ACT launches comprehensive smart card based retail customer loyalty solution at Retail Solutions

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A powerful new tool which exploits the full capabilities and functionality of smart cards to change the way that retailers can increase and manage customer loyalty schemes will be launched by Applied Card Technologies (ACT) at Retail Solutions (SecureRetail, Stand L12-
- NEC, 8th - 10th June). The ACT General Electronic Loyalty (GCL) application is a bespoke solution developed for retailers and others such as transport, local government, banks and finance houses and other affinity based organisations, with a requirement to encourage and develop loyalty based programmes. Esso Ireland is already a user and is currently rolling out the biggest customer loyalty scheme in the Irish Republic.

For operators, the card allows them to extend their marketing reach, to adopt paperless electronic rewards, and to develop e-business techniques without making changes to their existing IT infrastructure.

Gary Watts, managing director, ACT, stated: "The General Electronic Loyalty solution from ACT dynamically illustrates the power offered by smartcard technology within the rapidly growing loyalty market. We have created a solution that not only delivers immediate value for users, but is also helping loyalty scheme members such as Esso develop its business."

Nigel Sylvester, account manager at prime contractor Fujitsu Services,
stated: "The Esso TigerMiles loyalty scheme is already one of the most recognised brands in Ireland. With over 300 participating outlets and in excess of 250,000 active users, the implementation was one of the most extensive IT infrastructure projects in the retail sector in Ireland in recent years. As prime contractor, Fujitsu Services had to be able to rely on a supplier that was not only highly professional, but as we have experienced with ACT, a supplier that has exceeded expectation."

All retail operators need to do to install a simple card terminal at the till. This terminal automatically collects information on customers, including complete details of the transaction. The smartcard readers - or terminals - situated in every retail outlet are able to calculate rewards, upload them to the card and also calculate bonus awards, such as those applicable for first time users.

The smartcard itself has the software application loaded at the manufacturing stage and is capable of storing loyalty value, personal data and has a comprehensive security layer. Finally at headquarters the back office system devised by ACT enables the centralised consolidation of data as well as a highly sophisticated reporting and management functions.

Business benefits

To loyalty scheme providers
The card enables retailers to focus on new market opportunities afforded by the smartcard, such as cross promotional opportunities and bonus schemes
Centralised consolidation of data as well as highly sophisticated reporting and management functionality
Quick return on investment as a result of rapid deployment
Capable of storing loyalty values, personal data and has a comprehensive security layer
Manages redemption process.

To end users
Increased levels of security and reduced risk of fraud
Increased levels of management control, encouraging drivers to remain brand loyal
Highly attractive and easy to use loyalty scheme
Easy redemption process not based on paper tokens
Easy to use at point of sale.

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