(Watford, England â 24 May 2005) â ACI Worldwide (Nasdaq: TSAI), a leading international provider of enterprise e-payment solutions, has licensed ACI Smart Chip Managerâ¢ to Network International, the leading credit card and payment services provider in the Middle East. Using ACI Smart Chip Manager, Network International will be the first provider in the Middle East to issue multiple application smart cards with both payment and loyalty functionality. ACIâs software will also help Network International with its Europay, MasterCard and VISA (EMV) migration.
In order to seize market share, Middle East banks are continually striving to introduce new and innovative services to their customers. With the January 2006 EMV deadline approaching, the more advanced banks are introducing multiple applications on chip cards as part of their EMV migration. Network International continually strives to create and maintain competitive advantage in the region by offering advanced services to its bank customers and looked to ACI to provide differentiation through innovative card technology.
Network International is the first card provider in the Middle East to offer EMV compliant debit cards featuring an integrated loyalty application. By combining the enhanced security of EMV with a new delivery channel for customer loyalty, Network International enables its customers to deliver value-added services to the end user. Network International has worked with ACI Worldwide for 13 years and currently employs ACIâs flagship BASE24Â® payments software to handle transaction processing. Network International required a proven, flexible infrastructure that would enable it to introduce additional services to its customers securely via the EMV chip cards.
"The flexibility and scalability of ACIâs Smart Chip Manager enables us to issue and develop EMV chip cards in-house, giving our existing and prospective customers the ability to outsource end to end card personalisation services," said Abdulla Qassem, chairman Network International and chief technology /operations manager of Emirates Bank International. "Smart Chip Manager integrates seamlessly with BASE24 to help us introduce new, value-added services and functionality to satisfy existing customers and acquire new ones."
Supported by ACIâs local office in Bahrain, ACI Smart Chip Manager will help Network International manage the lifecycle of chip cards and update application parameters. It will also support personalisation of any smart card and the post-issuance of new applications to card schemes.
"ACI has been making significant inroads with Middle Eastern banks and card providers in their EMV migration efforts," said Richard Launder, managing director at ACI Worldwide (EMEA). "Our experience with organisations worldwide is that some find it difficult to justify the cost of EMV migration beyond reducing fraud. Network International is proof that investment in EMV can also be used for customer retention and acquisition by introducing multiple applications on the chip cards. We are proud that ACIâs software has been selected to support Network Internationalâs innovative multi application EMV smart card project."