Toronto – While Air Mile points have been a bone of contention for quite some time (the loyalty program angered many members in 2016 with its proposal to void unused Air Miles after five years. That policy was abandoned weeks before it was to take effect), the merger of two popular points programs seems to be progressing with too many raised eyebrows.
Loblaw Companies Limited (TSX: L, “Loblaw”) announced plans to bring together the Shoppers Optimum and PC Plus programs to create one program, PC Optimum, on February 1, 2018. Through a single card or app, members will be able to earn and redeem loyalty points more conveniently across Loblaw’s network of nearly 2,500 stores and its e-commerce sites.
Loblaws owns Superstore in BC.
The current programs, PC Plus and Shoppers Optimum, have respectively 8 million and 11 million members – who, last year, redeemed points every two seconds of the day, to save money on their necessities and indulgences. The programs rank first and second when Canadians are asked which loyalty programs provide them the best value.
When it launches on February 1, 2018, the PC Optimum program will provide a range of features requested by customers:
- Equal value when their PC Plus and Shoppers Optimum points are converted to PC Optimum points.
- Just one card or app for loyalty offers across the Loblaw and Shoppers Drug Mart network.
- The ability to earn and redeem points in nearly 2,500 stores and Loblaw-owned online services: Real Canadian Superstore, Atlantic Superstore, City Market, No Frills, Independent, Zehrs, Loblaws, Shoppers Drug Mart, Shoppers Home Health Care and online at Loblaw-owned Click & Collect websites, joefresh.com and beautyBoutique.ca.
- The ability to redeem faster. With the PC Plus program, members can redeem only once they reach 20,000 points. The threshold will be lowered to 10,000 with the PC Optimum program.
- 50 per cent more points (15 points vs. the current 10 points) for almost every dollar spent at Shoppers Drug Mart.
- The PC Optimum program will have a single, simple redemption table – i.e. 10,000 points equals $10 of value.
- President’s Choice Financial® Mastercard® cardholders will earn up to 30 PC Optimum points for every dollar they spend across Loblaw’s retail network, with an additional 15 PC Optimum points for every dollar spent on eligible purchases at Shoppers Drug Mart / Pharmaprix stores. PC Financial has provided Canadians with more than $1 billion in free groceries.
Loblaw has begun notifying members of both PC Plus and Shoppers Optimum of the pending change. The company will continue to share details with members over the coming months. More information is available at www.pcoptimum.ca.
In Quebec, due to the difference in laws applicable to loyalty programs, the Pharmaprix Optimum program will end on January 31, 2018. Members of the Pharmaprix Optimum program will have until May 2, 2018 to convert their points at full value to PC Optimum points or redeem them online or in store.