8 April 2016 - Placard Pty Ltd, Australia’s leading supplier of card production and personalisation services, is pleased to announce the successful completion of UnionPay International certification for its Australian manufacturing plant and personalisation bureau which is the first facility in the region to do so.

Already operating as Australia’s only secure card manufacturer this accreditation is a major step in being able to service the future requirements for our existing customers as well as others in the Australasia region and beyond.

Placard has recently successfully launched the Australia Post Load&Go China UnionPay prepaid card across Australia Post outlets country wide as well as being readily available via the Australia Post website.

“Obtaining UnionPay International accreditation is another example of how Placard is introducing new business opportunities and offerings that support and meet the changing needs of its customers” said Chris Nunis, Placard’s CEO.

Mr.  James Yang, General Manager of UnionPay International South Pacific, said “We are very glad that Placard becomes the first certified vendor of card production and personalisation for UnionPay International in Australia. Now, UnionPay serves the world’s largest cardholder base, and we hope to accelerate the process of local card issuance by cooperating with major institutions in Australia, so as to provide more convenient and cost-effective payment service for the local residents in their daily consumption and international travels.”

About Placard

Placard is an Australian organisation, which has been in existence since 1987 as a manufacturer of plastic cards. Since then, Placard has continued to expand and is now operational in New Zealand, providing comprehensive card programs to over 500 clients and employs in excess of 160 staff. Placard is a well-established, quality, total card solutions provider and has a reputation of meeting its commitments to its clients and consistently achieves service levels beyond its clients’ expectations.

Placard is the only secure card manufacturer in the country and is recognised as the market leader in Australia with a substantial card personalisation and fulfilment bureau.

Placard’s secure manufacturing and bureau facilities are Visa, MasterCard, China Union Pay and American Express accredited to the highest level.

Placard’s core competencies lie in the design, printing, manufacture, personalisation and mailing of ISO Standard secure and non-secure plastic cards with Bureau services encompassing the latest Visa and MasterCard EMV standards for embossing, manufacture of Dual Interface cards, magnetic stripe encoding, indent printing, thermal print flat graphics, high quality Drop on Demand personalisation, laser printing processes and intelligent matching & mailing services.

For more information, please visit www.placard.com.au or call Tess Barone, General Manager, Sales & Marketing on +61 3 9722 5200.

About UnionPay International

UnionPay International (UPI) is a subsidiary of China UnionPay focused on the growth and support of UnionPay’s global business. As a membership organization with over 300 members worldwide, UnionPay International has enabled card acceptance in over 150 countries and issuing in more than 30 countries. UnionPay International provides high quality, cost effective and secure cross-border payment services to the world’s largest cardholder base and ensures convenient local services to a growing number of global UnionPay cardholders and merchants.

4 February 2014 – Placard Pty Ltd, Australia’s leading supplier of card production and personalisation services, has selected Bell ID's trusted service manager (TSM) software solutions to enable it to provision and manage mobile near field communication (NFC)-based applications for its customer base.

Placard can now assume the role of a TSM, using Bell ID’s software platform to support mobile network operators (MNOs) and service providers such as banks and transit operators to deploy mobile NFC services. Through its TSM services, Placard provides the personalisation of NFC secure elements and the secure provisioning of applications – such as payment, loyalty and transit – ‘over the air’ to an NFC enabled mobile handset pre- and post-issuance.

“Bell ID's software solutions enable Placard to offer services and support to the emerging NFC industry. We recognised a need within the region for services of this nature and have extended our personalisation capabilities to include NFC-enabled mobile devices. Additionally, having the facilities to offer traditional TSM services combined with support for all form factors of secure element, including Secure Element in the Cloud, has put Placard at the forefront of the NFC ecosystem,” said Chris Nunis, CEO of Placard.

Pat Curran, Executive Chairman of Bell ID, adds: "2014 is the year when value added NFC services will come to consumer devices. We are already seeing services launching to consumers in markets such as Canada so it is pleasing to see Placard taking the initiative in Australia and using our technology to capitalise on the mobile NFC opportunity."

-ENDS-

About Placard

Placard was acquired by Australian Private Equity firm RMB Capital Partners in 2012 via a leverage buyout with Chris Nunis, joining the newly formed management team as Director and CEO, at the time of the transaction. Placard holds leading positions across a diverse range of card markets including financial services, identification & licenses, healthcare and transport. The company was founded in 1987 and produces over 90 million cards annually. Placard provides a one-stop-shop offering comprising card design, manufacture, personalisation and fulfilment. On the back of positive industry trends and solid management execution, the business has doubled revenues over the last three years. Today the company operates the only Australian-based production facility that is accredited by all four major payment schemes and services a wide range of blue chip customers under multi-year contracts.

For more information please visit www.placard.com.au or contact Steve Carlin – National Technical Manager (steve.carlin@placard .com.au)

About Bell ID

Bell ID (www.bellid.com) is a global provider of smart chip management solutions. Its proven technology manages the lifecycles of applications and cryptographic keys.

Whether you are a mobile network operator delivering mobile services, financial institution migrating to EMV, or government issuing body rolling out e-identity cards, Bell ID has the software solution to meet your specific token management needs.

For more information please visit www.bellid.com and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

25 October 2012 – Investment firm RMB Capital Partners (“RMB”), which manages funds sourced from the First Rand Group, is pleased to announce that it has lead the acquisition of a significant shareholding in Placard (“Placard” or the “Company”), a Melbourne based producer of secure transaction cards and associated services. RMB is partnering with the existing owner and management team of Placard, both of whom acquired significant minority shareholdings.

Placard holds leading positions across a diverse range of card markets including financial services, identification & licenses, healthcare and transport. The Company was founded in 1987 and produces over 90 million cards annually. Placard provides a one-stop-shop offering comprising card design, manufacture, personalisation and fulfilment. On the back of positive industry trends and solid management execution the business has doubled revenues over the last three years. Today the Company operates the only Australian based production facility that is accredited by all four major payment schemes and services a wide range of blue chip customers under multi-year contracts.

Placard earns the majority of its revenues from smart card business, which is driven by global improvements in chip technology and customer security requirements. The Company is the leading smart card provider in the Australian and New Zealand markets, providing smart cards for banks and other financial customers, driver’s licences, airline loyalty cards and integrated public transit ticketing.

Placard’s facility and plant is well invested to meet capacity growth and technological requirements in contactless and dual interface cards over next three to five years, with over $10m invested in the last six years.

Commenting on the transaction, Mark Summerhayes, Managing Director at RMB said:
“We are very pleased to have had the opportunity to invest in a market leading business with a strong value proposition and an experienced management team. There are some very exciting growth opportunities available to Placard, particularly in the smartcard segment, and we look forward to working with Ganesh and his team to capitalise on these as the business enters its next phase of development.”

Placard Chief Executive Officer, Ganesh Ganeshalingam, added:
“We are delighted to be working with RMB who enjoy a strong reputation for working in close partnership with businesses. RMB showed a deep understanding of our sector and we believe they are the right partner for us as we look to deliver on our plans.”

Mark Summerhayes and Magnus Hildingsson will be joining the Placard board on behalf of RMB, along with Steven Furman whose firm HighPoint Capital co-invested in the transaction. Highpoint raises its funding from high net worth investors who are looking to take positions in private equity deals.

RMB was advised by Freehills and Ernst & Young.

ENDS.
For more information please contact:
Mr Mark Summerhayes
Managing Director
RMB Capital Partners
+61 2 9256 6200
Info@rmbcapital.com.au

Tuesday, 24 April 2012 - By Cameron Boggs

Plastic card specialist printing company, Placard, has proven its mettle in one of the largest mail campaigns in Australian history, producing and mailing over eight million personalised Flybuys packs to nearly every household in Australia. Coles latest loyalty promotion sent out two new cards per household, that’s over 16 million cards.

According to Ganesh Ganeshalingam, managing director of Bayswater-based Placard, it was the biggest project of its kind ever done in Australia. Under high security settings the company produced everything inhouse from manufacturing the plastic cards to printing and personalising them. It also sourced all the envelopes and stationary.

“To get the project completed in 10 weeks we had to do a lot of overtime and bought additional equipment to cope with the scale of the job. We had to bring in an additional 50 people on top of our existing workforce of 150 staff to complete the 2,000-hour project.

“Storage was a big challenge as everything had to be kept onsite until distribution time. By the end of the job we had inserted over 33 million items into envelopes and processed over 500 tonnes of print, which is the equivalent of the weight of a fully loaded jumbo jet at take off,” he said.

In total around 25 differerent pieces of equipment were used for the project, to manufacture, personalise and fulfil the final pack. After the cards were printed on a Komori press, multiple high-speed laser machines handled the personalisation, attaching and inserting into envelopes.

“It took 28 Australia Post trucks to distribute the mailing campaign around the country and traffic management plans were in place in Bayswater to get Flybuys smoothly onto the streets. We finished the project ahead of schedule,” said Ganeshalingam.

The personalised cards and application forms had to be intelligently matched in the print run to make sure the variable data names and addresses coordinated prior to carrier attachment. If each card were laid edgeto- edge, the straight line of print would cover around 1,750 km – the distance from Melbourne to Brisbane.

At the launch of the all-new Flybuys, Ian McLeod, managing director of Coles, said the envelope landing in Australia’s mail boxes from Monday could be the most valuable letter a household will receive all year. “My message to customers is simple: get it, open it, activate it. Then start saving every time you shop.

“Last year we decided to rip up the rule book on reward cards and build a programme which offers real value to Australians. Our aim was to find new ways to give our customers something truly worthwhile as a thank you for choosing to shop with Coles. We wanted to make flybuys the card for the frequent buyer, not just the frequent flyer,” said McLeod.

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