American Express Promo Blitz Offers ‘Space Trip’

RIYADH, 24 May 2007 — Taking its exclusive offerings to new heights, American Express (Saudi Arabia) Limited launched an innovative national campaign for its cardmembers that entitles two grand prize winners a trip to outer space with thrill and enjoyment. This is the first promotion of its kind ever held in Saudi Arabia, where Amex has enrolled a large number of cardholders and expanded its existing merchant network substantially.

Addressing a press conference here yesterday, Sami El-Natour, Amex head of marketing and public relations, said that “the winners will enjoy a breathtaking experience by flying to the edge of stratosphere at a height of 55,000 feet provided by Thunder City of South Africa.” The press conference was also attended by Fahad Al-Ghuthami, Amex’s chief operating officer and Nizar Abu Hassan, marketing manager.

Spelling out the salient features of the campaign, El-Natour said that “the campaign will run across May 22 to Oct. 31 this year, initially providing all existing American Express cardmembers in Saudi Arabia with an automatic entry into the monthly draw when they make a purchase.” At the end of five-month promotion, a grand draw will be conducted, where two winners will receive a space trip.

“Three more winners will be picked up and they will be awarded a fully paid one-week trip to South Africa, where they will enjoy lifetime adventure,” explained Amex head of marketing, adding that the campaign is in line with the unique privileges that the American Express brand is recognized for. “With consumer lifestyles rapidly changing, the concept of value addition also needs to change,” said Amex COO Al-Ghuthami, while speaking on this occasion.

Al-Guthami said: “With this new promotion, we take marketing innovation further with a truly enriching experience for our cardmembers and benefits that have never been seen before.” Amex, he said, offers a wider range of personal and corporate payment solutions including charge cards, credit cards and corporate cards. The most recent addition to its product portfolio is Blue Card, a chip-based transparent card with built-in ID keeper technology for secure payments.

He said that the American Express cardholders can derive a lot of benefits from the their cards. Amex officials noted that Amex (Saudi Arabia) has adopted the SADAD payment system, enabling customers to pay off their credit cards, and other bills, electronically through any participating bank via its ATMs or by using phone or Internet banking services. Customers can use the system, which is secured against external and internal viruses as well as online fraud.

This comes as a result of the company’s strategic focus on increasing acceptance of American Express Cards across all commercial sectors in the Kingdom, while also offering greater value-added benefits to its cardmember base. The company is also identifying partnership opportunities with well-recognized merchants to further fuel its presence in the Saudi retail sector.

American Express cardmembers spend three to four times more than they do on other cards, naturally an important and profitable customer-base for merchants.

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