SOURCE: American Express Incentive Services

February 16, 2010 14:19 ET

Maritz Buys American Express' Minority Stake in American Express Incentive Services

ST. LOUIS, MO--(Marketwire - February 16, 2010) - Maritz Holdings, Inc. announced today it has bought American Express Company's minority interest in American Express Incentive Services (AEIS). As a result, AEIS is now entirely owned by Maritz Holdings, Inc. and its affiliates, and American Express Company and its subsidiaries no longer have an ownership interest in AEIS. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed. Following this transaction, AEIS continues to operate as an independent entity and will change its corporate name and re-brand itself before the end of 2010.

For the past 13 years, AEIS has operated as a joint venture between Maritz Holdings, Inc. and a subsidiary of American Express Company. AEIS remains an independent issuer of prepaid products on the American Express® network and also an authorized seller of American Express®-branded prepaid products. AEIS is committed to continuing its strategic commercial relationships with American Express.

"AEIS operations will remain mostly as they do today -- our clients and cardholders can expect business as usual," said Darryl Hutson, AEIS CEO. "For the past 13 years, we have helped our clients leverage the power of our DirectSpend(SM) program to lower costs and drive greater results. This agreement enables us to deliver that power and those possibilities to new businesses."

John McArthur, Senior Executive Vice President, Development of Maritz, noted that "The prepaid card space is a growing market, and an excellent opportunity for Maritz and AEIS to grow our business together. We're looking forward to exploring and developing a wide array of new solutions for our clients."

"Our stake in AEIS has become less strategically aligned with our investment plans for the future," said Alpesh Chokshi, president of Global Prepaid, American Express. "As a result, we decided that this would be an opportune time to exit this joint venture. American Express will continue to offer prepaid products in the business space."

Maritz, a world-renowned sales, marketing, and incentive company, has helped businesses attain their strategic goals for over a century. Maritz Holdings, Inc. is the corporate entity managing the growing portfolio of Maritz businesses, including joint ventures and other development opportunities.

About Maritz

St. Louis-based Maritz is a sales and marketing services company, which helps companies achieve their full potential through understanding, enabling, and motivating employees, channel partners and customers. Maritz provides market and customer research, communications, learning solutions, incentive initiatives, rewards and recognition, effective meeting, event and incentive management services and customer loyalty programs.

About American Express

American Express Company is a leading global payments and travel company founded in 1850. For more information, visit

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