Store card transactions continued to decline in number in 2018, with negative value growth in real terms. Banks continued to offer these cards without any promotions, which might have led to an increase in the number of users with the possibility of obtaining prizes and incentives.
Furthermore, the very high inflation rate has limited most of the traditional store card offers to benefits such as 10% off purchases in the provider’s stores or welcome discount bonuses on the first transaction. Therefore, store cards products are not offering additional advantages to those offered by standard credit cards.
Over the forecast period positive growth is not expected. Cards are not being replaced due to scarce raw materials, so that the entry of new offerers in the market is not expected in the short or medium term for this type of card.
Banesco Banco Universal remains the clear leader in store cards, followed by Banco de Venezuela and Banco Universal Mercantil. Banesco offers the Health Locatel store card, which can be used in a variety of places, such as Locatel, opticians, medical centres and dental clinics, as well as pharmacies and insurance companies, all of which are of great importance to Venezuelans, since access to these services has become very expensive due to the high inflation levels.
Store card products are set to continue struggling in Venezuela over the forecast period. Banesco’s Health Locatel store card offers a competitive interest rate, which can help consumers in a period of high inflation.
Banco Universal Mercantil is present with its DirecTV subscribers store card and Amway associates store card, with can be used at any affiliate shop, although its offer is less attractive with 36-months’ financing at an interest rate of 29%. Consumers preference for satellite or cable TV has helped preserve use of the DirecTV card to finance this type of expense.
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