New Footprint for Proton Prisma Technology in Europe
GENEVA, Dec. 18 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ – STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM)
today announced that it has signed an agreement for the deployment of its
Proton Prisma smart card system software technology in Norway with BBS
(Bankenes BetalingsSentral AS). BBS is owned by and acts on behalf of the
Norwegian banks – Den norske Bank, Sparebanken 1 Gruppen, Gjensidige NOR
Sparebank and Terra Gruppen. Under the terms of the agreement, BBS will
become a licensee for Norway for Proton Prisma. The agreement marks a
significant step by the Norwegian banks in their migration to smart cards, and
to EMV* in particular.
The cards that will be used in the first phase will be the Proton Prisma
BP (basic profile), on which the Visa or MasterCard EMV application will
co-exist with the Norwegian domestic debit Bank-Axept. Other applications are
expected to be added in the future, such as the existing Norwegian
Proton-based e-purse ‘Smapengekort’ and the BankID application.
The Norwegian banks have appointed BBS – which for many years has been
successful in providing national card payment systems and EFTPOS (Electronic
Funds Transfer Point Of Sale) solutions to the banks. BBS will coordinate the
development and launch of new payment solutions as an integral part of its
strategy to migrate to smart cards.
The cooperation between the banks and BBS has led to a common reliance on
Proton Prisma technology. Key to their decision making process were the well
recognized flexibility and openness offered by the Proton Prisma platform, in
addition to ST’s EMV PLUS* application. Also, the platform met the banks’
long term vision, as Proton Prisma enables the optimization of the total cost
of ownership for the entire system.
BBS will be running the multi-issuing Proton Prisma smart card management
system ‘Matrix’ for the various Norwegian banks, allowing each of them to
offer differentiated services to their clients.
The banks, together with BBS, are planning to launch the pilot in Q2 2004
to be prepared for roll-out in Q4 2004. The present debit or credit magstripe
cards will, as from then, be replaced by Proton Prisma cards in line with
their natural renewing cycle. It is targeted that all cards should be
replaced by the end of 2006.
The Proton Prisma deployment in Norway is one more in an ever growing list
of ongoing Proton Prisma projects. Existing projects are in Belgium, The
Netherlands, Sweden, the Czech Republic and Poland.
Knut Bjerke, Executive Vice President at BBS and Hans-Petter Bredesen,
Director of business development cards at BBS, are very optimistic on behalf
of the Norwegian banks and confirm their commitment in using Proton Prisma
technology, giving banks the opportunity to issue smart cards with one or more
applications. The advantages that exist for the banks are many: Proton Prisma
giving the banks freedom in three dimensions – card suppliers, card types,
and applications including new business – and user possibilities. Yet an
additional advantage for the banks is the likelihood of card usage escalation
within their highly competitive market of payment solutions.
Armand Linkens, Group Vice President within ST’s Smartcard ICs Division,
commented, “This contract is the result of our long lasting relationship with
the Norwegian banks and BBS. We are very proud that, once again, a major
banking community has chosen Proton Prisma for a nationwide deployment,
recognizing the benefits of our technology for its EMV migration in
particular. ST will actively support BBS to ensure a smooth installation and
implementation of the project. We look forward with confidence to a
successful EMV migration in Norway.”