With the Chemical Banking Corp. merger completed, Chase Manhattan Corp. is training its sights on a series of television and PC-based banking services it plans to offer with Nynex Corp.
In September, the bank and Nynex unveiled a prototype system in which Nynex acted as content provider for on-line services such as shopping and movies-on-demand, with Chase in the role of payment processor.
The system is supposed to be available by the end of the year, though Chase has not publicly updated its schedule in the wake of the merger.
Bank executives said the project has been broken down into staggered phases, with PC-based services getting attention first.
Once the PC services are completed, the bank will tackle interactive television, according to Arnold J. Lieberman, vice president and senior business development officer at Chase.
In addition to expanding the range of services Chase can offer its customers, the new services are viewed as a way for the bank to leverage its transaction processing expertise. Chase is the largest processor of automated clearing house payments.
The Nynex project is one of almost 20 "greenhouse initiatives" managed under Chase's global payments and treasury services area, according to Deborah Talbot, the executive who formerly headed that unit at Chase. Ms. Talbot recently left the bank to pursue other interests.
Chase executives said the bank's strategy of basing its home banking initiatives on existing systems and relationships separates it from many of its rivals, who are building new delivery channels from scratch.
"I don't want to create something new," said Mr. Lieberman. "I want to be a payment processor."
Though progressive projects have a tendency to fall by the wayside in post-merger integrations, Mr. Lieberman's project has not been neglected, Chase executives said.
The new service for interactive television and PCs would allow for basic bill paying as well as shopping, "two very different services run by the same engine," Mr. Lieberman noted.
According to several research companies, the personal computer and the television are likely to be the most appealing home banking delivery mechanisms to consumers.
However, experts predict that interactive television projects will not begin to pay off for banks until at least the end of the decade.