KEYCORP JOINS INTERLINK NETWORK; COMPANY ALSO PLANS TO EXPAND ITS
VISA DEBIT PROGRAM TO FOUR ADDITIONAL STATES
SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Interlink Network announced today that KeyCorp (NYSE: KEY) of Albany, N.Y., will participate in the Interlink direct-debit, point-of-sale network and join the Interlink Board of Directors. KeyCorp, which operates eight KeyBanks in Alaska, Idaho, Maine, New York, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming, plans to launch the program within the next six months and will begin issuing cards with the Interlink logo at that time. Those customers carrying an Interlink card can use it for purchases at all merchants accepting the Interlink logo.
KeyCorp is the second institution in the last month to announce its launch of an Interlink program outside of the five Western states where Interlink originally operated.
"We are pleased to be joining the Interlink board and look forward to participating in the management of the network," said James R. Waterston, group executive vice president and chief banking officer of KeyCorp. "With debit card use enjoying dramatic growth, we believe that the time is perfect to initiate a direct-debit program for our customers and capitalize on Interlink's expanding national presence."
"KeyCorp will be a valuable advisor to the network, and we are pleased to welcome their representative, Paul A. Frank, senior vice president of electronic banking for KeyCorp to the board," said Wesley C. Tallman, president and chief executive officer of Interlink. "More and more financial institutions like KeyCorp are seeing the added value and utility that Interlink, as the world's largest direct-debit program, can bring to their ATM programs. We are pleased with the pace at which institutions are launching Interlink programs and expect this momentum to continue."
KeyCorp also announced that it will expand its Visa Debit program from the four states in which it is currently available to all eight states where the company has operations. The company expects to have the program available in New York and Maine by January 1993, with Alaska and Washington set for rollout later in the year.
"The success of our Visa Debit program gave us a strong reason to expand the program to these additional four states. Now, more of our customers can take advantage of the benefits that a Visa Debit card offers, namely the ability to use the card as a cash and check replacement wherever Visa is accepted," said Waterston.
KeyCorp, with assets of $25 billion, is a multi-regional bank holding company headquartered in Albany, New York. It has focused its banking expansion activities in the Northeast and Northwest. As "America's neighborhood bank," Keycorp has pursued a middle-market target, concentrating its resources in cities and smaller communities of the northern tier of states, thus avoiding overcrowded marketplaces and single industry loan exposure.
Interlink, the largest direct-debit, point-of-sale network with more than 12.5 million cardholders, currently has 348 financial institutions committed to the program. It processes more than half of all direct-debit, point-of-sale transactions conducted in the United States.
Following its acquisition of Interlink in the fall of 1991, Visa U.S.A. expanded the program, which had been operational in five Western states, nationwide, launching the world's largest on-line, direct-debit program months ahead of the competition. Interlink is a subsidiary of Visa U.S.A.
Visa Debit, the world's largest debit program, has more than 10.5 million cardholders in the United States. The debit card allows cardholders to have their transactions authorized at any of the 10 million locations that accept Visa worldwide.
With more than 23 million debit cards in the United States between its two products, Visa leads the debit industry with 12 times more cards than its nearest competitor, MasterCard. Visa estimates it will have 100 million debit cards in the United States. by 1996.
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/CONTACT: Debbe Stern of Visa U.S.A., 415-570-3510, or Paul A. Frank of KeyCorp, 518-486-8084/
(KEY) CO: Visa U.S.A.; KeyCorp; Interlink Network ST: California, Maine, Alaska, Washington, New York IN: FIN SU: 635 11-03-92 13:16 EST TM -- SF002 -- 2093 11/03/92 13:23 EST