National City and Union Bank of California join SVPCO cheque image exchange network

Source: The Clearing House Payments Company

SVPCO - Electronic Clearing Services, the electronic check and check image exchange business of The Clearing House Payments Company L.L.C., today announced that National City Bank (NYSE: NCC) and Union Bank of California, National Association (NYSE: UB) are now exchanging check images over the SVPCO Check Image Exchange Network.

The SVPCO Check Image Exchange Network is the nation's premier image exchange network, enabling financial institutions to perform a variety of check image clearing and settlement functions. The three entities involved in the exchange of images use technology supplied by VECTORsgi.

"The launch of this image exchange is a major milestone that is the result of outstanding teamwork between Union Bank of California and National City," said Bill Christensen, Executive Vice President, Union Bank of California. "Image exchange represents the future of the check clearing business in the United States."

Connie Rose, Senior Vice President, National City, said: "Early adoption of image exchange has effectively positioned Union Bank and National City to reap the benefits of image-based presentment. Continued associations between financial institutions who also believe in the value proposition of image exchange will further drive efficiency and cost savings into bank operations. Pursuing Image Exchange through the SVPCO Check Image Exchange Network has proven to be an excellent starting point. SVPCO is an industry leader in terms of the processes and infrastructure to support image exchange for member and customer financial institutions."

The exchanges are being conducted through SVPCO's Distributed Traffic Agent (DTA), a solution developed by SVPCO with VECTORsgi, one of its strategic technology partners. The DTA enables financial institutions to transmit check images directly to each other in a cost-effective manner. The DTA works in conjunction with existing item-processing systems to link institutions into the network and enables institutions to directly exchange payloads of electronic images. SVPCO will also operate a gateway DTA that provides service to multiple financial institutions.

The initial exchange between Union Bank and National City was tested and deployed at a bank level as opposed to utilizing fixed account tables. The banks fully expect to steadily grow the number of sites, images, and cash letters throughout 2005.

"We're pleased to welcome two more banks to the nation's safest, most secure check image exchange network," said Susan Long, Senior Vice President of SVPCO -- Electronic Clearing Services. "SVPCO worked closely with National City and Union Bank to streamline the implementation process to help both institutions begin realizing the benefits of check image exchange in just several months."

In March, Federal Reserve Banks and financial institutions began exchanging images of checks using SVPCO's peer-to-peer image network. In addition, five of the nation's largest banks and a large, third-party service provider are also connected to the SVPCO Check Image Exchange Network. Most of The Clearing House's 19 bank owners are committed to begin linking to the SVPCO Check Image Exchange Network by the end of 2005.

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