UT-based International Automated Systems revealed yesterday that its pilot U-Check store in Salem, Utah, which opened officially to the general public in March, has captured approximately 50% of the local grocery market and is now profitable. The U-Check store is the world’s only fully self-cashiering supermarket. It features 12 of IAS’s automated check-out lanes.The store, which has doubled its in dollar volume since its first quarter of operation, also offers its customers a biometrically secured debit card, the ‘U-Check Card’. The magstripe card contains personal banking data, cross-referenced to the individual’s real-time three-dimensional fingerprint. The ‘U-Check’ debit card has been available for only four months, and already approximately 30% of the households in Salem utilize one. IAS says its system reduces labor costs for traditional supermarkets from 14% to 2%.Details
Diebold reported net income of $35,516,000 on revenue of $365,920,000 for 4Q/99. Diebold says its fourth quarter total incoming business increased in the double-digit range due in part to a $105 million from Brazil for 200,000 election terminals. Total self-service terminal hardware business increased in the low double-digit range. Excluding Procomp, orders declined 5% for 4Q/99 due to a drop-off in Y2K orders and Canada, which experienced a large order cancellation. Other 4Q/99 highlights for Diebold: installation of 870 cash dispensers with Card Capture Services totaling nearly $7 million; approximately 450 ATMs to Industrial and Commercial Bank of China valued at $11 million; and nearly 600 new tax return self-service terminals in Argentina totaling nearly $3 million.Details
Wells Fargo reported today that its credit card yield for 1999 was 13.58% compared to 14.67% for 1998. Wells also reports credit card loans grew during the fourth quarter from $5.3 billion to $5.5 billion. MN-based U.S. Bancorp reported strong growth in credit card fee revenue. Fee revenue for 4Q/99 was $166.3 million compared to $144.3 for 4Q/98. USB also reports average card loans of $4.1 billion for 4Q/99 and net chargeoffs of 3.67%. Chargeoffs for 4Q/98 were 4.16%. Meanwhile CardData shows that Household ended 1999 with $13,290,149,000 in card receivables, a strong rebound from 3Q/99’s $12.6 billion. HH also added 500,000 accounts during the fourth quarter, growing from 14,458,000 gross accounts to 15,030,000 gross accounts. For the latest statistics and historical data on more than 350 major card portfolios, visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]).
KY-based National Processing reported net income for the fourth quarter of $12.1 million, a 124% increase over the fourth quarter of 1998. Revenues for the fourth quarter increased to $101.8 million, a 14% increase over comparable quarter revenues in 1998 and were derived solely from the NPC’s core business units: Merchant Card Services, Travel Services and Outsourcing Services. EBIT before unusual items for the Merchant Card Services business line, the largest continuing business line, increased 70% for the quarter and 76% for the year ended Dec. 31, 1999, over the corresponding periods in 1998. Revenues for the Merchant Card Services business line for the quarter and year ended Dec. 31, 1999, increased by 15% and 18%, respectively, over comparable periods for 1998.Details
Electronic Clearing House Inc. announced the three-year extension of a network management and transaction processing agreement signed in December 1996 with U-Haul International (UHI), the nationwide renter of do-it-yourself equipment for household moving.
ECHO has been providing network management and transaction processing services to U-Haul for more than five years. Under the terms of the extended agreement, ECHO will continue to provide:
— Transaction processing of credit card authorizations and equipment tracking for more than 11,000 dealers around the country;
— Capture of financial and rental data and printing of the contract between the dealer and the dealer’s customer;
— Hourly updates sent to rental ultimate destinations, allowing for advanced reservations to be made;
— Calculation and reporting of weekly financial reconciliation between U-Haul dealers and UHI Corporate;
— Proprietary broadcasting of e-mail between UHI corporate and UHI dealers;
— Management of nationwide remote reservations generated from any dealer to any other dealer;
— Electronic dealer update system to manage and/or modify local tax tables, rental equipment rates, dealer-specific information and software to effect changes in system operation;
— Ongoing hardware and software engineering with regard to enhancement functionality;
— National depot repair for all systems in and out of warranty period;
— 24/7 customer support help desk service available to UHI and/or UHI dealers for operational assistance and problem resolutions.
ECHO also manages credit card processing service for U-Haul’s independent dealers who participate in the Preferred Dealer Program. Since July 1999, ECHO has been authorized to promote credit card processing of non-U-Haul activity on the same system dealers use to track their U-Haul inventory and credit card authorizations.
“It has been a great honor for ECHO to provide various dealer services to U-Haul, the undisputed leader in the rental industry, for the past five years. Over the next three years, we are dedicated to providing reliable service, innovative enhancements and state-of-the- art customer support. If you serve the best in the business, it puts the obligation on you to be the best as well,” stated Joel M. Barry, ECHO’s chief executive officer.
Electronic Clearing House provides credit card processing, cash advance services, check guarantee, check verification, check conversion, inventory tracking services and/or various Internet services to more than 41,000 retail merchants, U-Haul dealers and casinos across the nation.
ECHO also designs, develops and integrates software and point-of-sale hardware that is utilized as credit card processing terminals, automated money order dispensers, inventory tracking devices, and casino cash advance systems.Details
Bank of America reported this morning that yields on its credit card portfolio continued to lead the bank’s consumer lending. For 4Q/99, BofA’s card portfolio produced a yield of 11.32% compared to 8.18% for consumer finance; 8.12% for home equity loans; and 7.26% for residential mortgages. However over the course of 1999, BofA’s card yield for all twelve months has slipped from 12.64% to 11.59%. Chargeoffs also inched up during the fourth quarter but remain below year-ago levels. For 4Q/99, BofA card chargeoffs were 5.57% compared to 5.29% for 3Q/99 but below 4Q/98’s figure of 5.83%. Non-interest card revenue declined for 4Q/99, from $496 million for the third quarter to $487 million for the fourth quarter. Average managed bankcard receivables for 4Q/99 were $19.4 billion compared to $20.5 billion for 4Q/98. For more current and historical details on Bank of America’s credit card portfolio visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]).
Hypercom Corporation, a leading global provider of electronic payment solutions, announced an agreement to provide 400 additional Hypercom ICE 5000 card payment systems to Banamex Mexico. This latest agreement increases the total number of Hypercom card payment systems ordered by Mexico’s largest bank during the last year to 6,000. The agreement is in direct support of the bank’s card acquisition activities, and overall objective of providing merchants with advanced new technologies with revenue-generating opportunities.
“Hypercom is helping us lead the way by offering our customers the latest in innovative technology and additional revenue streams. The ICE 5000 terminals allow our merchant customers to interact with the terminal and help in the training process,” said Marco Antonio Giardiello, Acquiring Services Executive Vice President, Banamex Mexico. “Hypercom is helping us lead by offering our customers the latest technology and innovation.”
The ICE 5000 is a powerful, multi-function touch-screen terminal incorporating a high-speed thermal printer, paper cutter, and Hypercom FastPOS(TM) 9600 bits per second (bps) modem technology that completes transactions in less than six seconds. Hypercom’s ICE 5000 provides a highly interactive and intuitive user interface to support complex transactions with minimal user training. In addition to traditional credit and debit functions, the ICE 5000 supports payment options such as smart cards, and new business opportunities such as customer loyalty management systems. When used in conjunction with Hypercom’s ePic(TM) platform, the ICE 5000 also enables e-mail, online advertising, electronic receipt capture, storage and retrieval.
“Banamex Mexico continues to set the standard for banking in Mexico,” said Jairo E. Gonzalez, senior executive officer, Hypercom Corporation. “We are committed to helping this leading bank usher in a new era for Mexico’s financial industry, and we are pleased that Hypercom is continuing its leadership role in supplying terminals that bring communications capabilities to the point of sale.”
Hypercom Corporation (NYSE:HYC) is the single-source global provider of end-to-end electronic payment solutions, including card payment systems, peripherals, network products, software and e-commerce payment solutions that add value at the point-of-sale for consumers, merchants and acquirers.
Headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, Hypercom markets its products in more than 70 countries through a global network of affiliates and offices in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, China, Germany, Hong Kong, Hungary, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Singapore, Sweden, the United Kingdom and Venezuela. Hypercom’s Internet address is [www.hypercom.com].
Agency.com Ltd., a leading international Internet professional services firm, announced this week that it has been engaged by Household International, one of the nation’s leading consumer finance and credit card companies, to assist the company in the next phase of its e-business web development. This will include the redesign of several websites including Household International’s corporate website, as well as those of HFC, Household’s consumer finance unit, and Household Credit Services, the company’s credit card unit.
Kevin Rowe, President of AGENCY.COM: North America said, “We think consumer finance is a tremendous market opportunity for AGENCY.COM and we are very pleased to begin working with a market leader like Household International.”
About Household International
Household International, through its subsidiaries, is a leading provider of consumer finance, credit card, non-prime auto finance and credit insurance products in the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. In the United States, Household 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 Privilege card. For more information, visit the company’s web site at [http://www.household.com].
AGENCY.COM is a leading international Internet professional services firm. The company provides an integrated set of strategy, creative and technology services that helps take clients from concept to launch of their Internet businesses. Founded in January 1995, AGENCY.COM is headquartered in New York and has U.S. offices in Avon (CO), Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Portland (OR), San Francisco, and Woodbridge (NJ) and international offices in Amsterdam, Copenhagen, London and Paris. AGENCY.COM serves a broad and diversified global client base in a variety of industries, including 3M, Bank of America, British Airways, Colgate-Palmolive, Compaq and Texaco.
Total System Services, Inc. announced a one-year extension of its long-term retail processing agreement with Sears, Roebuck and Co. until 2010, to include processing of any new Sears consumer credit products scheduled in 2000. Sears accounts are processed on TS2(R), the industry’s most technologically advanced processing system. In 1999, TSYS successfully converted the Sears portfolio of 64 million retail cards in the industry’s largest conversion ever.
“TSYS is very excited to extend our relationship with Sears. Sears has already enjoyed the processing power of TS2, and now Sears can experience it with new consumer products. We appreciate Sears’ vote of confidence and look forward to helping Sears grow this business, too,” said Richard W. Ussery, Chairman of the Board and CEO of TSYS. “Our team members are committed to helping Sears meet and exceed its business challenges with our world-class people, service and technology.”
“TSYS processing has been key to Sears strategy to develop and leverage Sears’ credit customer relationships and to improve service support of Sears many formats and operations. We’ve been pleased with the service from TSYS and look forward to working with TSYS,” said Kevin T. Keleghan, President of Sears Credit Services.
About Sears, Roebuck and Co. (Sears)
Sears, Roebuck and Co., is a leading U.S. retailer of apparel, home and automotive products and services, with annual revenues of more than $41 billion. For more information, visit Sears Web site at [http://www.sears.com].
About Total System Services, Inc. (TSYS)
TSYS is one of the world’s leading processors of data and transactions for domestic and international issuers of credit, debit, commercial and private- label cards. TSYS’ sophisticated systems offer online accounting, data processing, electronic commerce services, portfolio management, account acquisition, credit evaluation, risk management and customer service. With more than 206.2 million accounts on file, TSYS and its family of companies service the entire lifecycle of card accounts, making it possible for 288.6 million consumers to use their cards anytime, anywhere. Headquartered in Columbus, Ga., TSYS ([http://www.totalsystem.com]) is an 80.8 percent owned subsidiary of Synovus Financial Corp. (NYSE: SNV) ([http://www.synovus.com]), named one of “The 100 Best Companies To Work For” by FORTUNE magazine in 2000.
CardSystems Inc., a provider of electronic payment solutions for the global electronic payment industry, announced the installation of its Exceptions Management System for NDC eCommerce, a business unit of National Data Corporation. NDC eCommerce has chosen to implement the EMS dispute resolution system to streamline operational efficiency and reduce costs.
As a part of CardSystems’ eCardSMART Performance Suite, EMS delivers a modular, interactive software solution that automates individual phases of the dispute resolution process, providing customer service case management, sales draft retrieval, chargeback initiation, cardholder contact management, and correspondence management. EMS utilizes CardSystems’ expert system technology, which codifies the rules governing dispute resolution, enabling accurate interpretation and resolution of the dispute – a process that increases productivity and improves customer service.
“Installing large, complex software solutions is cumbersome and in the fast-paced e-commerce industry, companies like NDC eCommerce require their partners to give a solid commitment that the new solution will be implemented quickly and supported by talented industry veterans,” said John S. Cramp, chairman and chief executive officer of CardSystems. “At CardSystems, we strive to be that partner providing a time-tested delivery mechanism, and the knowledge and experience to finish the job.”
“The ability to automate the dispute resolution process and provide the best chargeback defense capability available will mean fewer chargebacks to merchants,” said Thomas M. Dunn, chief operating officer for NDC eCommerce. “As a recognized leader in payment processing, NDC eCommerce strives to find ways to offer value to our customers, while improving our systems, increasing efficiency and lowering costs. CardSystems has implemented a system that will help us fulfill this goal.”
Currently in commercial production sites processing 1 billion transactions per year, CardSystems’ EMS is a proprietary software that utilizes an expert system to apply corporate knowledge to automate exceptions management.
About National Data Corporation
National Data Corporation (NYSE:NDC) is a leading Internet-related information network company. It provides a comprehensive range of Internet-and-storefront-based financial and information management applications including: electronic authorization and settlement, financial electronic data interchange and delivery services, card issuing services, point-of-sale and back office merchant support services, cash management and Internet processing and banking services.
About CardSystems Inc.
CardSystems Inc. is a leading provider of applications to the global electronic payment processing industry, offering end-to-end solutions to financial institutions and other transaction-oriented companies. Since its October 1999 merger with Maverick International Processing Services Inc., CardSystems has become the industry’s first Application Service Provider (ASP), evolving its proprietary eCardSMART(R) card processing methodology into a solutions framework that can be utilized across a wide spectrum of applications. Additionally, CardSystems has developed intelligent enabling technologies that include an expert system, neural network and software applications optimized for the card processing industry. The eCardSMART(R) suite of intelligent products and Internet solutions gives clients control over their proprietary customer data, leading to productivity gains and a favorable return on investment (ROI). CardSystems has deployed payment solutions in more than 30 countries. For more information on CardSystems, visit the company’s web site at [http://www.cardsystems.com].
Chase Manhattan reported this morning that operating earnings for its credit card portfolio grew 11% during 4Q/99. The increase is attributable to improved credit quality. During 1999 charge-offs, as a percentage of average receivables, declined from 6.27% to 5.24%. Delinquencies (90+ day) also decreased from 2.17% to 1.92% last year. However, fourth quarter operating revenues declined 6%, due to lower yields and fees as a result of the improving credit quality of the portfolio, and as a result of higher interest rates. For the year, operating earnings were up 16% to $523 million. The increase in operating earnings reflects a two percent increase in revenue and improved credit quality due to lower consumer bankruptcies and enhanced collections performance. The cash return on managed assets for the full year was 1.45 percent. As of Dec. 31, average card receivables for Chase’s domestic and international accounts stood at $33.3 billion compared to $31.9 billion for year-end 1998. For more current and historical details on Chase Manhattan’s credit card portfolio visit CardData ([www.carddata.com]).
Equifax launched this morning its a new verification and risk assessment service. ‘MarketMax’ provides a verification and risk-assessment score for consumers who have thin or no credit files. The new service draws from a variety of non-credit information databases. MarketMax is driven by data attributes housed outside the traditional consumer credit file and managed by sophisticated scoring algorithms. It analyzes consumer demographics, address files, bank accounts closed for cause, utility disconnections, known fraudulent activity and other public record information to predict the risk levels of prospects. The new service recently completed a successful Beta test with a national retail card issuer.Details