Groupe Bull, the French computer company, is bulking up through alliances for an assault on the North American smart card market.

Bull announced two major strategic relationships - with a Canadian payment systems company and a U.S. producer of a special type of computer chip - at the Cardtech/Securtech conference this week. And these go with concurrent initiatives, including a marketing agreement with the Banksys Electronic Purse System in Belgium and a pocket smart card reader for the Visa Cash test in Atlanta.

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