IDial Networks to Launch Multifunctional Debit Card

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IDial Networks will launch a co-branded credit/debit/ATM card in early November with Merchant Bankcard Services Corp. to try to provide consumers with poor credit the chance to open spending accounts.

The Visa debit card, labeled iDial ChexCard, will provide consumers with an electronic bank account, ATM services and traditional debit card services. The card is being targeted primarily at a new large population of Latin American immigrants who may have not established credit or have poor credit.

Consumers who receive the card will be provided with one personal card and another for family members, enabling transfer between the cardholder's account and those of the family. Officials at Merchant Bankcard Services, Fort Worth, TX, did not return calls.

"Many Latin American immigrants come to the U.S. and send money abroad to their families," said Julie Crosby, director of investor relations at iDial Networks, Dallas. "This card will allow them to transfer money without paying fees associated with wire services."

The cards will be sold at retail counters, check-cashing centers, convenience stores and online, Crosby said. Consumers can buy unembossed cards at these locations without filling out an application. The unembossed cards, which will be identified with a four-digit personal identification number, will be accepted only for in-person purchases. If the consumer wants a card that can be used for online and telephone-based purchases, he will be directed to mail a form along with an as yet undetermined fee for an embossed card.

IDial is developing print, television, radio and direct mail campaigns in New York, Los Angeles and Miami, Crosby said, adding that it is too early to disclose specifics about the campaign. While the direct mail, print and TV campaigns will have a direct response approach, the online campaign will have a branding focus, Crosby said.

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