So not only are we working with these companies to deliver products and services to our customers, in some cases we ourselves are the customer. And in some cases we may acquire the whole company.
We invested a little over a year ago in Cashrewards, which is the leading cashback company in Australia. Then a few months ago we completed an acquisition of the company. Cashrewards is now 100 per cent owned by one of the funds that we manage on behalf of ANZ.
Cashrewards credits members a percentage of what they spend when shopping, which can then be withdrawn as cash direct to their bank account.
The company partners with more than 1,700 merchants including Apple, Myer, Liquorland, Adidas, Bonds, Target, Booking.com and The Iconic.
We're excited about this because it's the chance to integrate loyalty and cashback optimisation into the customer experience around ANZ’s Australia Retail business.
We're in the process of going through this opportunity and articulating the strategic relationship outside of the commercial cash program we began last year, now called Cashrewards Max. The idea is to see how we can extend it and utilise the platform for other things.
It's a pretty exciting proposition. Cashrewards is a growing company in a sector that has massive growth opportunities and we're very excited to have them in the family.
And it’s a great example of 1835i’s versatile approach and how we use different methods of investment to deliver results for ANZ and its customers.
Ron Spector is managing director of ANZ’s external venture capital and innovation partner 1835i