Aplus Begins Full Operation of New Credit System Based on Experian Scoring Models

Japan – February 19, 2008 – Experian®, the global information services company, today announced that Aplus Co., Ltd., a credit sales company offering retail credit card and consumer finance services in Japan, has launched a new credit risk management system using Experian’s Strategy Management tool.  Aplus has been applying strict credit risk controls using Strategy Management since mid 2007.

The scoring models for screening and monitoring provided by Experian make use of customer information including application data, behavioural data and external credit records. These models are developed specifically for managing credit cards and loans. As well as adopting new scoring models, the new credit risk system incorporates rules developed by Aplus based on its experience in this field.

According to Mr. Shimazaki Masayuki, Chief Risk Officer of Aplus: “This is an extremely flexible, strategic credit control system as a result of the integration of our deep knowledge of the screening process and advanced statistical and mathematical technologies.

“In general, for our credit control operations, we would monitor and verify accuracy of a credit strategy based on an existing credit standard or scorecard, and refine it if necessary.  However, deployment of a new credit strategy can result in unexpected risks even after thorough verification.  This new credit system allows us to compare the accuracy of both new and current strategies by parallel running; we can then change the whole strategy if the new one demonstrates outstanding capability.  As such, we can now operate with the best credit strategy at all times.”   

Mr. Shimazaki added: “In the last couple of years, the credit sales industry has gone through major changes, including the revision of Money-lending Control Law and Installment Sales Law, changes in the economic environment, and diversifying needs of customers and merchants, as well as more sophisticated requirements from society to credit sales companies etc.  While credit strategies should be able to respond flexibly to these changes, system development inevitably takes time. The biggest benefit of the new system is the genuine capability for our credit strategy planning department to update strategies quickly.  Being able to incorporate these basic functions in our system at this stage is an extremely important step for us.”

Mr. Kent Ryu, General Manager of Experian Japan K.K., said: “Aplus is a very important client for Experian and we are very pleased to be able to contribute to its success through its use of Strategy Management.  As a trusted partner, we are dedicated to further enhancing our relationship and are focused on strengthening our support services for Aplus.”  

About Strategy Management
Strategy Management is an integrated credit strategy tool used by more than 600 companies in more than 65 countries worldwide. Strategy Management enables clients to carry out tasks ranging from strategic development of screening, monitoring and recovery operations to system implementation, coherently on a single platform. It offers a range of functions required by credit control departments for shaping credit strategies, including simulation, monitoring and business e-mail management. New credit strategies are immediately applied to the operating environment and can be executed in conjunction with mission-critical systems. The solution also offers a full range of operational functions, including management for credit strategies and security management.

In Japan, changes caused by the revision of the Money-lending Control Law have created the need to tune scoring models, to review logics for credit limit establishment and screening criteria (such as operational rules), and to change flows of credit operations. Strategy Management enables clients to respond speedily and flexibly to these changes by performing screening, monitoring and recovery in a coherent manner.

About Aplus
Aplus Co., Ltd., (1st section of OSE, Ticker code: 8586) is a credit sales company offering shopping credit, card services, and consumer finance services. It is also one of the core companies in retail finance services within the Shinsei Bank group. 

With 39 outlets in major cities around Japan, Aplus offers a wide range of financial products and services.  Aplus has a vision “to become the most efficient and competitive financial service institution” in Japan. It aims to be an innovative credit sales supplier that provides excellent services to business partners with enhanced consumer credit control and collection capability, using advanced infrastructure and information technology.   

Margaret Lam
Head of Marketing, Asia Pacific
+852 2839 5276  Tel  

About Experian
Experian® is a global leader in providing information, analytical and marketing services to organisations and consumers to help manage the risk and reward of commercial and financial decisions.  Combining its unique information tools and deep understanding of individuals, markets and economies, Experian partners with organisations around the world to establish and strengthen customer relationships and provide their businesses with competitive advantage.  For consumers, Experian delivers critical information that enables them to make financial and purchasing decisions with greater control and confidence.  Clients include organisations from financial services, retail and catalogue, telecommunications, utilities, media, insurance, automotive, leisure, e-commerce, manufacturing, property and government sectors. 

Experian Group Limited is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index.  It has corporate headquarters in Dublin, Ireland, and operational headquarters in Costa Mesa, Calif., and Nottingham, UK.  Experian employs approximately 15,500 people in 36 countries worldwide, supporting clients in more than 65 countries.  Annual sales are in excess of $3.8 billion (£1.9 billion/€2.8 billion).

For more information, visit the Group's website on www.experiangroup.com.

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