Dell 0% VISA

Dell Computer Corporation is offering several flexible payment options to help make it easier to buy personal computers this holiday season.

The options include a new Dell Platinum Visa credit card, the new Dell Gift Certificate and an improved personal leasing program.

“Imagine buying a PC this year and not having to pay for it until next year,” says Dave Hood, vice president and general manager of Dell Home Systems. “Now customers can do that with the new Dell Platinum Visa credit card.”

The Visa card is offered by Dell, the world’s leading direct computer systems company, in association with First USA, a leading credit card issuer. It enables customers of Dell Home Systems Co. to buy Dell PCs with no payment or interest for 120 days on the initial Dell purchase(1). After that, customers will pay a 9.99% fixed rate on their purchase..

With every card purchase, users earn Dell Dollars(SM) which they can use to buy a new Dell system in the future(2). With some of the latest instant credit approval technology, card applicants can be reviewed in one online visit to or one toll-free phone call to 800/BUY-DELL.

Dell’s new gift certificate enables customers to give high performance, customized Dell computers and accessories at great prices for the holidays.

“The gift certificate is a perfect present for those who don’t know exactly what to buy, and the recipient can build the PC they choose,” says Hood.

The gift certificates, which can be purchased online, come in increments of $100, are personalized and can be sent directly to the recipient..

Additional information is available at or by toll-free phone call to 800/BUY-DELL.

“Dell is making holiday shopping easy for customers,” Hood says. “Rather than being strapped for money this holiday season, these new payment options give customers flexibility when buying technology products. They are designed to fit our customers’ different needs.”

Dell’s personal leasing program, available through Dell Financial Services, is slashing rates by as much as 10% for leases beginning in the month of December. For example, those consumers who lease the Dell Dimension XPS R450 system(3), that recently won PC Computing’s 1998 MVP State of the Art desktop award, can save more than $300 over the life of a 24-month lease(4).

Also, during December, consumers who lease any Dell system from Dell Financial Services make no payment for 60 days — hopefully helping those who are feeling the holiday season squeeze. The Dell personal lease program, introduced by Dell Financial Services in August 1997, offers lease terms of 24 or 36 months with no payment for 30 days, no upfront cost and the ability to easily upgrade to the newest technology when the lease term ends.

For extra convenience and easy access, Dell’s new payment options are available online this holiday season at (5) And, Dell, who does more than $10 million daily in Internet sales, is poised to meet the needs of shoppers this holiday season..

Ranked No. 125 among the Fortune 500 companies and No. 363 in the Fortune Global 500, Dell Computer Corporation is the world’s leading direct computer systems company, based on revenues of $16.8 billion for the past four quarters. Dell designs, manufactures and customizes products and services to customer requirements and offers an extensive selection of software and peripherals. Information on Dell and its products can be obtained through its toll-free number 800/388-8542 or by accessing the Dell World Wide Web site at [][1] Dell is a registered trademark of Dell Computer Corporation. Fortune 500 is a registered trademark of Time Inc.

The Dell Platinum Visa card offer and Dell Dollars redemption is available only through Dell Home Systems Co.

The Dell Gift Certificate is available and redeemable only through Dell Home Systems Co.

(1) 0% APR for balance related to initial Dell purchase (Dell balance) for four billing cycles from date of such purchase (promotion period). Any balance that results from the initial purchase will be included in the Average Daily Balance on the first day of the fifth billing cycle after the cycle in which the charge is posted to your account. 9.99% APR for purchases and balance transfers and for Dell balance after the promotion period. 19.99% APR for cash advances. If payment is received late once during the promotion period on balances other than the Dell balance, the APR on the Dell balance will adjust to 9.99%. If at any time payment is received late twice in any six-month period, the APR on purchases and balance transfers will adjust to 19.99%. If you do not make payments for two consecutive months, the rate on all balances will adjust to 22.99%. The annual fee: NONE. A minimum monthly Finance Charge of 50 cents is payable if any Finance Charge is due. There is a Finance Charge for cash advances equal to or greater of 2% of the transaction amount or $5.00 for each transaction with a maximum of $25.00. Offer applies to Dell Home Systems purchases only; may not be applicable with other Dell System discounts.

(2) Not valid on balance transfers, convenience checks or cash advances. Dell Dollars expire after three (3) years. Complete terms and conditions included in Dell Platinum Visa Card introductory package.

(3) Award-winning configuration of Dell Dimension XPS R450 can be found at [][2].

(4) Leasing arranged by Dell Financial Services L.P, an independent entity, to qualified customers. Amount saved over the course of 24 months is based upon a 24-month personal lease. Above monthly lease payments exclude taxes which may vary (for example, for the award-winning Dimension XPS R450 configuration, the Hartford City, Ind., sales tax would be $2.45/month); shipping cost due with first payment; no security deposit required; subject to credit approval and availability. Lease terms are subject to change without notice. Business leases also available.

(5) Dell gift certificates are available for purchase online, but are currently not redeemable for online purchases.



IVI/NCR $15M Deal

IVI Checkmate announced yesterday a three-year agreement with NCR Corp.estimated to be worth over $15 million. The agreement specifies that IVI Checkmate will manufacture and supply, using IVI Checkmate’s ‘GEN4’ fourth generation architecture, the key technologies of the ‘NCR 5945’ retail debit/credit terminal and the ‘NCR 5992 Signature Capture Plus’ electronic payment terminal. The terminal products and supporting software will be sold as part of NCR retail solution offerings through NCR’s direct and indirect sales channels, replacing existing electronic payment products in NCR’s retail product family.


XMA$ 98 Purchases

American consumers will rack up $83.0 billion on major bank credit cards/charge cards, $14.3 billion on store credit cards and $13.2 billion on off-line, debit cards between Thanksgiving and Christmas according to data released this morning by CardData ([][1]). During the 28 day period between the holidays, Americans will swipe their credit cards more than 1.4 billion times, charging an average of $3.5 billion purchases per day or $145 million each hour. For the peak shopping days of Nov 27, Nov 28 and Dec 24, consumers will use their credit cards more than 6,000 times per second generating charges of nearly $450,000 per second. VISA and MasterCard-branded off-line debit cards will increase in popularity this holiday season as purchase volume and transaction activity continues to grow more than 50% annually. Last year Americans used of-line or signature-based debit cards approximately 230 million times during the Christmas shopping season.

1998 Xmas Holiday Payment Card Statistics
(for period between 11/27/98 and 12/24/98 inclusive)
Purchases       Transactions       Avg. Ticket     
Major Credit Cards $ 83.0 billion 1,170 million         $70.94
Store Credit Cards $ 14.3 billion 240 million         $59.58
Natl Debit Cards       $ 13.2 billion 354 million         $37.29
Total:                 $110.5 billion 1,764 million         $55.94
Source: CardData (



Online Hit

First Union customers using Microsoft’s ‘Money” software for bill payments had their payments deducted twice from their bank account. The problem occured last week and reportedly affected a minimum of 400 accounts. First Union indicated the problem was related to a telecommunications problem with VISA last Monday. The customers affected conducted their bill payments through a dial-up connection, not First Union’s Internet site.


Debit Hit

Fidelity Bank in Wichita was forced to suspend its debit cards last week after being hit with fraudulent charges. The bank says about 1% of the bank’s debit card accounts were affected. MasterCard detected the bogus charges within two hours of the first bad incident. Hackers apparently working through the processor’s system probed for valid account numbers using algorithms. This is the second bank in Wichita to be targeted. Intrust Bank in Wichita was hit last summer after hackers working from Asia ran up bogus charges using a similar scheme.


ATM Outlook

EFT networks, NYCE, PULSE and STAR jointly announced the release of the “1999 ATM Deployer Study” last week. The survey, prepared by Dove Associates, describes the evolution of the ATM industry to date and predicts that the next three years will be characterized by slower ATM deployment, declining revenue and profitability for ATM owners, and more intense competition for all industry participants. Among the study’s strategic findings: the average monthly operating cost for an off-premise ATM is $1,090, with depreciation and first line maintenance the largest components; major cost differences exist by type of deployer, with ISOs averaging a monthly cost of $703 per ATM; 76% of ATM deployers currently surcharge, with an average convenience fee of $1.36 per foreign cash withdrawal; and deployers plan to grow their ATM bases by 29% over the next three years, versus an actual expansion of 126% between 1996 and 1998.



An IL-based company is piloting a MasterCard prepaid gift card issued by KeyBank. SwiftGiftCard is offering the card in denominations of $25, $50, $75 and $100 and will emboss the recipient’s name on the card. The cards will expire three months from the issue date. The company is also including a personalized greeting card to go with the MasterCard gift card. SwiftGiftCard is charging a handling fee of $6.95 to $8.95 for each card. The cards may be ordered via the company’s Web site using a credit card and will shipped within four days. The cards cannot be used at an ATM. The company indicated it expects to issue upwards of 50,000 cards by year end.


Biz Cards

Nearly half of small and mid-sized business owners say they used credit cards to finance their businesses in the past 12 months, up from 34% last year according to the seventh annual survey of small and mid-sized business owners conducted by Arthur Andersen’s Enterprise Group and National Small Business United. Andersen says credit card financing has nearly tripled during the past six years, up from 17.3% in 1993. The number of business owners who pay off their balances each month has dropped by almost half, from 59% in 1997 down to 38% in 1998.  In addition, the number of business owners who say they use credit cards only occasionally to make ends meet has dropped by more than half, from 24% last year to 10% this year.


EDS – First Indiana Deal

First Indiana Bank has signed a seven-year check processing services agreement with EDS that will provide the bank with advanced image-based processing capabilities and team First Indiana with EDS to begin offering these services to other Indiana community banks by the second quarter of next year.

Under the agreement, early next year, EDS will convert the bank from a standard check processing system to an image-capture process in which paper checks are digitized and their images stored on disks, thus reducing paperwork and increasing efficiency. In addition to imaging checks for First Indiana’s retail customers, the conversion will allow First Indiana’s Correspondent Banking Division to offer imaging services to small to mid-sized banks.

“There are two main advantages of this agreement for the community banks we serve,” said Tim O’Neill, senior vice president of the $1.7 billion-asset bank. “First, these banks will be able to offer the benefits of new technology to their customers. Second, the image processing will be performed near their home offices without the large financial commitment to equipment, space, software and personnel.”

The EDS and First Indiana agreement brings together a perfect team to provide check imaging to community banks. EDS will manage the item processing operations at the bank’s Greenwood, Indiana technology center and execute processing contracts with the correspondent banks.

“First Indiana Bank and the correspondent banks that outsource their check processing to us will have the expertise of EDS, one of the largest processors in the world,” said O’Neill. First Indiana Bank will supply the equipment and software. In addition, First Indiana will be able to help identify future needs and product uses of other community bank customers because of the understanding the bank has of this market. “We are pleased to form this unique services arrangement with an institution of the caliber of First Indiana Bank,” said Ray Maturi, president of EDS’ Community Banking Division. “Together we will bring the latest in check processing technology to community banks throughout the region.”

First Indiana Bank is the principal subsidiary of First Indiana Corporation (Nasdaq: FISB), a diversified financial services holding company. The 80-year-old, full-service financial institution offers a complete line of checking, savings and lending products. First Indiana is the largest locally owned bank in Indianapolis, with 26 offices in Metropolitan Indianapolis, Franklin, Mooresville, Pendleton, Rushville, and Evansville, Indiana. In addition to its retail banking operations, First Indiana has mortgage, construction, and consumer loan service offices throughout Indiana and in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon and Utah. Visit First Indiana on the Internet at .

EDS offers a full range of professional services to the nation’s community banks. The offerings include core application processing, ACH transaction services, branch automation, cash management, compliance oversight, electronic markets services, infrastructure services, Internet services and payment services. In back-office services, EDS has become the largest third-party provider to the financial industry, processing more than 200 million prime- pass items monthly for more than 1,300 clients. Some of these services include encoding, in-clearing capture and balancing, POD capture and balancing, reject repair, transit processing, exception processing and image services.

EDS, the official information technology services provider for World Cup 1998, is a leader in the global information services industry. The company’s more than 110,000 employees specialize in applying a range of ideas and technologies to help business and government clients improve their economics, products, services and relationships. EDS, which serves clients in 45 countries, reported revenues of $15.2 billion in 1997. The company’s stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange. Visit EDS via the Internet at .


7-Eleven Intl Card

The 26th annual World Hello Day, observed by people in 179 countries to demonstrate the importance of personal communication for peace. Anyone can participate in World Hello Day simply by greeting 10 people. 7-Eleven, the leading retailer of prepaid phone cards, is making it especially easy for people to participate.

With the new 7-Eleven/AT&T International Prepaid Phone Card, U.S. citizens can celebrate World Hello Day by calling friends and family around the world for as little as 19 cents a minute. The new international card comes in three denominations: $5, $10 and $20.

International per-minute rates are competitively priced — 19 cents for calls to Canada, as low as 22 cents to Mexico, 25 cents to Italy, 29 cents to Australia, 34 cents to Japan, 44 cents to Hong Kong and 88 cents to South Africa. Each call has a $1 surcharge. The international phone cards also can be used closer to home, with domestic calls costing just 12 cents per minute.

“For $20, a person can make 10 three-minute calls to as far-flung places as Australia, Monaco and Singapore,” said Mike Baldwin, phone card product manager for 7-Eleven. “Phone calls to a single destination have even better rates because you only pay one surcharge. For example, a $20 card buys a 100-minute call to Canada, between an hour and hour-and-a-half call to Mexico depending on the exact location, and over an hour call to many countries in Europe.”

Established in response to the conflict between Egypt and Israel in the fall of 1973, World Hello Day gives people around the world an opportunity to express their concern for world peace. The heads of state of 114 countries have expressed their approval of the event.

With more than 18,000 convenience stores worldwide, operations of The Southland Corporation (Nasdaq: SLCM) include nearly 5,600 corporate and franchised 7-Eleven and other convenience stores in the United States and Canada. In addition, licensees and affiliates operate more than 12,400 7-Eleven stores in the United States, its territories and 17 other countries and foreign territories. The 7-Eleven home page is located at .


AT&T – McKesson Deal

AT&T continues to expand the retail availability of its popular AT&T PrePaid Cards with the signing of a two-year agreement with McKesson Pharmacy Services, a business unit of McKesson Corporation, and its network of ValueRite and HealthMart drug stores. McKesson is the largest health care supply management company in North America.

Under the agreement, McKesson’s network of ValueRite and HealthMart drug stores will have the opportunity to sell AT&T PrePaid Cards in their stores. Consumers who shop at participating ValueRite and HealthMart Drug Stores will find something new in the aisles this week — 15-, 30-, 60- and 100-minute denomination AT&T PrePaid Cards. The popular cards will be available at some of the chain’s 5,000 drug store locations nationwide.

“We’re thrilled to be working with McKesson’s ValueRite network members and HealthMart franchises,” said Mark Evans, general manager for AT&T PrePaid Cards. “AT&T PrePaid Cards are becoming more and more popular with consumers everywhere and we’ve been working very hard to expand the retail distribution of our cards. Teaming up with McKesson is a great opportunity for us.”

Today’s agreement is the fourth major retail announcement this year for AT&T’s PrePaid organization, including recent agreements with Southland Corp. and its 7-Eleven franchise, Barnes & Noble College Bookstores and Red Roof Inns. These agreements have helped triple the number of retail locations carrying AT&T PrePaid Cards nationwide.

AT&T PrePaid Cards can be used to call anywhere in the U.S. and to more than 200 countries from any touch-tone phone. Calls always travel on the AT&T Network, and the Network even keeps track of the balance of minutes left on the card. To use a prepaid card, customers simply dial an 800 number, enter their PIN, hear how many minutes remain on the card, then dial the number.

AT&T is the world’s premier voice and data communications company, serving more than 80 million customers, including consumers, businesses and government. With annual revenues of more than $51 billion and 119,000 employees, AT&T provides services to more than 280 countries and territories around the world. For more information on AT&T, go online to [][1]. For more information on AT&T PrePaid Cards go online to .

ValueRite(R) and HealthMart(R) are Registered Trademarks of McKesson Corporation.

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