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 HARTLAND, Wis., Dec. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Direct Data Inc. and NBS Inc. (Toronto: SBY) of Montreal, Quebec have formed a strategic partnership providing each company with marketing rights to the other's transaction automation products, announced Dick Draper, chairman of Direct Data Inc., and Jim Johnson, president of NBS Point of Sale (POS) Division, in a joint statement. The alliance will establish Direct Data Inc. as the exclusive nationwide marketer of NBS POS' products in America and give NBS POS sole marketing rights of Direct Data's products in Canada.
 "Direct Data has the expertise and proven track record we were looking for," explained Johnson. "With Draper's management team, Direct Data and its sister company, Stone-West Inc., will achieve $50 million in sales this year primarily marketing in the Midwest. When we began exploring alliances to pave the way for our products into the entire American market, there was unanimous agreement that Direct Data is a company poised for dramatic growth."
 The two companies entered into a limited marketing relationship this year, when NBS POS rolled out its Turbo terminal and Direct Data's PenPlus(TM) printer in the Canadian market. "This was a successful program resulting in substantial sales," said Mike Malahy, president of Direct Data. "It showed us that our companies are philosophically compatible. Our teams are both committed to quality and understand the importance of working together to meet our customers' needs. As a result, our efforts will consistently be market-driven. At Direct Data, that's been key to gaining results."
 Financial Systems Inc., which has been marketing NBS POS' products in the Northeast United States for 14 years, will continue to distribute to that region. In its new relationship with Direct Data, Financial Systems also will add the American company's product line to its offerings. "We're pleased that NBS is strengthening its position in the American market," said Joe Mulloy, president of Financial Systems Inc. "For us, this effort with Direct Data results in a very mutually beneficial association."
 In addition to marketing rights, the alliance provides for joint product development between the two companies. Direct Data and NBS POS plan to announce a number of new products throughout 1994, according to Draper. "Our emphasis has always been to bring total solutions to our customers. That's one of the reasons we were so pleased to form an alliance with NBS -- it's built a foundation on 20 years of innovation."
 With the ongoing financial support of Hees International, NBS POS has had an opportunity to strengthen its operations, explained Tim Casgrain, managing partner of Hees International and president of NBS Inc., the parent company of NBS POS Division. "NBS Inc. is in a great position to gain a substantial American market share. We have made a long-term commitment to the Direct Data alliance."
 "Direct Data operates from an international perspective," added Draper. "We source and sell globally, assuring our customers world- class products. This alliance is a critical next step for us because NBS is not only established in the Canadian market, the company also has distributors in a number of countries."
 Direct Data Inc.'s sister company Stone-West Inc. is the only American independent sales contractor for VeriFone. Beginning in 1994 when Stone-West's contract with VeriFone expires, the two companies will merge under the Direct Data name to continue developing, manufacturing and marketing transaction automation hardware and software. In addition to Direct Data's alliance with NBS, the company has established a reciprocal relationship with the Paris-based transaction automation company, Sinfa. The products marketed by Direct Data include the MICR reader, Cheq'R(TM); the bar code/IVR unit, Sabre(TM); the combination smart card, magnetic stripe and POS device, DesCartes(TM); the thermal receipt printer, PenPlus(TM); the frequency marketing software, Reflex(TM); and the terminal communications software, TCOMM(TM). Headquartered in Hartland, Direct Data has sales offices in Chicago, Lansing, Mich., Atlanta, San Diego and St. Louis.
 NBS POS Division is the leader in Canada's transaction automation industry. The company develops, manufactures and markets a range of software and hardware products, including terminals, compatible PIN pads and printers. NBS will achieve a 20-year milestone next year. Since 1974, the Montreal, Quebec-based company has deployed terminals in several regions around the world, including Europe, Africa, Latin America and Asia Pacific.
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 /CONTACT: Gayle Cloud, of Cloud Public Relations, 206-453-5583, for Direct Data and NBS; or Dick Draper, chairman, or Mike Malahy, president, of Direct Data, 414-367-5120; or Jim Johnson, president of NBS POS Division, of NBS, 514-735-1341/

CO: Direct Data Inc.; NBS Inc.; Stone-West Inc. ST: Wisconsin, Illinois, Georgia, California, Missouri, Michigan IN: CPR SU:

RB -- SE002 -- 0597 12/06/93 07:51 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Dec 6, 1993

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