Various regional dailies, 22 Oct 2013: 'New bonus card unfair'
“System leads to customer discrimination, according to experts. Map 'not very innovative'.
The introduction of the new AH bonus card is leading to discrimination among its seven million cardholders, according to supermarket expert Gerard Rutte.
Regular customers who do not want to register for privacy reasons are missing out on benefits that their neighbours will get from now on, according to the Santpoort retail expert.
"Sooner or later that's going to chafe and annoy," said Rutte, author of four books on supermarkets and marketing. "You get two groups of customers, discriminating against one group. Two people in the same street who don't pay the same leads to resentment in the long run."
The Privacy First foundation concurs. The foundation calls the new registration "an unfair trade practice". Spokesman Vincent Böhre said: ,,You force people to reveal their buying habits in exchange for a little discount. Research by the TV programme 'Kassa' shows that 98 per cent of supermarket customers want their purchase history erased."
Supermarket expert Rutte is one of many critics of the introduction of the new AH bonus card, which is in the wallet of seven out of nine million customers. The exchange operation, which runs until 6 January 2014, has supporters and detractors.
One customer is keen on privacy and does not get personalised offers. The other has no problem with his purchases being linked to his profile and gets extra perks.
This could include preferred products at AH, but also discounted petrol at Shell or benefits on purchases via Bol.com.
At least for now, the objections of Consumers' Association and Dutch Data Protection Authority (CBP) have been allayed. Users of the new card now have a choice: either register by name or continue to shop anonymously with the regular bonus offers. This option of choice was introduced by the supermarket chain on the orders of CBP. (...)"
Source: Gooi- en Eemlander, Haarlems Dagblad, IJmuider Courant, Leidsch Dagblad & Noordhollands Dagblad, 22 October 2013.