- i2c Announces the release of InTouch for its proprietary IVR (May 31, 2007)
i2c Inc., the innovative leader in high-quality transaction processing and stored value card management solutions, announced the release of another industry first, “InTouch”. InTouch enables clients to autonomously change the welcome greeting and up to three announcement messages played when cardholders call the IVR for customer service.
- Study Finds Debit Card Usage by Women Has More than Doubled Since 2003 (May 29, 2007)
A growing number of women use debit cards to manage personal and family finances, according to the results of the “Women in the Financial Marketplace” analysis, part of the Yankelovich MONITOR 2006/07 study. The study, commissioned by MasterCard Worldwide, found that debit card usage by women has more than doubled since 2003, growing from 20 percent to 43 percent.
- Meta Financial Group, Inc. Declares Cash Dividend (May 29, 2007)
Meta Financial Group, Inc. (NASDAQ Global Market -“CASH”) announced that the Company will pay a cash dividend of $0.13 per share for the third fiscal quarter of 2007. This dividend will be payable on or about July 2, 2007 to shareholders of record as of June 15, 2007.
- Serious USA, Inc. Sails Ahead With Digital Gift Card (May 22, 2007)
Digital publisher Serious has been swiftly taking the US gift card market by storm in taking a quantum leap from plastic gift cards to its digital format of the interactive DVD Card™. This industry pioneer and intellectual property owner has been commissioned by Circuit City to produce their second interactive DVD gift card program, featuring powerful Disney content from the imminent studio release; "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End."
- Branded Gift Cards Turn New Graduates’ Wish Lists into Reality (May 22, 2007)
Approximately six millions students will graduate this Spring, triggering a significant gift buying occasion for parents, relatives and friends. The Network Branded Prepaid Card Association (NBPCA) recommends branded gift cards (gift cards with an American Express, Discover, MasterCard or Visa brand logo) as the best option to give graduates exactly what they want. The NBPCA is a non-profit, inter-industry trade association created to advance the success of network branded prepaid cards.
- Global Payment Solutions Reaches Agreement to Provide 70,000 Card Payroll Program (May 22, 2007)
Global Pay Solutions Incorporated (PINKSHEETS: GPSI) announced today that it has reached an agreement with the LIGA Municipal Dominicana (LMD) to provide payroll cards to up to 70,000 municipal workers of the Dominican Republic. This agreement will provide the Company with initial revenues estimated at $400,000 from the purchase of the cards by LMD. Based on the Center for Financial Services Innovation, February 2007 research study of cardholder spending on prepaid cards, the company expects to receive card service transaction fees of approximately $3.00 per card each month or estimated annual transaction revenue of $2,520,000.
- Stored-Value MasterCards Sent Today to SkyBiz Pyramid Scheme Victims (May 21, 2007)
The Federal Trade Commission is announcing that redress administrator Robb Evans & Associates LLC today sent stored-value MasterCards to all eligible consumers who were victims of the SkyBiz pyramid scheme. The cards, which must be activated before they can be used, have been loaded with a pre-set amount of money and can be used at any retailer worldwide that accepts MasterCard. The cards must be used by September 20, 2007, after which unused balances will be forfeited. In early March, the FTC announced the deadline for consumers to submit claims in this case. That deadline has now passed, and no new claims are being accepted.
- Lifenexus Selects Gemalto for North America's First Healthcare Payment Card (May 17, 2007)
Gemalto, a world leader in digital security, has been chosen by LifeNexus, Inc. as the exclusive supplier of technology and professional services for North America’s first healthcare payment card. LifeNexus will issue the Personal Health Card directly to consumers, working with employers and other sponsoring organizations. This groundbreaking initiative makes access to personal health information and payment for health related services secure, fast and convenient.
- Alliance Data Agrees to Be Acquired by The Blackstone Group for $7.8 Billion (May 17, 2007)
Alliance Data Systems Corporation , a leading provider of loyalty and marketing solutions derived from transaction-rich data, today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to be acquired by Blackstone Capital Partners V L.P., an affiliate of The Blackstone Group, in a transaction valued at approximately $7.8 billion, including the assumption of certain debt. Under the terms of the agreement, Blackstone will acquire all of the outstanding common stock of Alliance Data for $81.75 per share in cash. The purchase
price represents a premium of approximately 30 percent over Alliance Data's closing share price of $62.96 on May 16, 2007.
- Serverside Group and PAYjr® Team Up to Provide Industry’s First “Design Your Own” Visa Buxx® Card For Teenagers (May 17, 2007)
PAYjr, an online service that provides powerful financial tools to help young people understand and appreciate the concept of financial responsibility, has joined together with global technology provider, Serverside Group, to offer teens a chance to design their own PAYjr Visa Buxx Card, a prepaid card for teenagers. The PAYjr Visa Buxx Card is issued by BankFirst, Sioux Falls, SD, pursuant to a license with Visa U.S.A. Inc. BankFirst; Member FDIC. The program will be made available to parents and teenagers starting in the summer of 2007 via PAYjr’s website www.PAYjr.com and through PAYjr’s numerous bank and credit union partners.
- TelExtreme Chooses PayPartners to Help with Global Payments (May 16, 2007)
RTP Financial Services, d/b/a PayPartners today announced an agreement with TelExtreme, Inc. to provide the First Pay Globe Wallet Visa prepaid debit card to their growing number of affiliates throughout the world. The new Visa card will be issued to and used for commission payouts to the existing 50,000 TelExtreme affiliates, with growth projections of half a million or more affiliates by year end 2008.
- Pershing Square Comments on Wrongful Termination of Gary Krow (May 16, 2007)
Pershing Square is disappointed but not surprised that Ceridian Corporation (NYSE: CEN) has elected to terminate, Gary Krow -- the President of its Comdata division, ostensibly for disclosing confidential information to Pershing Square. By doing so, Ceridian's board continues a pattern of punishing whistleblowers for their alleged insubordination. We note that according to Ceridian's 2006 10-K, the company received a subpoena from the SEC on January 8, 2007 concerning among other issues "how [Ceridian] respond[s] to any internal ethics complaints."
- Joseph Saunders Named Chairman and CEO of Visa Inc.(May 15, 2007)
Visa announced today that Joseph (Joe) W. Saunders has been named Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Visa Inc. Visa's regional boards of directors unanimously approved Saunders's appointment after an extensive six-month search. Saunders previously had been named the designated Executive Chairman of Visa Inc.'s Board of Directors, a role he assumed in February 2007.
- Now With Obopay: AOL's Aim Users Can Make Mobile Payments Right From Their Buddy Lists (May 14, 2007)
Obopay, the first comprehensive mobile payment service in the U.S., today announced the availability of a new AIM Obopay plugin for users of AOL's AIM service, the largest instant messaging community in the U.S. This new plugin allows eligible(1) AIM users to launch Obopay and use it to make payments directly from the AIM Buddy List feature. Users can sign up for Obopay and download the free AIM Obopay plugin at http://www.obopay.com/aim.
- Coinstar to offer Money Network Pay Card through Coinstar Kiosks (May 14, 2007)
Coinstar, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSTR), a multi-national company offering a range of 4th Wall™ solutions for the retailers' front of store, and First Data Corp. (NYSE:FDC), announced an agreement between Money Network Financial LLC, a First Data company, and Coinstar E-Payment Services Inc., a Coinstar company, to offer the Money Network Pay Card through select Coinstar® kiosks.
- Global Debit and Prepaid Reach 60 Percent of Visa’s Total Consumer Volume (May 14, 2007)
Visa International announced today that total volume for Visa consumer debit and prepaid programs, including cash transactions, grew by 17.0 percent in 2006, reaching US$2.68 trillion. This compares with a total volume of US$2.29 trillion for the same period in 2005. Debit and prepaid now account for 60 percent of Visa global total consumer volume and over 67 percent of the number of Visa transactions, based on total consumer volume of US$4.4 trillion and 59.9 billion total transactions.
- FTC Approves Final Consent Order in Matter of Darden Restaurants (May 14, 2007)
Commission approval of final consent order: Following a public comment period, the Commission has approved a final consent order in the matter concerning Darden Restaurants, Inc. The Commission vote approving the final order was 5-0. (FTC File No. 062-3112; the staff contact is Lucy Morris, Bureau of Consumer Protection, 202-326-3224; see press release dated April 3, 2007.)
- Lighthouse1 Announces New Professional Services Division (May 10, 2007)
Lighthouse1, the industry leading provider of consumer driven healthcare administration solutions, announced today they have launched a new venture, Lighthouse1 Professional Services. Lighthouse1 Professional Services provides custom tools and services to help customers adapt the Lighthouse1 OnDemand™ solution to their unique environments.
- Green Dot and CardinalCommerce Revolutionize and Increase Payment Options for eCommerce Merchants (May 10,2007)
Green Dot(R) Corporation, operator of the Green Dot Network, today announced an agreement with CardinalCommerce Corporation, a leading provider of authentication services and payment brands for banks, merchants, processors and financial service providers. The agreement will enable eCommerce merchants for the first time to receive online payments from a largely untapped consumer segment: the financially underserved community of more than 80 million "cash consumers" nationwide who do not have access to traditional bank accounts, credit cards or other financial tools.
- Cerner Selects First Data and UMB to Deliver Combined Real-Time Health Plan ID and Payment Card (May 7, 2007)
Cerner Corp. (NASDAQ:CERN), a leading supplier of healthcare information technology, announced Healthe(TM) has launched one of the industry's first combined health plan ID and payment cards with a fully integrated line of credit for healthcare consumers. Cerner has selected First Data Healthcare Services, part of First Data Corp. (NYSE: FDC), and UMB Healthcare Services, a division of UMB Financial Corporation (NASDAQ: UMBF) and a leader in financial services for consumer-directed healthcare products, to provide support on this innovative offering.
- nFinanSe™ Discover® Network Payroll Cards Unveiled (May 7, 2007)
FinanSe Inc. (OTCBB: NFSE), today launched its new line of nFinanSe™ Discover® Network Payroll Cards. The new nFinanSe Payroll Card can be used to eliminate payroll and administrative costs from the issuance of paychecks, increase employee productivity and raise employee morale. All of these important benefits are produced with no fees to the employer.
- Blackhawk Network Appoints Senior Vice President (May 7, 2007)
Blackhawk Network, a market leader in card-based financial solutions and the largest provider of third-party gift cards in the United States and Canada, announced today the appointment of Mari Ellis as senior vice president. Ms. Ellis joins Blackhawk Network to support its continual growth in markets and product offerings.
- First Data Makes Strategic Investment in ViVOtech (May 7, 2007)
First Data Corp. (NYSE:FDC), a global leader in electronic commerce and payment services, today announced it has made a strategic investment in ViVOtech and will use ViVOtech’s collection of emerging technologies that include Near Field Communication (NFC) terminals and mobile commerce enablement. First Data’s investment will come in the form of the company’s participation as lead investor in ViVOtech’s Series C round of financing.
- Visa and ADP Sign Five Year Agreement to Expand Adoption of Visa Payroll Cards (May 3, 2007)
Visa USA today announced a five-year agreement with ADP® Employer Services, a division of Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (NYSE: ADP), to offer Visa-branded payroll cards to its clients. The agreement reflects the two industry leaders’ commitment to grow prepaid card solutions that offer convenience and cost savings for businesses and their employees. The Visa branded ADP Total Pay card is issued by a number of Visa member financial institutions.
- 2007 National Money Laundering Strategy Released (May 3, 2007)
The U.S. Departments of Treasury, Justice, and Homeland Security today joined together in issuing the 2007 National Money Laundering Strategy, a report detailing continued efforts to dismantle money laundering and terrorist financing networks and bring these criminals to justice.
- InComm Expands to Australia and New Zealand (May 2, 2007)
Consumers in Australia and New Zealand will soon be able to enjoy enhanced products and services and vastly improved purchase experiences as InComm, North America’s leading provider of stored-value gift and prepaid products, is extending its product and technology solutions to the Australian and New Zealand marketplaces.
- More Than 200 Online Merchants Sign up with Retail Expansion Network to Offer PaidByCash (May 1, 2007)
Retail Expansion Network, an e-commerce solution provider, today announced that more than 200 Internet retailers have added PaidByCash to their sites. PaidByCash enables consumers to easily use cash to make purchases online by obtaining a virtual prepaid MasterCard® card account. The new service was launched in the United States only two months ago and is gaining significant traction quickly among online merchants and shoppers. The PaidByCash Virtual Prepaid MasterCard account is issued by First Bank of Delaware.
- American Express Incentive Services Adds Unique Travelocity Product to DirectSpend(SM) Prepaid Card Offerings (May 1, 2007)
American Express Incentive Services (AEIS), a business-to-business prepaid card industry leader, announces an agreement with Travelocity to provide exciting travel options to DirectSpend(SM) programs. DirectSpend is a patented prepaid card acceptance process that strategically directs cardholder spend to a specific merchant or group of merchants (U.S. Patents 5,689,100 and 5,956,695). AEIS leverages this process for use in its clients' employee programs and consumer promotions to create indulgent reward experiences at a selection of top retail, travel and entertainment establishments.