CU Cards

Credit unions, faced with the challenges of rapid industry consolidation and a slowing economy, can thrive if they leverage customized programs and new technologies made possible by their payment card portfolios, says Bill Mathis, senior vice president for MasterCard International.

Speaking at the Credit Union Journal’s Third Annual Business Development Select Employee Group (SEG) Conference, Mathis cited the wide array of payment options, advanced market segmentation strategies and strong promotional campaigns as a means to boost portfolio revenue. Payment card portfolios level the financial services playing field for credit unions, he said, allowing them to keep their rates low, while offering their clientele world-class payment solutions under their own private label.

“Today’s card portfolio is much more diverse and much more powerful than it was only a few years ago,” said Mathis, who drew comparisons with conventional card program solutions. He drew attention to the emergence of person-to-person payment systems and the huge potential in consumer-to-government payments, such as tax bills that are paid with credit and debit cards. Mathis also pointed out the growth of government-to-consumer payments in the form of tax refunds, pensions and other social services benefits through stored value cards. He also cited significant growth in online transactions now being done with payment cards as testimony to the high level of public trust in the card issuing institutions and the potency of global branding campaigns.

“At MasterCard, not only are we delivering a greater variety of payment options, such as virtual card accounts and stored value cards, but we have also introduced a consulting service called Market Advisor that is particularly well suited for credit unions. Market Advisor gives credit unions a real-time look at their card-usage data, so they can monitor and measure the performance of card programs and quickly make adjustments.”

At MasterCard, Mathis is responsible for providing leadership to a team focused on increasing the profitability of MasterCard’s members. Bringing more than 25 years of experience in management and customer-building skills, Mathis delivers an individual, consultative approach to MasterCard’s members – regardless of their size. The SEG Conference will host various discussions, lectures and workshops on the most recent techniques and strategies for building credit union membership, as well as how to retain existing members.

About MasterCard

MasterCard International has the most comprehensive portfolio of payment brands in the world. More than 1.7 billion MasterCard(R), Cirrus(R) and Maestro(R) logos are present on credit, charge and debit cards in circulation today. An association comprised of more than 20,000 member financial institutions, MasterCard serves consumers and businesses, both large and small, in 210 countries and territories. MasterCard is the leader in quality and innovation, offering a wide range of payment solutions in the virtual and traditional worlds. MasterCard’s award-winning Priceless(R) advertising campaign is now seen in 81countries and in more than 36 languages, giving the MasterCard brand reach and scope unrivaled by any competitor in the industry. With more than 21 million acceptance locations, no card is accepted in more places and by more merchants than the MasterCard Card. In 2000, gross dollar volume exceeded US$857 billion. MasterCard can be reached through its World Wide Web site at .



Gemplus International S.A., the
world’s leading provider of solutions empowered by smart cards, announced that Panasonic has signed a Value-Added Reseller
agreement to promote smart card-ready electronics, based on Gemplus’
smart card solution suite, to their customers in North America.
By combining Gemplus’ smart card solutions with its own card
reading technology, Panasonic electronic hardware will offer greater
convenience and flexibility to users. With a smart card in hand,
Panasonic customers will have the ability to enjoy more powerful
applications including electronic commerce, gaming, loyalty,
credit/debit and e-purse.

“Panasonic is excited about incorporating Gemplus’ smart card
technology into the reader products suite, which will enable us to
offer a more complete product and service to our customers,” said
Steve Belcak, vice president of Panasonic Industrial Company. “We want
to take advantage of the growing momentum for smart cards as a
customer convenience tool. By offering the cards themselves — to
supplement our card-reading technologies — we are taking a very
positive step.”

Together, Panasonic and Gemplus will develop and enhance market
opportunities for smart card solutions based on joint expertise,
global support and shared customer bases. The smart card industry has
seen tremendous growth in North America in the past year with several
groundbreaking smart card deployments executed and numerous
endorsements from financial and retail industry leaders. Panasonic’s
decision to support smart cards adds a new dimension to the growing
support for the technology.

“This joint market offering of two industry leaders is unique, as
Gemplus and Panasonic together can offer a complete and convenient
solution directly to consumers,” said Sven Hammar, vice president of
Gemplus’ Financial and Security Services Business Unit. “The ability
to share manufacturing, support and branding opportunities enables
rapid and efficient time-to-market, unwrapping unlimited opportunities
for users of Panasonic products.”

About Gemplus

GEMPLUS: the world’s number one provider of solutions empowered by
Smart Cards (Gartner Dataquest 2001). Gemplus helps its clients offer
an exceptional range of portable, personalized solutions that bring
security and convenience to people’s lives. These include mobile
Internet access, inter-operable banking facilities, e-commerce and a
wealth of other applications.

Gemplus is the only completely dedicated, truly global player in
the Smart Card industry, with the largest R&D team, unrivalled
experience, and an outstanding track record of technological

Gemplus trades its shares on Euronext Paris S.A. First Market and
on the Nasdaq Stock Market as GEMP in the form of ADSs. Its revenue in
2000 was 1.205 Billion Euros. It employs 7800 people in 37 countries
throughout the world.
Gemplus: Your Passport to the Digital Age

About Panasonic

Panasonic Industrial Company is a unit of Matsushita Electric
Corporation of America, the principal North American subsidiary of
Japan-based Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. (NYSE:MC), which
is best known for its Panasonic brand. A worldwide leader in the
development and manufacture of electronic products for a wide range of
consumer, business and industrial needs, Matsushita Electric recorded
consolidated sales of $61.45 billion for the fiscal year ended March
31, 2001.
Additional information is available at



US Dataworks Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of SonicPort Inc. announced that 15 new contracts have been signed for Remoteworks, the company’s innovative Internet-based check-processing software. Terms of the individual contracts, composed of recurring subscription payments, were not disclosed.

Under the new contracts, SonicPort will make Remoteworks available via the Internet, giving these clients access to the entire US Dataworks-branded check truncation suite.

“This is a significant milestone for SonicPort,” said John O. Cooper, president and CEO of SonicPort. “This validates the concept that we can use the Internet to deliver state-of-the-art services to an extremely broad spectrum of businesses.

“Remoteworks is a Web-based version of the highly sophisticated software suite, `The Works,’ currently being used under licensing agreements by some of the top financial institutions in the United States. While `The Works’ is geared to large institutions that process in excess of 200,000 check transactions per month, Remoteworks, on the other hand, is geared to smaller businesses that may have as few as 100 check transactions per month. “Remoteworks expedites the concentration of check-related funds from remote locations to a central corporate account and captures returned check information for conversion to electronic representment (RCK). “Remoteworks allows merchants to accept paper checks in person, through the mail, or even by telephone, to now immediately turn them into electronic transactions at the point of sale. The cost of physical transportation of the checks and the float expense incurred during that process are now immediately eliminated. Clearance time for the checks is significantly reduced as well as the expense of floating the funds until the checks have cleared. “We expect to begin delivering service to thousands of clients with modest check transaction volume who can justify a recurring subscription payment but who would not have been appropriate for our larger in-house solutions requiring a substantial upfront investment.”

SonicPort also announced that David Baeza, vice chairman and chief marketing officer, has left SonicPort to pursue other interests. Baeza has also resigned from the board of directors, effective Aug. 17, 2001. Baeza will remain as a significant shareholder of SonicPort and will continue to be subject to a two-year lockup with respect to selling his shares, as are all members of the board.

About US Dataworks

Established in 1997, US Dataworks develops, markets and supports transaction-processing software for Windows NT computer systems. Its customer base includes many of the largest financial institutions as well as credit card companies, government institutions and high-volume merchants in the United States. It also has a strategic alliance with Thomson Financial Publishing, a unit of Thomson Corp. (TSE:TOC), to incorporate their EPICWare database into US Dataworks products.

About SonicPort Inc.

SonicPort Inc. is a financial services company specializing in the integration of transaction-processing software with ASP services, IT expertise and customer service. Additional value-added services include custom software applications and technical support.


Diebold & Pacom

Diebold has formed a strategic relationship with Pacom Systems, producers of the ‘Graphical Management System’, an integrated alarm and access control management system. As part of the overall relationship, Diebold is to sell, install and service Pacom’s product solutions to the financial and commercial markets in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Central and South America. Following Mosler’s announcement stating the company would cease operations, Pacom moved quickly to assure customers they would continue to support the same ‘GMS’ systems sold by Mosler.


Gemplus Buy-Back

Gemplus International announced it plans to start repurchasing up to 10 million shares of its outstanding common stock, under the repurchase program approved by shareholders during the company’s Annual General Meeting on April 18. The repurchased shares are intended for use under the company’s employee stock option program. This repurchase, which will take place over the next 9 months, represents only a portion of the total number of shares authorized under the program. The company generally plans to use existing cash to finance the repurchases. The company had cash and cash equivalents of 430 million Euros as of June 30.


Network Impact


Following yesterday’s tragic events in the US, Visa International would like to confirm that VisaNet systems are fully functioning as usual.

All systems are fully operational and settlement completed normally on 11 September 2001. Likewise, no telecommunications outages have been reported and all processing times will continue to proceed.

An Emergency Operations Centre has been established to provide Member banks with continued reliabilility and support. Any cardholders who experience problems with their Visa cards should contact their issuing bank.

Visa International would like to express its deepest sympathy to all those who have been affected by the events.


Loyalty OTC Terminals

Catuity, Inc. has launched a joint marketing and sales effort to promote loyalty with gift cards with SchlumbergerSema. Catuity’s ‘Loyalty OTC’ product is now running on the SchlumbergerSema ‘MagIC 6000’ and ‘9000’ terminals. Catuity’s ‘Loyalty OTC’, which was introduced last month, is an over-the-counter product that allows merchants who issue gift cards and/or private label loyalty cards to add the full range of marketing benefits offered by the Catuity System to their cards and ultimately provide a relationship card with benefits for both the merchant and the consumer.


Sovereign & FDMS

Sovereign Bank and First Data Merchant Services are launching a new merchant services program that will give Sovereign business customers access to the nation’s largest electronic payment processing network. The program will be marketed as ‘Sovereign Merchant Services’. Marketing efforts will focus on more than 500 Sovereign Bank community banking offices and cash management groups in the New England and mid-Atlantic regions. First Data Merchant Services will assign 35 New England-based sales executives to Sovereign Merchant Services. First Data anticipates adding 30 more staff, including sales management and client relations personnel, over the next year to increase support in the mid-Atlantic market. FDC has also appointed Paul DeFlavio as the general manager for ‘Sovereign Merchant Services’.


Jackson to HH

Household International, , the $101 billion (managed assets) consumer lender, announced that Diane Jackson has joined the company as director of community relations. Jackson will report directly to Craig Streem, vice president of corporate relations and communications.

As director of community relations, Jackson will be responsible for the design and implementation of the company’s strategy to link corporate philanthropy, consumer education and community relations activities. One of Jackson’s initial assignments will be implementing the company’s financial literacy initiatives, most notably through the recently announced Household financial literacy grant.

“With a wealth of community relations experience and a strong financial services background, Diane is ideally qualified to help Household develop and implement innovative outreach programs that will make a real impact,” said Craig Streem. “Diane is the right person to help us continue and strengthen our 123-year commitment to improving the quality of life in the communities where we do business.”

Jackson brings more than 15 years of community relations experience to Household. Previously, she served as the director of diversity and community relations for ING Aetna Financial Services in Hartford, Conn. In that role, Jackson was instrumental in the development and execution of programs designed to bring financial and business education and tools to youth in major cities across the country. While there, she also led many of the company’s diversity initiatives, including recruiting, mentoring and advertising.

Jackson graduated cum laude from Northeastern University in Boston, MA. She will be based at Household’s Prospect Heights, Ill., headquarters.

About Household

Household’s businesses are leading providers of consumer loans, credit card, auto finance and credit insurance products in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. In the United States, Household’s largest business, founded in 1878, operates under the two oldest and most widely recognized names in consumer finance- HFC and Beneficial. Household is also one of the nation’s largest issuers of private-label and general purpose credit cards, including the GM Card and the AFL-CIO’s Union Plus card. For more information, visit the company’s web site at .



SSP Solutions, Inc. providing solutions and services that enable secure, real-time movement of financial transactions and valued digital content, announced the world’s first secure and anonymous Internet commerce transaction solution securing ATM and debit cards — the equivalent of cash — as well as traditional credit cards for Internet purchasing. Banco Nationale de Credito will go live with this technology via the Internet, using SSP’s bundled hardware and software package uniquely enabling embedded two-factor authentication required for ATM, credit or debit transactions. Available worldwide, initially the program will be rolled out to 2,000 consumers in the Dominican Republic with larger deployment scheduled for the following quarter.

“Merchants are anxious to leverage ATM and debit card business opportunities — expanding their customer base and reducing repudiation and fraud associated with traditional credit card transactions,” said Rob Gorman, managing director of strategic affairs SSP Solutions, Inc. “We’re moving quickly to support this initiative and deliver a powerful product specifically designed to secure ATM and debit customer segments for online shopping.”

The package includes the SSP Solutions branded ETSS (Enhanced Transactional Secure Software) application and a secure SSP(TM) EMBASSY(R) (EMBedded Application Security SYstem) card reader that connects directly to the consumer’s PC. The reader is both mag-stripe and smart-card compatible and uses a secure numeric keypad for PIN and password entries. ETSS is the world’s first embedded non-repudiation card present software that enables merchant to secure transactions without the actual credit, debit or ATM customer account numbers available to the merchant, thereby protecting both the consumer and the merchant from account number database fraud and unauthorized intrusions. Both VISA and Mastercard are supported by this technology. Several recent well-publicized illegal intrusions of merchant databases have resulted in thousands of consumer debit and credit card account numbers being stolen, and the embedded SSP ETSS software eliminates this risk to the merchant.

SSP also exclusively licensed on a worldwide basis the marketing and deployment rights of ETSS software originally developed by a joint venture of SSP and Freestar Technologies. Banco National de Credito is the first major banking organization to actively deploy this solution.

About SSP Solutions, Inc.

SSP Solutions, Inc. develops and distributes the SSP(TM) Security Suite of hardware, software, and embedded security products designed as the Trusted Symbol of the Digital Economy(TM). SSP products embed security and trust throughout the transaction chain protecting electronic communications and financial transactions, network access, and the exchange of copyrighted digital content. By combining our own technology with a range of partners’ technologies and intellectual properties, SSP products represent the first, open embedded security architecture simultaneously supporting public key infrastructure (PKI) and multiple standards of digital rights management. SSP’s custom-made enterprise security solutions address digital rights management, financial services, government, entertainment, healthcare, and education — and form the heart of a ten-year alliance with Electronic Data Systems (NYSE:EDS), the nation’s largest systems integrator and a global leader in information assurance. For additional company information, visit com .

About Freestar Technologies, Inc.

Freestar Technologies, Inc.’s Enhanced Transactional Secure Software (“ETSS”), a proprietary software package that enables consumers to consummate secure e-commerce transactions over the Internet using credit, debit, ATM (with PIN) or smart cards. The ETSS system integrates a consumer-side card-swipe terminal with a back-end host-processing center. It encrypts sensitive financial data at the consumer’s personal computer, using powerful DES encryption and algorithms. It sends an authorization number to the e-commerce merchant, rather than the consumer’s credit card information, to provide a maximum level of security. The Company plans to link several large, established smart card systems together on an ETSS-based standard to achieve economies of scale and further market penetration for this secure e-commerce payment system.



LLC, a leading B2B electronic invoice presentment and payment consolidator, and KUBRA, the leader in customer communication and relationship management outsource solutions, announced that they have entered into a
strategic alliance. The new partnership offers mutual customers advanced
capabilities in the complex financial supply chain environment with respect to
the invoice-to-collect and procure-to-pay processes.
The alliance between KUBRA and BillingZone will deliver exceptional value
to participating companies with large B2B invoice volume. The partnership
channels KUBRA’s electronic invoices, statements and credit memos into the EIPP consolidated service most preferred by business
payers. Billers will enjoy the benefits of an integrated EIPP solution that
offers paper-based, EDI, Web-based, and consolidated invoice and payment
processes rather than fragmented solutions for presentment and payer
consolidation services. The new alliance offers customers access to all types
of invoicing and provides consolidation to business payers for the greatest
usage and penetration.

“KUBRA recognizes that we need flexible invoice solutions to maximize our
reach and meet the needs of billers,” said Rick Watkin, president and chief
executive officer, KUBRA. “The alliance with BillingZone allows us to offer a
complete suite of services to billers. We also understand that payer
communities have different needs. As a supplier of e-products, we are
providing a solution today that is designed for the future so that customers
can grow with KUBRA as their one-stop provider. BillingZone is the only
consolidator in operation today that can deliver quality EIPP services to
KUBRA’s customers.”

“At BillingZone, we have built the leading consolidator service for B2B
EIPP to be open to invoices and payments from the majority of sources and
formats,” said Eric Smith, president and chief executive officer of
BillingZone, LLC. “For KUBRA’s customers, this will mean that more of their
customers will be able to access, review, and pay their bills electronically.
This leads to the robust cost-savings and enhanced customer relationships that
KUBRA’s customers expect from e-billing. We are pleased to be working with
KUBRA to offer this valuable service to their customers.”
KUBRA’s offering, KUBRA e-invoice(TM), was designed as a straightforward
interactive environment for payee and payer process stakeholders in the
invoice-to-collect marketplace. It is a complete end-to-end B2B EIPP solution
that delivers workflow and dispute handling, interactive customer care,
payment processing and personalized marketing with respect to digital invoice
creation and delivery. The product’s enhanced customer self-care features and
its streamlined workflow for receipt, review, dispute, approval and payment of
invoices enables billers to simultaneously reduce support costs while
providing business customers with greater convenience and improved service.
Under the new alliance with BillingZone, customers using the KUBRA
e-invoice(TM) product suite will be offered advanced distribution of
electronic presentment and payment services to their associated payer
communities through the service. BillingZone recently
launched its Open Alliance Program, offering companies an easy, flexible path
to link existing software and Web site solutions with an Internet service that
offers a broad network of participants. BillingZone consolidates
transactional data from multiple invoicing sources into one centralized hub,
efficiently distributes invoices to multiple customers through the Web site, offers a sophisticated set of payables
functionality, and provides financial reconciliation back to the suppliers
through their existing banking, credit card and settlement relationships.


KUBRA leads the market in delivering comprehensive customer communication
and customer relationship management outsourced solutions. KUBRA has
leveraged their expertise in these skill sets to offer various business
communities personalized interactive customer communication and management
solutions. Since the company’s inception in 1992, they have created a
multinational corporation that creates value for their customers in the form
of enhanced access to new markets, reduced costs and increased profitability.
KUBRA’s capabilities in data processing, print production, electronic
presentment and delivery and secure payment processing allows them to provide
customer communication solutions through any channel and to facilitate the
communication program throughout its entire life cycle — from document
conception and presentment to customer response and payment. More information
on the Company is available on the Internet at .

About BillingZone, LLC

BillingZone, LLC offers a business-to-business electronic invoice
presentment and payment service that provides businesses a consolidated model
for presenting, receiving and paying invoices on the Internet. The service is
expressly designed to meet the needs of corporate billers and payers and
provides to payers the convenience of paying multiple bills at one site.
BillingZone helps companies streamline the complexity of invoicing and payment
processes, realize cost savings by eliminating paper and manual processes, and
speeds up the communication between companies and their customers or
suppliers. BillingZone, LLC is a joint venture of two industry leaders, PNC
Bank, N.A., a member of The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (NYSE: PNC),
and Perot Systems Corporation (NYSE: PER). Please contact BillingZone, LLC at
(412) 705-3000 or via e-mail at Additional information
is available on the company’s web site at .



The governors of ten commercial banks yesterday signed an agreement to link their ATM networks with real-time clearing. The agreement also includes provisions for the ten banks to pool resources for other deals such as syndicated loans. The ten banks include: The banks are the Bank of Communications, Citic Industrial Bank, China Merchants Bank, Shenzhen Development Bank, Guangdong Development Bank, Fujian Industrial Bank, China Everbright Bank, Huaxia Bank, Shanghai Pudong Development Bank and China Minsheng Banking Co Ltd.