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HomeNEWSThe Warehouse expands into mobile and finance

The Warehouse expands into mobile and finance

New Zealand’s largest listed retailer is diversifying into prepay mobile services, insurance and credit cards. It unveiled its two new brands, Warehouse Money and Warehouse Mobile, today.

Little information is available about Warehouse Mobile, but it will be available exclusively through The Warehouse channels from November 23.

Warehouse Money has launched with two new credit cards backed by Visa. To tempt new customers in, neither card will have annual or establishment fees. Both have a 19.95 percent interest rate, which the National Business Review says is similar to standard cards on the market.

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  • The ‘Warehouse Money Visa Card’ or ‘Red Card’ gets the user a 5 percent discount in stores and online.
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  • The ‘Purple Credit Visa Card’ is part of an Airpoints-style loyalty scheme enabling the user to earn and spend “purple dollars”.

Five insurance products are also available, underwritten by nib and Vero.

The Warehouse Group announced its move into financial services in March last year, saying its intention is to be a leading NZ retail financial servics company. The company already offered a range of financial services which were administered through a joint venture and various third parties such as Westpac, which provided a low-interest-rate credit card. TWG also offered insurance through Sovereign and PetPlan.

In its statement in March, TWG says it prepared for the pivot into financial services by raising $115 million, and acquiring Diner’s Club New Zealand for $3 million. The 50-strong team from Diner’s Club provided experience, core infrastructure, a premium card product, an existing customer base and receivables portfolio.

The company then said that the new financial services division is expected to lose up to $3 million during FY14-15 as the business base is developed. CEO Mark Powell described the project as a five year journey.

“With the acquisition of Noel Leeming, it became clear that we had the scale across the group to have a significant financial services business.”

Over the past year we have reviewed a number of options and believe starting our own ‘captive’ financial services business to be the best way of realising the potential value for our shareholders.”

TWG financial services CEO Mark Yeoman says Warehouse Money marks a new level of commitment to customers. He says the services will be appealing to existing customers, but expects they will also attract new customers.

“While we’ve designed these two cards with our Retail customers in mind, we hope that they will be attractive to any credit card user.  Being Visa cards they can be used wherever Visa is accepted, and our rewards card earns rewards wherever you shop,” Yeoman says.

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