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Fiserv Leads All Core Processors with Branch and Merchant Capture Sales

Press release from the issuing company

BROOKFIELD, Wis., Oct 18, 2007 -- Fiserv, a leading provider of technology solutions, has signed a total of 872 clients for merchant capture and 972 for branch capture through September 2007 - the largest volume of remote capture sales among all core processing providers to date.
Fiserv sales reflect a trend that has been growing throughout the industry since late 2004, when Check 21 legislation took effect, the federal law permitting financial institutions to process checks electronically, eliminating the need to further handle the physical document. Many banks and credit unions have reworked their entire concept of check processing and are embracing the Fiserv vision of providing end-to-end solutions for Check 21 products and services.
Bob Meara, a senior analyst for the international research and consulting firm Celent, predicts the vast majority of financial institutions will implement branch or merchant capture, or both technologies, in the next 12 to 18 months. "Distributed capture is certainly entering the mainstream, with more than 4,000 banks and credit unions expected to implement one or more solutions by the end of 2007, and more than two-thirds adopting solutions through 2008," Meara said.
Fiserv branch and merchant capture solutions are aimed at the company's more than 6,000 financial institution clients, but can be delivered to any bank or credit union. In all cases, Fiserv can complete the solution by clearing checks through its own fast-growing Fiserv Clearing Network, a utility designed to drive down the costs of clearing checks and build significant new efficiencies in the check processing business.
"From the first days of Check 21, our goal has been to build the industry's most comprehensive solution for image-based check processing, from merchant to branch, to the clearing of the check," said Tom Warsop, president of the Fiserv Financial Institutions Group. "Clients are telling us that our distributed capture solutions make their jobs easier, and save them both time and money."
With merchant capture, a financial institution's business customers can scan checks, which are then electronically deposited. Eileen Byrne, treasury services manager for Florida Capital Bank, a $728-million asset bank headquartered in Jacksonville, Fla., said merchant capture has enabled her bank to target customers outside of its already fast-growing branch network. "The biggest benefit of merchant capture has been to broaden our market and allow us to extend to areas that we wouldn't have been able to reach before," Byrne said. "We have definitely increased our deposit balances."
Merchant capture has also helped $430-million United Bank of Michigan, located in Grand Rapids, increase account volume considerably. "We're able to do business with customers beyond our market footprint, and don't have to worry about having a branch on every corner," said Vicki Smith, vice president of business development.
Branch capture enables banks to scan checks in their branches. Those checks then are processed electronically, reducing the processing time and eliminating the need to deliver paper. Paul Roble, senior vice president & chief technology officer at $1.2-billion Stockman Bank in Miles City, Montana, said branch capture has helped his organization experience new efficiencies and cost savings. "With branches across all four corners of the state, just eliminating courier costs was significant, and we don't have the expense of using third-party proof and capture providers. Branch capture has also provided customers with improved availability of funds."
These Fiserv end-to-end solutions include full-featured offerings for merchant and branch capture, as well as clearing and, if needed, printing of image replacement documents (IRDs) at more than 30 sites throughout the country. Fiserv also offers a teller capture solution - tightly integrated with the company's ITI Premier and PCS Vision core banking systems - that has garnered 136 clients since its launch in 2006. In addition, Premier and at least two other core processors will soon offer integration with additional Fiserv Teller solutions.
Vineyard Bank, a $2.3-billion bank in Corona, Calif., chose branch and merchant capture, as well as the Fiserv Clearing Network, to save money on its branch operations - some located in remote and mountainous parts of the state - and reach new business customers, said Luana Lopez, senior vice president of operations services. "Remote capture really helps expand our reach," she added.
"We will continue developing technology that streamlines day-to-day check processing," said Warsop. "Our goal remains focused on finding ways to help our clients experience significant cost reductions, aggregate more deposits and expand their footprint without building new branches."