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National ATM Council Celebrates 50th Anniversary of First ATM in America

Jacksonville, FL, September 2, 2019 – The National ATM Council, the U.S. based trade organization representing America’s independent, nonbank ATM entrepreneurs, celebrates the introduction of the very first ATM deployed in the USA – fifty years ago today.  The first ATM installed in the U.S. was at a Chemical Bank branch located in Rockville Center, NY, on September 2, 1969.

ATMs were initially provided solely by the banks, until 1969, when ATM surcharges were authorized by the global networks, in the face of mounting legal and legislative pressures.  This change allowed for competitive, lower cost ATM entrepreneurs to enter the U.S. ATM market, almost quadrupling America’s ATM base from approximately 130,000 ATMs in 1969 to approximately 470,000 ATMs today. 

“ATMs are such an integral part of the present national landscape in America, it’s hard to even recall what it was like pre 1969, before the first ATM became operational,” said George Sarantopoulos, NAC Chair and CEO of Brooklyn, NY based ATM/POS provider, Access One Solutions.   “Nowadays, we take for granted widespread cash access across the USA, and we don’t fully appreciate how important ATMs have become in fueling our consumer-spending-based U.S. economy, day in and day out.”

According to an independent 2018 UNF Coggin College of Business study, there were 470,135 ATMs in operation in the US in 2016, out of which 278,394 (59.3%) were independent, nonbank terminals.  The study also demonstrated with statistical significance that independent, nonbank ATMs were the cash terminals/financial outlets serving inner city and rural communities throughout our nation.

“The ATM business is continuing to evolve, with an emphasis on having our terminals begin to interoperate with mobile phones/apps and be able to provide new features and enhanced capabilities based on software upgrades,” said Patrick Conner, NAC Vice Chair and Founder/CEO of Westlake Village, CA based national ATM supply/repair firm ATMPartMart.com.  “To think of how far ATM hardware/software has already advanced is mind boggling, and we are seeing another major leap forward for ATMs in the form of software based enhancements now becoming technologically feasible.”

The National ATM Council will be holding its annual industry conference next month – on October 15-17th at Planet Hollywood, Las Vegas – for a special celebration of the 50th Anniversary of ATMs in America – bringing together the nation’s largest gathering of independent, nonbank ATM providers and suppliers. Please call: 904-683-6533 – or go to: www.natmc.org/nac-events.html  for more information.