The architects of Aberdeen’s gift card scheme have declared it the most successful in the UK, after it generated £190,000 of sales in December alone.
Miconex, the payment provider for 70 Town and City Gift Card initiatives across the UK and Ireland, have said the Granite City achieved their highest sales level over the past year.
Between the card’s launch at the end of November 2020 and the same time last year, it had generated £235,000 of spend in the city.
But an exceptional December last year – by far the most successful month of the initiative so far – pushed that figure up to £425,000 total, thanks to the launch of a digital version and the decision by many local companies to use the card as a gift or reward for employees.
The scheme was launched by BID organisation Aberdeen Inspired ahead of the festive season in 2020, in an effort to encourage people back out to local shops that may have struggled due to the pandemic.
Adrian Watson, chief executive at Aberdeen Inspired said: “It’s fantastic to see the people of Aberdeen supporting their city centre and in turn supporting local retailers, restaurants and the likes through buying an Aberdeen Gift Card.
“As we navigate through Covid-19 we are grateful for the support shown to the city centre by the public and continue to encourage north-east consumers to continue to safely support Aberdeen city centre’s brick and mortar businesses, at a time where it has never been more needed.
“In December alone, sales topped £190,000 – up 37% on the previous year, underlining the public’s desire to support the local economy and shop local at the hundreds of businesses who accept the card.”
Businesses on board
Shell, CNR International, Aberdeen Performing Arts and Aberdeen Harbour Board were among around 40 city businesses that supported the scheme, with corporate orders totaling more than £65,000.
Bob Sanguinetti, chief executive at Aberdeen Harbour Board, said: “The Aberdeen Gift Card proved to be a successful way to thank our 100 employees, and we are pleased that the proceeds will directly support local businesses which are navigating through post-lockdown challenges.
“Our congratulations go to Aberdeen Inspired for their success with the Aberdeen Gift Card since 2020.”
‘Unbeatable customer proposition’
Colin Munro, managing director at Miconex, said: “Aberdeen Inspired has demonstrated skill, innovation and creativity in the launch and development of the Aberdeen Gift Card.
“They have created an unbeatable customer proposition, a gift card that can be spent with over 200 businesses in the city across a wide variety of sectors, building its desirability as a consumer and corporate gift.
“They have worked successfully with the local authority and other key stakeholders to make the Aberdeen Gift Card integral to city strategy and messaging. And they have continued to develop their gift card with the launch of digital.
“It is these activities and more which have made the Aberdeen Gift Card not only the most successful Town & City Gift Card in Scotland, but the most successful across the whole of the UK and Ireland, and a blueprint of how local gift cards can transform communities and take a proactive, long-term approach to the challenges faced by the high street.”