Global Payments Inc. recently activated strategic ISO relationships to enable acquisition of Discover Network merchants. The ISOs include EVO Merchant Services, Mercury Payment Systems LLC, North American Bancard and Total Merchant Services.
Discover Financial Services operates Discover Network, a network that connects to millions of merchant and cash access locations, according to the company. Discover also markets and supports a range of credit, debit and prepaid cards, including the Discover Card.
The new relationships are in step with Discover's current acquiring model, which formerly relied entirely on in-house merchant acquisition. Now its practices mirror those of Visa Inc. and MasterCard Worldwide, making it more appealing to ISOs and merchant level salespeople.
Once the activation is finalized, Global's entire merchant portfolio, along with its ISOs, will be able to process Discover Network card transactions with full customer support. Global will serve as the Discover Network acquiring program sponsor on behalf of the ISOs.
"This is a significant step toward enabling all direct merchants that process with Global to participate in this program," said Vin Perrelli, President of Third Party Acquiring and Chief Operating Officer for Global Payments. "We recently completed the conversion of Global's and Comerica's direct merchant portfolio to Discover Network card processing, and are now implementing the conversion of all our ISO merchants.
"Soon, all direct merchants that process with Global Payments will enjoy the same seamless experience for these major payment card brands."
The Discover brand was introduced by Sears, Roebuck & Co. more than 20 years ago and subsequently absorbed by Morgan Stanley (the Wall Street firm formed when it merged with the former Sear's investment banking unit, Dean Witter). Discover Financial Services is now an independent company, trading as DFS on the New York Stock Exchange.
Effective Nov. 1, 2007, Discover ended its Network Referral Acquisition Program (RAP) and External Agent Sales Incentive (easi) program as part of its move to a market-based acquiring model. (For more information, see "Discover dumps RAP, easi for new program," The Green Sheet, Sept. 10, 2007, 07:09:01)
"We applaud Global's efforts to accelerate the conversion of its direct and ISO merchant portfolios," said Matt Johanson, Vice President of Acquirer Relations for Discover. "Global is a leader in supporting such a large and diverse group of ISOs. We look forward to working with them, as they enable this easy, cost efficient, all-in-one payment processing solution." Global expects the program to be finalized by the third quarter of 2008.
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