Aeroplan to launch Italian loyalty coalition
Groupe Aeroplan has announced that it is to launch a coalition loyalty programme in Italy, modeled on the already successful Nectar programme in the UK.
Groupe Aeroplan will have a majority 75% ownership in the new Italian programme, the name of which has not yet been officially announced.
Groupe Aeroplan reports, however, that it has already signed contracts with a number of partners from the retailing sector and that it plans to launch the new programme at some point during 2010.
As one of the world's major economies, offering a potential member base of some 58 million consumers, Italy offers a significant growth opportunity for the company.
"We have already said that we intend to grow our core business offering, and I am delighted that we are making good progress in executing that strategy in Italy," commented Rupert Duchesne, president and CEO for Groupe Aeroplan in Canada.
Groupe Aeroplan's portion of the funding requirements for the launch of the programme is estimated in the range of Euro 15.0 million (approximately US$24 million) over the coming 12 months.
Other than expenditure on pre-launch activities, which will account for a portion of the initial funding, the company does not expect its Italian plans to impact its financial results for 2009.
However, after the new programme is launched next year, it is expected that the company's gross billings in Italy may be in the range of some Euro 60 million to 80 million within three years.
When asked for specific details of the new programme, apart from its model being similar to Nectar, Duchesne explained that the full details of the programme, including the names of sponsors and participating companies, will be made public closer to the launch date.
Groupe Aeroplan currently owns Canada's Aeroplan loyalty programme and the UK's Nectar programme, as well as 60% of Rewards Management Middle East (the operator of Air Miles programmes in the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain). The group also operates Insight & Communication, an insight and data analytics business unit providing services to retailers and their suppliers globally.