In response to nFinanSe Inc.'s breach of contract and antitrust lawsuit against InComm, the Atlanta-based prepaid card distributor said the general purpose reloadable (GPR) card provider's claims are meritless. The lawsuit alleges InComm is blocking access by merchants to the Florida-based company's cards to force nFinanSe to join InComm's Vanilla Reload Network.
InComm countered that the Vanilla Reload Network is made available to its partners at a generally accepted reload price point and that "nFinanSe is free to participate or not participate on those terms at its discretion." InComm's statement added that "nFinanSe can continue to use its existing reload platform or any of the others available in the industry." InComm noted that it reserves the right to select what products it distributes on its network.
Beginning in 2012, New York state taxpayers will be given the option to receive state income tax refunds on prepaid cards. The New York State Prepaid Refund Card will be available to taxpayers as a state tax refund alternative alongside paper checks and direct deposit.
Ed Walsh, Public Information Officer at the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance, said the MasterCard Worldwide-branded cards will be issued by Bank of America Corp., and taxpayers will be able to access funds via the Allpoint ATM network, which boasts 43,000 surcharge-free ATMs worldwide. The prepaid card option will appear on 2012 tax forms, Walsh added.
As part of Boston's annual Holidays on Main Streets campaign, Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino officially launched the Boston Meter Card. The proprietary, closed-loop prepaid card is designed for use at 7,000 single-space parking meters across the city. Menino said the card will not only make it easier for people to pay for street parking, as it eliminates the need for drivers to feed meters with coins, but it will also promote local holiday shopping.
Meters that accept the magnetic stripe card were deployed in Boston shopping districts. Users swipe the cards through the meters when they park and again when they leave to deduct amounts from prepaid accounts. The cards can be loaded in denominations between $5 and $100. When purchased and reloaded online, users pay with Visa Inc.- and MasterCard-branded cards.
Software and services provider AllTrust Networks launched AllTrust Cloud – a web-based platform that allows retailers and partners to offer check cashing, bill payment, money transfers, money orders and prepaid card services to the unbanked and underbanked.
Safeway Inc. subsidiary Blackhawk Network is expanding its gift card mall network with the addition of 500 QuikTrip Corp. convenience store locations nationwide. The product line in QuikTrip stores includes a variety of gift, digital content and phone cards.
OceanPay maritime payroll card program manager Prepaid Solutions Inc. changed its name to Brightwell Payments Inc. "The new name more accurately reflects the company’s strategic direction to be the industry source for smart, innovative prepaid solutions as it continues to expand domestically and internationally," the Atlanta-based company said.
Fidelity National Information Services Inc. (FIS) rolled out the ScoreCard Prepaid Rewards program that offers card issuers a new program to attract and retain consumers with rewards points for using prepaid cards.
For the holiday season, InComm sponsored two contests. "A Million Options" sweepstakes offered entrants the chance to win one of five $1,000 Vanilla Visa Gift Cards; the contest ended Dec. 16, 2011. InComm also launched the "Dreams and Drywall Sweepstakes," which runs through Dec. 31, 2011, and will award one winner $25,000 in gift cards to The Home Depot.
New York-based mobile application developer MyCityWay.com added an e-gift card feature to Clingle, a geo-location-based mobile app that enables users to send messages embedded with personalized videos, audio or text (called "clingles") via mobile phones. Clingle Gifts allows Apple Inc. device users to send gift cards along with clingles.
With its new Secure Payment Services, transaction processor PreCash Inc. will offer prepaid debit card and stored-value products, including wireless telecommunications reloading and bill payment through its partners to over 3 million consumers. PreCash said it processes $2 billion in payments annually.
The Prepaid Awards said the 2012 ceremony will take place in the newly refurbished ballroom of The Lancaster London on Oct. 11, 2012. Over 500 industry professionals are expected to attend the event.
PrepaYd Wireless Inc., subsidiary of prepaid card provider PrepaYd Inc., is marketing the "Y Pay More" campaign to promote a $40-per-month wireless data plan to underbanked consumers. The parent company said PrepaYd Wireless is a "natural upsell" to PrepaYd's customer base.
Digital gift card solution company Transaction Wireless will provide athletic apparel and accessories retailer The Finish Line Inc. and sports bar and grill chain Buffalo Wild Wings with e-gift card solutions via the retailers' websites, Facebook pages and mobile storefronts.
Vantiv LLC introduced its first prepaid card program available to its financial institution partners. The MasterCard-branded GPR cards is designed to offer new revenue opportunities for Vantiv's clients to help attract and retain more customers.
The Western Union Co. extended its prepaid card platform to the United Kingdom with the launch of the Western Union MasterCard Gift Card and the Western Union GoCash Service. Western Union said its first international extension will continue with future moves into Asia, Latin America and other European countries.
A multiyear agreement between prepaid card processor FIS and Payango GmbH is designed to extend the Berlin-based program manager's reach beyond Germany. Payango is focused on expanding its prepaid card solutions to banks across Europe.
Transaction processor Fiserv Inc. inked a deal with Sunrise Community Banks to provide GPR and gift card processing services. Sunrise Community Banks is a banking group composed of Franklin Bank, Park Midway Bank and University Bank headquartered in Minneapolis and Saint Paul, Minn.
MasterCard and Western Union will work together to make electronic payments, including prepaid cards and money transfers, more efficient and convenient for consumers globally. The companies said 2.5 billion adults worldwide are financially underserved and more than a quarter of the adult population in the United States is excluded from the financial mainstream.
Health care information technology firm The TriZetto Group Inc. teamed with health care card program manager Evolution1 to provide TriZetto's health plan clients with Evolution1's consumer directed health care payment platform, which includes the Benny Prepaid Benefits Card.
Prepaid telecommunications provider SelectCore Ltd. said it retained a financial advisor to act as an exclusive agent in connection with new potential merger and acquisition targets that have been presented to the Canadian company. SelectCore said the engagement is not related to the company's proposed acquisition of a Canadian payment processor.
Green Dot Corp. hired financial technology veteran John MacIlwaine as Chief Information Officer to design and implement Green Dot's technology strategy. MacIlwaine was previously Head of Global Development at Visa, where he spearheaded development of new products and services across Visa's commercial and consumer product divisions.
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