Thursday, April 30, 2009

Ottawa to propose credit card reforms - Globe and Mail - April 25, 2009

Ottawa to propose credit card reforms

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty is set to propose regulations next week that would require companies that issue credit cards to provide their customers with clearer information about the interest they're paying.

Mr. Flaherty declined in an interview to give details of what he intends to propose. He spoke on the sidelines of meetings with counterparts in the G7 nations in Washington yesterday.

The Finance Minister emphasized that he is unconcerned with the level of credit card interest rates, saying issuers should be left free to set whatever rate they choose. However, he said he wants to set standards for how those companies explain their interest rate policies to cardholders.

Canada’s First Transaction With a Chip Debit Card - Issue 19 - September 2007

Canada’s First Transaction with a Chip Debit Card

Toronto, July 9 07—TD Canada Trust has announced the completion of "Canada's first transaction with a chip debit card. The transaction was made at a Green Machine automated banking machine (ABM) located in TD's Creekside Corporate Office in Mississauga, Ontario. TD becomes the first organization in Canada to be able to conduct a transaction using a chip debit card at a chip-enabled ABM that adheres to EMV standards."

EMV is the global technology standard developed by Europay, MasterCard, and Visa for chip-based debit and credit cards to replace existing magnetic stripe cards. While many other countries including Britain and France have already migrated to chip technology, Canada has just begun, with critical mass of cards, ABMs and point-of-sale (POS) terminals in market expected to be reached by 2010. Over the next several years, TD will issue millions of chip-enabled TD Visa Cards and TD Canada Trust Access Cards to its customers. TD Merchant Services has already deployed tens of thousands of chip-enabled POS terminals to merchants in preparation of chip cards entering the market.

"We've made great progress internally to ready TD for the transition to chip, and being the first bank in Canada to be able to complete a transaction with a chip debit card is both a satisfying and proud moment," said Chris Stamper, Vice President, Core Banking and Debit Payments, TD Canada Trust. "With last year's upgrade of our network of more than 2,500 ABMs, today's announcement sets the stage for the final software implementation at Green Machines to accept chip debit and credit cards."

Chip technology simply makes a secure payment system even better. Chip cards have an embedded computer chip that stores information in a secure, encrypted format, making it virtually impossible for unauthorized users to copy or access the information on the card. Chip-enabled POS terminals will prompt chip debit and credit cardholders to enter a Personal Identification Number (PIN). The PIN provides an extra level of protection against fraudulent unauthorized use and is a key security element of the transaction.

"Because we offer both debit and credit card issuing and payment processing services, we feel we're particularly well positioned to assist customers in the transition to chip technology," said Jeff van Duynhoven, Vice President, TD Merchant Services. "Businesses that process their card payments through TD can gain an advantage by tapping into the high level of confidence consumers have with the TD brand at the point-of-sale."


Chip, contactless and other innovative authentication devices are being rolled out in Canada and the US to cut down on fraud, increase convenience and capture a greater share of transactions that are still cash based. We are approaching, and have perhaps passed, the tipping point where a majority of retail transactions are electronic and not cash-based. In my view, all non-biometric authentication and identification devices have a kind of built in obsolescence with the advent of inexpensive biometric scanning devices. In Germany a material portion of grocery store payments are authorized by fingerprint.

Fingerprint authorizations are becoming popular in certain US markets as well. As a leader in biometric privacy regulation, Germany has also enacted legislation that specifically addresses biometric data bases. German and other European privacy laws make our Canadian PIPEDA and Office of the Privacy Commissioner look comical.

Canadian payments professionals and legislators should set the ground work for biometric payments which will inevitably become the standard form of authorization and payment not long after chip and contactless cards are finally rolled out.

In the mean time, the FT would like to wish all readers an awesome Canadian back to school season.

Adam N. Atlas

Editor in Chief


Cardex Financial Corporation (CFC) changes their name to Cesef Financial Corporation

Montreal, July 19 07 – Cardex Financial Corporation, a Canadian company offering merchant cash advances, has changed their name to Cesef Financial Corporation.

CFC was formed in June 2006 as the sister company to Cardex Corporation, Canada’s leading payment processor, to offer their merchants cash advances. With Cardex’s recent acquisition by Pivotal Payments, CFC is now in the position to act as a standalone company and continue to offer Merchant Cash Advances to a wider array of Canadian SMEs, and business partners.

“Cesef means money, which is exactly what CFC provides to Canadian businesses,” said Peter Mazoff, President of CFC.

“The traditional reason for SME failure is due to lack of or poorly managed cashflow, Merchant Cash Advances allow millions of businesses to not only survive but also thrive in their new positions.”

Chase Paymentech Provides Tim Hortons Enhanced Speed and Convenience with Point of Sale Payment Acceptance

Toronto, July 17 07-- When customers step up to the front counter or pull up to the 24-hour drive-thru window at their local Tim Hortons, they will enjoy the convenience of paying with their MasterCard(R) card through the introduction of Chase Paymentech-powered services to be rolled out at more than 2,200 Canadian locations by September 2007.

Tim Hortons is introducing the latest payment solutions from Chase Paymentech as a means to provide payment convenience to consumers. Research indicates that nearly half of adult consumers carry $20 or less in their wallet and that 86 percent want to make cashless transactions more frequently.

Tim Hortons will also feature Chase Paymentech's payment solutions equipped with MasterCard PayPass card readers at the drive-thru and inside the store. These point-of-sale terminals will accept the newest contactless payment cards, along with conventional swipe cards from MasterCard. Contactless credit cards contain radio frequency technology to transmit payment details to themerchant's terminal, replacing the magnetic stripe and the need for consumers to swipe the card. Merchants accepting contactless technology are able to accept and process payments quicker, making contactless ideal for the quick service restaurant industry.

"Our customers expect fast, convenient service," said Paul House, president and chief executive officer, Tim Hortons.

"Providing them with the ability to just 'tap-n-go' when buying their coffee and food delivers on our commitment to provide customers with the best quality and convenience in the market."

Smart Processing Solutions partners with Electronic Transaction Services Limited

Toronto, July 19 07-- Smart Processing Solutions one of the TNS Group of Companies has announced that it has entered into a partnership with Electronic Transaction Services Limited, to pilot the Smart Processing Suite™ solution in the New Zealand market.

Independent SalesOrganizations acrossNorthAmerica – and now New Zealand - have been empowered by the Smart Processing Suite™ to successfully process in-house transactions. The Smart Processing Suite securely delivers terminal management, connection to EFT and ATM networks, extensive monitoring, reporting capabilities, and numerous management tools designed specifically to help the ISOs grow and advance.

With the Smart Processing Suite's™highly flexible configuration, exhaustive security measures and extensive feature set, large and small Banking Institutions, Credit Unions, Retail Organizations, and Independent Sales Organizations can provide the same level of service as a major national processing institution.

Anti-Money Laundering Spending Up 71 Percent at North American Banks

North America, July 15 07—A new survey by KPMG International reports that bank executives say spending to combat money-laundering activities rose by 71 percent in North America over the past three years,mainly to pay for IT systems and training staff.

With an expectation that the appropriate IT systems are now in place to support monitoring and regulatory reforms, those same North American executives expect to hold spending increases to just 28 percent over the next three years, the KPMG study found. But IT systems are only part of the monitoring process.

In addition, 95 percent of North American banking executives reported a rise in the number of suspicious activity reports (SARs) over the past three years, with 63 percent of those surveyed saying the number of SARs were up "substantially."

Globally, 72 percent of those surveyed reported an increase, while just 42 percent saying the number were "substantially" higher. The white paper did not ask for the number of SARs that each institution filed.

With more SARs being filed, banks have new investigative challenges, particularly when an issue requires cross-border deployment of staff and when emerging markets are involved.

"To successfully combat global AML issues you need a truly global team," said Pesce. "That means having well-trained, locally-based investigators in foreign countries who know the domestic banking laws and business culture, as well as how to speak the language."

Pesce also pointed out that although globalization of banking and other market forces have increased the focus on moneylaundering by senior management and boards, more attention is needed. According to the survey, only 63 percent of North American respondents believed AML issues were among senior management's highest priorities.


Toronto, August 10 07 –Purepay, a $100 million buyout fund focused on payments, banking and the financial supply chain, announced that it has acquired Creditron, a Toronto-based remittance software provider focused primarily on middle market commercial customers in the U.S. and Canada. Creditron’s existing management team will continue to direct the company on a day-to-day basis.

With strong capabilities in Check 21 and Remote Deposit Capture, Creditron has been providing automated lockbox and remittance solutions to small and medium sized companies for 12 years. Regulations like Check 21 and BOC have created new and greater demand for these services. Creditron intends to capitalize on this increased demand by leveraging its operational experience in the sector and tapping Purepay’s capital resources to extend the company’s capabilities into new and broader markets.

Carol Coye Benson, a partner at Glenbrook Partners commented “Not only does Creditron have a very solid core remittance application, but its ROI product’s cash application functionality and integration withMicrosoft Great Plains hits the sweet spot for the small to medium enterprise.”

“We entertained several potential investors and in the end we chose Purepay based on their understanding of remittance and a shared vision of Creditron’s future,” saidWally Vogel, President of Creditron. “Purepay is not only a financial sponsor. We’re looking to leverage their network and resources to enhance the future growth of Creditron.”

Purepay anticipates a consolidation among companies serving this market and expects future opportunities in the remittance and lockbox services over the coming quarters. The deal closed on August 1, 2007.

Pivotal Payments Acquires Cardex Corporation’s 8000 Merchants Expanding Annual Processing to over $3.8 Billion

Montreal, August 8 07 — Pivotal Payments, announced it has purchased the assets of Cardex Corporation, one of Canada’s leading ISO/MSPs. With the acquisition of the Cardex portfolio, Pivotal continues its long-termgrowth strategy that began in 2005 to develop into one of North America largest, most complete, merchant friendly payment processors.

The purchase of Cardex Corporation’s assets adds over 8000 merchants to the Pivotal Payments portfolio, solidifying Pivotal as one of the top ISO/MSPs in North America, processing over $3.8 billion annually. All of Cardex’s 51 employees have joined the Pivotal team and will work out of Pivotal’s downtown Montreal offices. “We are very excited with the direction Pivotal is going in and feel confident that this new partnership will lead to tremendous growth,” says Cardex’s founder Greg Mitelman.

With debt financing provided by Goldman Sachs, Pivotal’s growth and acquisition plans continue to produce tremendous value and opportunity for its employees, partners and stakeholders. Plans for 2007-2008 include continued organic growth and additional strategic acquisitions that will extend Pivotal’s influence throughout North America.

NXGEN Payment Services Promotes Michael Jaffe Vice President of Global Marketing and New Programs

Calgary, August 1 07 – NXGEN Payment Services, a leading MSP for bothNOVAInformation Systems andCynergyData, has promoted Michael Jaffe as its Vice President of Global Marketing and New Programs. Jaffe will be responsible for designing, coordinating and driving to execution products and program to feed the company’s growth both in USA and in Canada while jump starting business in the other countries targeted by the International division of the company. In this position, Jaffe will report directly to the COO Giuseppe Caltabiano.

“Michael is one of the founders of NXGEN and has been a driving force in building up the indirect sales organization as well as taking to the market our core products,” said Giuseppe Caltabiano “the exciting part for all of us is that we are now expanding our International Division with senior management while growing profitably”

“After having brought NXGEN USA to the current level of sales, I cannot wait to start exchanging programs, products, and ideas across borders.” States Jaffe “With a solid presence established in USA and in Canada, more than 800 referral partnership in USA alone, we have plans to deepen our presence by growing in different vertical markets, while expanding our reach to different continents”

Michael Jaffe has been with NXGEN since its inception and bringsmore than 10 years experience in the payment and banking industry.

New From NCR, Teller Assist Cash Recyclers

Calgary, August 13 07– NCR Corporation has announced the availability in Canada of new Teller Assist Cash Recycler (TACR) technology. The cash recycling units, a component of NCR’s broader branch optimization portfolio, are integral to further extending NCR’s commitment to providing innovative branch technology to banks and credit unions across Canada.

The worldwide leader in financial self-service solutions,NCR recently signed a multiyear technology license agreement with CIMA S.p.A, a leading cash-handling technology company. With this agreement, NCR will leverage its global manufacturing expertise, customer service infrastructure, and sales and marketing breadth to bring CIMA’s Teller Assist Cash Recycler to the global marketplace.

TACR technology is designed to help improve branch efficiency and customer service levels, cornerstones of all retail bank branch strategies today. The TACR offers the optimum mix of a high-cash capacity, coupled with a small, branch-friendly footprint. The cash recyclers can be positioned at the teller counter for individual or shared use, or be used as a mini-vault to further enhance security for both cash and the employee.

“Since the 1980s, many bank branches have been using Teller Assist Cash Dispensers to improve teller productivity and increase security. We see TACR as an emerging technology that will replace the 20-year-old cash dispense system,” said Nicholas Hames, vice president of NCR’s Financial Solutions division in Canada. “TACRs offer financial institutions many incremental benefits. For example, over the course of the day, cash received by the teller begins to accumulate in teller drawers. TACRs eliminate this as cash can be stored safely within the cash recycling unit itself and made ready for immediate dispense. TACRs can also replace currency counters, day vaults and other commonly used incremental security equipment generally associated with Teller Assist Cash Dispensers.”

The TACR automatically authenticates, counts, stores and makes available deposited currency notes, which are then recycled back to customers over the teller counter. With today’s labour intensive cash counting process, it is not uncommon for a banknote to be counted by hand at least six times on its journey from the vault through the branch. As much as two-thirds of a teller’s daily processing time can be reduced using the TACR technology.

For commercial customers in particular, TACRs can reduce the transaction time for bulk cash counting and sorting deposits and cash purchase orders by as much as 50 per cent.

Desjardins and Couche-Tard Inc. Sign a Canada-Wide Partnership Agreement

Montreal, August 8 07 – Desjardins Group, the largest integrated cooperative financial group in Canada, announced the renewal of its partnership with Alimentation Couche-Tard inc. as a supplier of Desjardins payment solutions (debit and credit services).

Building on the strength of their running, ten-year partnership, Desjardins Card Services and Alimentation Couche-Tard inc. have not only renewed their agreement for services in Quebec, but also expanded it across Canada into the areas served by Alimentation Couche-Tard inc. under the Mac’s banner, as exclusive supplier for the processing of POS transactions.

“Now able to process both VISA™ and MasterCard® transactions, Desjardins Card Services is a premium supplier of payment and financing solutions and is strengthening its position as a leader in this area. Thanks to our extensive range of services, we can meet the evolving needs of merchants all over Canada.

We are very proud to be associated with Alimentation Couche-Tard inc. and to offer Desjardins payment solutions for all of its stores in Canada”, stated Jean Yelle, Vice-President of Desjardins Card Services.

TNS Smart Network Inc.’s Portfolio of 3rd Party ATMs is More Than Double the Size of the Largest Canadian Banks ATM Portfolio

Toronto, August 15 07 - TNS Smart Network Inc., Canada's largest ATM processor, announced that it has exceeded 10,000 3rd Party ATMs installed on its network and expects to reach a new plateau of 11,000 ATMs by the end of 2007. The strength of the Canadian ATM industry coupled with the confidence of Independent Sales Organizations and Merchants in TNS Smart Network's superior service and support is driving more ATMs to TNS Smart Network, surpassing all expectations.

TNS Smart Network's installed ATM base represents a volume of ATMs equivalent to 64% of all the ATMs deployed by the Big Five Banks in Canada. "At the current rate of growth, we expect that within one year, TNS SmartNetwork Inc. will surpass the number of ATMs currently deployed by all Canadian Financial Institutions combined.

Compared to the Banks our installed base of ATM's is more than twice the size of the largest banks installedATMbase." stated Mischa Weisz, President and CEO of TNS Smart Network Inc. (See table below)

Mr.Weisz added that, "The momentum that has driven us to where we are today is what we strive to maintain by offering the best customer service, the most innovative products and services, and giving the card holder what they want, access to their money, anytime, anywhere."

Number of installed ATM's by entity (*)

TNS Smart Network Inc. . .10,291

Royal Bank of Canada . . . . . .4,232

CIBC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3,818

TD Canada Trust . . . . . . . . . .3,256

Scotiabank . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2,742

Bank of Montreal . . . . . . . . . . 1,936

(*) Bank information as at October 31, 2006

Global Payments Certifies POSLynx220™ for Payments

Ottawa, August 1 07 – Precidia Technologies Inc., a global leader in the design and manufacture of Internet Protocol (IP) payment and networking devices, announced today the Class B certification of its POSLynx220™ payment router by leading payment processor Global Payments Inc. Today’s certification allows merchants to integrate Precidia’s secure payment application with existing POS devices including PCs and cash registers for fast, PCI compliant transaction processing to Global Payments’ GlobalNet @dvantage SSL Gateway.

While the popular POSLynx220 provides broadband connectivity to a wide range of POS equipment, from ATMs to payment terminals, today’s announcement introduces Precidia’s secure payment engine, TransNet™, to Global Payments customers. This payment engine integrates with existing PC and cash register applications, separating the payment function from other applications by housing it on the secure POSLynx220. This solution is ideal for hospitality and other retailers who depend on PC-based systems and want to ensure ongoing PCI compliance and cardholder security. With the POSLynx220 already certified by Global Payments to provide connectivity to a wide range of POS equipment, this new certification extends the IP payment options available to merchants processing to Global Payments.

Precidia’s Payment System includes the POSLynx220, TransNet™ secure payment engine, and MerchantVu™, which provides store-level statistics on transactions, network status and settlement. The Payment System boasts the industry’s most comprehensive approach to PCI and data security, with automatic alerts and updates, and a secure server for payments.

Capellas Set to Flip First Data?

August 1 07—MichaelCapellas, who sold bothMCI Inc. and Compaq Computer Corp., will become chief executive officer of First Data Corp. when its $26 billion leveraged buyout is completed. But how long will he and First Data be around?

Capellas, who has made his career by cutting costs and sprucing up companies for sale, may be a perfect fit for First Data under the control of private equity firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. Private equity firms typically acquire companies, refinance their debt, cut costs and sell them for a profit after three to five years.

First Data and KKR could not be immediately reached for comment.

Capellas flips companies and pockets a lot of money on the way out. He sold Compaq to Hewlett-Packard and served as the combined company’s president for sevenmonths.He walked away with a severance package of more than $14 million, while 17,000 employees lost their jobs in the merger. At MCI, he got a $39 million package for helping turn around the bankrupt company and selling it to Verizon Communication.

First Data’s Chairman Ric Duques described Capellas as: “Michael is by any measure an accomplished, energetic and visionary CEO.”

PresentPay Inc. to Offer Secure eMail Bill Presentment and Payment

Winnipeg, September 9 07 – TelPay Incorporated is pleased to announce the formation of a subsidiary company, PresentPay Inc. to promote the presentment By secure email of corporate bills, statements and other documents normally distributed by regular mail.

PresentPay has entered into a reseller agreement for Canada with Striata Inc., of New York an international provider of bill presentment services.

Striata Secure eDocument Delivery and Email Bill Presentment & Payment are solution sets that deliver rapid reduction in operational costs and quicker payment, by revolutionizing the way bills, statements, pay stubs and other high volume system-generated documents are delivered and paid.

Unlike today's online billing solutions, which insist on consumers visiting and registering at a website, Striata delivers feature rich, secure email documents directly to customers’ inbox allowing two click electronic bill presentment and payment. This innovative and strategic change from ‘pull’ to ‘push’ dramatically increases consumer adoption of electronic billing, allowing the biller to achieve rapid ROI from their self-service and high volume e-correspondence investments.

Striata provides its billing services to many major utilities, Telco’s and financial institutions worldwide, including 3 of the top 12 banks in the world.

TelPay is Canada’s largest independent electronic bill payment processor. The combination of the Striata solutions and TelPay’s electronic payment capabilities, accomplishes the ideal solution to the long sought Electronic Bill Presentment and Payment (EBPP) eStatement capability that meets the needs of both the biller and the bill payer.

Credential Direct and TD Waterhouse Named Top Online Brokerage Firms in Canada

Ontario September 11 07—For the third time, Credential Direct and TD Waterhouse held top honors as the premier online brokerages for Canadians, according to the newly released Summer 2007 Surviscor analysis. Credential Direct retained both the "overall" and the "investor" top spots. TD Waterhouse retained the top spot in the trader profile. The analysis identified major shifts in price point, with little change in features and functionality across the firms.

In the investor profile, Credential Direct earned four category awards, BMOInvestorLine earned two and ScotiaMcLeod Direct Investing earned one. In the trader profile, TD Waterhouse earned four category awards, and BMO InvestorLine earned one.

According to the 2007 results, the main improvements to features and functionality during the past nine months have been pricing changes and an emphasis on increasing self-directed learning and research tools. "The price war continues to be the main topic of conversation as prices continue to decrease, mainly for active traders," said Surviscor President Glenn LaCoste.

Surviscor predicts that the online brokerage environment will see more features and functionality enhancements this year and into 2008 with security and messaging being at the top of the list of priorities. LaCoste observes that customers are demanding the best possible online security and secure messaging from their online brokerage firms. As a result, many firms have begun investing in delivering the most secure environment possible.

NCR Appoints Former Xerox Executive as NCR Canada President

Mississauga, September 11 07– NCR Corporation has announced the appointment of Ranji Persad as president of NCR Canada.

A proven sales and marketing executive, Persad has overall sales, marketing and management responsibility for all facets of NCR’s retail, financial and support services business in Canada.

“Ranji Persad brings to this executive role solid expertise in leading large-scale business transformation initiatives and delivering significant business results. He is joining NCR’s Canadian organization at a very exciting time as we embark on our journey as the new NCR,” said NCR Senior Vice President Dan Bogan. “By leveraging his successful sales, marketing and management track record, Ranji will help drive cross-functional marketing strategies that enhance the customer experience and also ensure that NCR capitalizes on the tremendous growth opportunities that exist in the Canadian self-service marketplace.”

Prior to joining NCR, Persad spent 24 years at Xerox Canada Ltd., most recently serving as vice president, business transformation and chief information officer. Before that, he held a number of other senior executive positions including vice president, strategy and sales operations, and vice president and general manager, major accounts Canada. His career also included management assignments in Xerox Canada’s business division marketing and indirect channel organizations as well as in the company’s U.S. operations.

Persad has a degree in commerce and economics from the University of Toronto and is Lean Six Sigma certified.

VeriFone to Supply Cara with Pay-At-the Table Systems - Issue 18 - July 2007

VeriFone to Supply Cara with Pay-At-the Table Systems

June 14, 2007 - VeriFone Holdings, Inc. has announced that Cara, the largest operator of full service restaurants in Canada, has selected the ON THE SPOT pay at the table system designed exclusively for the hospitality industry.

With this multi-million dollar rollout, Cara becomes the largest restaurant operator and the first in Canada to provide its customers with payment at the table. Cara owns many of Canada’s most popular restaurant concepts with stores totaling over 800, including the Swiss Chalet, Harvey’s, Kelsey’s, Montana’s Cookhouse and Milestone’s Grill & Bar brands.

ON THE SPOT is designed to significantly improve security for restaurant patrons and cut down on the increasingly common problem of credit card fraud. It has two main platforms. One that allows at-the-table, curb or point of delivery payment for full-service family, casual and fine dining restaurants (model Vx 670); and the other designed for use at drive-thru windows (model QX720). At Cara, ON THE SPOT is integrating seamlessly with MICROS Systems, Inc. point-of-sale solutions.

ON THE SPOT allows patrons to hold on to their card during the payment process, consequently cutting down on “skimming,” an increasingly common practice in which a restaurant employee swipes the card through a special device that records its owner’s account information, which can then be used in identity theft. TransUnion estimates that 70 percent of all skimming takes place in the restaurant environment.

The payment system also uses special encryption and other security features to protect all financial data handled over a restaurant’s Wi-Fi network. These security features are a necessity today, with the Federal Trade Commission reporting that credit card fraud has become the most common form of identity theft.

Restaurant owners may also experience an additional benefit of lower credit card processing fees when customers use PIN-based debit cards, which incur lower processing fees than signature-based credit transactions.

The use of payment devices similar to ON THE SPOT has been widespread in Europe for years and is picking up steam in North American restaurants. VeriFone’s ON THE SPOT is the most widely deployed solution in the U.S. and Canada since being launched in May of 2006 at the National Restaurant Association trade show.


It seems our gamble at the FT has paid off. Since the founding of this publication, we have bet on the Canadian payments industry going in the direction of the US payments market. I think its safe to say that as of the summer of 2007 that has happened. Every few months a new merchant account ISO comes on line in Canada. Canadian ISOs and some US ISO’s have finally rolled out cash advance products in Canada, and prepaid cards are now being issued wherever you look in Canada. Its official, Canada now has a payments industry.

The challenge for Canadian payments entrepreneurs, in my opinion, is not just to open the Canadian market for payments products, but to keep their market share when the US competitors come to Canada.With the exception of the ten or so biggest names in the industry, most US payments businesses that have tried to come to Canada got tired of not getting called back by Canadian banks and decided that a country the size of California was not worth the hassle. That has left Canadian entrepreneurs with the thankless task of re-engineering the Canadian marketplace to become open and welcoming of new payments offerings. That is happening right now, and we are delighted to report on it in the pages of this publication.

In this issue we are also launching The Frontier Times General Store where readers will be able to pick up odds and ends that might be hard to find elsewhere. The first offering in this regard is cleaning cards. Anyone who has ever done grocery shopping knows how important it is to clean POS machines. The FT is pleased to help you help your merchants with this perennial problem.

Whether you are reading this issue at the cottage with your feet in the lake or in the muggy city summer heat, we hope you are having a great Canadian summer.

Adam N. Atlas

Editor in Chief


First Data International Extends Agreement with Laurentian Bank of Canada

Toronto, June 06 2007 – First Data International, a global leader in electronic commerce and payment services, announced it has extended its agreement with Laurentian Bank of Canada. Under terms of the agreement, First Data will continue to provide payment processing services for the bank's credit card portfolios.

Laurentian Bank is a Quebec banking institution operating across Canada and drives the third largest branch network in Quebec. The bank has more than 3,200 employees, 158 bank branches, 29 commercial banking centers and 14 brokerage offices, and is dedicated to meeting the financial needs of its clients through the excellence of its service, simplicity and proximity.

First Data has provided card processing services in Canada since 2000 and currently processes accounts on behalf of leading card issuers in the region. The company is also a leading merchant acquirer of MasterCard® transactions in Canada working with a wide range of merchants.

Visa charges ahead with plan to go public

June 22 2007 – Visa has filed documents with regulators that provide further detail on its plan to launch an initial public offering for the company that operates the world's most popular credit card.

Visa said 51% of its shares now owned by the banks that issue Visa cards would be issued to the public.

However, before that can happen, Visa will restructure its global operations. Visa Canada, Visa International and Visa USA will be combined into a single company, Visa Inc., which will be owned by its member banks.

Visa hopes to replicate the success of its rival, MasterCard, which went public in 2006. Its shares gained 18% on their first day of trading and have quadrupled since then.

Member banks who own 100 per cent of Visa's stock could stand to reap huge windfall profits on selling their shares.

Both Visa and MasterCard are facing legal scrutiny in the U.S., where merchants have accused the two companies of price fixing and have filed antitrust lawsuits.

There are currently about 1.5 billion Visa cards in circulation around the world.

Bank of America Expands Toronto-based Global Corporate and Investment Banking Team

Toronto, June 28 2007 – Bank of America has announced two hires to its Toronto-based Global Corporate and Investment Banking (GCIB) team with the appointments of Paul R. DeMelo as Managing Director and head of Corporate Banking, and J. Andrew Riddell as Senior Vice President and Senior ClientManager in Commercial Banking. Both are based in Toronto, Canada.

DeMelo reports to Donald C. Stewart, Managing Director and Principal Officer and Chairman of Banc of America Securities Canada Co. In his position as head of Corporate Banking, DeMelo is responsible for building out and leading the bank's expanding corporate banking efforts in Canada.

DeMelo brings a wealth of experience and success in building and leading corporate banking teams in Canada and the United States over a career spanning 20 years. His most recent position was head of Corporate Banking for JPMorgan Canada.

Riddell reports to Kevin Murphy, Commercial Banking Market Executive for Upstate New York and Eastern Canada at Bank of America. In his position as Senior Client Manager, Riddell is responsible for leading and growing the bank's existing portfolio of commercial customers.

Riddell brings with him a 17 year history of outstanding results in servicing the Canadian commercial sector with a particular focus on cross border financial service needs. His most recent position was as a Senior Vice President in the International Banking group at National City Bank, Canada branch.


Montreal, June 11, 2007 – The Royal Canadian Mounted Police created the Merchants Against Money Laundering and Counterfeiting Program to help business people recognize the various forms of money laundering as well as counterfeit bank notes.

Until August, the Merchants Against Money Laundering and Counterfeiting Program team will provide presentations on these two crimes and their consequences to merchants across Québec. The sessions are offered free of charge in both official languages.

Whether it is money laundering or counterfeit money, merchants often lack information to combat these types of financial crimes that affect them directly.

In response to this situation, the RCMP hired students and created a prevention program aimed at merchants who will gain by becoming more familiar with these increasingly popular crimes. “Counterfeit money has seen spectacular growth over the past few years, said Sergeant André Bacon, Regional Coordinator of the RCMP’s Counterfeit Program. Seized bills alone account for losses of tens of millions of dollars for the victims.”

Visual presentations on request:

The program uses visual presentations to raise merchants’ awareness. The material was created in collaboration with the RCMP Integrated Counterfeit Enforcement Team and Integrated Proceeds of Crime, as well as the Bank of Canada and FINTRAC (Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada). This initiative has already been successfully implemented in other cities, such as Ottawa and Halifax.

Anyone interested in this program can contact Annie Bélanger and Maude Boivin-Laframboise at (514) 939-8304 for theMontréal area or the RCMP Integrated Proceeds of Crime at (418) 648-4126 for the Québec city area for additional information.

GE Money, eBay Introduce eBay MasterCard

June 16, 2007 – GE Money has announced the eBay MasterCard, calling it an expansion of its partnership with eBay. eBay MasterCard customers will benefit from a new rewards program, earning one Reward Point for every $1 spent in purchases. Reward Points are also earned with non-Internet, everyday purchases wherever MasterCard is accepted. Points are redeemable for shipping discounts and vouchers that can be used to shop on eBay or to pay eBay seller fees.

Cardholders will enjoy other benefits with the eBay MasterCard, such as the ability to choose from one of three card designs, and the option to add their eBay User ID to the card. The card also features Safe Shipping, which protects them if their item never arrives. The card fits perfectly with PayPal, as customers can view their account activity within their existing PayPal account. Additional benefits include zero percent liability for unauthorized purchases, 24/7 customer service and no annual fee.

eBay will provide promotional and branding support for the eBay MasterCard. GE Money Bank will be responsible for issuing the card, and providing customer service, billing and credit management.

The eBayMasterCard is an expansion of a relationship originally created in June 2004 for GE to offer PayPal Buyer Credit, a private label, revolving credit line available to registered PayPal customers. A PayPal® Plus MasterCard was introduced in May 2006.

New POSLynx220 Version Introduces TransNet™ Payment Engine

Solution makes PC-based payment processing more secure.

Ottawa, June 14 2007 – Precidia Technologies Inc., a global leader in the design and manufacture of Internet Protocol (IP) payment and networking devices, has announced the release of POSLynx220™ version 2.09, which now supports TransNet™, Precidia’s secure payment engine for PC POS systems.

This new solution eliminates the vulnerability of PC-based systems running payment applications by leveraging the POSLynx220 hardware as a secure server for Precidia’s payment application. The solution can be purchased by vendors and developers to integrate secure payments functionality with complementary applications. Delivering peace of mind with automatic PCI alerts and updates, merchants purchasing TransNet with the POSLynx220 can also take advantage of value added store-level management tools.

Established in hospitality and other retail sectors, PC based systems are ideal for running multiple applications, from inventory to email.When it comes to payments, however, PC systems have one fundamental flaw that TransNet has been designed to address: inadequate security. In order to meet the demanding requirements of cardholder security standards like PCI, the payments function must stand alone separate from other applications running on the PC. The POSLynx220 payment router connects to the PC system, delivering fast IP transactions, enhanced management and statistics, switching for multiple card types and solid security.

Experian and eCredit™ Join for Rapid Credit Decision Service

Toronto, June 11 2007 – Experian®, a global information services company, has announced that it has teamed with eCredit™ a leading provider of online solutions for credit and collections professionals, to launch an end-to-end new account and portfolio management credit decisioning tool.

Powered by eCredit's market-leading credit decisioning technology and integrated with Experian's small-business commercial risk information, Credit Risk Advisor(SM) provides the trade credit community with a powerful tool to more efficiently support new accounts and existing portfolio management.

With automated workflow functionality and configurable decisioning criteria, Credit Risk Advisor enables users to develop and easily implement a robust credit policy that identifies areas of risk and opportunity across their entire portfolio. The new service also provides clients with flexible scorecards that meet the evolving demands of trade credit companies, including manufacturers, wholesalers and transportation businesses.

Credit Risk Advisor automates the new account decisioning process by allowing business credit applications to be entered and instantly evaluated in a paperless online environment. All account information including Experian credit scores, payment history, notes and approved credit limits can be electronically routed within the credit department or between credit and sales, enabling clients to save time, reduce out-ofpolicy exceptions and improve cash-management productivity. The new service also will evaluate account portfolios using automated customer-defined rules and will aid in the immediate identification of unwarranted credit exposures before significant problems arise.

MasterCard Wins Injunction Against Visa

New York, June 08 2007 – Federal Judge Barbara Jones ruled that Visa's Settlement Service Fee (“SSF”), implemented in the wake of the settlement of the merchant lawsuit in 2003, was unlawful and must be repealed, MasterCard reported today.

“This is a significant win forMasterCard and its customers,” said Noah J. Hanft, MasterCard general counsel. “With this roadblock out of the way, financial institutions will not be deterred by this coercive fee and can make decisions based on their best judgment about quality of service, strength of brand and other competitive factors that benefit their cardholders.”Mr.Hanft continued, “Banks that were prevented fromfully evaluating MasterCard’s debit offering because of the SSF will now be permitted to terminate their agreements with Visa in order to issue MasterCard debit cards.”

In addition to requiring that Visa repeal the SSF, Judge Jones also issued an order allowing all of Visa’s top 100 debit issuers, with Visa debit agreements that were signed while the SSF was in place, to terminate such agreements in the event that they enter into a new agreement with MasterCard to issue debit cards on MasterCard’s network. In the coming months, all issuing financial institutions in the United States must be notified of the remedy in Judge Jones' decision.

Judge Jones found that the SSF effectively prevented Visa’s top 100 debit issuers from issuing on MasterCard’s network. Mr. Hanft said Visa's intention to put in place a coercive fee to block issuers frommaking independent brand decisions was unmasked by the Court through extensive evidence, including Visa’s own internal documents.

Alliance Data’s Canadian Loyalty Business Signs Multi-Year Agreement with Leading Insurance Company

St-John, NF, June 7 2007 – Alliance Data Systems Corporation, a leading provider of loyalty and marketing solutions derived from transaction-rich data, announced that Roins Financial Services Limited (RFSL) has signed a multi-year agreement in which its affiliates Royal & SunAlliance and Johnson Inc. will become national sponsors in Alliance Data's Canadian AIR MILES® Reward Program. Beginning June 1st, eligible collectors receive reward miles on premiums paid for home or auto insurance policies underwritten and distributed through participating RFSL affiliate companies.

As a leading home, car and business insurance company, Royal & SunAlliance will offer the AIR MILES Reward Program through a large network of independent insurance brokers representing Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada andWestern Assurance Company.

TheAIRMILES Reward ProgramisCanada's premier coalition loyalty program, with approximately two-thirds of Canadian households actively collecting reward miles. AIRMILES collectors earn reward miles at more than 100 leading brand-name sponsors representing thousands of retail and service locations across Canada. AIR MILES reward miles can be redeemed for more than 800 different rewards, such as travel, movie passes, entertainment attractions, electronic merchandise and more.

Founded in 1880, Johnson Inc. is today one of Canada's leading insurance and benefit providers. Headquartered in St. John's, Newfoundland, the company has more than 60 locations across Canada from which it will offer the AIR MILES Reward Programtogether with its award-winning customer service. Johnson Inc. will offerAIR MILES rewardmiles on regularmarket home and auto insurance policies underwritten by Unifund Assurance Company. Johnson Inc. and Unifund Assurance Company share common ownership.

EMC Announces Acquisition of Verid

Toronto, June 4, 2007 – EMC Corporation, the world leader in information infrastructure solutions, announced that it has acquired Verid, Inc., a privately held information security technology leader based in Florida that delivers knowledge-based authentication solutions to millions of users worldwide, through some of the largest consumer-facing financial institutions, telecom providers and retailers. The acquisition is complete and further details of the transaction are not being disclosed.

The addition of Verid marks a significant enhancement in EMC's commitment, through its RSA division to providing protection, visibility and business acceleration at every point of the user verification process. RSA is now strongly positioned to offer continuous security. Starting with the initial user identity verification and maintaining perpetual vigilance throughout the lifecycle of the relationship, across the various channels of user interaction.

The comprehensive RSA® Adaptive Authentication suite will now cover the identity verification process from end-to-end, through a new two-tier approach:

1. Initial Authentication: Verification at the time of enrolment or when an account is opened. This initial stage determines the level of trust that can be applied to an identity, its account and all future transactions.

2. Ongoing Authentication: Once the initial relationship has been established with certainty and a credential has been issued, all subsequent authentication activities can be managed and tailored individually, using appropriate levels of security according to specific scenarios and risk.

Verid's technology and expertise adds advantages to RSA and EMC customers in both of these tiers. Initial authentication will be established using knowledge-based techniques, in conjunction with RSA's recognized risk engine and the RSA® eFraudNetworksm community.

NCR Study Shows Consumers Are Driving Self-Service

Mississauga, June 21 2007 –On-the-go consumers prefer to handle an increasing number of transactions themselves through self-service devices, and are more likely to do business with companies that make it easier to for them to do so, according to a major new study conducted by BuzzBack Market Research for NCR Corporation.

More than three out of four (77%) of the 633 U.S. and Canadian consumers polled said they aremore likely to do business with organizations that offer self-service, and 92% value combining mobile devices with the Internet and self-service kiosks or ATMs to improve their overall service experience.

Some of the more frequently cited transactions respondents said they would like to see automated through multipurpose kiosks include: renewing drivers’ licenses or vehicle registration (76%); checking the status of items ordered online (71%); purchasing transit or airline tickets (62%); making photo copies (57%); and ordering flowers, books and other items (54%). The top-three locations where respondents would like to see this type of convenience are in airports (70%); malls (65%); and grocery stores (55%).

Respondents also showed a strong preference for self-service when it comes to printing on-the-go. An overwhelming majority (85% to 94%) of respondents indicated they would prefer to use self-service to print items such as maps, tickets, schedules, coupons and other items while banking, shopping, travelling, dining or visiting a medical clinic.

Most consumers showed a preference for serving themselves across a number of industries. However, results indicate many respondents prefer to obtain personal assistance with more consultative, financial transactions. For example, 74% said they would prefer to speak with someone to obtain investment advice, 73% would prefer this option for purchasing insurance, and 69% would like assistance obtaining mortgage advice.

Background on survey methodology:

A total of 633 U.S. and Canadian respondents, at least 18 years old, participated in this study. The total sample is representative for age, gender, household income and region.

Hayton Systems Chooses Precidia for Mobile Asset Tracking

Ottawa,May 30 2007 – Precidia Technologies Inc., a global leader in the design and manufacture of Internet Protocol (IP) payment and networking devices, announced that the iPocket232 has been selected by leading industrial data collection and management provider Hayton Systems. The solution provided by the iPocket232 tracks assets nation-wide for key customers including Verizon Communications. The iPocket232 works withHayton System’s complete handheldmobile scanning package, providing the reliable network connectivity required to transmit status data on company assets from any location nationwide, directly to corporate head office.

Hayton Systems customizes a Handheld Products (HHP) handheld computer with its software and a modem. Customers like Verizon depend on Hayton Systems’ solution to track assets such as power supplies and circuit cards via transactions carried out on theHHP handheld device.With the iPocket232 embedded in the device, users have two options for mobile connectivity: internet and dial, depending on what type of service is available to them. These mobile transactions, which include installs, removals, modifications and movements between locations, are carried by the iPocket232 over an Ethernet network for real-time updates to a central office database.

Precidia president Deepak Wanner points to Hayton Systems as an example of using internet technology to improve customer solutions: “Hayton Systems has designed a mobile solution that is ideal for a wide range of industries, including industrial”, said Mr.Wanner. “By integrating networking capability into this solution, customers have a greater range of options available to them with respect to the transmission of asset tracking data to a central office”.

Cognera Corp. in the Top 4 Meter-to-Cash Business Process Outsourcing Vendors in North America

Calgary, May 31 2007 – Cognera Corp. announced that its outsourced energy billing solution has been recognized as one of the Top 4 Meter-to-Cash Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) solutions in the North American market, as per the 2007 Technology Vendor Analysis Matrix (TVAM) rankings released by UtiliPoint International, Inc.

The TVAM is a survey and analysis tool that is based on describing and evaluating utility and energy technology, not just on a "features and functions" basis, but around the more important metrics of architecture, cost of ownership, service delivery, and the cultural relationship between technology suppliers and utilities. The TVAM report ranked Cognera highly in several BPO metric categories including Commitment to Outsourcing, Organizational Strengths, Insurance and Risk Mitigation, and Platform Surety.

Cognera is a leading provider of settlement and retail billing solutions for competitive energy retailers and regulated utilities using a combined Business Process Outsourcing and Software as a Service model. Headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, Cognera delivers a unique and modular software solution that manages complex billing processes, while allowing clients to retain access to their core customer data.

Barclays Canada Launches New iShares ™ Small Cap ETFs

Toronto, May 15 2007 – Barclays Global Investors Canada Limited announced the launch of Canada's first small cap Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs): iShares CDN SmallCap Index Fund (XCS) and iShares CDN Russell 2000(R) Index Fund (XSU).

"With the introduction of the new iShares small cap funds, investors will now have unprecedented access to the equity market in Canada, while also accessing the US small capmarket without the currency risk," saidHeather Pelant,Head of Business Development, iShares, while introducing the new funds to investment advisors during a briefing in Toronto.

Pelant explained that a small-cap company is generally a newer and faster growing company. In Canada, small-cap companies generally have a market capitalization between $100 million and $1.5 billion. In the US, which is a much larger market, the average small-cap company has a market capitalization of about $150 billion. The funds are the first of their kind to be traded in Canada.

"Until now, we have not had a good small cap benchmark in Canada," John De Goey, CFP. Senior Financial Advisor, Burgeonvest Securities and author of The Professional Financial Advisor II. "The new iShares small cap ETFs will provide an important diversifier for any investment portfolio and greatly benefit investors who find themselves heavily over weighted in large cap. Essentially, it is the cure for what has ailed Canadian investors to date."

The new iShares Small Cap funds include:

iShares CDN SmallCap Index Fund, XCS will be the first exchange traded fund to track the new S&P/TSX SmallCap Index. XCS is expected to give investors a better ability to express their views on Canadian equity exposure based on market capitalization.

iSharesCDNRussell 2000 Index Fund, XSUwill provide increased flexibility for investors to choose US small cap exposure without currency risk. Through XSU, Barclays Canada is offering Canadian-dollar hedged exposure to the Russell 2000 Index, which is comprised of smaller US public issuers.

The launch of iShares small cap funds was coupled with the launch of Canada's first Socially Responsible ETF: iShares CDN Jantzi Social Index(R) Fund (XEN). All three funds will began trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange on May 18, 2007.