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ICVERIFY, First Data Launch B-to-B Commerce Software

ICVERIFY Inc. and First Data Merchant Services Corp. (FDMS) jointly released ICVERIFY for Windows, merchant software enabling acceptance of business-to-business purchasing cards.

FDMS will make ICVERIFY Purchasing Card Capable software available through its alliances with bank partners and other merchant processing clients. FDMS, a subsidiary of First Data Corp., reportedly handled nearly 5 billion merchant transactions in 1997 on behalf of its partners.

The ICVERIFY for Windows Purchasing Card Capable software, which runs on Windows 95 and Windows NT, enables merchants to accept Visa and MasterCard cards, as well as other credit cards, ATM/debit cards, and check transactions over the Internet.

FDMS said it will provide 24-hour help-desk support for merchants using the product.

"By adding this functionality, we can offer merchants the ability to improve their cash flow, increase their profits, and expand their customer base by working with corporations that may offer employees purchasing cards," said Steve Ryan, senior vice president, FDMS Product Development.

Purchasing card transaction volume in the United States totaled $20 billion in 1997, and the volume is projected to double in 1998, the companies said.

Purchasing cards are credit cards that corporations issue to their employees for buying products and services at selected businesses.

"The major card brands are telling us that purchasing cards will become the business-to-business standard in the next 12 months. We believe merchants who cannot offer this capability to their customers will begin to lose business," said F. Tom Aden, CEO and president of Oakland, CA-based ICVERIFY.

ICVERIFY software stores up to nine years of data, allowing users to print detailed reports or conduct searches for specific transactions. Users can process transactions in real-time, or in batch-mode. ICVERIFY also allows users to exchange data with other applications, such as databases or spreadsheets.