Host committee members for the NRF Foundation’s second annual Gala announced

Gala to also welcome Carl Banks of NY Giants fame and executives from American Express, DreamWorks, PwC

WASHINGTON, 2015-10-22 — /EPR Retail News/ — The NRF Foundation today announced the names of several industry insiders, retail CEOs and business partners who will serve as host committee members for the Foundation’s second annual Gala. The NRF Foundation is the non-profit division of the National Retail Federation. On Sunday, January 17 at Pier Sixty in New York City the Gala will bring together the next generation of retail talent, hundreds of the industry’s most illustrious leaders, and honorees on The List of People Shaping Retail’s Future.

Members of the 2016 Host Committee:

  • Carl Banks, former NY Giant and president of G-III Sports
  • Steve Barr, U.S. retail and consumer leader, PwC
  • Stacey Bendet, ceo and creative director, Alice + Olivia
  • Nate Berkus, designer and author, founder of Nate Berkus Associates
  • Gunther Bright, executive vice president, merchant services, U.S., American Express Company
  • Michael Francis, chief global brand officer, DreamWorks Animation
  • Tommy Hilfiger, principal designer, Tommy Hilfiger
  • Iman, ceo, Iman Cosmetics, Inc.
  • Fern Mallis, president, Fern Mallis LLC, International Fashion and Design Consultancy
  • Joy Mangano, founder and president, Ingenious Designs LLC (subsidiary of HSNi)
  • Brit Morin, founder and ceo, Brit + Co
  • Kara Ross, founder, KARA ROSS NY & DIAMONDS UNLEASHED
  • Rachel Shechtman, founder and ceo, STORY

HSNi CEO and Chairman of the NRF Foundation Board of Directors Mindy Grossman, and Chairman and CEO of The Container Store and Chairman of the NRF Board of Directors Kip Tindell will co-host the event, which will raise funds for the NRF Foundation. All proceeds from the Gala’s ticket sales, donations, sponsorship packages and auction will benefit the Foundation’s initiatives over the next year, including funding for student scholarships and experiences, advancement efforts for young professionals in retail, helping veterans transition to the civilian workforce, and showcasing diverse and innovative retail career opportunities.

“The imagination, inspiration and innovation that happens every day in retail is worth celebrating, and it is incredible to see the industry come together on one night to recognize those shaping the industry,” said Grossman. “The Gala is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for industry leaders to help the NRF Foundation with its mission of shaping retail’s future and sharing the message that retail offers richly rewarding and diverse career opportunities.”

In addition to recognizing the 2016 List of People Shaping Retail’s Future, the Gala will welcome dozens of high-performing students and scholarship recipients who are a part of the NRF Student Association. The List of People Shaping Retail’s Future will be announced in early January 2016.

“One of the most powerful tools in retail that helps keep the industry innovating at lightning speed is the wealth and diversity of our talent. No other industry in the world depends on and values people the way retail does, and that’s why the work of the NRF Foundation is so critical,” said Tindell. “We had an amazing inaugural event last year and I cannot wait to host the Gala again this January.”

The inaugural NRF Foundation Gala in January 2015 raised $1.2 million for scholarships, programs and initiatives. The fundraising goal for this year’s Gala is $1.5 million.

Learn more about how you can participate in the Gala and show your support for the retail industry here: nrf.com/gala.

Note to media: If you are interested in covering the event, please contact NRF’s media team at press@nrf.com.

The NRF Foundation shapes retail’s future by building awareness of the industry through statistics and stories; developing talent through education, experiences and scholarships; and fostering career growth among people who work in retail. The NRF Foundation is the 501(c)(3) nonprofit arm of the National Retail Federation and is funded in part by generous donations from retail industry supporters. NRF.com/Foundation

Kathy Grannis Allen
(202) 783-7971
press@nrf.com
(855) NRF-Press

SOURCE: National Retail Federation

AT&T, ExxonMobil, Macy’s, Nationwide, Rite Aid, Direct Energy and Hulu join American Express to launch first U.S.-based coalition loyalty program Plenti

Debuting in Spring, Plenti Will Let Consumers Earn and Use Points across a Range of Well-Known Brands in Different Industries

NEW YORK, 2015-3-19 — /EPR Retail News/ — AT&T, ExxonMobil, Macy’s, Nationwide, Rite Aid, Direct Energy and Hulu are joining with American Express to launch Plenti, the first U.S.-based coalition loyalty program with well-known brands where consumers can earn and use Plenti points for purchasing a wide range of products, regardless of the payment method consumers choose to use. The program will officially launch this spring and is expected to include more brands in additional categories.

Recent research indicates that nearly three-quarters (72 percent) of Americans say they would prefer a rewards program that allows them to shop at many stores versus a single brand1. Plenti is designed to address that need, giving consumers options to earn points and additional value through special offers and product discounts. Plenti will be free to join, and consumers can earn points and discounts using any form of payment accepted by the participating brands, including cash, prepaid and any debit, charge or credit card.

Benefits for Consumers
Plenti offers multiple ways for consumers to earn points:

• Earn Plenti points when buying a tank of fuel at a participating Exxon- or Mobil-branded service station and use the points for savings toward a pair of shoes at Macy’s or macys.com.
• Earn Plenti points when signing up for qualifying wireless services at AT&T, or for eligible charges on AT&T wireless bills.
• Earn Plenti points for eligible Nationwide auto or property insurance.
• Earn Plenti points by taking advantage of special offers on a wide range of beauty, health and wellness and everyday items at Rite Aid.

Every 1,000 points will translate to at least $10 in savings, and Plenti members can earn points faster by activating special promotional offers across participating brands or through Plenti’s online offer center and online marketplace.

“This is a perfect time for a coalition loyalty program in the U.S., as online marketing becomes more efficient and American consumers become more accustomed to rewards programs, special offers and discounts,” said Ed Gilligan, president at American Express. “With American Express’ deep experience with the Membership Rewards® program and acquisition of Loyalty Partner in 2011, we are the right company to operate a loyalty program of this scale, involving such celebrated brands.”

Background on US Loyalty
US Loyalty is a division of American Express that will serve as the operator of Plenti, and will issue the rewards and oversee the centralized marketing activities for the program in collaboration with the founding companies. In addition, US Loyalty will be responsible for securely managing consumer data collected through Plenti.

In 2011, American Express acquired Loyalty Partner. The company operates three subsidiaries including: Payback, a leading multi-partner loyalty program designed to deliver value to consumers and generate additional revenue for participating companies. Today, Payback manages coalition loyalty programs in Germany, Italy, Poland, India and Mexico and has more than 60 million active customers.

Further information about the program will be available in the coming months.

Executive Quotes

American Express:
“We’re pleased to introduce the first U.S.-based coalition loyalty program, where consumers will have the flexibility and choice across seven well-known brands to earn and use points for purchasing a wide range of products,” said Abeer Bhatia, CEO of US Loyalty, American Express.

AT&T:
“One of the most important things we can do for our customers is to show that we appreciate them,” said David Christopher, chief marketing officer, AT&T Mobility. “We are excited to join Plenti as it is a unique way of saying thank you – through this program they get added value from being our customer.”

ExxonMobil:
“Plenti is an exciting opportunity for ExxonMobil to partner with numerous major brands to create a game-changing loyalty program in the U.S.,” said Matt Bergeron, vice president, marketing, ExxonMobil Fuels, Lubricants & Specialties Marketing Company. “This is the first and only program of its kind in the country and it will give consumers the opportunity to earn and redeem points on everyday spending, including fuels, convenience store and car wash purchases at participating Exxon- and Mobil-branded stations.”

Macy’s:
“Consumers today are busy and smart. They know good value, and they want to be rewarded for the dollars they spend day-in and day-out at their favorite stores,” said Martine Reardon, chief marketing officer, Macy’s. “Plenti will offer customers everyday opportunity to earn and to redeem those points with much more choice – so shoppers can choose to reward themselves on routine purchases, or they can save up points to buy great gifts or treat themselves to larger purchases. Macy’s is excited to be a part of breaking new ground for American consumers with a program that is focused on rewarding them frequently and with greater cumulative value.”

Nationwide:
“By partnering with Plenti, Nationwide will advance our members first mission that helps make membership more rewarding than ever,” said Matt Jauchius, chief marketing officer, Nationwide. “With this category-exclusive benefit, eligible Nationwide members who enroll in Plenti can now earn points just by paying for their insurance, and then use those points across a growing collection of America’s top brands. We’re excited to share this new benefit in 2015.”

Rite Aid:
“We are excited to join Plenti and add this compelling customer value proposition to our already successful wellness+ loyalty program,” said John Learish, senior vice president, marketing for Rite Aid. “Our customers told us that adding the ability to earn and use points for savings in our stores and at eligible Plenti partner locations, while saving up to 20% every day in our stores, significantly increases the appeal of our program and creates more reasons for them to shop at Rite Aid more often.”

Hulu:
“Hulu is always looking for ways to give our viewers the best possible experience,” said Tim Connolly, head of distribution and partnerships, Hulu. “The Plenti program is a tremendous opportunity to reward our viewers for their loyalty. We are excited to partner with Plenti and the partner brands to give viewers the chance to experience everyday wins, earn points and gain rewards.”

Direct Energy:
“Direct Energy is proud to be a part of this first-of-its-kind rewards program that gives credit to our customers for making everyday purchases, including simply paying their energy supply bill,” said Mike Beck, vice president and chief sales officer, Direct Energy. “We are always looking for innovative and exciting ways to bring value to Direct Energy customers, and Plenti allows customers to earn rewards easily and quickly.”

About Plenti
Plenti is a U.S. coalition loyalty program comprised of widely known companies, the first of which include: AT&T, ExxonMobil, Macy’s, Nationwide, Rite Aid, Direct Energy and Hulu. Plenti is designed to offer consumers greater choice and savings potential through a multi-category rewards platform. To receive more information, please visit: www.plenti.com.

1 Source: Ebiquity Study: Plenti Consumer Research, commissioned on behalf of American Express between November 14-17, 2014.

Contact:

Media: Susan Henderson 717-730-7766