Discover Financial Services Announces International Alliance with Nigeria’s Interswitch Limited

  Discover Financial Services Announces International Alliance with Nigeria’s
  Interswitch Limited

     Agreement will boost transaction volume on the Discover, Diners Club
  International and PULSE networks and acceptance of Verve Cards across the
                           Discover global network

Business Wire

RIVERWOODS, Ill. & LAGOS, Nigeria -- March 12, 2013

Discover Financial Services (DFS) and Interswitch Limited, the largest
integrated payment processing service provider in Nigeria and promoter of the
leading card network, Verve, today announced a strategic alliance that will
allow acceptance of Discover and Diners Club International (DCI) cards at
Interswitch-enabled ATM and point-of-sale (POS) terminals for purchases in
Nigeria. It will also allow Verve cardholders to have access to Discover,
Diners Club International and PULSE networks for international purchases and
cash access outside of Nigeria.

The long-term agreement, which will be implemented in phases, will focus first
on enabling about 20 million Verve cards on the PULSE global ATM network,
followed by acceptance opportunities for Discover and Diners Club cards in
Nigeria, and then the acceptance of Verve cards across the Discover global
network. The Discover global network, which includes Diners Club, PULSE and
other partner networks, provides acceptance in more than 185 countries and

Discover and Interswitch also will collaborate on the integration of Discover
DPAS EMV solutions and fraud monitoring solutions to ensure safe transactions
across both networks. The companies also plan to look at future opportunities
for emerging payment products in Nigeria and in other Interswitch markets.

"This alliance is significant to Discover’s strategy of creating an
alternative global payments network that gives both financial institutions and
consumers more choice,” said Diane Offereins, EVP and President of Discover
Payment Services. "By partnering with regional payments networks such as
Interswitch, Discover is able to leverage its unique set of assets to grow
volume, while providing our partners with the global reach and localized
preferences and needs they require."

Discover has established network to network alliances across the globe,
including in China, Japan, Korea, Serbia and India. These alliances provide
valuable access to Discover's global acceptance footprint and deliver value
and volume to merchants and partners.

“This alliance is another step in the right direction for Verve. We continue
to look for new opportunities to expand our payments network, and our
partnership with Discover is an example of that,” said Charles Ifedi, CEO of
Verve. "The new agreement with Discover Financial Services provides our
issuing members with new options for ATM and POS access around the globe while
also giving Verve cardholders what they deserve, more convenience at home and

“This partnership is a major milestone in our 10-year history. We will also
leverage Discover’s suite of solutions to deliver innovative card and
electronic payment initiatives across various sectors in the market,” said
Mitchell Elegbe, Group MD/CEO, Interswitch. “One of the objectives of the
Central Bank of Nigeria's Financial System Strategy 2020 (FSS 2020) is to
advance the efficiency of the country's e-payment systems by reducing the
reliance on cash and promoting interoperability among financial institutions.
The agreement between Discover and Interswitch will contribute positively
towards this vision.”

About Discover

Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) is a direct banking and payment
services company with one of the most recognized brands in U.S. financial
services. Since its inception in 1986, the company has become one of the
largest card issuers in the United States. The company operates the Discover
card, America's cash rewards pioneer, and offers home loans, private student
loans, personal loans, online savings accounts, certificates of deposit and
money market accounts through its direct banking business. Its payment
businesses consist of Discover Network, with millions of merchant and cash
access locations; PULSE, one of the nation's leading ATM/debit networks; and
Diners Club International, a global payments network with acceptance in more
than 185 countries and territories. For more information, visit

About Interswitch Limited

Interswitch Limited is an integrated payment processing network which provides
technology integration, advisory services and transaction processing and
payment infrastructure to government, banks and corporate organizations.
Interswitch is the promoter of the Verve payment brand and provides online,
real-time transaction switching that enable businesses and individuals have
access to their funds across the 21 banks in Nigeria and across a variety of
payment channels such as ATMS, POS terminals, Mobile Phones, Kiosks, Web and
Bank Branches and has operations in Nigeria and throughout Sub-Saharan Africa.
For more information, visit


Media Contacts:
Discover Financial Services
Laura Gingiss, 224-405-0185
Interswitch Limited
Enyioma Anaba, 234-704-030-3085
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