Visa and Catuity sign contract for loyalty programmes
Visa and Catuity are cooperating to provide a software engine that will allow Visa member banks to create loyalty programmes on the cards.
A single, US-wide, cross-sector loyalty card has become more feasible now that smart cards are gaining popularity there. Cross-sector cards have their problems - the main one being branding - but they also have significant advantages.
Loyalty software system provider, Catuity, and Visa USA have just entered a multi-faceted development and cross-licensing contract. Catuity will further develop its loyalty system and provide Visa with on-going technical support as well as a licence for its suite of loyalty software and technology. Visa will licence the new Visa technology developed under the agreement to Catuity, who will market it to Visa member banks and merchants. The contract is worth an immediate US$4 million to Catuity.
Create new products Catuity's loyalty software is a component of the smart Visa Technology platform introduced last year. FleetBoston Financial Corporation, Providian Financial Corporation and Retailers National Bank, a division of Target Corporation, all issue smart Visa cards incorporating the software, which allows merchants to run loyalty programmes that are tied to the payment process. The system can use either smart cards or magnetic stripe cards, and Visa estimates that over 7 million smart Visa cards will be in circulation by the end of 2001.Visa member banks can use the Catuity software engine to create new products, including multiple loyalty programmes on a smart Visa card.