HOUSTON (10/23/14)--Debit/ATM network PULSE has launched a consulting service to help financial institutions analyze and improve performance of their retail business.
PULSE InSights will provide strategic guidance and support to help credit unions and banks increase revenue, expand cross-selling programs and strengthen member or customer relations, the company said.
"Our 30-plus years of helping financial institutions succeed in debit gives PULSE a unique perspective and experience in delivering comprehensive solutions that positively impact their bottom line," said Annette Harris, PULSE director of marketing and practice lead for PULSE InSights. "PULSE InSights is a logical next step in serving as an advocate for the interests of our financial institutions and their cardholders."
PULSE InSights focuses on five areas:
- Retail branch maximization: Identifies and addresses issues that affect efficiency, member/customer experience and overall profitability;
- Card portfolio performance: Provides portfolio insights and best practices after analyzing a financial institution's mix of products and examining cardholder behaviors;
- Marketing services: Delivers end-to-end support in developing and executing data-driven marketing campaigns;
- Member/customer experience: Examines factors such as channels, technology, operations and personnel that impact the cardholder experience; and
- Contact center optimization: Evaluates the efficiency and effectiveness of the financial institution's contact center and uses industry benchmarks to identify opportunities.
PORTLAND, Maine (10/22/14)--Synergent, a subsidiary of the Maine Credit Union League, announced that three credit unions have signed 10-year renewal agreements for the Episys core processing solution with Synergent Technology Services.
John Murphy, Synergent president/CEO, said that the renewals reflect the strength of continued partnerships. "While our service bureau environment provides the security, quality of service and greater efficiencies that allow the credit union to grow, our understanding of the credit unions and their unique needs gives them both the tools and the team they need to serve their members," Murphy added.
Credit unions signing agreements include:
- cPort CU, Portland, with $155 million in assets;
- Coast Line CU, South Portland, with $48 million in assets; and
- Casco FCU, Gorham, with $47 million in assets.
A continuing trend for new signings and renewals has been longer-term agreements, with most credit unions opting for 10-year contracts, said Ben Jordan, Synergent vice president of technology services.
"These long-term partnerships are investments in the credit union's strategy to be the best in member service and allow Synergent to provide the technology services needed to achieve that," Jordan added.
LONDON (10/21/14)--MasterCard and biotmetrics technology firm Zwipe have partnered to launch a contactless payment card featuring an integrated fingerprint sensor.
The Zwipe MasterCard card includes an integrated biometric sensor and the Zwipe secure biometric authentication technology that holds the cardholder's biometric data. It contains an EMV-certified secure element and MasterCard's contactless application.
"Our belief is that we should be able to identify ourselves without having to use passwords or personal-identification numbers," said Ajay Bhalla, MasterCard president of enterprise security solutions. "Biometric authentication can help us achieve this. However, our challenge is to ensure the technology offers robust security, simplicity of use and convenience for the customer. Zwipe's first trial is a significant milestone, and its results are very encouraging."
Cardholder fingerprint data is stored directly on the card, not in an external database. After activation by a simple fingerprint scan, the Zwipe MasterCard card can be used to make contactless payments. The biometric authentication replaces the PIN entry, thus enabling cardholders to make payments of any amount, unlike other contactless payment cards on the market.
Zwipe is working on the next generation of its card that will be the same format as a standard card and designed to work with all payment terminals for release in 2015. This new card will harvest energy from the payment terminals without the need for a battery.
LIVONIA, Mich. (10/20/14)--CU Solutions Group's Love My Credit Union Rewards program is expanding its ADT credit union member discount nationwide.
The exclusive offer from ADT includes a free ADT monitored home security system valued at $850, and $425 in credit union member savings on additional equipment.
More than 3.6 million credit union members have saved over $1 billion with Love My Credit Union Rewards. The program has generated in excess of 340,000 auto loans for credit unions totaling more than $7.5 billion.
Formerly known as Invest in America, Love My Credit Union Rewards offers credit unions four bundles of products to help save credit union members money on the products and services they use every day. The bundles make it easier for credit unions to market the programs to members and to link to core products and services. The four bundles include All, Auto, Home and Invest in America:
- The All bundle allows credit unions to holistically participate in the program and market discounts to members with streamlined marketing requirements. The All bundle offers discounts from Sprint, GM, TurboTax, Credit Union Auto Club, ADT, DIRECTV, Allied Moving Services and Love to Shop;
- The Auto and Home bundles were put together for credit unions to use in conjunction with their low loan rates and to add value to special promotions, such as auto loans, mortgages or home equity lines of credit. The Auto bundle includes discounts on GM vehicles and roadside assistance from Credit Union Auto Club. The Home bundle includes discounts from Sprint, ADT, DIRECTV and Allied Moving Services; and
- The Invest in America bundle offers discounts from American companies, including GM, Credit Union Auto Club, TurboTax, DIRECTV and Allied Moving Services.
The nationwide expansion of ADT will be offered under the All and Home bundles of Love My Credit Union Rewards, as well as an individual program. The ADT credit union member discount offers exclusive savings to credit union members and creates opportunities for credit unions to drive core product growth as well as earn non-interest income.
PORTLAND, Ore. (10/17/14)--The Northwest Credit Union Association (NWCUA) and its Strategic Link subsidiary have launched betaSpace, an online marketplace where credit unions can help finance promising financial technology startups.
"Credit unions are ready for the fintech revolution," said Troy Stang, NWCUA president/CEO. "Although some might not have the resources to develop new technologies internally or search out the latest innovations themselves, collectively as an association we can find and vet the most promising fin-tech startups and connect them with our members through betaSpace."
Startups selected for betaSpace will offer Northwest credit unions access to their technologies at preferred prices (
Oct. 9). betaSpace already has launched two companies: Profits4Purpose and LifeCounts.
LifeCounts is an online tool to help people manage their financial lives. It securely links all of their accounts, even those from different institutions, into one central dashboard. Users can see an overview of their full financial situation, receive personalized spending insights and budgeting advice, and set up goals and alerts to help them move their finances in the direction they choose.
Through betaSpace, LifeCounts has committed to link any Northwest credit union into its proprietary aggregation system at no cost to the credit union, and with no work on the credit union's part.
San Diego-based Profits4Purpose helps institutions discover, track and report their charitable work, including volunteerism, individual giving and grant management. Its client list includes both credit unions and several Fortune 500 companies.
CUPERTINO, Calif. (10/17/14)--With commitments from 500 financial institutions, Apple said Thursday that Apple Pay, its much-discussed electronic wallet, will become available to U.S. consumers on Monday.
Through ApplePay, iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus use Touch ID for purchases in stores and within apps. Touch ID authorizes purchases using the device owner's fingerprint, which is also used to access the device. Users of the just-announced iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 will be able to use Touch ID on their devices for Apple Pay within apps. The new service will be enabled by a free software update to iOS 8.
Apple Pay is designed to protect the user's personal information. It doesn't collect any transaction information that can be tied back to a user, and payment transactions are between the user, the merchant and the user's bank. Apple doesn't collect purchase history. Actual card numbers are not stored on the device, instead, a unique device account number is created, encrypted and stored in the secure element of the device.
Apple Pay supports credit and debit cards from the three major payment networks: American Express, MasterCard and Visa.
CO-OP Financial Services is in active negotiations with Visa and MasterCard to bring the lowest aggregated issuer fees to credit unions (
Sept. 11). Brookfield, Wis.-based Fiserv has said that all Fiserv-processed debit and credit issuers have tokenization capabilities--the security measure used by Apple Pay--available to them through the Visa Token Service and MasterCard Digital Enablement Service.
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (10/16/14)--Denali Alaskan FCU has added the CO-OP ATM network to its member services menu.
"Denali Alaskan joined the CO-OP ATM network to give members added value and options when it comes to ATM access," said Bob Teachworth, president of the $544 million-asset, Anchorage, Alaska-based credit union.
"It's particularly important to us to offer more than 30,000 surcharge-free ATMs nationwide. Denali Alaskan has thousands of members located throughout the Lower 48 and Alaskans also travel often throughout the rest of the nation," he said. "Our partnership with CO-OP Financial Services is just another way the credit union fulfills its commitment to our member needs."
In addition to using CO-OP ATM, the credit union also participates in CO-OP Shared Branch, enabling its members to visit more than 5,100 "live-teller" branches throughout the United States and conduct their business as if they were at Denali Alaskan's home branch.
Eight Alaska-based credit unions participate in CO-OP Shared Branch. There are a total of 36 shared branches in Alaska. Any member of any participating CO-OP Shared Branch institution across the country may access these branches.
With 30,000 ATMs, the nationwide CO-OP ATM network is larger than the network of any national bank. In addition to credit union branches, CO-OP ATMs can be found at retail outlets such as Walgreens, 7-Eleven and Costco.