Discover and Evertec Inc. announced Wednesday they have entered into an agreement that allows financial institutions participating in the island’s electronic banking network, known as ATH, to issue PIN-based debit cards with signature functionality via the credit card company’s network.
This agreement will effectively expand the use of such cards to point-of-sale terminals worldwide wherever the Discover and Diners brands are accepted, company officials said. Evertec owns and operates the ATH network, the largest debit payment and ATM network in Puerto Rico.
Furthermore, customers will be given added convenience because they can use these cards to make online purchases, as well as payments at places like parking terminals, where PIN debit transactions are typically not an option.
“As we continue to expand globally by partnering with key networks throughout the world, we look forward to welcoming ATH to the Discover family of networks and strengthening our presence in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean,” said Diane Offereins, president of Discover Payments Services. “We believe that ATH financial institutions will see immediate, clear benefit from our compelling value proposition, card features and the flexibility the Discover Network provides.”
Meanwhile, Mike Vizcarrondo, executive vice president of Evertec, added, “we see Discover as a solid partner for not only growing the acceptance of our brand outside of our main markets, but also for offering more options to ATH member institutions.”
Evertec is 51 percent owned by an affiliate private equity and capital markets investor Apollo Management VII, L.P., and 49 percent owned by Popular Inc., the largest financial institution in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean.