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    INTERNATIONAL NEWS

    Petro-Canada offers point-of-sale Activation; Japanese c-store sales on decline.

    Alberta, Canada-based Petro-Canada convenience stores has signed DataWave Systems Inc. to become the exclusive supplier of point-of-sale Activation (POSA) technology of prepaid phone time. This technology will be used to sell prepaid long distance and cellular PINs as well as other prepaid products.

    This program will enable Petro-Canada sites to rapidly grow their sales and product offerings of prepaid products, without concerns about up front inventory costs or shrinkage.

    The proprietary POSA technology of the DataWave System gives retailers the capability for instantaneous electronic delivery of prepaid PIN products. Long-distance phone cards and cellular PIN from all major cellular service providers can be delivered, on demand, directly to the point of purchase, through small free-standing terminals or by a host-to-host infrastructure that can be incorporated into the retailers' already existing cash-register system.

    In other international news, Seven-Eleven Japan Co. paced declines among retailers in Japan after an industry report showed convenience store sales fell 0.7 percent in May, as extra holidays brought fewer shoppers to outlets in business districts of cities.

    Same-store sales at convenience stores, including Seven Eleven Japan Co. and Lawson Inc., decreased to 538 billion yen last month from 541 billion yen a year earlier, said Japan Franchise Association in Tokyo. Seven-Eleven Japan dropped 110 yen, or 3.1 percent, to 3,500. Lawson, Japan's No. 2 convenience store operator, shed 20 yen, or 0.5 percent, to 4,290.

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