Friday, October 28, 2005


Retailers to Provide Exclusive, Off-the-Shelf NASCAR Prepaid Visa Card to Their Customers

Courtesy Kerry Tharp, NASCAR PR/Licensing

LOS ANGELES – October 20, 2005 – Next Estate Communications (NEC) and NASCAR have entered into a licensing partnership to launch the NASCAR® prepaid Visa® card – an off-the-shelf, prepaid financial tool with built-in appeal for NASCAR’s more than 75 million loyal fans.

NEC is America’s first and largest provider of retailer-sold, association-branded prepaid debit cards. NEC’s prepaid products are sold in over 50,000 retail locations nationwide. It is also the creator and operator of the Green Dot® Financial Network, a retail-based financial network providing cash acceptance services including prepaid card reloading and remittance cash collection.

"Next Estate is adding the most powerful brands in the country to its suite of pioneering payment products. This gives our retail partners more exclusive products and our customers more choice," said Mark Troughton, Chief Operating Officer of NEC. "NASCAR represents the most brand-loyal, passionate consumers and we are honored that they chose Next Estate and our Green Dot Financial Network to power their program."

The NASCAR Visa prepaid card is the first reloadable sports-affinity debit card of its kind combining a breadth of services and benefits, with additional perks that racing fans are sure to enjoy.

In addition to providing cardholders with financial flexibility and freedom to pay for purchases at stores, online, over the phone, or wherever prepaid Visa cards are accepted, the new cards have the added convenience of withdrawing funds from more than one million Visa/Plus ATMs worldwide. The NASCAR prepaid Visa card, which requires no applications to fill out and no credit checks, will also feature the NASCAR logo.

NASCAR prepaid Visa cardholders will also enjoy the ability to have their payroll checks deposited directly onto their card, in addition to adding more money onto their card at tens of thousands of Green Dot Financial Network retail locations nationwide. The cards will be issued by Columbus Bank and Trust Company in Columbus, GA.

With the purchase of the card, fans will also receive a premium NASCAR-licensed gift and enjoy a free trial membership in the Official NASCAR Members Club (ONMC), launched in February 2006 to better connect fans with the sport. The card’s roll-out to leading retail stores is set for first quarter of 2006, and will be supported by NASCAR online and via newsletter promotion to its most loyal fans.

“Through our partnership with Next Estate, the NASCAR prepaid Visa card will provide our sport’s millions of fans with enhanced and flexible purchasing opportunities. With a national fan base that overlaps in every geographical market, coupled with NEC’s over 50,000 retail locations and nationwide reload network, including a wide variety of NASCAR retail sponsors, NASCAR fans will have a terrific opportunity to purchase and reload the card,” said Mark Dyer, NASCAR Vice President of Licensing and Consumer Products.

Recent NASCAR research shows that fans are three times as likely to sample and purchase NASCAR branded products and services. Studies also indicate that nearly 90 percent of fans believe that NASCAR-branded products represent quality. For retailers, this means NASCAR-branded products fulfill a pre-existing market demand among an already primed group of customers.

Approximately 22 million prepaid debit cards were issued in 2004. That total is expected to more than double within 5 years.

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