CCMC &  FD Direct Banking

CCMC and First Data Direct Banking have joined forces to sell the industry-leading NetPrecision Home Banking and Card Services programs, the two firms announced Thursday.

CCMC Inc. is an information technology consulting firm that focuses on providing technology solutions for community banks. The agreement is CCMC’s first partnership with another bank technology vendor.

“This is a natural partnership, combining CCMC’s extensive knowledge of the banking industry, experience with leading-edge technology and its focus on branch banking with First Data Direct Banking’s Internet banking products,” said David Willis, president of CCMC. “It provides us with a key tool necessary to assist community banks in maintaining their competitive position.”

Internet banking “is rapidly becoming a required extension of the branch environment,” according to Willis. “The use of dial-up software for home banking is being replaced by Internet connections that offer a full array of functions for the bank’s customers. Internet banking systems are the next evolution in branch automation, and will be as vital as the teller and CSR,” he predicted.

“We are excited to welcome CCMC into the First Data Direct Banking Partners program,” said Randy Kahn, President of First Data Direct Banking. “The combination of CCMC’s existing banking technology solutions and NetPrecision Internet services offers banks a complete arsenal for competing in tomorrow’s technology-driven financial services marketplace.”

CCMC selected First Data Direct Banking after reviewing several Internet banking providers. “NetPrecision offered the best functionality of any of the products available,” Willis said. “We believe First Data Direct Banking has the experience and the staying power to outlast the young software and Internet companies that currently populate the market.”

A significant factor in the decision was First Data Direct Banking’s ongoing commitment to the security of its Internet services, Willis said. In May, the company became the first financial services provider to earn Web Host Compliant certification from the International Computer Security Association, an independent agency that audits and verifies network security.

First Data Direct Banking Partners Program members have been particularly successful marketing the NetPrecision 30/30 Home Banking product, which offers a fully functional, scalable and completely branded web site in 30 business days. The 30/30 product, which can be customized to include any features or functions desired, has proved popular among community banks because of its affordability and speed to market. To date, more than 40 financial institutions have chosen NetPrecision as their Internet banking and credit card platform.

About CCMC

CCMC is an information technology consulting firm dedicated to helping banks implement leading-edge technologies to solve real-life, mission-critical business issues. CCMC provides technology consulting services to financial institutions and industry vendors, including strategic technology planning, technology integration, custom solutions and educational services. The company has developed solutions for branch automation environments, including teller functions, account opening functions, sales management functions and referral processing. Founded in 1994, CCMC has headquarters in Altamonte Springs, Fla. For further information about CCMC, please visit the company on the Internet at [www.ccmcinc.com][1].

About First Data Direct Banking

First Data Direct Banking builds and hosts customized Internet financial service solutions for financial institutions of all sizes.

Using the NetSpeed process, financial institutions can have fully functional, branded web sites up and running in just 30 business days with the NetPrecision system.

Los Angeles-based First Data Direct Banking ties leading-edge online financial services partnerships and template, custom-built or existing web sites into transaction processing provided by electronic payments processing leader First Data Corp.

Direct Banking can be found on the World Wide Web at [www.netprecision.com][2].

Hackensack, N.J.-based First Data Corp. is a global leader in payment systems, electronic commerce and information management products and services. First Data and its principal operating units process the information that allows millions of consumers to pay for goods and services by credit, debit or smart card at the point of sale or over the Internet; by check or wire money. For further information about First Data, please visit the company on the Internet at [www.firstdatacorp.com][3].

[1]: http://www.ccmcinc.com
[2]: http://www.netprecision.com
[3]: http://www.firstdatacorp.com

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Toys “R” Us VISA Upgraded

Chase Manhattan Bank and Toys”R”Us have enhanced the rebate structure of the Toys”R”Us Visa Card from Chase, making the card even more rewarding. Beginning in October, cardmembers of the Toys”R”Us Visa Card from Chase will earn a 4% rebate, up from 3%, each time the card is used for purchases at Toys”R”Us, Kids”R”Us, and Babies”R”Us. Cardmembers will continue to earn a 1% rebate on all other purchases everywhere Visa is accepted. As an added benefit, cardmembers will now have the flexibility to choose when and how to use the rebates. For every $10 earned in rebates, cardmembers will receive a Geoffrey Reward coupon. Geoffrey Reward coupons can be used at any of the “R” Us family of stores for savings right at the register. Cardmembers can even collect their coupons for holidays, birthdays and special occasions. The coupons are good for one year from the date of issuance.

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VISA Olympic 2002

U.S. Olympic team partner Visa U.S.A., the longest-standing sponsor of the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team, yesterday became the first corporate partner to extend its support of the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team through the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City. Under this agreement, Visa will remain the “Official Card of the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team” through June 30, 2003.  The partnership will be leveraged through a fully integrated marketing program consisting of national television and print advertising, ski industry retail promotions, event sponsorship and prominent signage on team uniforms.  In return, Visa plans to aid the team’s fund raising efforts with the ongoing “Give the U.S. Ski Team a Lift” cardholder usage campaign.  Visa will also support the development of the team by providing motivational seminars with past Olympic greats.Visa is finalizing plans to continue the “Give the U.S. Ski Team a Lift” campaign, a supplemental donation program for the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team. Donations to the USSA from this program will be based on Visa card transactions. To date, Visa has committed nearly $2 million to the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team, which is used to help cover the costs of training, sports- science programs and travel.

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Premiere Grows

Premiere Technologies, Inc. announced that earlier this week additional Bank of America (formerly NationsBank) customer service traffic was routed to Premiere’s platform. Bank of America selected Premiere over other bidders, including many of the industry’s largest telecommunications service providers, to provide these services for its Direct Banking Program beginning in 1997. Since that time, Premiere has provided these mission-critical interactive voice response (IVR) services on behalf of Bank of America, allowing its customers to access account information via the telephone.  This week’s increase will more than double the Direct Banking traffic handled by Premiere for Bank of America, which the company estimates will be in excess of 125 million calls per year, or approximately 25 percent of the bank’s total consumer volume. The company has recently announced several other key transactions within its Enhanced Calling Services unit. In early August, Premiere was selected by MasterCard International to be the exclusive vendor for MasterCard’s MasterPhone service outside the U.S. and a preferred provider domestically.

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For Sale

National Loan Exchange Corp., has been contracted to offer non-performing and charged-off financial assets for Toronto Dominion Bank as well as a second major Canadian Bank.  NLEX will sell approximately $50 million of charged-off credit card accounts in October, followed by a December sale for a third Canadian Bank.  Also being offered in 1998 are non-performing loans on behalf of Island Victoria Bank of Jamaica. Assets include commercial and real estate accounts.

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Chase Lenscard

Chase Manhattan Bank also announced the launch of the first credit card designed to help users make sense of the fine print — The Chase LensCard.  The LensCard has a built-in magnifying lens to make small print easier to read. The Chase LensCard provides a simple and practical solution to such inconveniences as reading the small print on restaurant receipts and bills, in telephone books and directories or anytime you forget your reading glasses! This added feature makes paying for all types of purchases with your Chase credit card even more convenient. The LensCard, which is available exclusively through Chase, offers quality resolution and magnifies print three and a half times its existing size.  The magnifying lens is in the center of the left side of the card and measures 1-1/8 by 3/8 of an inch in size, so it’s unobtrusive and doesn’t interfere with the cards operation.

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Discover Renamed

Morgan Stanley Dean Witter announced Wednesday that it would be renaming its credit services unit, formerly NOVUS Services, Inc., to Discover Financial Services, Inc.  In addition to the name change, all of the credit cards offered through Discover Financial Services, Inc. will have the Discover Card name and/or logo appear on the cards. The NOVUS Network name will not change but the acceptance logos will now consistently be Discover/NOVUS.

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3GI Growth

3-G International, Inc. (3GI) has been recognized as one of the fastest growing privately-held U.S. companies by Inc. Magazine.  3GI achieved a remarkable 1820% five-year sales growth, placing the company 134th in the 1998 Inc. 500 survey. 3GI joins an elite group of past Inc. 500 companies which includes Microsoft, Oracle, and Gateway 2000.  3GI develops and sells smart card software applications, smart card management systems, and software for smart card acceptance devices including personal computers. 3GI also provides comprehensive smart card integration services to industry and government customers.

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VERIPRINT

Biometric Identification Inc. (Bio ID) has announced the development and introduction of prototypes for the first complete Biometric Fingerprint Identification System that utilizes silicon sensor verification technology. This innovative product line, known as the Veriprint 1000/1100, represents the first time a silicon sensor-based technology has been implemented in a fingerprint identification product. Prior to the development of the V1000/1100, fingerprint solutions were based solely on optical imaging technology.

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VHS-NEO

VHS Network Inc., a publicly traded Florida corporation, announced Wednesday that it has executed a Letter of Intent to purchase 100% of all outstanding shares of NEO Products Pty. Ltd. NEO Products is in the ATM and Kiosk manufacturing design and software engineering business. NEO’s company base includes IBM, governments, Olympics, Tralstra National Telephone Co. and many other national brand names. In addition, proprietary software technology includes the pro-active “Smart Card” and financial transaction ability.

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Carnival VISA

The “World’s Best Way To Pay” is partnering and co-sponsoring “The World’s Leading Cruise Lines”.  Carnival Corp. announced Tuesday its first-ever corporate marketing effort for its family of six cruise companies: Carnival Cruise Lines, Costa Cruises, Cunard Line, Holland America Line-Westours, Seabourn Cruise Line and Windstar Cruises. VISA had previously been involved in marketing partnerships with Carnival Cruise Lines and Holland America Line. The relationship will now expand to Carnival’s other brands and will feature exclusive offers for VISA cardholders.Carnival Corp.operates 42 ships under six brand names on worldwide itineraries.

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