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CheckFree Banking on Corillian

CheckFree is on a shopping spree. The online payment and processing company today announced its second acquisition of 2007, this time Corillian Corporation, a provider of online banking platforms for financial services firms.

The stock purchase price works out to about $245 million.

CheckFree said the Corillian addition would enable a tighter integration of electronic banking, billing, payment and service support functionality to deliver a more efficient and complete consumer and small business user experience.

Gartner Group analyst Avivah Litan confirmed that the "name of the game" for online financial services providers such as CheckFree is end-to-end online banking and payment systems for financial institutions and businesses.

"They're looking for growth and payments alone won't get them there," Litan told internetnews.com, especially after Intuit joined the field when it bought online banking services provider Digital Insight today for $1.35 billion last November.

The Corillian buy raises CheckFree's acquisition spending to nearly half of a billion dollars for 2007. Just a month ago, the company bought Carreker Corporation for approximately $206 million.

But it's not clear whether CheckFree has finally recovered from the dot-com bust that followed its late-1990s boom. That month, CheckFree closed four offices and cut 450 jobs only weeks after sacking 100 employees in its shuttered San Francisco office. For the fiscal year ending June 30, 2001, the company lost $363 million.