Garanti Bank, Turkey's second largest private bank by asset size and Atasay Jewelry, one of Turkey's biggest jewelry companies, today announced the launch of the world's first credit card that allows consumers to redeem their bonus points in gold.
Golden Bonus was introduced as an addition to Garanti's existing Bonus Card that allows consumers to exchange accumulated Bonus points for goods and services at selected Garanti partners. Bonus Card is already one of the most widely used credit cards in Turkey with ten million cards in circulation today.
The new card allows consumers to be rewarded with gold through every purchase made in the country or overseas using the Golden Bonus credit card. The accumulated gold value can be viewed on customers' credit card statements and online and can be redeemed in all Atasay jewelry stores or the company's distributors in Turkey. Alternatively, Garanti customers are able to add the gold value to their existing Bonus Card points to accumulate loyalty points and savings. That way, consumers are able to increase their savings while moving from using cash to increasing their use of their credit cards.
Turkey is Europe's largest gold market, but it is estimated that the country holds at least 5,000 tons of inactive gold stock worth $200 billion, which amounts to 32 per cent of Turkey's Gross National Product. The introduction of the Golden Bonus card is expected to help stimulate the national economy by prompting the reintroduction of some of the inactive gold back into the market.
Mehmet Sezgin, General Manager of Garanti Payments Systems, comments: "The introduction of the Golden Bonus card provides our customers with a credit card that enables them to save while spending money. It also gives customers the opportunity to invest in the country's preferred commodity - gold. With large amounts of inactive gold stock in the country, Golden Bonus should also play a role in helping to strengthen the Turkish economy."
New Golden Bonus customers will also receive a complimentary golden bullion of 0.5 grams.