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MADISON, Wis. – In what appears to be an amicable parting of ways, CUNA and FundsXpress have ended their three-year Internet banking marketing arrangement. The partnership, formed in July of 1999, made FundsXpress CUNA’s endorsed provider for Internet banking, which was sold through CUNA’s then eCommerce division. A lot has happened since then. For one there is no longer a CUNA eCommerce division. Now there’s a firm called CUNA Network Services (formerly Aquis IP Communications, a long-time strategic tech partner’s of CUNA eCommerce), which is owned 40% by CUNA Strategic Services, Inc., CUNA’s for-profit arm. CSSI is owned 51% by CUNA. Both sides say everything will be done to make sure the 24 CUs which are on the FundsXpress Net banking system through the CUNA endorsement will not experience any downtime. The interesting aspect is that CUNA Network Services maintains that it is not getting out of the Net banking realm. In fact, at press time it said it was very close to releasing the name of its new Internet banking partner. The two parties disagree as to why the break-up occurred. “We enjoyed the CUNA relationship and partnership. The problem was because of the endorsement we were prohibited from selling any other products,” said John Burns, President/CEO of FundsXpress. “That was fine back in 1999 when we started because Internet banking was our only product. Since that time Portana has become a big success. We now have Internet lending, aggregation, brokerage and a whole lineup of new products which we were prohibited from selling,” said Burns. “They (CUNA) didn’t have a program to endorse those products, so we decided it was best to part ways. It was very amicable,” said Burns. CNS Senior Vice President Doug Benzine said the market focus of the two organizations was a key reason for the breakup. “Really the sole reason for this is they’re focusing on a certain portion of the market, while we want to serve our entire market, from the small credit unions to large ones,” said Benzine. Benzine said FundsXpress is marketing more towards the larger end of the industry. “We’re not discontinuing any services. FundsXpress is still going on. I still think they have a great product. This is just one of those things,” said Benzine, who at press time was busy contacting the 24 mutual CU clients. “It will be up to the discretion of each of the credit unions if they want to stay with FundsXpress or move to our new vendor. It’s up to them,” said Benzine. FundsXpress has 50 CUs using its Portana portal site; 11 using its Web site services; and one using its commercial solutions. [email protected]

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