-- CheckFree and CashEdge form partnership to accelerate, simplify and reduce the cost of account opening, funding and transfer processes --
ATLANTA, July 25, 2006 (AllPayNews) -- CheckFree Corporation (Nasdaq: CKFR) today introduced a suite of online banking solutions that will help financial institutions reach beyond their traditional brick-and-mortar and geographic footprints by leveraging the Internet to offer new accounts to a broader range of prospective customers.
Consumers - particularly younger adults in Generations X and Y - increasingly expect to be able to perform a variety of financial tasks online - from paying bills to opening new accounts. CheckFree Online Open(TM) and CheckFree Online Fund(TM) are designed to help consumers establish and fund new accounts, in a matter of minutes. An automated decision-making engine processes the applications based on the financial institution's unique business rules for managing risk, while flagging any exceptions for manual review.
CheckFree Online Transfer(TM) enables financial institutions to simplify the transfer of funds between accounts and create new revenue streams by extending their online offerings to include fee-based, intra- and inter- institution fund transfer services between accounts held at more than 23,000 banks, credit unions and brokerages. For example, parents could use Online Transfer to move money from their account to their child's bank account at the same or a different financial institutions to help pay for college expenses.
"With the addition of these compelling self-service online banking solutions alongside our industry-leading electronic billing and payment portfolio, CheckFree is creating unparalleled opportunities for financial institutions to deliver enhanced virtual branch experiences and drive the acquisition and retention of more profitable customers through their branded websites," said Jeff Weikert, senior vice president and consumer service provider (CSP) business unit executive, CheckFree Electronic Commerce division. "It's all part of CheckFree's broader strategy to make complex financial activities easier for businesses and consumers."
These online banking solutions are powered by CashEdge, a leading provider of innovative online financial applications for banks, credit union and wealth management firms. "With its unparalleled distribution network, CheckFree is a powerful force in the electronic billing and payment industry," said CashEdge CEO Sanjeev Dheer. "The combination of CheckFree's industry-leading platform for secure and convenient electronic billing and payment, and CashEdge's innovative payment and account opening products will offer new levels of convenience to financial institution customers."
For financial institutions and their customers, the potential benefits of these solutions are clear. Real-time account opening helps financial institutions compete more effectively for new accounts by dramatically compressing the time, cost and complexity of opening and funding new accounts. With automated solutions, new accounts can be opened online in a matter of minutes in most cases, compared to an industry-standard average of three to five days, according to a September 22, 2005, Aite Group report titled "Online Account Opening Technology: The Last Mile in STP." Aite Group is an independent research and advisory firm serving the financial services industry.
"A natural convergence is taking place between broader online financial services applications such as online account opening and funding and electronic billing and payment solutions, resulting in a suite of comprehensive offerings aligned with banks' acquisition, retention and profitability goals," said Eva Weber, an analyst at Aite Group. "Online account opening and funding applications help reduce the cost per acquisition of new customers, while real-time transfer and electronic billing and payment capabilities help increase retention and build profitability for the bank."
Opening accounts online costs financial institutions only a fraction of the average $65 for offline processing of each new account, according to Aite Group. It helps speed up the flow of funds into new accounts - from five to seven days through traditional processes to just one to three days via online account funding. It is also expected to increase account completion rates - new accounts that are ultimately funded - to a projected 70 percent of submitted applications from the current 10 percent.
Available as stand-alone services from CheckFree, Online Open, Online Fund, and Online Transfer are designed to help financial institutions increase new account completion rates and fully leverage their online channels for customer acquisition and retention.
About CheckFree ( http://www.checkfreecorp.com )
Founded in 1981, CheckFree Corporation (Nasdaq: CKFR) provides financial electronic commerce services and products to organizations around the world. CheckFree Electronic Commerce solutions enable thousands of financial services providers and billers to offer their customers the convenience of receiving and paying their household bills online or in person through retail outlets. CheckFree Investment Services provides a broad range of investment management solutions and outsourced services to thousands of financial services organizations, which manage about $1.3 trillion in assets. CheckFree Software develops, markets and supports software applications that are used by financial institutions to process more than two-thirds of the 12 billion Automated Clearing House transactions in the United States. The division also provides operational risk management, financial messaging, corporate actions, and regulatory compliance software to more than 1,500 organizations across the globe.
Certain of the Company's statements in this press release are not purely historical, and as such are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These include statements regarding management's intentions, plans, beliefs, expectations or projections of the future. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties, including without limitation, the various risks inherent in the Company's business, and other risks and uncertainties detailed from time to time in the Company's periodic reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended June 30, 2005 (filed September 2, 2005), Form 10-Q for the quarter ended September 30, 2005 (filed November 8, 2005), Form 10-Q for the quarter ended December 31, 2005 (filed February 8, 2006) and Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2006 (filed May 9, 2006). One or more of these factors have affected, and could in the future affect the Company's business and financial results in future periods, and could cause actual results to differ materially from plans and projections. There can be no assurance that the forward-looking statements made in this press release will prove to be accurate, and issuance of such forward-looking statements should not be regarded as a representation by the Company, or any other person, that the objectives and plans of the Company will be achieved. All forward-looking statements made in this press release are based on information presently available to management, and the Company assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements.
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"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding CheckFree Corp's business which are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report or Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year.