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MERIDIAN DECLARES ADVANTAGE DEBIT CARD A SUCCESS; OVER 200,000 CARDS IN ACTIVE USE IN FIRST YEAR

 MERIDIAN DECLARES ADVANTAGE DEBIT CARD A SUCCESS;
 OVER 200,000 CARDS IN ACTIVE USE IN FIRST YEAR
 READING, Pa., Sept. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- On the anniversary of its first year in active usage, Meridian Bank released today results of its Advantage debit card marketing effort.
 The results indicate strong consumer acceptance with over 200,000 Advantage Cards in active use after only one year. These results make Meridian the bank with the largest debit card base in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware.
 In addition to its ability to access MAC, MOST and NYCE automatic teller machines (ATM), the Advantage Card is also being widely used to make consumer purchases.
 Mailed to Meridian customers in September, 1991, the Meridian Advantage/Visa Debit Card works by processing transactions through the Visa payment system and deducting the withdrawal or purchase amount from the customer's deposit account.
 "Meridian is proud of its leadership in bringing this new payment innovation to its customers. We are also proud of the fact that our customers have embraced the card beyond our wildest expectations," said Meridian Senior Vice President of Electronic Banking Joseph S. Pendleton, III.
 "Financial convenience is king in the 1990s. Clearly, the success of this card indicates that we have tapped a convenience nerve that gives consumers the safety of a check with the convenience of a credit card," Pendleton said.
 In a December, 1991, survey of Advantage Card users, Meridian also found the following with respect to convenience and safety:
 -- Eighty-seven percent said the Advantage Card is more convenient than writing checks;
 -- Eighty-seven percent said using the Advantage Card is safer than carrying cash;
 -- Sixty-five percent plan to use the Advantage Card more in the future; and
 -- Forty-six percent believe that the Advantage Card is a good way to control spending.
 In addition to its launch of the Advantage Card, to better serve its customers, Meridian also has significantly expanded its ATM network in the past year. By signing on to the MOST and NYCE networks, Meridian has added more than 18,000 new automatic teller machine (ATM) locations from Maine to Florida to its existing network of 254 ATMs in Southeastern Pennsylvania, the Delaware Valley and the state of Delaware.
 Meridian Bancorp, Inc., a banking and financial services holding company, is based in Reading. Meridian, through its subsidiaries, operates nationally with its banking focus in 16 Pennsylvania counties and the state of Delaware.
 -0- 9/15/92 R
 /CONTACT: George E. Biechler, 215-655-2470, or Bob Shade, 215-655-2463, both of Meridian Bancorp/
 (MRDN) CO: Meridian Bancorp, Inc. ST: Pennsylvania IN: FIN SU:


MK -- PH011 -- 9702 09/15/92 14:29 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 15, 1992
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