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Intuit snags more banking allies

Intuit and two financial-processing companies offer online banking services.

Intuit Services Corporation and two major financial-processing companies are teaming up to make online banking technology available to nearly 2,000 banks nationwide.

A subsidiary of Intuit, ISC aims to capitalize on its software expertise in a new relationship announced today with Electronic Payments Services and M&I Data Services, two companies that provide ATM and other electronic processing functions.

Intuit will offer online banking technology that the company has developed through its popular Quicken financial management software to some 1,900 banks that already have established relationships with EPS and M&I.

Intuit's new service is aimed at smaller and mid-sized institutions that might not otherwise have the means or knowledge to set up their own online banking networks. It is not known how many of the 2,000 banks that EPS and M&I represent will make use of the new service, but many are expected to express interest to stay competitive as the Internet becomes an increasingly popular venue for banking transactions.

The new alliances are the latest salvo in the battle for online banking between the software manufacturer and archrival Microsoft, which abandoned its highly publicized attempt to buy Intuit last year after persistent antitrust questions.

Since then, Microsoft has moved swiftly and aggressively into the territory of its erstwhile partner, signing up 58 financial institutions to support its Microsoft Money software and proposing a new online banking specification called Open Financial Connectivity.

Intuit today reported a 30 percent increase in net revenue for the third quarter ending April 30, to $136.5 million from the $104.8 million posted in the corresponding fiscal quarter a year ago. The company also, however, reported a net loss of $0.3 million for the quarter, attributing the figure to acquisition expenses.

Related stories:
Microsoft Money gets show of support
Microsoft gets serious on home banking