HNC Software Inc. announced Monday a further agreement with HSBC Holdings plc, one of the largest financial service organizations in the world. As part of the new agreement, HSBC will further use HNC’s Falcon, the leading bank card fraud detection system, to bolster its already strong fraud detection systems to protect its credit and debit card account customers worldwide.

“We’re pleased to be amplifying our partnership with HSBC, a global banking powerhouse,” said John Mutch, chief executive officer of HNC Software.

“We chose to expand our relationship with HNC due to the considerable success Falcon has brought us in reducing fraud losses,” said Brendan Cook, who heads HSBC’s Group Cards businesses. “We now have Falcon deployed across four continents to protect our global cards business and we now wish to go even further to strengthen our defenses against fraud.”

Falcon, a neural network-based predictive software system that examines transaction, cardholder, and merchant data to detect a wide range of payment card fraud, currently protects more than 400 million payment card accounts worldwide. The system employs the world’s largest consortium of payment card transactions to accurately predict the likelihood of fraud. Eighty-five percent of all US credit card transactions, and 65 percent of all international credit card transactions flow through HNC’s predictive neural networks every day.

About HSBC

Headquartered in London and possessing assets of $674 billion (US) as of December 31, 2000, HSBC serves more than 25 million customers through its international network of 6,500 offices in 79 countries and territories in the Asia-Pacific region, Europe, the Americas, the Middle East, and Africa. With listings on the London, Hong Kong, and New York stock exchanges, shares in HSBC Holdings are held by some 190,000 shareholders in more than 100 countries and territories. Through a global network linked by advanced technology, HSBC provides a comprehensive range of financial services; personal, commercial, investment, and private banking; trade services; cash management; treasury and capital markets services; insurance; consumer and business finance; pension and investment fund management; trustee services; and securities and custody services.

About HNC Software Inc.

HNC Software is a leading provider of Customer Insight solutions including intelligent response, decision management, and customer analytics software that enables companies in the financial, telecommunications, e-commerce and insurance industries to acquire, manage and retain customers.


Business Center Hires Baker

Georgia Baker, former Retail Market Manager with U.S. Bank, has been appointed to the position of Vice President of Partner Development for Business Center USA. Baker, who spent the last 10 years with U.S. Bank, will focus on the further expansion of Business Center USA’s base of over 300 sales offices.

Business Center USA (formerly known as Money Tree) is a national provider of credit and debit card accounts for retail and Internet merchants and has processed over $5 billion in transactions.


Sears Risk Management

Sears, Roebuck & Co. announced that it expects to reduce costs associated with credit risks and increase revenue streams by several million dollars annually through the use of new software designed by Sears and developed by SignalTree Solutions, Inc. The new software provides expanded functionality and exceptional speed and flexibility in the area of customer behavior modeling performed by the Sears Credit department, significantly improving its credit decision process.

“To the best of our knowledge, no other credit issuer has undertaken a custom scoring initiative as extensive, thorough and forward-looking as Account Scoring Engine (ASE). The ASE represents world-class, industry- leading technology in terms of techniques we will apply to customer scoring, the information we can bring to bear in the scoring/decisioning process, and the speed with which we can deliver modeling and strategy solutions to the marketplace,” said Mark Teague, Director, Portfolio Strategy for Sears Credit. “We will use this technology to better serve our customers and shareholders through superior decision-making in the consumer credit arena.”

Sears selected SignalTree Solutions to build the system due to the company’s proven track record of delivering complex transactional systems, with strict adherence to development methodology. SignalTree Solutions currently is working on the second phase of the Account Scoring Engine, which will enable business users to define new rules through a Web-based interface.

“We were aware that SignalTree had built similarly complex applications for other clients and felt very confident that they could do the same for Sears,” said Ron Callahan, Director of Risk and Information Management for Sears. “Not only did they complete the development on schedule, but they also worked very closely with our business users and IT staff to resolve all the nitty-gritty details in the data conversion.”

“The work we’re doing at Sears showcases all of our strengths,” said Russ Cappellino, SignalTree Solutions Chairman and CEO. “We have a thorough understanding of Sears’ business, we integrate their applications across a variety of hardware and operating systems, and we are leveraging our offshore development facility to minimize costs.”

About SignalTree Solutions

SignalTree Solutions is a leading provider of global sourcing IT solutions, primarily to the North American and European markets. The company has more than 1000 technology consultants at six technology centers strategically located in Los Angeles and Irvine, California; Chicago, Illinois; Jacksonville, Florida; and in Hyderabad and Delhi, India. The offshore technology centers have attained the most prestigious level of organizational excellence, the Software Engineering Institute’s SW-CMM Level 5. SignalTree Solutions seeks to develop strategic relationships with clients by customizing a global sourcing model that best meets the client’s business and technology needs. The company’s ability to build trust and demonstrate reliability has resulted in a number of significant multi-year outsourcing contracts and ongoing business from existing clients. For more information on SignalTree Solutions, visit: .

About Sears

Sears, Roebuck and Co. is a leading U.S. retailer of apparel, home and automotive products and services, with annual revenue of more than $40 billion. The company serves families throughout the country through approximately 860 full-line department stores, and more than 2,100 specialized retail locations, and a variety of online offerings accessible through the company’s Web site, .


NCR Gets Lance

NCR Corporation announced that Howard L. Lance has been named president of NCR and chief operating officer of its Retail and Financial Group, reporting to NCR chairman and chief executive officer Lars Nyberg.

Lance joins NCR after 17 years with global electrical and electronic equipment maker Emerson, having held increasingly senior management positions since joining the company’s Copeland division in 1984. Most recently, he served as executive vice president with responsibility for much of Emerson’s electronics and telecommunications segment, a $4 billion business providing a broad range of power, electronic and connectivity products for the information technology and telecommunications markets.

Lance, whose appointment is effective immediately, will be responsible for four of NCR’s five businesses — Retail Store Automation, Financial Self Service, Worldwide Customer Services and Systemedia.

“Howard has proven ability growing technology-related businesses both organically and through acquisition. His extensive sales and marketing experience, operational capabilities and technology expertise are an excellent fit for NCR, and I’m excited about bringing his business acumen and leadership to NCR and our Retail and Financial Group,” said Lars Nyberg, chairman and CEO of NCR.

Lance began his career in an engineering co-op program with Caterpillar, Inc. while attending Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois. Upon graduation he moved into sales and marketing assignments at Caterpillar, and eventually was appointed marketing director for the Towmotor division.

Following two years at the Scott-Fetzer Company as national sales and marketing manager, he joined Copeland Corporation in Sidney, Ohio in 1984 as manager of its product service business and later became vice president of sales and marketing for the company. Copeland was purchased by Emerson in 1986. Lance’s success increasing sales revenue earned him a general management role in 1993 as president of Copeland’s refrigeration division.

Prior to his most recent role as executive vice president of Emerson’s electronics and telecommunications segment, Lance was group vice president responsible for five of the segment’s business units. Prior to that, he was chief executive officer of Astec plc, at the time a 51 percent Emerson-owned power supply and electronic components business based in Hong Kong.

Lance holds a M.S. in management from Purdue University, and a B.S. in industrial engineering from Bradley University.

NCR’s fifth business — Teradata, a global leader in data warehousing and analytical solutions — continues to be led by chief operating officer Mark Hurd, also reporting to Nyberg. Hurd will assume the title of president of NCR, along with his current title of chief operating officer of the Teradata Division.

“Since assuming responsibility for our data warehousing business in 1999, Mark has continued to demonstrate strong leadership in this space,” said Nyberg.

Along with Nyberg and chief financial officer David Bearman, Lance and Hurd are members of NCR’s Executive Committee. NCR is led by this four-person committee, responsible for establishing company direction and setting strategies and objectives in support of that direction.

About NCR Corporation

NCR Corporation (NYSE: NCR) is a leader in providing Relationship Technology(TM) solutions to customers worldwide. NCR’s Relationship Technology solutions include the Teradata(R) database and analytical applications for customer relationship management (CRM) and business performance management, store automation systems and automated teller machines (ATMs). The company’s business solutions are built on the foundation of its long-established industry knowledge and consulting expertise, value-adding software, global customer support services, a complete line of consumable and media products, and leading edge hardware technology. NCR employs 33,200 in more than 100 countries, and is a component stock of the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index. More information about NCR and its solutions may be found at .


Banamex Backlash

Citigroup’s acquisition of Mexican credit card king Banamex is drawing fire from the Latino community. The California Reinvestment Committee is concerned about Citigroup’s proposed use the ‘Banamex’ name to market to Latinos in the US. The group says Citigroup’s dismal track record in marketing sub-prime products and Citi’s acquisition of Associates Finance will lead to a monopoly in Mexican finance. The CRC also says Citigroup will monopolize wire remittances to Mexico without a commitment to control prices and will continue to dominate EBT while offering inadequate access to these benefits.


Enhanced Access @dvantage

Global Payments Inc. announced the enhancement of Global Access @dvantage, a Web-based payment information management tool, to include a merchant accounting module. The newest payment information access module offers Global Payments’ merchant customers the ability to easily research and review 180 days of authorization and settlement data through a secure Internet connection.

Global Access @dvantage provides merchant customers 24-hour accessibility to research and reconcile transaction and settlement information; confirm ACH transfers; obtain statement information; and track chargeback notifications and media retrievals to prevent revenue loss from overlooked requests. Merchants will also have the ability to export and print data, and to obtain downgrade reason descriptions.

Global Access @dvantage, a payment information portal, also offers two additional modules for immediate and convenient access to transaction information, Master File data, and report images.

Global Access @dvantage offers financial institutions and Independent Sales Organizations full control to manage merchant portfolio records, conduct interchange research, and verify transactions. Financial Institutions can add or update merchant/terminal information, as well as view or print electronic images of pre-formatted reports.

“These enhancements to our Internet reporting product shows Global’s commitment to providing our customers innovative solutions for managing and enhancing their businesses. Offering Web-based solutions gives Global the ability to get enhancements and upgrades faster to market and affords both our customers and Global the ability to increase productivity and reduce expense,” said Global Payments’ President and CEO, Paul R. Garcia.

Global Payments Inc. is a leading provider of electronic transaction processing services to merchants, Independent Sales Organizations (ISOs), financial institutions, government agencies and multi-national corporations. Global Payments offers a comprehensive line of payment solutions, including credit and debit cards, business-to-business purchasing cards, gift cards, check guarantee, check verification and recovery, terminal management and funds transfer services.


TSAI Restructuring

Transaction Systems Architects confirmed Monday it will incur one-time charges in the third quarter of fiscal 2001 of approximately $22 million as a result of its ongoing operational restructuring plan. The Company has scheduled a news conference for this morning. TSAI also announced that it has transferred its 70% ownership in Hospital Health Plan Corporation to HHPC’s minority shareholder. The Company has also closed or significantly reduced the size of certain product development organizations and geographic sales offices. TSAI expects revenue for the third quarter to be between $72 million and $74 million.


Certegy Spinoff

Equifax Inc. announced it has completed the spin-off of Certegy Inc. with the distribution of its approximately 68.6 million shares of Certegy common stock.

On July 7, 2001, Equifax shareholders of record as of June 27, 2001, were issued one share of Certegy common stock for every two shares of Equifax stock owned. Shareholders will receive a cash payment in lieu of fractional shares.

The Equifax share price initially will reflect the distribution of Certegy to Equifax shareholders. Shareholders should add the dollar value of their Equifax holdings to that of their Certegy shares to ascertain the total value of their investment.

Equifax enables and secures global commerce through its information management, consumer credit, marketing services, business information, authentication and e-commerce businesses. As the leader in information services, Equifax adds value wherever customers do business, including the financial services, retail, telecommunications/utilities, information technology, brokerage, insurance and business lending industries and government. Equifax also enlightens, enables and empowers consumers to manage and protect their financial health with services offered at . The company ranked in the top five in return on equity among Business Week’s Best Performers for 2001. Equifax employs 6,600 in 13 countries and has $1.1 billion in revenue.

Certegy provides credit and debit card processing, e-banking services, check risk management, check cashing and merchant card processing services to financial institutions and merchants. Headquartered in Alpharetta, Georgia, Certegy maintains a strong global presence with operations in the United States, Canada, the U.K., Ireland, France, Chile, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand. As a proven global payment services provider, Certegy enables transaction certainty, brings commerce and customers together, and provides business results through leading technology. Certegy’s two main business units — Card Services and Check Services — are organized to enable targeted services and systems that address diverse customer needs. Certegy employs 5,700 employees in 9 countries and has $779 million in revenues.


New GetSmart Services

Providian’s online credit card subsidiary, GetSmart, this morning announced the launch of two new services for auto insurance and brokerage services. The ‘GetSmart Brokerage Search’ tool allows consumers to specify their online brokerage requirements and search for companies in the GetSmart network that best meet their needs. Using GetSmart tools, consumers can research, profile and make side-by-side comparisons to quickly review a brokerage firm’s capabilities. Additionally, consumers can research commissions charged on different products, such as stocks, options, and mutual funds. ‘GetSmart’s Auto Insurance’ service enables consumers to obtain online quotes from top national and regional auto insurance companies. Answer Financial is providing this service for GetSmart in a co-branded environment.



Elva Inc. has completed a consolidation of shares at a ratio of 1 for 10 and the stock is now trading under the symbol “EVAI” on the OTC Bulletin Board. ELVA International, Inc., is a leader in the self-powered acoustic smart card industry. ELVA’s patented VocaliD smart cards supply secure online access and transactions from any phone set, cellular or computer without requiring card readers. VocaliD transmits pseudo random audio sequences in order to guarantee highly secure authentication during each use. ELVA owns six smart card technology registered patents in Europe, USA, Canada and Japan. A VocaliD smart card transmits pseudo random audio sequences in order to guarantee highly secure authentication at each use, from any place in the world. VocaliD is also a standard format card that meets any mag stripe based payment and loyalty infrastructure requirements while being compliant with major traditional chip card based technologies.


Offline Incentives

MO-based Commerce Bank has re-launched a promotion to encourage debit cardholders to sign for purchases instead of using a PIN. The “Skip the PIN – and Win!” contest automatically enters the bank’s debit cardholders in a $1,000 weekly drawing and a $25,000 grand-prize drawing each time they use their ‘Commerce VISA Check Card’ and sign for their purchase rather than entering their PIN. Last year Commerce awarded approximately $86,000 to more than 60 winners and realized a substantial boost in off-line debit card usage. In addition to the current weekly $1,000 prizes and the final $25,000 grand prize, Commerce will award $1,000 daily prizes during the 2001 holiday season. he contest will run through the end of this year. Commerce is using the promotion to educate cardholders about the benefits of skipping the PIN, which include extended warranty, price and purchase protections, special consumer protection rules and back-up authorization limits.



Merchant Data Systems has executed an agreement with Chase Manhattan Bank and Chase Merchant Services to process through First Data’s alliance platform. MDS also announced that Newtek Capital has an investment via a portfolio purchase through Newtek’s Florida-based certified capital company. Recently, MDS signed a contract with another Newtek partner company, Universal Processing Services, to offer its transaction processing to all of Universal. MDS offers merchants an array of services including credit and debit card processing, electronic benefits transfers, equipment sales, leasing and rental programs, 24-7 customer service, supplies and technical support. MDS intends to convert most of its current merchants to the Chase-First Data Platform, enabling merchants to process transactions all over the U.S.