Lewis Levin, vice president of Microsoft Corp.'s desktop finance division, has been named president and chief executive officer of the Transpoint bill presentment and payment company.

Microsoft and First Data Corp. started Transpoint in June 1997 and admitted Citigroup as a co-investor a year later.

Mr. Levin's "appointment to this position clearly demonstrates our deep commitment to this important joint venture," said Microsoft president Steve Ballmer. "Several Microsoft business units have grown and prospered under his guidance and vision, and we're confident he'll have the same impact on Transpoint."

Mr. Levin took charge of the desktop finance division in 1996, with responsibility for Microsoft Money, the MSN Investor Web site that evolved into the MoneyCentral on-line service, and the MSN Personal Finance Channel.

A 13-year veteran of Microsoft, Mr. Levin has been a key liaison with the banking and financial services community and played a significant role in the development of Transpoint.

The venture is currently carrying out pilot programs with institutions including Bank One Corp., KeyBank, Wells Fargo Bank, Citibank, Mellon Bank Corp., and First Union Corp.. Almost 40 major billers are also participating in pilot tests, including such household names as GTE, BellSouth, PECO Energy, and J.C. Penney.

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