The independent sales organization Total Merchant Services Inc. has agreed to purchase at least 25,000 payment terminals from Hypercom Corp. of Phoenix, which it has named its preferred supplier.

Hypercom said Wednesday that the agreement is part of Total Merchant Services' free terminal program, in which the Basalt, Colo., sales company provides electronic payment systems to merchants at no cost to encourage wider acceptance of credit and debit cards.

"The program, in a nutshell, is just what it sounds like," Heidi Goff, Hypercom's president and managing director for the Americas, said in an interview Wednesday. "They have been very successful with it."

Ms. Goff, who joined Hypercom in February to drive sales in the Americas, said the Total Merchant Services agreement is one of several major deals her company has landed in recent months, though she could not name any of the other customers.

Potential customers have been attracted to Hypercom's Optimum 4200 product line, which features several models that all run on the same software, she said.

Sharing the same software makes it easy to install the various models and to train people to use them, Ms. Goff said. "It drives down the total cost of ownership."

Last year Hypercom reorganized its sales force last year and outsourced its manufacturing. Last month it reported that its first-quarter revenue rose 10.6% from a year earlier, to $71.7 million, and its net loss shrank 88%, to $300,000.

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