Catuity gets new patent for multi-application loyalty systems
An Australian patent has been granted to Catuity covering the operation of multi-application systems interactively, across a range of acceptance terminals, using a card. The patent is still pending in most other major markets including the US and Europe.
This patent has a widespread significance because loyalty and reward programmes from card issuers, retailers and merchants are gaining momentum globally. It covers applications and programmes operating between in-store point-of-sale (PoS) devices, mobile devices, personal computers, kiosks, host systems and the internet, using a single card or other consumer device.
New opportunities Interaction across all sales channels is an increasingly important feature of marketing and sales campaigns, and consumer devices such as cards are key elements in such systems.
Catuity's CEO, Michael Howe, explained, "Our system is diverse, capturing data and awarding real-time loyalty rewards at the point of sale, whether the card presented is a smart card or mag-stripe card. We believe we have the opportunity to provide retailers with the ability to install a loyalty system and take it from mag-stripe cards to smart cards using the same system."
Intellectual property According to Howe, the new patent significantly adds to the company's intellectual property, and represents an advantage in the multi-programme systems arena that many card issuers and retailers are looking into.
And in February 2002, Catuity had its first US multi-application patent accepted, protecting its system for manipulating data on a number of data-carrying devices (such as smart cards), used in multiple terminals that are capable of communicating with a central host (including electronic payments, ticketing and loyalty programmes). The firm anticipates acceptance of this earlier patent in Australia and other countries, and believes that a number of existing and proposed smart card system implementations could fall within its scope.