NAIROBI, Kenya, March 18 – Barclays Bank Kenya has partnered with Visa to introduce the premium Signature credit card in Kenya targeting the growing number of affluent domestic and international travelers.
Visa Signature has been created to service the needs of these high-achieving consumers that have risen above the ordinary. Kenya becomes among the first countries in Africa to introduce this high-end credit card.
“Visa wants to ensure that every cardholder has the world at their fingertips in the form of card privileges and benefits,” said Sunny Walia, Visa General Manager for East Africa. “The absence of the Signature card in this region caused a gap in our affluent product offering which has now been filled. We created the Signature card to recognize the status of affluent, high-achieving consumers who have a vision above the ordinary. The card is targeted at affluent customers who travel both domestically and internationally, offering them a suite of features and benefits that reflect and enhance their lifestyle.”
By launching the Signature card, one of the globe’s most exclusive credit cards, Barclays, who prides itself as the market leader in the credit card space in Kenya, is enhancing its service proposition in the cards business.
“The introduction of the Signature Credit Card fits well within our strategy of continuously strengthening our institution in response to customers’ feedback to make it more relevant to their day-to-day banking,” said Barclays Bank Managing Director Jeremy Awori. “The launch will therefore enable Barclays to cement leadership of the local credit card market.”
Among the many benefits, the card comes with a concierge available 24 hour a day, seven day a week to ensure cardholders’ personal and business travel needs are attended to.
For instance, the concierge helps customers to book restaurants on their behalf, to guarantee reservations and unlock dining experiences that are only available to Visa Signature cardholders. The concierge also assists customers to suggest and book concerts, theatre productions and other entertainment in cities around the world, including those in their home town.
In addition, the card gives customers access to airport lounges in over 800 airports around the world with the concierge available to coordinate every stage of out-of-town trips, including airport transfers and hotel and restaurant bookings.
“By booking via your concierge, your loved ones can also enjoy upgrades, late check-outs and extra safety and convenience on their travels,” said Walia.
Visa Signature cardholders also have access to multi-trip travel insurance for anything that could arise, from something as small as a delayed flight to larger issues such as a medical emergency. The travel insurance covers a card holder and family members including parents, children and in-laws under 85 years of age who may need medical attention while travelling abroad together.
In addition, purchases made with Visa Signature cards are protected for one year from date of purchase and have no excess through Visa Signature purchase protection. Also, new items purchased with the Visa Signature card can extend the repair period offered by the original manufacturer’s warranty for up to 24 months.
“The increase in varied luxury brands in Kenya demonstrates the growth of the affluent segment making this market the perfect launch pad for the Signature Card. This segment is constantly evolving, and we must be ready to respond to these changes with products and services that cater to consumers as they transition through various stages of their lives,” added Walia.
Overall, the uptake of cards in Kenya (debit and credit) increased from 11.5 million in June 2016 to 15.6 million cards as at June 2017. Over the same period, there were less than 250,000 credit cards in the market with Barclays controlling 40% of these.