Tesco expands Clubcard's retail partner network
UK supermarket chain, Tesco, has finalised deals with two new retail partners, allowing Allders (department stores) and Dollond & Aitchison (opticians) to award Tesco Clubcard loyalty points in their stores. From November 18th, 2002, shoppers at the new partners' stores will earn one point for every £1 spent. The new partnership with Allders, in particular, presents card members with some unusual opportunities to earn large numbers of points. For example, buying a leather three-piece suite (costing around £2,499) and a flatscreen television (at around £1,499) would earn around 4,000 points. For Premium Clubcard holders, that would translate to:· Around £160 off their shopping, or· A white water rafting day out for two, or· Five visits to the cinema for a family of four, or· Two return flights to Amsterdam or Paris (using Air Miles).Redemptions Points can be redeemed against special Clubcard deals, swapped for Air Miles (March 18th, 2002), or exchanged for vouchers from the firm's 150 redemption partners (which include Blockbuster, Alton Towers, UGC Cinemas, and RAC roadside assistance). Tesco claims that, with over 80% of sales being made using Clubcards, it issues around £200 million worth of points every year and, since the scheme's launch in 1995, the firm has handed out over £1 billion in Clubcard vouchers.Retail partners Together, the new partners expand the total number of UK Clubcard point-issuing locations to over 3,300. The network of retail partners already includes firms such as Beefeater restaurants and pubs, Johnsons Dry Cleaners, Travelcare, Nationwide, Lex autocentres, and H Samuel jewellers (May 5th, 2002). "Expanding the Clubcard scheme to include two more high street names gives our shoppers points on more of their shopping, which is what they have been asking for," explained Tim Mason, marketing director for Tesco. "Shoppers can earn more points than before and, in many cases, they could add thousands of points to their account in one go." Harvey Lipsith, chief executive of Allders, said, "This is an exciting development for Allders, and a further step in our strategy of repositioning the business to make it more contemporary and appealing to customers."Nectar response Tesco has already responded to the launch of the Nectar programme (Sept. 12th, 2002) by launching a short-term 'win a million' promotion for its Clubcard members (Oct. 4th, 2002), and points out that many of the vouchers it offers require less points than their Nectar counterparts. And, further increasing its competitive efforts, Tesco has also recently begun accepting discount vouchers issued by Sainsbury's and Safeway supermarkets - a move which unfortunately coincides with a seasonal 'stepping up' of special offer coupons from its competitors (Oct. 21st, 2002).