Putnam Lovell NBF and Financial Insights Join Forces to Publish Monthly Analysis of the Financial Technology Universe

NEW YORK & FRAMINGHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 16, 2004--Putnam Lovell NBF Securities Inc., a leading investment bank to the global financial services community, and Financial Insights, an IDC Company, and the principal provider of independent research services, custom consulting, and detailed multi-client studies on technology issues and challenges facing the financial services industry, are proud to announce the publication of FinTech Universe: Insights and Indices (FinTech Universe i2), providing vital monthly research on the resurgent Financial Technology sector.

The FinTech Universe i2, jointly produced by Putnam Lovell NBF and Financial Insights, identifies all the key players in the sector, and includes performance and benchmark data, plus news and M&A activity on more than 150 public companies worldwide. These publicly traded companies, including providers of banking software, market data and financial information, buy- and sell-side technology and software, outsourcing services, processing, insurance technology, electronic networks, and brokerage services, as well as more than 100 world-class private companies, are the focus of Putnam Lovell NBF's market-leading coverage of the Financial Technology sector. The FinTech Universe i2 can be found on both the Financial Insights and Putnam Lovell NBF Web sites, www.financial-insights.com and www.putnamlovellnbf.com.

"We are confident that the contribution of Financial Insights will make the FinTech Universe i2 more valuable to the sector practitioners and decision-makers. We will continue to look for ways of enriching the content of the FinTech Universe i2, in order to capture as fully as possible the significant turnaround the Financial Technology sector has undergone," said Lado Gurgenidze, Managing Director, Putnam Lovell NBF Investment Banking. "This alliance will benefit the clients of both Financial Insights and Putnam Lovell NBF."

"We are excited about this opportunity. The Universe offers true thought leadership in the global market for FinTech services. The i2 combination of insights plus indices, of penetrating analysis combined with practical measures of market sentiment, are increasingly important factors in all types of strategic decisions by today's FinTech CEOs and those they serve," said Michon Schenck, Chief Operating Officer of Financial Insights. "We expect that the FinTech Universe will become a useful tool for everything from investment strategies to alliance management to market focus."

About Putnam Lovell NBF

Putnam Lovell NBF Securities Inc. ("Putnam Lovell NBF") is an investment banking firm focused on the financial services industry. It offers merger and acquisition advice, equity capital markets, fixed income trading, and general corporate finance advisory services. It serves a global client base comprised of diversified financial services firms, institutional asset managers, mutual fund managers, banks, broker-dealers, insurers, and financial technology firms. Putnam Lovell NBF was founded in 1987 and operates from offices in Boston, London, New York, and San Francisco. Putnam Lovell NBF Securities Inc., member NASD/SIPC, is a subsidiary of National Bank Financial Inc. www.putnamlovellnbf.com.

About Financial Insights, an IDC

Company Financial Insights provides independent research services to users and providers of financial industry technology. The company was formed in November 2002 by combining Meridien Research and the IDC Financial Services Advisory group. The Retail Financial Services practice offers four areas of focus: Payments, Delivery Channels, Wealth Management, and Consumer Banking and Credit. The Capital Markets practice offers Trading Technologies and all aspects of Risk Management. The Corporate Banking practice covers cash management, wholesale payments, trade finance, and small business banking. Each practice delivers reports detailing new issues and challenges and uses its knowledge to advise clients on technology related decisions. Financial Insights is an IDC Company, headquartered in Framingham, MA. Visit www.financial-insights.com for more information.

IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research, and exposition company.

Lado Gurgenidze,

+44 20 7478 1626



Financial Insights

Deborah Stark,