MasterCard International has launched a pre-paid MasterCard electronic card, 'Bonus+', to offer businesses in Poland an easy way to reward employees. The roll-out is expected to extend to 1 million cards by mid-2004.
Working with Bonus Systems Polska and Kredyt Bank in Poland, MasterCard International launched the Bonus+ card in Poland, with the aim of issuing some 750,000 cards before the end of 2003.
The card, apart from replacing paper-based bonus and reward payments for employees, could also extend the reach of incentive campaigns to reward business partners, or offer loyalty programmes for customers.
"The card offers the Polish business sector a unique new business tool that will cross boundaries and generate new revenues," said Wieslaw Federowicz, general manager for MasterCard in Poland.
For a company that wants to reward employee and partners, such a card can provide a safe and efficient tool for reward allocation, for delivering promotional rewards to trade partners, and - in the long term - delivering loyalty schemes for customers. The administrative costs of an electronic pre-payment facility are also most likely to be much lower than a paper-based gift certificate programme.
The Bonus+ card incorporates a 'recharge' feature that allows employers to reload cards with unlimited cash amounts over a two-year period. The card can only be made 'live' by the employer (through an instruction to the bank), removing many of the risks associated with paper-based vouchers which can often be used if stolen.
For the employee, partner, or loyalty card holder, the most obvious benefit is that their rewards can be spent as cash at the 70,000+ merchants in Poland that accept MasterCard payments. This compares favourably to the 17,000 merchants currently accepting the programme's original paper vouchers. Another side effect of pre-payment is that the consumer no longer needs to worry about certificate expiry dates, and can confidently save bonuses toward a bigger purchase.
More info: http://www.mastercard.pl (Polish language)