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Cedar Mill News

Volume 9, Issue 2
February 2011

Sam Bosch
Sam Bosch in his office in the Westlawn Professional Center. The company began with an office in Amberglen, then moved to a location on Science Park Drive. It's been at Westlawn since 2007.

Featured Business
Peregrin Financial Technologies
by Virginia Bruce

Sam Bosch is an idea man. Restless, bright and ambitious at 76, he still leads the company he founded in 1982, that has just launched a new cash management product and promises another breakthrough development later this year.

With a Masters Degree in Physics from UCLA, he worked as a research physicist, a systems analyst and a marketing manager before starting Peregrin in 1982. "My last employer was a startup technology company. They were very good at getting funding, but they never were able to bring a product to market. As the marketing manager, I tried to tell them that they were developing a product that people didn't want. I ended up getting fired. If I were in their shoes, I would have fired me too!" he recalls with a twinkle.

"But if they hadn't fired me, I wouldn't be where I am today. I had an idea for a new product, and so I contacted Sohrab Vossoughi, who was working at HP at that time. He was willing to moonlight on my project, and with his design help we won an International Design Award for a consumer-activated gas-dispensing terminal." Shortly after that, Sohrab quit HP and formed Ziba Design, an internationally-renowned firm headquartered in Portland.

Peregrin ATMBosch sold that company and its product to Addressograph/Multigraph. He paid off his promised share of the proceeds to Vossoughi and started Peregrin. Their first product was the P300 cashless ATM, which allows a customer to swipe their debit/ATM card to receive a printed voucher, which they use like cash with the host merchant to purchase something and even receive change.

These were the days when every mom-and-pop store didn't have a debit/credit card terminal next to the cash register. If you wanted to spend money at a smaller store, you had to have cash in your pocket. The ATM business, which let consumers access their credit for instant cash, grew quickly.

Peregrin went on to develop self-service movie theater ticketing terminals for AMC Theaters and MovieFone; theme park ticketing terminals for Disneyland and Universal Studios; ski-lift ticketing kiosks in Vermont and California; and ticket terminals at Yellowstone and Carlsbad Caverns National Parks.

The company expanded to market commercially-available ATM machines and PIN-based debit/point-of-sale (POS) terminals, providing sales, service, and transaction processing.

Bosch understood the need for easy-to-use equipment for the consumer, and also the need for his customer, the business that hosts the equipment, to have simple solutions, responsive customer service, accessible information, and seamless transaction processing. He developed a network of customer service and cash transfer services that let his company expand to service businesses throughout the Pacific Northwest, with customers also located in Nevada, California, and West Virginia.

Peregrin awards

The company has been recognized four years in a row by The Portland Business Journal as one of Oregon's Top 100 Fastest Growing Private Companies, and a received a similar national award from Inc. business magazine.

Peregrin now supports hundreds of terminals for scores of companies in the region and beyond. Two-thirds of these ATMs are "placed," where Peregrin provides the ATM, armored car service, and vault cash. Peregrin's ATMs are installed in convenience stores, fast-food restaurants, sports bars, bowling centers, liquor stores, in delis with video poker machines, and in credit unions.

In 2007, the company was awarded the contract to install ATMs in Washington State Licensing offices. The Oregon Zoo and the Rose Quarter also have multiple Peregrin ATMs.

Peregrin has a staff of trained technicians to install and service its products, because they believe that responsive after-sales support is as important as initial low cost. They also work with another local company, SolvPort, to provide an 800 number for 24/7 support during evening and weekend hours. In addition, the terminals have built-in monitoring programs that alert Peregrin technicians when ATMs or safes are low on cash, need service, or simply haven't processed a transaction in a specified time period. Bosch points out that, "A non-operating ATM frustrates consumers and loses money for merchants."

Last summer, Peregrin announced CeleraCash, a new cash-management product and service for the merchant whose business generates a high volume of cash transactions. The merchant and their selected employees insert cash into the Provisional Cash Safe (PCS) which counts the bills, rejects counterfeits, and prints deposit slips. At the end of the day, the safe transmits the day's deposits to the bank, and the day's total amount is credited to the merchant's account to use as early as the next morning for payments to suppliers and other uses. Businesses no longer have to suffer losses and anxieties due to miscounted cash and those after-midnight trips to a bank's night deposit box. Armored cars pick up the cash on a set schedule or whenever it reaches an agreed cash level.

CeleraCashCeleraCash customers, such as Ace Hardware and Elmer's Restaurants, can use an application on their desktop computer and even on their smart phone to monitor the status of their PCSs from anywhere. This is particularly useful for merchants with multiple locations. Bosch likes to envision his customer on the beach in Hawaii checking in to view the cash position of his stores!

This development was made possible by a convergence of technology and banking regulations. Prior to 9/11, checks were loaded onto airplanes and flown around the country to be processed back at the bank of their origin. With all air traffic shut down for days after that disaster, banking regulators realized that technology could improve the process. Remote Deposit Credit means that checks are now scanned and transmitted electronically to financial institutions. The same regulations that have allowed this have also made it possible for banks to accept cash deposits electronically when transmitted from a secure smart safe.

Smaller and cheaper electronics technology and more efficient software was the other part of the puzzle. Peregrin developed the software that connects the CeleraCash PCS to its server, which uploads information to the financial institution and also generates real-time reports for the customer. It has worked with safe manufacturers to develop the same type of user-friendly interface that made its ATMs so successful. Bosch points out that this represents the transition for merchants from loss prevention to full cash management. "The ATM market is mature. Most of the businesses that need them already have them. The technology of cash management is just beginning and we're poised to grow along with it," he says.

Bosch says he named the company Peregrin for the remarkable peregrin falcon, a bird that can fly 180 miles an hour, has the eyesight of a human with eight-power binoculars and is very agile. And, no matter how a peregrin falcon twists and turns in its flight, its eyes are always horizontal. Bosch envisioned a company that is swift, has great vision and is flexible in meeting customer needs, and is always level-headed!

Sam Bosch and his wife Corinne live in Rock Creek and attend the Oak Hills Community Church, where he organizes the yearly remote broadcast of the "January Series" from Calvin College, 15 lectures from national and internationally renowned personalities, which this year included Cal Ripken Jr. and Dr Temple Grandin—"The most accomplished and well known adult with autism in the world." They have two sons and two daughters, one of whom is a part-time bookkeeper for the company. Corrine worked as a teacher, and is the corporate Secretary. They enjoy travelling, which they generally combine with business.

Bosch invites anyone with a cash-intensive business to contact Peregrin to find out if CeleraCash is a good fit. "You can eliminate the costs and risks of your current cash-handling and depositing procedures, and gain access to your cash faster for less than $15 per day per location," he says. Contact them at 503-690-1111 or stop in at 1225 NW Murray Road, Suite 112.



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Published monthly by Pioneer Marketing & Design
Publisher/Editor:Virginia Bruce
PO Box 91061
Portland, Oregon 97291