Internet banking opportunities have finally materialized for Intelidata Technologies Corp., which tried to make a business out of the ill-fated screen phone in the mid-1990s.
In the last 12 months, Intelidata has sold its Interpose banking system to BB&T Corp., BancWest Corp., Old Kent Financial Corp., Compass Bancshares Inc., Summit Bancorp, and National City Corp.
And the Reston, Va., company has opened regional sales offices in Milwaukee, St. Louis, and Dallas, in anticipation of a flurry of Internet banking in 2000.
"Considering the business we have generated this year," said Alfred S. Dominick Jr., Intelidata's president and chief executive officer, "we have created the standard for an in-house, industrial-strength solution."
Banks are becoming more receptive to Intelidata's use of mainframes for Internet banking and bill payment software, he said. "Banks will be looking for new, longer-term solutions that incorporate the mainframe," he said.
The year-2000 conversion is no longer a reason for delaying software purchases, he added.
John Fuoss, a business development veteran of Electronic Data System's bank services division, is to manage Intelidata's Dallas office. Kenneth N. Rich, who worked with Mr. Dominick at M&I Data Services, is to lead the St. Louis office. And Peter J. Van Sistine, a banker for 25 years and a director at M&I Data for nine years, is to head the Milwaukee office.
The company also said it expects to hire Chris Yodzis, a former director of retail technologies at Bank One Corp., to head up a regional office in Toledo.
The hirings "suggest to me that the people who have joined us see an opportunity," Mr. Dominick said.
Intelidata, once known as U.S. Order, originally specialized in developing screen phones for retail banking applications. It has struggled since a failed 1996 merger with Colonial Data Technologies, a developer of caller identification products.
As competitors entered the market, offering cheaper products, Intelidata was forced to write off or sell most of Colonial Data's depreciating assets. Its stock price went from the $10 range when it was U.S. Order to less than $1 a share last year. It now trades in the $3 range. It has $6 million of cash and $10 million of net tangible assets.