Four of Verifone Inc.'s smart card experts have gone into the consulting business-without leaving the company.

Led by Michael J. Shade, the group operates independently and internationally as the Centum Consultancy, offering their combined 100-plus years of experience and expertise ("centum" is Latin for century) to financial institutions, retailers, and anyone else trying to make sense of what Mr. Shade calls an "astronomical rate of change" in payment technologies.

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