Cineplex is 'de-worse-fying' instead of diversifying: Lightwater Partners
From airlines to grocery stores, there’s been lots of movement on the loyalty program front lately.
Here’s a round-up of some of the biggest and most recent changes.
CIBC’s SIMPLII FINANCIAL AND PRESIDENT'S CHOICE FINANCIAL
As of November 1, President’s Choice Financial banking customers will now be under CIBC’s new brand Simplii Financial.
CIBC is aiming to make the transition as seamless as possible and will send PC Financial customers a new debit card between the November start date and April 13 2018.
CIBC says bank account numbers, preauthorized bill payments and mortgage terms will not change.
For those that have earned PC points through a PC Financial bank account or mortgage can still redeem their existing points with their debit card until November 1 as the points do not expire.
After November 1, customers will have to sign up for Loblaw’s PC Plus to earn additional points or redeem their existing points.
If you have a PC Financial Mastercard, it will be business as usual as President’s Choice bank backs that specific product.
PC PLUS-SHOPPERS OPTIMUM
Loblaw has said it’s looking into the merits of a PC Plus and Shoppers Optimum merger, with speculation growing in the wake of the divorce between President’s Choice Financial and CIBC.
Desjardins Capital Markets analyst Keith Howlett said in a note to clients he thinks consumers could see Loblaw roll out an enhanced combination of the programs as early as late next year.
Schulich School of Business assistant professor Alan Middleton says merging the programs makes absolute sense.
“Combining data would result in Loblaws/Shoppers gaining a fuller picture of their customers and enable them to serve them with more targeted and more valuable offers,” Middleton told BNN in an email. “The key element will be the transition: it needs to be done with care and cooperation with the consumer so that issues of privacy are respected and the company does not appear too 'pushy'.”
Uniting the two loyalty programs is unlikely to move the needle on Loblaw stock, Avenue Investment Management portfolio manager Bill Harris told BNN via email.
Moviegoers will notice changes to Cineplex’s SCENE program at the concession stand beginning October 4th.
SCENE members will now earn and redeem points for food and drinks instead of getting an instant 10 per cent discount.
The new regime will see customers earn 10 SCENE points for every $1 spent at the popcorn stand as well as other branded in-theatre concessions such as Outtakes, YoYo’s, Poptopia, VIP Lounges and in-theatre Pizza Pizza and Starbucks locations.
Purchases at Tim Hortons locations in Cineplex theatres are not included.
Cineplex points out there are no SCENE program changes with regards to movie tickets.
LoyaltyOne, the operator of Air Miles, ignited a firestorm after announcing its intention to slap a five-year expiry date on Miles late last year.
The move prompted everything from a class-action lawsuit to the attention of lawmakers.
In the end, LoyaltyOne scrapped the proposal and no change was made to the Air Miles program.
One legacy from the public relations debacle lives on in Bill 47, which allowed the Ontario government to amend the Consumer Protection Act to ban expiry of loyalty programs’ points.
Aimia, which owns the Air Miles name, announced Friday it will sell the trademark and licence agreements in Canada to Diversified Royalty Corporation for $53.75 million, plus up to $13.75 million in contingent payments.
Aimia, the provider of Aeroplan, will be losing a major partner on June 30, 2020 when its contract with Air Canada expires and the airline launches its own in-house loyalty program.
Until that date, it will be business as usual for Aeroplan members.
You will be able to earn and redeem Aeroplan Rewards for Air Canada flights and any miles earned up until the agreement expiry date will stay in your Aeroplan account.
After June 2020, the airline says it intends to continue to honour Aeroplan rewards.
Air Canada has big plans for its own program though, saying it will increase the number of ways customers can earn and redeem points.
On Air Canada’s second-quarter conference call, Chief Executive Calin Rovinescu said he believes the three-year lead time is enough advance notice for Aeroplan members to not cause a redemption rush.