ARLINGTON, Va. – A new partnership between Certegy, the credit and debit card processor which reports having approximately 4,000 credit union and 2,000 other financial institution clients, and JLS Associates, Little Rock, Ark., a management consulting firm that specializes in credit and debit card analysis, should bring Certegy member credit unions an unprecedented level of card analysis and expertise, according to Jerry Hines, senior vice president with Certegy Card Services. Hines acknowledged that, on the surface, it appeared as though JLS might be duplicating the work of Card Services for Credit Unions (CSCU), another organization that provides Certegy member credit unions with card portfolio analysis. But in reality JLS will be able to provide credit unions with personnel in the credit union to analyze the procedural strengths and weaknesses underlying a credit union's card portfolio performance, he said. "CSCU does tremendous work," Hines said, "but they are very small in terms of personnel. JLS will be able to work with a credit union on-site," he said. Certegy expected its credit union members to continue working with CSCU, particularly in their online analysis of portfolio performance, even if they had JLS analyze their portfolio. "It is in the numbers from CSCU after a credit union implements JLS recommendations that the credit union should see the results," he said. One key analysis JLS will offer credit unions will be a review of their portfolio's performance relative to the entire card industry and not just other credit unions, Hines said, and then recommendations on ways the credit union can raise that performance to reach the industry standard. "For the longest time credit unions have not had the resources" to match the major card issuers, Hines said. The partnership with JLS is meant to help correct that, he added. In order to try to make the service available to as many credit unions as possible, Hines said, the analysis will be available for "very modest" flat rates that will reflect the analysis the credit unions need, he said.

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