“Just for You” Visa Gift Cards Arrive in UAE as Majid Al Futtaim Creates Desirable New Gift-Giving Option for Consumers

15 Jan 2011

Visa Gift Cards from AED 100- AED 3,500 Accepted Worldwide and Online Now Available at 100 ENOC/EPPCO and Zoom Outlets as well as other leading stores across the UAE.

Dubai, UAE: Combating the disappointment of receiving ‘unwanted’ gifts and the practice of ‘regifting’ them to unsuspecting family and friends, Majid Al Futtaim Finance has launched “Just for you” Visa gift cards, which allow you to gift from AED 100 – AED 3,500 to celebrate all manner of holidays and occasions, complete with a beautiful free greeting card, and allowing the receiver freedom of choice.  The cards, which are accepted worldwide and can also be used for online purchases, cost AED 15 and can be purchased at over 100 ENOC / EPPCO / Zoom convenience stores and Geant across the UAE.  The cards will also be available at Carrefour and Al Ghurair Exchange outlets.

Research from the US, where almost 70% of participants of a recent survey planned to purchase gift cards for the holiday season, found that more than $18 billion is spent on gift cards in that market, with forecasts for gift card sales reaching $47 billion in the next four years.  Average consumers in America purchase at least three to four gift cards in the holiday season, according to market research firm Packaged Facts.

“The diversity of the UAE’s population and the practice of gift-giving for all major holidays as well as birthdays, anniversaries, the arrival of new babies, graduations and other celebratory occasions means that this market is awash in ‘unwanted’ gifts that then may be passed along inappropriately in the practice of ‘regifting’ – this issue of wasted money is addressed quickly and easily through the giving of a Visa “Just for you” gift card from Majid Al Futtaim Finance,” said Rasool Hujair, CEO, Majid Al Futtaim Finance.

“A Visa “Just for you” gift card takes all of the guess work out of gift-giving – it’s always the right size, always appropriate because it enables the recipient to choose whatever he or she likes, and can be used anywhere in the world that Visa is accepted.  If users register their gift cards, they are safer than cash gifts because they can also be replaced if lost or stolen, and their acceptance online means that consumer can shop via the Internet without the fear of giving a credit card number,” he added.

The popularity of gift cards in markets such as the US – where they are the second most given gift annually, with more than 50% of consumers saying they would like to receive, according to research from Packaged Facts – bodes well for the launch of the concept in the UAE, where credit card usage and the practice of frequent gift-giving are both high.

Majid Al Futtaim Finance has timed the launch of its Visa “Just for you” gift cards to correspond with the company’s second anniversary as a member of the UAE’s credit card sector.  To make gift-giving even easier, the company has pre-packaged each one of the four varieties of gift card available – marking a birthday, seasonal greetings, hearty congratulations or a special gift -- with a quality greeting card and envelope so that the message can be personalized and the consumer does not need to buy a separate greeting card.

Prior to launching the card, Majid Al Futtaim Finance’s team of analysts found that:
- According to research conducted by ICM on behalf of eBay in the last five years, an estimated 4 billion pounds sterling of unwanted gifts are given each holiday season – the equivalent of almost 100 pounds per person in the UK.

- 65% percent of people surveyed about gifts in Australia within the last five years admitted to receiving unwanted gifts that they had no intention of using or keeping, with more than one-third (37%) confessing that they recycle or ‘regift’ things that are unwanted, even dedicating a special closet in their home to these recycled items.

“There is tremendous potential in how gift cards can be used and who can enjoy the benefits – students going off to university, people wanting to shop more safely online within a certain price limit, and even younger consumers learning to spend money responsibly – to mark our second anniversary in the UAE, the Visa “Just for you” gift card is actually our way of celebrating with consumers here,” concluded Hujair.