BMO Financial Group

BMO Financial Group
BMO Bank of Montreal

BMO Bank of Montreal

February 03, 2011 06:01 ET

BMO Bank of Montreal Expands International Access To Its ABM Network

Joins Acxsys Corporation's International Card ABM Acquiring Service: participating UnionPay, Diners Club International®, Discover® Card and PULSE® cardholders can now withdraw money from BMO ABMs while travelling in Canada

- Strengthens bank's relationship with Diners Club International family by accepting the cards of other Diners Club® franchises;

- Provides BMO's customers living in China access to their bank accounts while visiting Canada;

- Augments BMO's "Newcomers to Canada" program, to help make newcomers' transition to Canada smoother.

TORONTO, ONTARIO--BMO Bank of Montreal announced today that it has begun accepting participating UnionPay, Diners Club International, Discover and PULSE cards at its more than 2,000 automated bank machines (ABMs) across Canada through the International Card ABM Acquiring Service of Acxsys Corporation, whose shareholders are the architects of the Interac® network, Canada's national debit network.

"This strategic initiative will help BMO build and sustain the strong banking relationships that we continue to establish with newcomers to Canada, with our clients in China and with our extended family of Diners Club Cardmembers worldwide," said David Heatherly, Vice-President, Payment Products, BMO Bank of Montreal.

"Providing relevant, convenient services to a growing number of international customers and to visitors to Canada is just another way that BMO defines great customer experience. With more than 2,000 ABMs nationwide, cardholders visiting Canada will never be far away from accessing their money."

Rate of Travel from China to Canada expected to increase

During Prime Minister Harper's visit to China in 2009, China announced that it granted Canada Approved Destination Status (ADS). A Memorandum of Understanding was reached between Prime Minister Harper and President Hu Jintao on June 24th, 2010. Nearly 160,000 Chinese travellers visited Canada in 2009 and it is expected that ADS will help the yearly rate of travel to Canada from China to increase up to 50 percent by 2015.

About UnionPay

As China's national bankcard association, UnionPay plays a pivotal role in China's bankcard industry. Established in 2002, UnionPay is responsible for operating a unified inter-bank clearing and settlement system in China and developing the international acceptance network for UnionPay cards. To date, more than 2.3 billion UnionPay cards have been issued worldwide. UnionPay has also established partnerships with approximately 400 financial institutions all over the world and has extended the UnionPay card international acceptance network to 104 countries and regions. For more information, go to

About Discover, PULSE and Diners Club International

Discover's payment businesses consist of Discover Network, with millions of merchant and cash access locations; PULSE, one of the United States' leading ABM/debit networks; and Diners Club International, a global payments network with acceptance in more than 185 countries and territories. PULSE's ABM network accepts Diners Club, Discover, and PULSE cards.

In December of 2009, BMO acquired the Diners Club North American franchise. Until now, BMO ABMs only accepted Diners Club cards bearing the MasterCard network brands (Cirrus, MasterCard, Maestro). The PULSE network will provide cardholders from other Diners Club franchises whose cards are not co-branded MasterCard with access to their accounts through BMO ABMs (in North America, these cards are only accepted at ABMs on the PULSE network). 


About BMO Bank of Montreal

BMO Bank of Montreal has a network of more than 2,000 automated banking machines across Canada which, in addition to UnionPay, Diners International, Discover and PULSE, also accept cards from Interac, Plus and MasterCard payment networks (including Cirrus, MasterCard and Maestro).

BMO cardholders can access their accounts in Canada at any of the 60,000 ABMS bearing the Interac logo and anywhere in the world through more than 1.8 million ABMs bearing the MasterCard/Cirrus logo, including 900 Harris ABMs in Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin.

BMO and China

BMO has one of the strongest presences in China among the major Canadian banks. Together, BMO and its Chinese subsidiary, BMO ChinaCo, have branches in Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. BMO also has a representative office in Taipei, Taiwan and an Investment Banking representative office in Beijing. BMO owns 28% of equity interest in Fullgoal Fund Management Co., one of China's leading investment funds management companies.

  • In October 2010, BMO officially opened its new incorporated subsidiary, Bank of Montreal (China) Co. Ltd. (BMO ChinaCo), with its headquarters in Beijing. As the first Canadian bank to obtain approval to incorporate in China BMO now has the flexibility to expand its product and service offerings for North American and Chinese clients.
  • BMO ChinaCo and BMO branches in Beijing and Hong Kong provide financing solutions to the Bank's global corporate client base as it relates to their China businesses. Primary activities include trade finance, corporate lending, correspondent banking, treasury, money market and derivative products, foreign exchange, depository and accounts services as well as Canadian banking consulting services. 
  • Bank of Montreal assists Chinese immigrating to Canada by providing information on aspects of their new life in Canada, including information on the Banking, taxation, education, the legal system and other information to help ease the transition to their new life. BMO also assists emigrants in opening banking accounts when they arrive in Canada.
  • BMO Harris Private Banking has professionals on the ground in Greater China, offering advisory services to high-net-worth individuals who emigrate or are interested in investing in Canada and the U.S. 

Chinese Travellers to Canada

  • Chinese visitors had the highest average length of stay in Canada — 28 nights — and spent more than visitors from any other country, nearly $1,650.
  • There are 42,000 students from China studying in Canada.
  • China travellers injected $260.6 million into the Canadian economy in 2009, down slightly (0.9%) from 2008.
  • In 2009, Chinese travellers spent on average $1,634 per person-trip; the average stay was 27.9 nights.
  • In 2009, Chinese travellers preferred to visit Canada in the summer (35%), while spring was the second most popular season (25%).

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