First Online Credit Authorization System in the U.S.

The history of the development of the first online credit authorization system in the US took place in 1972 while I was a Treasurer and Director of a major New England department store.

I saw the need for an improved system that would speed the authorization of sales throughout the Gilchrist chain of stores. Accordingly, I commissioned a local firm to develop a proprietary system to that end.  After about a year of development, late nights, weekends, and endless software and hardware design sessions in 1973 Gilchrist Department Store introduced the first and only electronic transaction authorization system in the world. It was the precursor to what we all now take for granted when we make credit card purchases.

The system communicated over telephone lines at 300 BAUD, a creeping pace in today’s environment.  However, transactions that previously had taken from 10 to 20 minutes to authorize took mere seconds.  The effect on efficiency. customer relations and operating economies was astounding.

The event was even more monumental, as for the first time a major full–line retail chain incorporated both Master Card and Visa (then BankAmericard) integrated with its own in-store credit process.

As a result of the success, I was asked to become a director of MasterCard of New England and to speak at major bank conferences regarding the success of the system.

About Sidney Golub

ADAR International was founded in 1987 by Mr. Sidney J. Golub. A graduate of the prestigious Wharton School of Business, and successful, 40-year career businessman serving as CEO and CFO for several US companies, Mr. Golub decided to start his own company when he learned of the need in the market for better service in the recovery of unclaimed funds held in U.S. government accounts. Over the next ten years Mr. Golub grew his business from a start-up of 4 employees to a total of 35, becoming the largest and most important recovery service firm in the US and the UK. Consistent and diligent tracking of insolvency data over the more than 20 years (both in the US and the UK) has provided Adar with the most comprehensive unclaimed funds database in existence today which proves a valuable source for uncovering assets for our clients on an ongoing basis.
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