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To: StocksMan who wrote (20253)7/30/2004 7:29:53 AM
From: StocksMan  Read Replies (1) | Respond to of 20297
 
BACS EBPP Ltd Receives Support From HSBC and Lloyds TSB to Work Actively in the UK to Deliver More Bills Online

Friday July 30, 4:00 am ET

LONDON and ATLANTA, July 30 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- The joint venture from BACS and CheckFree Corporation (Nasdaq: CKFR - News) has secured the participation of HSBC and Lloyds TSB in its work to develop a service, which will provide additional electronic bill presentment and payment functionality in the UK. The service from BACS EBPP will provide an easy and integrated route for bills to be viewed and paid through online bank sites, giving UK billers, such as utilities, a suite of benefits that will provide the potential for cost savings and improved customer service.

Martin Kearsley, managing director of the new company, said: "We have undertaken independent research that shows billers who provide their customers with online functionality can experience lower costs and faster payment. With BACS' payments industry expertise and CheckFree's electronic billing leadership, BACS EBPP will provide a reliable, secure and proven forum to ensure billers and their customers can gain increasing value and convenience from the online management of personal finances. We are delighted to be actively working with both HSBC and Lloyds TSB on this development which will benefit billers, banks and their customers."

Matthew Timms, head of Lloyds TSB Internet banking, commented on the decision to support the establishment of the BACS EBPP service: "We are dedicated to continuing the growth of our online channel and to constantly improving the services we offer customers. The benefits for customers are clear - by giving them the chance to pay and view their bills on one site we'll be making this aspect of managing their finances simpler and speedier and this will pay dividends for all involved. By working with BACS to deliver this service, we can continue to meet the rapidly growing online demand for innovative banking services."

As Internet banking continues to grow, this new service will streamline personal finances by providing the ability to manage bills alongside an online bank account, without the need for multiple passwords across different billers' sites. Internet banking and online bill presentment and payment will also reduce the likelihood of lost cheques or missed payments.

Pete Kight, chairman and chief executive officer, CheckFree Corporation, concluded: "We have seen in other countries the significant benefits for billers who adopt this model in terms of strengthened customer relationships and billing operational efficiencies. We have also seen that once these services are easily accessible, banking customers who view and pay bills online at their trusted bank site rarely go back to their former less efficient methods."

Marion King, CEO, BACS Ltd added: "Working with HSBC and Lloyds TSB is encouraging for the future of our joint venture and a clear signal to billers to get on board. Strengthening customer relationships, reducing the reliance on paper bills while streamlining billing, accounts receivable and customer care operations is a win-win situation for everyone."

Benefits to Participants

* Significant cost reductions for billers as the reliance on paper bills decreases and automation of manual tasks occur

* Billing organisations will be able to strengthen customer relationships via visibility, targeting interactive marketing messages through the electronic bill, and by offering the convenience of remote access to bills and statements

* Tight integration between billing operations, accounts receivable and customer care systems within their operational environment will deliver substantial cost savings

* Banks will be able to offer new levels of service and convenience to consumers, who cite the ability to view and pay bills at a single site as an increasingly critical component of their online banking experience

* The frequency of bank-site visits will increase as consumers log-on while automated access, time savings and availability offer the individual greater control

* UK consumers will have the ability to both view and pay their bills at their bank's website. . .

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