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Most in the credit union industry would not be surprised to learn that credit unions are by far the junior partners in ATM deployment when compared to banks, but many might be surprised to learn that the banks themselves deploy significantly fewer ATMs than do Independent Sales Organizations (ISOs) and that, in the broader ATM picture, credit unions are almost insignificant. According to the Dove study, in 2002 large ISO’s deployed an average of 3,689 ATMs and “other” ISOs placed an average of 212 of the machines. Large banks deployed an average of 1,674 ATMs and “other” banks deployed an average of 38 machines. By comparison, large credit unions, on average, only deploy an average of 93 ATMs and “other” credit unions average only 12 machines. Arizona-based eFunds Corporation, a $441 million company, is the single largest ISO deployer, with more than 12,000 machines in place and an additional 3,000 that it expects to acquire soon through the purchase of other ISOs networks, according to Todd Hannon, the vice president of eFunds’ ATM management. The great majority of eFunds deployments are branded as Access Cash machines, although the company sells the branding rights to some financial institutions and other businesses, Hannon said, adding that most of the firm’s machines served what he called the “C-store” or convenience store market. Even at that level of placements, ATM deployments make up only about 20% of eFunds economic activity, which includes ATM processing. In fact, eFunds is the data processor for Co-Op Network, a fact that neither company advertises but which is not particularly a secret, Hannon said.

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