On Oct. 28, 2010, Atlanta-based prepaid card distributor InComm said it filed another patent infringement claim against Pleasanton, Calif.-based gift card mall operator Blackhawk Network. InComm asserted that Blackhawk infringes on its U.S. Patent No. 7,630,926, entitled "Inserting Value Into Customer Account at Point of Sale Using a Customer Account Identifier."
InComm, which reportedly owns 29 domestic and 45 international patents, said this new claim amends its original lawsuit that argued Blackhawk infringed on another InComm patent, U.S. Patent No. 7,578,439.
As the holiday season approaches, PSCU Financial Services Inc. recommends prepaid incentive cards as a way for businesses to award high-performing employees.
Ron Silvia, Director of Debit, ATM & Prepaid Services at PSCU, said offering incentive cards is one way to board small businesses. "Small-business owners are an especially attractive segment because they seek multiple services for their personal and business finance needs, including credit, debit and prepaid cards, online bill payment, checking, savings, and 401K retirement plans," he said.
BillMyParents, the teen payments arm of Socialwise Inc., came out with the Money Tips For Teens blog (http://news.billmyparents.com/tips), designed to help parents educate teens about money management. Topics on the blog include a budget worksheet tool, ways finance experts teach kids about money, how to curb impulse spending, saving for college and teaching teens about financial responsibility.
CardSmith LLC rolled out the Windward OneCard for Windward School, a college preparatory school in Los Angeles. The Windward OneCard functions as an identification card as well as a payment card for on-campus purchases, CardSmith said.
National women's specialty apparel retailer Dots LLC launched a social media application which allows customers to send Dots gift cards to recipients via Facebook or email. The new initiative is an extension of Dots' social media initiative, the retailer said.
FNDS3000 Corp., a U.S.-headquartered prepaid processor focused on the South Africa market, secured $2.5 million in financing to further the company's rollout of prepaid card solutions in South Africa. Sherington Holdings LLC was the lead investor, with FNDS3000 shareholders also taking part, the processor said.
Vancouver, British Columbia-headquartered hyperWALLET Systems Inc. launched hyperREMIT, a short message service-based international remittance service from Canada to the Philippines. The service allows Canadians to send funds to recipients in the Philippines.
J.P. Morgan, the treasury arm of JPMorgan Chase & Co., set up an electronic benefits transfer (EBT) card program for the Chickasaw Nation Women, Infants and Children Supplemental Nutrition Program (WIC), which allows Chickasaw Nation members to purchase food using EBT cards. The Chickasaw Nation is the first WIC agency in Oklahoma to issue EBT cards, J.P. Morgan said.
Mobile Resource Card inked a deal with television celebrities Kourtney, Kim and Khloe Kardashian for the promotion of the Kardashian Kard branded with the sisters' likenesses. The card was officially launched on Nov. 10, 2010.
MoneyGram International expanded its services in China through 825 Bank of China branches in the Jiangsu region and 525 more branches across Zhejiang province. The money transfer company said this network expansion through Bank of China began in 2009.
MoneyGram also signed a long-term sponsorship agreement with the International Cricket Council for ICC cricket tournaments worldwide from 2011 to 2015. MoneyGram said its brand is well known in countries where cricket is a popular sport.
Loyalty and incentive card provider Parago Inc. said its General Counsel and Senior Vice President, Ed Woodson, was selected by the Dallas Business Journal as one of the Dallas-Fort Worth area's best in-house corporate attorneys.
The Western Union Co. reported its mobile money transfers can now be sent from nearly 70,000 agent locations in 27 countries to Globe Telecom and Smart Communications mobile subscribers in the Philippines. Over half of the 70,000 send locations are in the United States, the company said.
American Express Corp., in collaboration with ICICI Bank, launched the ICICI Bank American Express Prepaid Travel Card. The card is tied to the American Express Selects program which gives cardholders access to 13,000 offers from over 10,000 merchants participating in more than 75 countries, AmEx said.
FiCentive Inc., the prepaid card issuing branch of Payment Data Systems Inc., teamed with Mexico-based mail shipping firm Redpack to market the Redpack Mi Promesa MasterCard prepaid card to unbanked and underbanked people in Mexican communities in the United States.
Health care benefit platform provider Medagate Corp. entered a partnership with prepaid card distributor InComm to launch OTCNetwork, touted as the first national over-the-counter (OTC) benefits program for Medicare Advantage members. Using the OTCNetwork, members are able to pay for health care-related OTC purchases at drugstores participating in the program.
PlaySpan Inc., issuers of the Ultimate Game Card through it subsidiary PayByCash partnered with PayPal Inc. to integrate PayPal X into PlaySpan's Video Monetization Platform, which allows users to buy and sell virtual currency, virtual goods, games and videos.
Additionally, online gift card exchange Plastic Jungle Inc. teamed with PayPal to allow PayPal users to fund PayPal accounts with unused gift cards.
Mobile payment company RegaloCard made a pact with money transfer marketer Dinero Ahora to distribute RegaloCards via the marketer's 1,200 retail locations across the United States.
U.S. Bank will issue reloadable prepaid rewards cards to help customers save money on groceries and gas at The Kroger Co. stores. Cardholders who make purchases using the rewards cards automatically earn points that can be redeemed when purchases are made at the stores.
Financial services company Trycera Financial Inc. hired Kevin Goldstein and Reiner Vanooteghem for its executive leadership team. Goldstein became Chief Technology and Vanooteghem was appointed Vice President of Sales.
Blue Label Telecoms Group appointed Mteto Nyati to its board of directors as a non-executive director. Nyati has served as a manager at Microsoft South Africa and in IBM's South African operations, the prepaid card provider said.
Betty Weinkle, Area Vice President for InteliSpend Prepaid Solutions, was elected President of the Incentive Gift Card Council at the Motivation Show held in Chicago. The IGCC is a strategic industry group within the Incentive Marketing Association that promotes the benefits of incentive cards.
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