Affinity card model extended to broad financial services
Ten months after its acquisition of MBNA, Bank of America has announced the launch of what it calls 'affinity banking', offering a range of financial services to partner organisations whose members share a strong common interest or passion, such as a college, university, charity, or professional association.
While this business model itself was used by the former MBNA organisation as far back as 25 years ago, it largely focused on co-branded, affinity credit cards. The new affinity banking offering now also includes deposit accounts and home equity products.
New ways to build support With the new offering, the bank aims to create a better and more consistent consumer credit and deposit experience, and to nurture greater customer loyalty.
Bank of America customers can now support the organisations about which they are most passionate through their various lines of credit and everyday cheque account and debit card transactions.
Customer benefits The affinity deposit product package includes the following benefits for customers:
- The choice between cheque accounts and savings accounts, including the bank's Keep the Change savings programme;
- Special rates on CD accounts, IRA accounts, and money market accounts;
- The affinity organisation's name and/or logo on cheques and bank statements;
- A customized cheque card bearing the affinity organisation's logo (available from Q1 2007).
First partners signed The following organisations, representing nearly 10 million members, are the first to sign agreements with Bank of America to offer its affinity deposit and/or home equity products and services:
- American Quarter Horse Association
- Brown Alumni Association
- The District of Columbia Bar Association
- Defenders of Wildlife
- Habitat for Humanity International
- The Humane Society of the United States
- The Medical Society of the State of New York
- New York State Bar Association
- National Trust for Historic Preservation
- National Wildlife Federation
- National Wild Turkey Federation
- The University of Arizona Alumni Association
Launch campaign The new deposit products are being marketed to participating organisation members and supporters online through group web sites, and will be available at selected banking centres in Dallas/Ft. Worth, Arkansas, Chicago, Southeastern Pennsylvania, New York City, Riverside and North Orange County, California.
Affinity banking products are planned to roll out to banking centres across the US in Q1 2007, and more partners are expected to be added throughout the year.