Warburg Pincus Completes 25 Million Pound Investment Commitment To Finance Loyalty Management UK
LONDON, July 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Following news that four of the UK's leading retail brands are joining forces to launch a new consumer loyalty program, Loyalty Management UK (LMUK) announced that it has secured a commitment of 25 million pounds in equity financing from Warburg Pincus, one of the leading global private equity firms. LMUK will launch and operate Nectar, which brings together Sainsbury's, Barclaycard, BP, and Debenhams to form the UK's largest and most comprehensive customer loyalty program, which is expected to sign up over 50 percent of all UK households following its autumn 2002 launch. "We intend to transform the loyalty landscape in the UK by developing the first fully integrated loyalty program that makes points collection and redemption easier for consumers by bringing together several established rewards programs and four of the leading national retailers," said Rob Gierkink, Chief Executive Officer of LMUK. "We are delighted to partner with Warburg Pincus and its support enables us to put in place the financial foundation for the successful launch and development of LMUK," he added. Nectar will target the more than 12 million consumers who are members of points and rewards programs currently operated by Sainsbury's, BP, Barclaycard and Debenhams. Nectar offers consumers the ability to collect points from more than 1,800 Sainsbury's, Debenhams and BP outlets and with all Barclaycard purchases. Points collected in the Nectar program will be exchangeable for a wide range of rewards like grocery discounts, consumer goods, flights, holidays, restaurant meals, family days out and cinema tickets. "LMUK's management team has a unique and distinguished track record of building and operating coalition loyalty schemes in a variety of markets including the UK," said Joseph Schull, a Warburg Pincus Managing Director. "This is an opportunity to back an outstanding management team and build a durable business in a market that is ripe for consolidation. In evaluating this investment opportunity we have been very impressed with the vision of the four launch Sponsors and with their commitment to making Nectar the UK's most successful loyalty program. This investment also builds upon our experience and track record of investing in business information and marketing services companies worldwide over the last three decades." The investment in LMUK is being made jointly by two funds, Warburg Pincus International Partners, L.P. a USD $2.5 billion fund, and Warburg Pincus Private Equity VIII, L.P. a USD $5.3 billion global fund that closed in April 2002. Note to Editors: Warburg Pincus Warburg Pincus is one of the largest private equity investment firms in the world. Working in partnership with management teams, Warburg Pincus has taken an active role in building businesses, including companies such as Mattel Inc., UnitedHealth Group, Inc., Dime Bancorp, Inc., Mellon Bank Corporation, Knoll, Inc., Aegis Group plc, Information Holdings, ADVO, Calyx, Channel 5 Broadcasting Ltd, BEA Systems and VERITAS Software Corp. Throughout its 30-year history in private equity, Warburg Pincus has invested at all stages of a company's life cycle, from founding start-ups and providing growth capital to leading restructurings, recapitalizations and buy-outs. Since 1971, Warburg Pincus has invested more than $12 billion in 450 companies in 29 countries. The firm currently has $10 billion under management, with an additional $7.5 billion available for investment. Further information is available at http://www.warburgpincus.com. LMUK LMUK has been established by Loyalty Management International (LMI) specifically to launch and operate Nectar. LMUK is Chaired by Air Miles founder Keith Mills and its management team has more than 100 years' experience in implementing and running large multi-company customer loyalty programs. LMI has previously initiated companies that have been operating loyalty programs in numerous markets for a total of 35 years. Nectar Nectar will be a new coalition reward program and will be launched in the UK in the fall. Nectar has brought together leading UK retailers -- Sainsbury's, BP, Debenhams and Barclaycard to offer UK consumers a superior loyalty program that truly rewards customers on everyday purchases. MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X69694115
SOURCE Warburg Pincus
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