Four-way loyalty scheme to launch
Air Miles founder signs up Sainsbury’s and Debenhams to joint programme
June 5 2002
Sainsbury’s and Debenhams are to join BP and Barclaycard in a new loyalty card scheme launching in the autumn.
All four will transfer outstanding loyalty points from existing programmes into the new scheme, called Nectar. Devised by Keith Mills, the founder of Air Miles, Nectar aims to have half of UK households on board in its first month, based on customer numbers in existing individual schemes.
Points collected in the Nectar programme card will be exchangeable for a wide range of rewards like grocery shopping, consumer goods, flights, holidays, restaurant meals, family days out and cinema tickets.
Nectar will operated by Loyalty Management UK (LMUK), chaired by Mills.
Mills said: “We are delighted that four of the UK’s best known and respected companies are coming together with us to launch Nectar. It will transform the UK loyalty market. LMUK will be working with trusted household names that are market leaders in their sectors. We will also be adding other sponsors to the programme in the future which will mean that consumers will have even more opportunities to earn points.”
Last month, Tesco announced that it had signed up jeweller H Samuel to its Clubcard loyalty programme, and that other non-competitive retailers were expected to follow.
The loyalty database industry has long forecast that larger, multi-retailer cards are the way forward as the initial success of single-retailer loyalty programmes subsided. The main obstacle has been seen as the sharing of valuable customer data with potential rivals. As supermarkets increase their non-food offer, the available bank of non-competitive partners for joint loyalty programmes has reduced dramatically. Nectar is offering the companies taking part exclusivity in their indvidual sectors.
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