Shoppers Drug Mart Corp. and Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) have introduced a new co-branded credit card, and with the launch Canada's largest bank plans to acquire the existing Shoppers Optimum MasterCard credit card portfolio.


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Shoppers Drug Mart, RBC unveil co-branded credit card

September 7th, 2012

TORONTO – Shoppers Drug Mart Corp. and Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) have introduced a new co-branded credit card, and with the launch Canada's largest bank plans to acquire the existing Shoppers Optimum MasterCard credit card portfolio.

The RBC Shoppers Optimum MasterCard credit card offers increased point-earning potential for the drug chain's customer loyalty program.

The companies said Friday that the new RBC Shoppers Optimum MasterCard is a no-annual-fee credit card with increased point-earning potential for the Canadian drug chain's Shoppers Optimum customer loyalty program. The credit card features state-of-the-art chip and PIN security, extended warranty and purchase security insurance.

Shoppers Drug Mart and RBC didn't disclose financial terms of the bank's proposed acquisition of the Shoppers Optimum MasterCard credit card portfolio. The proposed transaction is expected to close later this fall, pending regulatory approvals and other conditions.

When the deal closes, RBC plans to roll the current Shoppers Optimum MasterCard credit cards into the RBC Shoppers Optimum MasterCard credit card program. Meanwhile, existing cardholders can continue to use their Shoppers Optimum MasterCard and receive the same benefits that they do today.

Under the RBC-Shoppers Drug Mart program, consumers can earn Shoppers Optimum points whether they shop at a Shoppers Drug Mart/Pharmaprix drug store or at any merchant that accepts MasterCard or Interac debit. In addition, they can collect bonus points for signing up and earn additional points on purchases when presenting the Shoppers Optimum loyalty card at Shoppers Drug Mart/Pharmaprix.

"We are continuously looking for new ways to reward our Shoppers Optimum members and are pleased to provide this enhanced financial service offering with RBC," said Domenic Pilla, president and chief executive officer of Shoppers Drug Mart, said in a statement. "Our Shoppers Optimum loyalty program members are among our most passionate customers, and with the launch of this new credit card they will have more options for earning rewards."

The RBC Shoppers Optimum MasterCard program is the latest co-branded financial services product offered by the two companies, complementing the RBC Shoppers Optimum banking account and debit card launched in March. Since then, customers with that account have been able to earn more Shoppers Optimum points by paying with their debit card and have gained access to Canada's largest network of ATMs, including more than 250 ATMs in Shoppers Drug Mart and Pharmaprix stores and another 50 ATMs slated to be installed by the end of the year.

"This is a natural extension of the strategic alliance between RBC and Shoppers Drug Mart," stated Dave McKay, group head of Canadian banking at RBC. "Our joint program is designed to deliver financial flexibility while giving Canadians access to one of the top loyalty programs in the country. This is another step forward in making banking easier and the retail experience more rewarding for everyone."

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