Alex. Brown Hires a Managing Director

SAN FRANCISCO - Gary F. Craft has joined the equity research department of Deutsche Banc Alex. Brown as managing director.Mr. Craft heads research in electronic finance, with coverage including Internet banking, brokerage, insurance, and payment companies.

He and Cato Carpenter are the firm's core electronic commerce research team. Mr. Carpenter will continue to focus on the electronic transaction processing and electronic payments areas. Mr. Craft and Mr. Carpenter will work closely with Gaurang Desai, head of electronic commerce investment banking.

Most recently, Mr. Craft founded Financial DNA, an information aggregation and consulting firm that was sold to Venture Factory. He also spent six years on Wall Street as a research analyst with firms including E-Offering and BancAmerica Robertson Stephens. He worked for several years at Citibank in corporate banking and portfolio management.


PNC Hooks Up With Lending Web Site

PITTSBURGH - PNC Bank Corp. has signed an agreement to link visitors to the GetSmart.com lending site with the banking company's home equity loan application system.PNC says the on-line process can cut the home equity loan decision process from 10 days to 10 minutes.

"The addition of PNC means that loan shoppers who visit GetSmart will now have the ability to get home equity loans nationwide quickly and efficiently," said Stephen Semprevivo, GetSmart.com's president.

James DeFoggia, vice president of consumer lending at PNC, said the agreement with GetSmart.com is part of his company's strategy "to give our customers on-line banking options."

PNC already has announced that it will become the exclusive provider of certain financial products for iVillage.com, a network for women. It also provides financial products for CollegeLink.com Inc. and has signed an agreement with iCat, a division of Intel Corp., to offer small businesses an on-line store-building service.


Sallie Mae to Pay Out Loans Electronically

RESTON, Va. - Sallie Mae plans to use electronic payment software from Bottomline Technologies of Portsmouth, N.H., to disburse loans to college students and receive funds from lenders.Sallie Mae said it will also use the software for its "direct repay" system, which lets students automatically repay loans electronically. The software will initiate monthly direct debits to the student's bank account and then send payment files through Sallie Mae to the lending bank. Sallie Mae also plans to use Bottomline's fraud protection tools.

Dan Conant, assistant vice president of finance at Sallie Mae, said, "We expect the product will provide superior protection and control for our electronic payments."


Banking, Brokerage Software Being Integrated

MCLEAN, Va. - Online Resources and Communications Corp. announced an agreement to integrate its on-line banking and billing software with Engineering Enterprise Inc.'s EnterpriseFTX Internet software for brokerages.The partnership will let users move money between checking, savings, and brokerage accounts; pay bills on-line; and initiate securities transactions. All transactions would be executed in real time.

"We plan to work together to mesh brokerage and banking services so that our client financial institutions can offer their customers the on-line services they're demanding," said Matthew P. Lawlor, Online Resources' chief executive officer.

George Anderson, president and chief executive officer of New York-based Engineering Enterprise, said the agreement will let customers of his company's brokerage clients invest proceeds from stock transactions faster.

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