Evening Standard launch UK’s first dedicated cashless card

Innovative use of market-leading digital voucher platform

At Waterloo today, the Evening Standard will launch the Eros Reward Card, a cashless payment card that readers can use to buy the paper.

Similar to the OysterCard used by the majority of Londoners for public transport, the Eros Card can be “topped-up” online and then used to buy the Evening Standard.  Through the Eros Card, readers will be able to buy the Evening Standard at a discounted rate and benefit from a range of exclusive offers.  A full rollout of the Eros cashless payment system will move outside of Waterloo and across Zone One from October 1st 2007.

The Eros Reward Card concept was developed by Marketing Consultancy HH&S who have worked in the past on various electronic loyalty schemes for the paper. Mike Halstead Managing Director of HH&S said “The time was right to introduce a dedicated card to give Evening Standard readers both savings and  contactless card  convenience. What made the timing all the better was the availability of the right technology partners”

HH&S followed through the concept development with project management of the Eros Card offering and launch including building the www.eroscard.co.uk website and database. The Eros database will drive a new CRM function developed specifically for the Eros Card. In July following a beauty parade Broadsystems were appointed to work on developing the CRM function.

“The Eros Card system network uses i-movo’s market-leading, digital voucher distribution system already used in campaigns for BP, Coke, Diageo, Nectar, Nestle, Nike, Martin McColls and Roadchef.  Initially, the Eros Card will only be used at Evening Standard Vendors but the scheme has the potential to be extended in the future to third party retailers as David Tymm, CEO of i-movo explained: “i-movo  uses the existing standard card payment technology retailers already have installed. By November, over 30,000 UK retailers will be able to accept our digital vouchers including over 5,000  stores in the south-east where the Evening Standard is sold. There will be no technical barriers to these retailers accepting the Eros Card”

Operating in partnership with i-movo, the contactless card transaction delivery infrastructure is operated by TS3 Services, specialists in electronic transaction routing and processing, who have also supplied the payment terminals used in the scheme.

Andrew Mullins, Managing Director of the Evening Standard, said: “We are very excited to be the first newspaper to introduce this cashless and reward based payment system. Over the next two years in London, Zone One will increasingly become a cashless payment zone and the Evening Standard will be helping drive and lead this trend. The Evening Standard Eros card is a genuine innovation. It not only provides greater convenience for our loyal readers but also appropriate added value benefit rewards.

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