Consumer Payment Card News


MasterCard, Hypercom and Gemplus have teamed up to introduce 25,000 hockey fans to smart cards during the NHL All-Star Game now underway in San Jose. More than 20 sponsors are giving away prizes based on winning bits programmed into each card. The promotion is being held at the Pinnacle/NHL FANtasy event running in connection with the All-Star Game. Meanwhile VISA says it will run a humorous commercial featuring former Senator Bob Dole during Super Bowl XXXI. BBDO New York created the 60 second commercial.

Gemplus today announced that it has provided the 25,000 smart cards for MasterCard’s National Hockey League (NHL) FANtasy “Cool Card” to be distributed to attendees of the Pinnacle/NHL FANtasy Event, to be held January 16-19 at the San Jose Convention Center in San Jose, California, in conjunction with the NHL All-Star Game.

FANtasy attendees will use their smart cards to determine if they have won a prize at a sponsor’s booth. The event features some 20 sponsors who will provide hockey-related prizes such as T-shirts, game tickets, and autographed photos. Attendees will insert their smart cards into a reader at each sponsor’s booth. If the card has been encoded with a winning “bit,” the printer attached to the reader will print out a coupon informing the attendee that a prize has been won. The coupon must then be taken by the attendee to the MasterCard Redemption Booth to claim the prize.

In addition to supplying the GPM103 disposable prepaid cards, Gemplus also provided card personalization services which involved customizing the cards for the Hypercom card readers and encoding the memory chips with the winning “bits.”

Gemplus, with an annual capacity of 750 million units and revenue of $302 million in 1995, is the world leader in the production of smart and plastic cards. Revenues for 1996 are forecast to be more than $400 million. Gemplus’ business includes chip design, software development, printing and assembly of cards, personalization services, and the design and production of card readers. It is the leading supplier of SIM cards to the U.S. PCS market.

The company currently supplies its products to 80 different countries throughout the world, for such applications as banking, electronic purse, loyalty, telecommunications (public and mobile), transport, education, healthcare, gaming, identity, access control, pay TV, and electronic payment.

North American operations include the company’s headquarters in Montgomeryville, Pa., and satellite facilities in Dallas, Tx.; Bethesda, Md.; San Mateo, Ca.; Shakopee, Minn; and Montreal, Canada.

Information about Gemplus’ products and services can be found on the World Wide Web at:

MasterCard and Hypercom Present Chip Card Technology at NHL Legend Bobby Orr

MasterCard International, Inc and Hypercom Inc. will demonstrate the marketing potential of chip cards by using them to boost sponsor attraction attendance during the Pinnavle/NHK FANtast ™, being help here in connection with the 47th NHL All-Star game. MasterCard’s NHL Spokesperson, hockey superstar Bobby Orr will perform the first demonstration of this unique application of chip card technology. The four-day expo runs through January 19 at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center.

MasterCard, along with 25 other major MHL business partners, will entertain visitors to the Pinnable/NHL FANtasy with hockey-related exhibits, games and memorabilia. The first 25,000 lucky hockey fans will get an extra bonus: a chip card from MasterCard that gives them the opportunity to win prizes from the participating sponsors. Chip cards can contain an imbedded integrated circuit (IC) chip that carries ten to 100 times more information than magnetic stripe cards. In fact, a single chip card could be used as a cash substitute or for other diverse purposes such as personal identification, medical information or ATM cards.

“MasterCard sees enormous potential for chip card technology and we are committed to leading the development and adoption of this payment system today and into the future,” said Peter Cerra, Director of Chip Card Products at MasterCard. “We believe that exposing consumers to chip cards in a friendly and controlled environment, such as the Pinnacle/NHL FANtasy will ultimately increase understanding and usage of the different applications of this technology.”

To win prizes, fans visit sponsor attractions and insert their MasterCard chip cards, “cool cards,” into a Hypersom PIN Pad chip card reader. Some of the chip cards will be programmed to award prizes from the participating Pinnacle/NHL sponsors. The chip card reader will electronically validate the card for that specific sponsor. As contestants leave the exhibit hall, they will stop at the MasterCard technology booth where another Hypercom PIN Pad will read each card. If the validated card indicates that he or she is a winner, the fan will receive a prize. Prizes include sponsor’s products, games, memorabilia and apparel, and a trip for two to the 1997 Stanely Cup championship.

“This is a very simple application, but it demonstrates in a fun way how chip card systems can be an effective marketing took,” said Al Irato, President and CEO of Hypercom. “In this case it works as an incentive for building traffic to exhibitors’ booths, but other much more sophisticated applications are possible. Loyalty programs, bonus point programs and stored-value applications are examples. Systems using chip cards with technically advanced chip card readers such as the Hypercom S7SC PIN Pad can give a company a distinct competitive advantage,”he said.

Hypersom, Inc, is a recognized leader in Point-of-Sale technology, providing a full range of innovative terminals and networking solutions designed to maximize and extend the value of investment in automated transaction processing.

Visa and Bob Dole team up for Super Bowl commercial
One of the world’s most recognizable public figures and one of the world’s most popular brands will team up to entertain viewers of Super Bowl XXXI, when Visa launches a humorous new Super Bowl commercial featuring Senator Bob Dole.

The 60-second commercial was created by BBDO New York, Visa’s advertising agency for more than 10 years. While the storyline of the commercial remains a secret, it is expected to capture the Senator’s lighthearted side. It will also feature Dole’s hometown of Russell, Kansas.

“Super Bowl Sunday is the most eagerly-anticipated day of television advertising each year,” said Carl Pascarella, President and CEO of Visa U.S.A. “To continue building Visa brand visibility for our financial institution members and deliver our key messages to consumers, we needed to find a captivating image. Bob Dole is one of the most intriguing and admired personalities in the world.”

“I accepted Visa’s offer to appear in this ad because it looked like a lot of fun, it showcases my home town, and it’s a nice break from working on my inaugural address,” said Senator Dole.

This marks the third time in four years that Visa has advertised during the Super Bowl broadcast. Last year, Visa unveiled a 45-second Visa Gold Card spot featuring Olympic Dream Team basketball stars Scottie Pippen and Hakeem Olajuwon. During Super Bowl XXVIII, the company aired a special 60-second version of another Visa Gold commercial, which followed the exploits of a young couple traveling in Italy.

A second-year sponsor of the NFL, Visa is the world’s largest consumer payment system. It plays a pivotal role in advancing new payment products and technologies to benefit its 20,000 member financial institutions, their cardholders and the global economy. Visa’s 510 million cards are accepted at 13 million locations worldwide. Visa Global ATM Network consists of more than 316,000 ATMs in 109 countries. For more information on Visa, visit Visa Expo at

Leave A Reply