Wilmington, DE, and Freeport, ME, June 30, 2008 – L.L.Bean and Barclays today announced the launch of the new L.L.Bean Visa Card, which will be available July 1. The card rewards loyal customers with Coupon Dollars good toward L.L.Bean merchandise every time they use the card, plus a wealth of new and improved benefits to make the card even more rewarding than before.
Every time Cardmembers make a purchase with their L.L.Bean Visa Card, they earn Coupon Dollars good for L.L.Bean merchandise. Whenever Cardmembers earn 10 Coupon Dollars, a $10 L.L.Bean Coupon will be sent to them automatically via their account statement. The card has no annual fee and there are no limits on earned rewards. Cardmembers can earn Coupon Dollars faster when purchasing L.L.Bean merchandise or at the L.L.Bean Outdoor Discovery Schools®. Cardmembers can also donate their L.L.Bean Coupon Dollars to support the National Park Foundation.
"Launching a new card offering represents an important opportunity to build the trust and loyalty of our customers," said Chris McCormick, President and CEO of L.L.Bean. "In Barclays, we found a partner that shares our commitment to quality, value and customer service. Barclays went the extra mile with us to create a program that suits the needs of our Cardmembers and positively reflects our brand. Our current and future Cardmembers will appreciate the expanded card benefits, outstanding customer service and continuity of the L.L.Bean Coupon program."
"L.L.Bean represents an iconic brand that stands out amongst its loyal customers, employees, partners and the communities in which it does business," said Lloyd M. Wirshba, Chief Executive Officer, Barclaycard US, the credit card business of Barclays PLC in the United States. "We believe that this new credit card product will add significant value for L.L.Bean customers and help foster an even further deepening of loyalty to this world-renowned retailer."
As part of the selection criteria, L.L.Bean sought a bank partner that was willing to make a commitment to the state of Maine to support the new program. Barclays concluded that Maine represented an extremely attractive option for its continued expansion of customer service operations. Barclays selected a site in Wilton, Maine, for its newest care center in the US, which opened earlier this month to serve L.L.Bean Cardmembers as well as those from other partner programs. The facility's employees were immersed in an intensive training program developed in conjunction with L.L.Bean and based on its award-winning service program – to ensure Cardmembers receive the same familiar, high-quality L.L.Bean customer experience.
Barclays worked closely with L.L.Bean to better understand the needs and desires of its loyal customer base and customize a program that added more value. In addition to earning L.L.Bean Coupon Dollars, the new card program offers Free Shipping, Free Return Shipping, Free Monogramming and a choice of three card designs, plus Visa Platinum or Signature benefits with no annual fee and no limits on earned rewards. Consumers can apply for the card online at www.llbeanrewards.com or through any L.L.Bean channel.
"We listened to L.L.Bean customers and learned that they really wanted Free Return Shipping, in addition to the Free Monogramming and Free Shipping that was already in place," said Shawn Gorman, Vice President of Card Services at L.L.Bean. "We made it an exclusive benefit for Cardmembers and gave them the option of personalizing their card with three different L.L.Bean-inspired designs. Finally, the addition of extraordinary Visa Signature® benefits – such as access to exclusive events, enticing offers and complimentary concierge services – truly increases the appeal of the L.L.Bean program."
"The consumer value behind the new L.L.Bean Visa program stands out within the retail card category," said Dennis Nealon, Senior Director – Partner Programs, Barclaycard US. "And it has to. L.L.Bean customers expect no less from L.L.Bean. Customers also have so many payment options today that the value must be compelling."