The Green Sheet Online Edition
June 22, 2009 • Issue 09:06:02
Prepaid in brief
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Underbanked consumers tell their stories
At the Underbanked Financial Service Forum held in Dallas, The Center for Financial Services Innovation's director premiered CFSI's first video production "CFSI: Innovation in Action." The video offers success stories from customers who use prepaid cards, new small-dollar amount loan products and in-bank check cashing. "This video showcases financial service innovations that are helping to put consumers on a path toward financial prosperity," said CFSI Director Jennifer Tescher. "These stories illustrate that, with the right tools, underbanked consumers can be valuable customers."
Mindset positive at Western Union
Western Union Co.'s Payment Services Money Mindset Index, a national survey of 3,000 consumers, revealed that, despite the economy, people have entrepreneurial aspirations. Western Union said nearly 23 percent of survey respondents plan to start their own businesses.
To achieve their financial goals, consumers are changing spending habits and looking for opportunities to supplement income, the report said. The Index revealed that Latinos are especially optimistic about the future. Nearly 70 percent said they see their financial situation improving in the next six months.
Check 'n Go expands offerings
Cincinnati-based cash advance company Check 'n Go expanded its consumer offerings beyond short-term cash advance to include check processing, global money transfers, remittance, bill payment services of Western Union and the Axcess prepaid MasterCard Worldwide card. Responding to consumer demand, Check 'n Go added these services across 1,000 retailers in 30 states.
Online gaming payment alternative
CyKash Inc., a provider of prepaid cards and virtual currency for online games and entertainment, launched the CyKash Game Card, a multi-online game card that can be redeemed at many online gaming sites. CyKash provides users an alternative payment method for virtual items and subscriptions.
Europe, Canada loyal to MoneyGram
Payment services provider MoneyGram International introduced the worldwide expansion of MoneyGram Rewards, a loyalty program that offers its members fee discounts and free money transfers. The program, initially launched in Germany, will expand into France and Italy in the summer of 2009 and to Spain and Canada later in the fall.
Streamlining Internet purchases
PayByCash, a subsidiary of PlaySpan Inc., is making its PayByCash Code prepaid product available to consumers in 180 countries. PayByCash said its codes offer consumers a more efficient means to make Internet purchases.
First-of-its-kind fuel card
Prepaid debit card solutions company TransCard LLC introduced an innovative fuel card network in Latin American countries. The fuel card is accepted at more than 2,200 locations in Mexico, representing over 25 percent of the country's fuel market, TransCard said.
Philanthropic spirit honored
Western Union earned the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy Excellence Award for developing and implementing its Our World, Our Family program, a $50 million, five-year program to help low-income migrants stay connected to their families overseas.
Three-way team for underbanked education
The Center for Financial Services Innovation partnered with The Network Branded Prepaid Card Association and prepaid debit card provider NetSpend Corp. to create educational resources associated with prepaid cards to support nonprofit organizations serving underbanked consumers. Dubbed the Prepaid Educational Resources, it offers The Nonprofit's Guide to Prepaid Cards and informational webinars.
Coinstar lets gamers pay as they go
Coinstar E-Payment Services, a subsidiary of Coinstar Inc., launched the Pay As You Go prepaid solution in U.S. retail locations.
The card, designed for online gamers, features prepaid wireless programs, long distance cards, and reloadable and one-time-use Visa Inc.- and MasterCard-branded debit cards.
Better homes and prepaid
Canadian home builder ICF World Homes Inc. teamed up with prepaid solutions company DCR Strategies Inc. to unveil the TruCa$h/ICF World Homes prepaid MasterCard card. It will be used as a payment vehicle for commissions, incentives and expenses for ICF sales representatives, staff and independent contractors.
nFinanSe takes off with RocketBux
Mobile advertising firm RocketBux Inc. signed a memorandum of understanding with stored-value and prepaid solutions provider nFinanSe Inc. to provide coupons and offers to nFinanSe cardholders' mobile phones.
Bancorp acquisition supports prepaid sector
Prepaid products and services provider The Bancorp Inc. entered into a stock purchase agreement with American Home Mortgage Holdings Inc., an Illinois federal savings association, to acquire all of the outstanding shares of AHMHI's capital stock. The acquisition provides a platform for national operations and supports the growth of Bancorp's prepaid card market.
Endacott joins MyTravelCash board
Steve Endacott joined CorporatePay Ltd.'s new venture, MyTravelCash, as a nonexecutive Director. The new venture aims to provide foreign exchange services to the online travel community. MyTravelCash is a prepaid MasterCard card available in euros and U.S. dollars.
Mumby is the word
International voice and Internet Protocol solutions firm Arbinet Inc. appointed Robert Mumby as its new Vice President of Sales, North America. Mumby is responsible for building Arbinet's international voice business with traditional and emerging carriers, prepaid companies and mobile operators across the continent.
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