Sainsbury’s tests tie-up with Barclays

Supermarket giant Sainsbury’s is testing the use of Reward Card points as an incentive for joining Barclays Bank.

“This is the first time a major supermarket has allowed its loyalty card to be used by a third party,” says one source close to the trial. “It won’t be the last.”

Barclays is offering first-year students at Birmingham University 200 Reward Card points if they join the bank’s university branch.

Sainsbury’s launched the Reward Card this summer. This week, the supermarket chain will begin to offer cardholders the opportunity of exchanging 250 points for 250 minutes of free calls with BT and a 5 voucher off BT phone products.

It also allows rewards earned to be doubled when spent with selected third parties. For example, a 2.50 Reward entitles a customer to 5 off at Sketchley dry cleaners and at restaurants such as Beefeater, TGI Fridays and Brewers Fayre.

The tie-up is Sainsbury’s second with the high street bank; it is also involved with Barclays on its Internet site, Barclaysquare.

Barclays is also planning a financial services co-branding venture with Sainsbury’s to launch next year. This will offer either a credit card or current account bank products and works in a similar way to Tesco’s Clubcard Plus scheme.

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