Three new smart loyalty cards
The new Malaysian ID card, ANZ Bank's new smart card and Turkey's Akbank all chose Welcome Real-time's loyalty software for real-time rewards.
Welcome Real-time, French-based provider of smart payment and loyalty card software is reaping some of the benefits of its purchase of Axiomatique International (see previous article). Axiomatique has been chosen to supply the loyalty application for the terminals that will be used by new Malaysian Government Multi-Purpose Card, known as MyKad. The loyalty application is not yet being used, but is ready to roll.
MyKad was launched last April. It is one of the most sophisticated smart card systems in the world, incorporating a national ID, driver's licence, passport and electronic purse. There are plans for it to also perform banking and payment transactions (including the payment of utility bills and the withdrawal of cash from ATMs) as well as enabling holders to digitally sign documents on the Internet.
Instant rewards The loyalty application (Welcome Real-time's XLSmart) will store recency, frequency and monetary value behavioural data. This will be updated dynamically in real time during each transaction. Direct marketing software in the merchants' point of sale terminals will interact with the data on the card. This means that customers will be able to receive instant rewards, targeted specifically at them, based on their up-to-date purchase history. Clearly, this saves on the cost of managing, processing and handling redemption rewards. Axiomatique International has been active in the Malaysian marketplace since 1998 and includes leading international banks in the region among its clients.
Australia Axiomatique has also been busy in Australia. There, it has won a contract to provide the loyalty application for ANZ (Australia and New Zealand) Banking Group Limited's multi-application chip-based credit card system, launched last month in Australia. The system includes cards, terminals and the loyalty transaction processing system. Axiomatique specified the loyalty system architecture, worked with ANZ on the chip card and terminal applications, and is assisting with the integration of the host system with ANZ's existing credit card systems. Melbourne-based ANZ is the first major credit card issuing bank in Australia to begin converting to smart cards. It announced last November that it would upgrade some 1m Visa-branded cards and convert some 80,000 point-of-sale terminals to accept smart cards.
Turkey Meanwhile, Welcome Real-time has been active nearer home. Turkish bank, Akbank, has begun issuing a smart credit card that employs Welcome's XLS software (this means that it can perform RFM calculations in real time at the point of sale). The card, called Axess, is the first chip-based credit card combining real-time rewards and cash-back features. Akbank has set its sights on being a leading player in the plastic cards market as Turkey plans to move from magnetic stripe to chip-based cards. The cash-back feature allows cardholders to receive a percentage of past cumulative purchases to use towards their upcoming purchases. Over 2,500 retail outlets have joined the scheme just days after the launch.