentrated effort on
reducing costs. The operating expenses include restructuring costs of $198,821
incurred during the first two quarters.
As of September 30, 2001, the Company’s net current assets stood at $3.0
million (December 31, 2000: $31.8 million). Net cash used in operating
activities decreased from $6,334,932 for the nine months ended September 30,
2000 to $4,592,465 for the nine months ended September 30, 2001, mainly due to
the significant reduction in operating costs in the first nine months of 2001
as compared to the first nine months of 2000.
Net cash used in investing activities for the nine months ended September 30,
2001 was $23,505,347 as compared to $7,316,048 for the nine months ended
September 30, 2000. The major activities were (i) the acquisition of and
investment in FEDS of $3,984,526 and (ii) acquisition of petroleum assets, in
the form of a 26% equity interest in Gasco Energy, Inc., for $19 million.
Further progress was made during the quarter in the payment processing
by the signing of agreements with United Overseas Bank (Malaysia) (UOB) and
American Express. Revenue as a result of these contracts is expected to
commence during the fourth quarter.
In addition, the Company completed the productization of its e-Acquirer
gateway system. This will allow the Company to sell complete systems to banks
and financial institutions that do not wish to outsource the entire payment
The Company had a total of 24 (including 10 at FEDS) full time employees as at
September 30, 2001 as compared to 56 full time employees, not including FEDS,
as at September 30, 2000. This decrease in employees has resulted in a
recovery, during the nine months ended September 30, 2001, of $2,202,766 of
previously expensed stock-based compensation costs. During the comparable
period ended September 30, 2000, the Company expensed $3,050,794 of
The Company’s financial results for the quarter ended September 30, 2001
accompanied the filing of its Form 10-Q with the Securities & Exchange
Commission on November 14, 2001, which is available on-line at the SEC’s Edgar
database at www.freeedgar.com.
About First Ecom.com
First Ecom.com Inc. has interests in both oil and gas exploitation as well as
being a global provider of electronic payment solutions through its wholly
subsidiary First Ecom Systems Limited.
For more information, visit www.firstecom.com or
contact First Ecom.com at
+(852) 2801-5181 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
The FTC’s Division of Enforcement announced this week they recently conducted a surf of 110 major Internet retailers to find out whether e-tailers were making “quick-ship” claims. As a result of the surf, FTC staff sent letters to 72 e-tailers reminding them of the federal ‘Mail Order Rule’ and ‘Warranty Rule’. The FTC staff found that 52 of the 110 sites made “quick-ship” claims and that 52 of the sites selling warranted products didn’t provide adequate information about the warranties. In 1999, the FTC brought civil penalty actions against seven well-known e-tailers for allegedly violating the Mail Order Rule. The companies paid more than $1.5 million in total penalties.Details
Bibit Payment Services made available figures that indicate consumer payment
transactions on a
global basis have rebounded to levels higher than those prior to the
of September 2001. The Company also announced that it has developed the Bibit
Index, which measures aggregate global consumer spending patterns across a
number of industries, including travel, books, CD/video, computers, and
flowers. The Bibit Index is scheduled to be issued on a quarterly basis.
The Bibit Index is designed to show increases and decreases in purchase
transactions from week to week by establishing a benchmark from which to
change. Bibit is the leading payment processing service in Europe, and has a
significant presence in the U.S. market. Using volumes of data derived from
global transaction base, Bibit can track aggregate purchasing patterns by
industry, geographic region, market or time span. The Bibit Index is separate
from other economic indicators, and provides a neutral, independent and
unbiased report of consumer spending across product categories.
The initial Bibit Index uses the week of September 2, 2001 as a benchmark,
tracks transaction volume on a weekly basis through the week of October 7,
2001. Following the September 11 attacks, transactions across all categories
fell by 31% for the week of September 9-15. However, the weeks of September
– October 7 show a continual increase in spending. The week of September 30,
global transactions rebounded to top pre-September 11 levels by 11%. The same
period shows that the travel industry was the most severely affected by the
events of September 11, but also experienced the sharpest rebound; by the
of September 30, spending on travel was 11% higher than prior to September
At the same time, the book category was the only industry to see a sustained
increase in spending, with an 8% jump immediately following the September 11
Using the week of September 2, 2001 as the benchmark, transaction activity
fluctuated week-to-week as follows:
Bibit provides transaction processing across all payment channels, including
Internet, call centers, and point-of-sale. The Bibit payment platform
a multi-lingual, end-to-end payment service that combines 60 multi-currency
international payment methods, including conventional credit cards and the
protocol for secure transactions, into a single digital solution. Bibit’s
service offering includes full reconciliation and administrative services,
handling both the technical and financial management of the payment
a fully secure environment. The payment service seamlessly integrates into
existing transaction generating platforms and enables businesses to extend
their reach into the European market.
About Bibit Payment Services
Bibit Internet Payments is Europe’s leading Internet Payment Service
Founded in the Netherlands in 1997, Bibit currently operates on a
scale, including Germany, France, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and the
United States. Bibit’s extensive international client list includes
multi-channel retailers, as well as pure web shops, call centers, and
points-of-sale. Customers include Dell Computer, DaimlerChrysler, Yahoo!, The
Financial Times, Canon, and Fleurop Interflora. Bibit is a privately held
company, with investments from Residex Investments, BNP Paribas (Paribas
Investments), Twinning and Continuum Group Ltd. For more information, please
call 408/399-9938, or visit
FL-based Transmedia Network, issuer of the largest dining discount card program, reported gross sales in the dining sector were $47.6 million for the quarter ending Sept 30th, compared with $46.8 million in the prior year period. For the quarter, the company recorded net income of $945,000 compared with a net loss in the same quarter of last year of $2.4 million. Transmedia offers its nearly 7 million members a variety of dining savings and rewards programs at more than 7,500 restaurants via means of a registered credit card. The savings are offered through the Company’s dining programs, either branded under the name ‘iDine’ or provided through private label partnerships, such as airline frequent flyer programs, club memberships or other affinity organizations. For complete details on Transmedia’s 3Q/01 results visit CardData ([www.carddata.com])
Triton Systems, Inc., a wholly
owned operating company of Dover Corporation and the leading manufacturer of
off-premise ATMs, announces the establishment of an exclusive Distributor
agreement with Capture Systems to support and distribute Triton products
throughout Latin America and the Caribbean.
Capture Systems has been founded by a collaboration of various ATM-related
business interests throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Jorge
Fernandez, co-founder for Capture Systems and former Director of Latin
American and Caribbean business operations for Triton, stated, “We are
extremely pleased to enter into this agreement with Triton. Our collective
experience with Triton and this region indicates that Triton’s products are
the best solution in this growing off-premise market.”
Triton President, Dr. Ernest Burdette stated, “We are excited about
building on the foundation that Jorge and others have laid for Triton in this
market. This agreement makes sense for both of us and we are optimistic about
the direction of this partnership.” Fernandez also sees advantages for Triton
customers in the region: “Capture Systems brings more than 20 years
experience in the industry and this market. Furthermore, we will be able to
bring value-added services and products to this market, focused on the needs
of the off-premise owner.”
Both Triton and Capture Systems see a great deal of potential for the off-
premise market in these regions.
About Triton Systems, Inc.
As the leading provider of cash-dispensing ATMs for off-premise locations,
Triton is committed to redefining and leading the retail market for cash
delivery systems. Triton is the largest provider of off-premise ATMs and ATM
management software in North America and has more than 55,000 installations in
over 15 countries worldwide.
Triton is headquartered in Long Beach, MS and is an operating company of
Dover Industries, Inc., a subsidiary of Dover Corporation. For more
information about Triton, please visit
http://www.tritonatm.com or call
1-228-868-1317 (U.S. toll free 1-800-367-7191).
About Capture Systems, Inc.
Capture Systems was founded to provide value added systems integration
products and services to the Financial, Retail and e-commerce Industries in
Latin America and the Caribbean including; sales/marketing, technical
expertise, consulting and local support services. Capture markets its
products and services direct to end users as well as through a network of
local value added partners.
The company’s founders have over 30 years of combined experience working
with financial institutions, Retailing and Healthcare providers throughout the
region. Capture Systems is privately held and is located in Miami, Florida.
For more information about Capture Systems, please call 1-305.446.0018. Jorge
Fernandez is the company’s president and General Manager (Jorgef1@aol.com ).
Air miles for debit card use picked up another player yesterday as US Airways and Bank of America launched a new ‘Dividend Miles VISA Check Card’ and ‘Dividend Miles VISA Business Card’. In March, U.S. Bank and Northwest Airlines introduced the ‘WorldPerks VISA Check Card’. Two years ago Chase Manhattan and Continental Airlines introduced the first co-branded debit card and the first debit card to offer air mileage rewards from a major carrier. Under the US Airways/BofA program, consumer cardholders earn 1,000 ‘Dividend Miles’ after the first purchase, and one ‘Dividend Mile’ for every $2 in purchases thereafter. ‘Dividend Miles VISA Business Card’ customers will earn one ‘Dividend Mile’ for each $1 spent in net purchases and two miles for every $1 spent on US Airways goods and services purchased directly from US Airways. The business owner also will receive 5,000 bonus miles after the first purchase is made using the card, one complimentary ‘US Airways Club’ pass each year and a 10% discount on ‘Dividend Incentives’ purchases. Business owners will also earn ‘Dividend Miles’ purchases made by their employees with all miles credited to one account designated by the business owner. (CF Library 3/27/01)Details
Thirty-five percent of all Americans report being very satisfied with their online holiday shopping experience, according to the eSpending Report released by Goldman Sachs, a leading global investment banking and securities firm, Harris Interactive, a worldwide market research and consulting firm, and NetRatings, Inc., the fastest growing Internet audience measurement and analysis firm. Additionally, 17 percent stated that their holiday shopping satisfaction is higher this season than last year.
“Quality customer service has not been impacted by the dot-com shake out or economic conditions this year and remains a key factor for online shoppers,” said Sean Kaldor, vice president, analytical services, NetRatings.
According to the Nielsen//NetRatings Holiday eCommerce Index, traffic to ecommerce Web sites jumped 14 percent during the second week of November, signaling the beginning of the online holiday shopping season.
Competitive Pricing Drives Shoppers Online
Lower prices and the ability to easily compare products and item cost on the Internet led 39 percent of Americans to shop online this past week. Sixty-seven percent of those surveyed said pricing was their main purchasing factor, while 59 percent cited product selection. Additionally, 26 percent of shoppers indicated that shipping costs are impacting their purchasing decisions this season.
“Etailers offering free shipping promotions and competitive pricing have much to gain from luring price-conscious shoppers,” Kaldor continued. “Holiday shoppers feeling the effects of the slowing economy this season are watching their budgets and looking for the perfect gift with the right price.”
One in Three Americans Have Started Holiday Shopping
Findings from the survey revealed that one in three Americans have started their holiday shopping as of the week ending November 9 (see Table 1). Eleven percent of respondents indicated that they have completed their holiday shopping.
“With the holiday season starting in the second week of November this year, we can expect online activity to grow steadily as the season progresses,” said Lori Iventosch-James, director of ecommerce research, Harris Interactive. “The overall outlook for the holiday season is positive, as popular online categories such as home and garden, toys and video games have already emerged as hot gift categories this season.”
Table 1. Online Holiday Shopping Barometer, Week Ending November 9 (U.S.)
Week Week Week
Ending Ending Ending
10/26 11/2 11/9
Finished Shopping 8% 9% 11%
Started, but Not Finished Shopping 23% 31% 35%
Have Yet to Start Shopping 69% 60% 55%
Source: Goldman Sachs, Harris Interactive & Nielsen//NetRatings, November
About eSpending Report
The eSpending Report by Goldman Sachs, Harris Interactive and Nielsen//NetRatings is based upon a weekly national survey of 500 online shoppers randomly chosen from Harris Interactive’s multimillion-member panel of Internet users. The survey data is weighted to represent the online population and has an overall precision of +/- 4.4 percent, which varies by question. The eSpending report offers weekly intelligence on online shopping and spending by market segment and tracks consumer attitudes and motivations that drive online shopping.
About Goldman Sachs
Goldman Sachs is a leading global investment banking and securities firm that provides a wide range of services worldwide to a substantial and diversified client base that includes corporations, financial institutions, governments and high-net-worth individuals. Founded in 1869, it is one of the oldest and largest investment banking firms. The firm is headquartered in New York and maintains offices in London, Frankfurt, Tokyo, Hong Kong and other major financial centers around the world.
About Harris Interactive(SM)
Harris Interactive (Nasdaq: HPOL) is a worldwide market research and consulting firm, best known for The Harris Poll (R) and its pioneering use of the Internet to conduct scientifically accurate market research. Strengthened by its recent merger with Total Research Corporation, the Company now combines the power of technology with international expertise in predictive, custom, strategic research. Headquartered in the United States, with offices in the United Kingdom, Japan and a global network of local market and opinion research firms, the Company conducts international research with fluency in multiple languages. For more information about Harris Interactive, visit [http://www.harrisinteractive.com]. EOE M/F/D/V
About NetRatings, Inc.
NetRatings, Inc. ([http://www.netratings.com]) is a leading provider of Internet audience measurement information and analysis. Its technology driven products and services enable customers to make informed business-critical decisions regarding their Internet media and commerce strategies. NetRatings has strategic relationships with both Nielsen Media Research, the leading source of television audience measurement and related services in the U.S. and Canada, and ACNielsen, a leading provider of market research information and analysis to the consumer products and services industries. Worldwide, NetRatings services measure the Internet experiences of more than 225,000 Internet users in 29 countries.
Through strategic partnerships between NetRatings, Inc. (Nasdaq: NTRT), Nielsen Media Research and ACNielsen, the Nielsen//NetRatings audience measurement service collects real-time data from more than 225,000 individuals with access to the Internet in 29 countries around the world. Nielsen//NetRatings uses unique technology capable of measuring both Internet use and advertising to provide the most timely, accurate and comprehensive Internet usage data and advertising information in the global marketplace. For more information, please visit [http://www.nielsen-netratings.com].
During the 32 shopping days, between Thanksgiving and Christmas, consumers will charge an estimated $121.4 billion to their major bank credit cards, based on retail and travel sales projections as well as dollar charge volume patterns this year. The figure, which excludes commercial card and debit card volume, is only 6.8% higher than last year’s dollar volume of bank credit card charges, and the most sluggish growth since 1991. Last year, Americans charged about $113.7 billion, a 23% gain over 1999. If not for an extra shopping day this year, holiday credit card activity would be up by a mere 3.4%. At mid-year, credit card volume was growing at a 9% annual rate, according to CardData ([www.carddata.com]). Retail holiday sales are expected to rise by 2% and holiday travel sales are expected to be down by nearly 18%. CardData projects that Americans will use their major credit cards slightly more than 1.3 billion times during the shopping season, or 1.7 million times, on average, per hour. This weekend, the aggregate volume of credit card transactions among VISA, MasterCard, Discover, and American Express may reach 8,500 transactions per second. Californians will charge nearly $17.4 billion and New Yorkers are expected to charge about $10.2 billion between the two major holidays.