The day of a national PIN-based debit network has arrived. Concord EFS formally announced it is acquiring Star Systems. The merger agreement will combine Concord’s ‘MAC’ network with the ‘STAR’ network. Under terms of the deal, Concord will issue 24.75 million shares of common stock for all of the outstanding shares of Star Systems’ common stock and will setup Star Systems as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Concord. The ‘MAC EFT’ network provides services to over 3,300 financial institutions primarily in the Northeast and Midwest. The ‘STAR’ network has 3,500 financial institution members, and operates primarily in 22 states in the West, Southwest, and Southeast, plus the District of Columbia. Of the 2.4 billion transactions processed by ‘STAR’ in 1999, 40% were payments made by ‘STAR’ cardholders at an estimated 500,000 POS locations. More than 136,000 ATMs and 80 million cards carry the ‘STAR’ brand. The ‘MAC’ network, which processed 1.9 billion transactions in 1999, has 52,000 ‘MAC’-branded ATMs, plus an additional 7,000 ATMs currently branded ‘Cash Station’, but transitioning to the ‘MAC’ brand in the coming months. Both companies say that they expect that both the ‘STAR’ and ‘MAC’ network brands will co-exist for some period of time. (See CF Library 10/2/00)Details
CyberSource Corporation, a leading provider of mission-critical eCommerce transaction services, announced that Wachovia Merchant Services will begin offering CyberSource payment and value-added eCommerce transaction services. Wachovia Merchant Services is a venture between an operating subsidiary of Wachovia Bank, N.A. — the principal subsidiary of Wachovia Corp. — and First Data Corp..
! CyberSource payment and value-added transaction services include the CyberSource Internet Fraud Screen enhanced by Visa, which tracks eCommerce transactions, measures the level of risk associated with each transaction, and returns a real-time related risk score to the merchant. This service provides more efficient risk management and tighter online security for merchants.
Wachovia Merchant Services is the first merchant services organization in the Southeast to sign a reseller agreement with CyberSource. Merchants will be able to sign up for the CyberSource eCommerce Transaction Suite(SM) directly through their WMS sales representative. The entire CyberSource suite includes payment, fraud screening, gift certificate and promotional services, as well as sales tax calculation, fulfillment management and distribution control, and it is designed to help businesses achieve more efficient and successful online sales.
“CyberSource, with a full suite of eCommerce transaction services, provides an ideal fit for our corporate clients,” said Kevin Gallagher, director of e-business strategies for Wachovia Merchant Services. “CyberSource maintains a strong reputation for service reliability, and we believe that its risk management service is the industry leader. We are pleased to offer this service to help our merchants succeed in their eCommerce endeavors.”
“CyberSource is very pleased to enhance its long-standing relationship with Wachovia Merchant Services,” said Steve Klebe, vice president of payment industry alliances for CyberSource. “Through streamlined sales, registration and ongoing support processes, the goal of this reseller relationship is to offer a one-stop shop for Wachovia clients who need eCommerce solutions quickly.”
Wachovia Corporation is a $70.8 billion asset interstate financial holding company with dual headquarters in Atlanta and Winston-Salem, N.C. Wachovia Bank, N.A. has nearly 700 offices and 1,400 ATMs in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. Wachovia Bank Card Services is the nation’s 12th largest credit card issuer. Wachovia Merchant Services, [http://www.wmssolutions.com], provides business customers with bank card processing services for every major credit or debit card and a full complement of related and supporting services. In 1999, WMS served more then 30,000 customer locations and processed $6.5 billion in transaction volume. Wachovia’s Web site is located at [http://www.wachovia.com].
About First Data
Atlanta-based First Data Corp. helps move the world’s money. As the leader in electronic commerce and payment services, First Data serves more than two 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 more than 30,000 employees worldwide, the company provides credit, debit and stored- value card issuing and merchant transaction processing services; Internet commerce solutions; money transfers and money orders; and check processing and verification services throughout the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Mexico, Spain and Germany. In addition, its Western Union network includes approximately 90,000 agent locations with operations in 182 countries and territories. For more information, visit the company’s Web site at .
CyberSource is a leading developer and provider of enterprise eCommerce transaction services, and a pioneer in the area of Internet fraud detection. More than 2,200 businesses throughout the world have chosen to use the CyberSource eCommerce Transaction Suite(SM). The CyberSource eCommerce Transaction Suite offers customer-controlled, real-time services including, Payment, Tax Calculation, Stored Value, Risk Management and Fulfillment Management. CyberSource Global Professional Services develops comprehensive eCommerce solutions that are built upon CyberSource’s mission-critical transaction services and tailored to each customer environment to provide security, reliability, and extensibility for rapid growth. Customers and partners of CyberSource include leading Internet etailers, retailers, manufacturers and businesses selling online including Ashford.com, BUY.COM (U.S. & U.K.), Compaq Computer, Home Depot, Mercata.com, MotherNature.com, Nike.com, Priceline, Remedy and VerticalNet. CyberSource Corporation is headquartered in Mountain View, Calif., and has offices in Japan and the United Kingdom, as well as various other locations throughout the Unites States. The company can be found on the World Wide Web at . CyberSource information is also available via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
VISA reported yesterday it achieved new highs in its 14-year Olympic Games’ sponsorship with record sales volumes of US$14.2 million representing 294,610 card purchases at 800 terminals installed at Sydney Olympic Park. VISA also reports that more than 50,000 withdrawals were made at the 22 Olympic ATMs totaling US$4.56 million. During the Games more than 500 Australian retailers participated in VISA’s ‘Embrace the Spirit’ campaign featuring a give-away program of more than 120,000 Olympic pins. Signage combining VISA sales materials and Australian vistas were also featured by more than 2,500 retailers throughout Sydney. More than 5,000 Olympians and their guests registered at The Olympians Reunion Centre. The Sydney VISA Customer Centre assisted 3,000 customers during the Olympic Games.Details
VeriFone, a division of Hewlett-Packard Company, announced that it has shipped more than 9 million payment systems worldwide, approximately three times its closest competitor. Building on this history of success, VeriFone is defining the future of e-payments with:
— Verix, a multi-application platform;
— EMV-certified terminals and peripherals; and
— Innovative technologies that deliver the power and speed of the Internet to the merchant countertop.
The Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) specification body’s Level 1 certification ensures global interoperability between chip-based cards and terminals worldwide. VeriFone is among the first to market with EMV-certified terminals and payment applications.
“Strong sales of VeriFone products over the years are solid proof that VeriFone solutions meet the existing needs of our many market segments, and prepare our customers for the future,” said Pierre-Francois Catte, vice president and general manager of VeriFone. “VeriFone’s unsurpassed quality hardware and software solutions, combined with financing, training, and support services, help lower the total cost of ownership for our customers.” “The widespread need for multi-application devices is driving demand for our Omni 3300 series of payment terminals,” said Eric Lecesne, general manager of VeriFone Appliance Payment Operation. “In every region of the globe, VeriFone is achieving rapid certification of the Omni 3300 series of payment terminals, which features a secure, open architecture, application separation and smart card capability.”
Demand is expected to increase as the emergence of Internet connectivity at the point of sale and wireless payment-enabled devices drive the need for open, multi-application terminals that allow payments to be made anytime, anywhere. VeriFone credit, debit and smart card products provide secure, reliable e-payment solutions designed for the multi-lane retailer, petroleum/convenience stores, financial institutions, government agencies and payment services providers. VeriFone is continuing to develop solutions to meet the needs of new industries embracing e-payment.
VeriFone (), a division of Hewlett-Packard Company, is the leading global provider of secure electronic-payment solutions for financial institutions, merchants and consumers. The division has shipped more than nine million electronic-payment systems, which are used in more than 100 countries.
Hewlett-Packard Company — a leading global provider of computing and imaging solutions and services — is focused on making technology and its benefits accessible to individuals and businesses through simple appliances, useful e-services and an Internet infrastructure that’s always on. HP has 86,000 employees worldwide and had total revenue from continuing operations of $42.4 billion in its 1999 fiscal year. Information about HP and its products can be found on the World Wide Web at .Details
Transaction data by 500,000+ NextCard cardholders reveals Amazon.com continues to hold the #1 ranking among top online merchants. AOL ranks as #2. The latest NextCard ‘eCommerce Index’ also shows that Priceline Air/Hotel and the Juno service are rising rapidly among Internet merchants while Ebay and Stamps.com have declined. Juno has been very aggressive with customer acquisition, including advertising, and in targeting customers of ISPs that have recently shut their doors. The NextCard ‘eCommerce Index’ combines two critical components to accurately reflect online transaction activity: 1) a large cardholder base of active online purchasers and 2) data-mining technology that tracks credit card transactions online.Details
First Data and iFormation Group announced Monday they are creating a new company to accelerate emerging payment technologies. eONE Global LP will combine the distribution strength of First Data and iFormation’s expertise in building new online businesses. First Data is contributing certain operating businesses as well as existing Internet venture interests and management, valued at approximately $360 million, to eONE Global for a 75% equity interest. iFormation Group is contributing $135 million in cash and will receive an equity interest of 25% in the new company and a warrant for 1.75 million shares in First Data. First Data and iFormation together have committed an additional $100 million in cash, proportionate to their ownership levels, for future business development. eONE Global will focus on building the payments infrastructure for B2B, B2C, B2G, and P2P marketplaces. It will create and operate technologies that span these payment sectors, including wireless and multi-applications smart devices; stored value, digital cash and micropayments; as well as credit application and evaluation. Initial eONE Global operating businesses include SurePay LLC, a joint venture with Entrust Technologies, and CashTax, a subsidiary of eONE Global. Garen Staglin will become President/CEO while FDC’s Ric Duques will be Board chairman. Other members of top management include John Duncan, former First Data Internet Commerce Group head and MasterCard executive; Scott Loftesness, a payments and technology expert with experience from VISA International; and Dave Treinen of FDC. iFormation Group was created by The Boston Consulting Group, General Atlantic Partners and The Goldman Sachs Group.Details
Visa U.S.A. announced that it is partnering with National City Corporation for an initial product offering of Visa’s newest and most exclusive credit card – the Infinite card. National City Corporation, headquartered in Cleveland, is inviting 500 of its most important customers to use the card and provide feedback on the card’s benefits and services.
Targeting the affluent market, the Infinite card is a relationship-building tool for Visa’s member banks, like National City, to reward their most affluent customers. Infinite has no preset spending limits and offers unsurpassed amenities to suit the affluent market’s more upscale and active lifestyle. However, individual transactions are authorized by Card Issuers based on factors such as account history, credit record, and payment resources. Card Issuers pre-set upper limits for cash advances.
“Visa is pleased to have partnered with National City Corporation in the creation and development of their Visa Infinite card,” said Sarah Thompson, Vice President for Consumer Credit Products for Visa U.S.A. “This partnership allows us to introduce the card on a limited basis to affluent customers and gather valuable feedback on the card’s benefits and services. This initial effort serves as an excellent opportunity for us to pilot the Infinite card with a select group of card holders prior to a national roll-out.” According to Visa, the Visa Infinite card features attractive customer rewards, services, flexibility and customization at a level unmatched by any other premium card in the market. Unique only to Visa Infinite, the Customized Rewards Program allows cardholders to tailor rewards according to their own preferences and redeem points for goods and services that best meet their needs. Recurring Bill Payments allows cardholders to make automatic, scheduled payments on their cards to any merchant enrolled in this service. The Automatic Monthly Payment feature allows cardholders to have Infinite card payments automatically deducted from their checking, savings, or money market account. “The affluent market is expected to grow by 20 percent over the next five years. Such growth potential presents Visa with a not-to-be-missed opportunity to provide a premium product that enables our member banks to build stronger relationships with their most important customers,” Thompson added. “The Infinite card serves a more active, demanding market, satisfying those who need a payment product that includes many time-saving services.”
The Visa Infinite Concierge Plus service provides dependable, around-the-clock help with cardholders’ personal and business needs 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. With one phone call, Infinite Concierge provides a range of services including restaurant reservations, gift purchasing, travel information, business services and appointments with a personal shopper. Cardholders are guaranteed access to reservations at exclusive restaurants, wineries and hotels. The Visa Concierge will also provide a complete description of the restaurant including reviews and sample menus.
The Infinite card includes additional highly specialized features designed to satisfy upscale needs:
Online Account Information No Pre-Set Spending Limit Year-End Summary Statements 24×7 Live Customer Service Free Companion Airline Ticket Robb Report Subscription Airport Parking Guarantee Privacy Commitment
Visa U.S.A. is the leading payment brand and the largest payment system in the United States, with more volume than all other major payment cards combined. Visa plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 14,000 U.S. member financial institutions and their cardholders. There are 344.7 million Visa credit, commercial and check cards, which generate $765.1 billion in annual transaction volume in the U.S. Visa-branded cards are accepted at over 19 million locations worldwide, including some 625,000 ATMs in the Visa/PLUS Global ATM Network. Visa’s Internet address is .Details
Cognigen Networks, Inc. , a Seattle-based applications service provider and Internet telecommunications marketing company, and AAA Washington announced the roll-out of communications services for AAA Washington members, including a jointly crafted unique calling card product utilizing members’ existing AAA Washington membership cards as pre-paid calling cards.
In addition to the calling card program, Cognigen is partnering with AAA Washington to offer the club’s 640,000 members discounted long distance telephone service as well as dish satellite TV.
Cognigen Switching Technologies (CST), a division of Cognigen Networks, developed the custom calling card program with AAA Washington and will provide service through its customized switching platform and high-quality carriers throughout the world.
Following a simple process accessed online or by telephone, AAA Washington members can activate and recharge their cards at competitive rates for use in daily communications throughout the United States and to more than 200 countries. Cognigen will provide customer support on a 24-hour basis.
Charlie Liekweg, president and chief executive officer of AAA Washington, said, “AAA Washington’s goal is to provide the best in value and service to our members. We’re pleased to add these convenient communications products to our portfolio of emergency road service, travel and insurance offerings. Our members are quite mobile, and we believe these products will prove to be very popular.”
Darrell Hughes, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Cognigen Networks, Inc., said, “We are particularly excited about the creative application of Cognigen’s technological expertise in developing the calling card program with AAA Washington management. We share their focus on providing customers with innovative products and excellent customer service.”
Additionally, Rich Rime, director of business development for AAA Washington, said, “The membership calling card program, the long distance telephone service and dish satellite TV are the first in a suite of communications services that add value to membership in AAA Washington. We look forward to working with Cognigen as we introduce these new services.”
Cognigen Networks, Inc. is a worldwide applications service provider and major Internet marketer of telecommunications and other products and services. Cognigen offers a wide range of services via the company’s Web site [http://www.cognigen.com]. Additionally, the company markets to approximately 250,000 customer accounts worldwide through a network of independent agents, each with a customized Web site.
AAA Washington provides more than 640,000 members in western and central Washington a full range of products and benefits, including full-service travel agencies and personal lines insurance agencies in each of its 13 service centers; a range of auto-related services; a variety of financial products; and member discounts on many consumer products and services. Although its travel and insurance agencies are available to the general public, AAA members benefit additionally from many special discounts and exclusive programs. A not-for-profit organization, AAA Washington also assists travelers through its highway and transportation safety and legislative advocacy programs. More information about AAA Washington is available on the company’s Web site at [http://www.aaawa.com].
The Pathways Group has signed agreements with several Turkish banks to develop smart card solutions. Under terms of the deal, Pathways will establish a transaction processing center that can process credit, debit and smart card transactions for all participating banks. In addition to providing the ‘Proton’ electronic purse, Pathways will assist the banks in creating loyalty and affinity programs to tie together related businesses such as restaurant chains, hotel chains, travel agencies, supermarkets, airlines, insurance companies and car rental agencies. As a part of this process, it is contemplated that a Turkish company will be formed and owned by participating banks and The Pathways Group. This company will purchase a ‘Proton’ operating license for Turkey.Details
An airline has come up with a program to issue stored value debit cards to passengers with lost luggage. Swissair and Sabena airlines are offering passengers who are waiting for lost luggage to be found, MasterCard debit cards to cover costs for immediate needs. The debit cards carry various amounts and are distributed to passengers who arrive at their final destination in the U.S. only without their checked bags. The airline says the majority of lost luggage is found and returned within 24 hours. The Swissair and Sabena MasterCard debit cards are valid until funds on the cards are depleted. The cards cannot be used at ATM’s or bank tellers for cash withdrawals. Swissair offers direct service to Switzerland from Atlanta, Miami, New York, Newark, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, Washington,D.C., Montreal and Los Angeles.Details
Euronet is installing electronic transaction software for NovaBank in Greece, a new financial institution that entered the Greek retail banking market with the simultaneous opening of 45 branches last month. Euronet installed its core middleware product, ‘Integrated Transaction Management’, as well as modules for debit card system management, ATM network management, and ATM bill-pay. The middleware’s on-line connection with NovaBank’s back-office system allows new accounts to become active immediately and provides real-time transfer of data. Euronet also provided special software functionality enabling NovaBank branches to immediately issue ‘VISA Electron’ debit cards and PINs to new customers on site.Details
Tidel Technologies reported this morning an all-time high for ATM shipments in the third quarter. Tidel shipped 3,739 ATMs for its quarter ending Sept. 30, an increase of 36% over the 2,742 units shipped in the same quarter a year ago and an increase of 9% over the previous quarterly record of 3,419 units set in June 2000. For the fiscal year ended Sept. 30, 2000, the company shipped a record 12,426 units, an increase of 76% over the 7,061 units shipped in fiscal 1999 and an increase of 200% over the 4,140 units shipped in fiscal 1998. Fore more details on Tidel’s 3Q financials visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]).