Barclaycard has announced a five-year partnership with the NEC Group that will offer its 12 million customers enriched entertainment and payment experiences. The move will see Barclaycard become official payment partner of The Ticket Factory – one of the UK’s leading national ticketing agents – the LG Arena, the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) and National Indoor Arena (NIA). 

Customers participating in the free-to-join benefits programme, Barclaycard Unwind, will be further rewarded with exclusive offers; such as preferential ticketing, access to customer lounges and fast track entrances at the Group’s venues. The partnership will also see payment acceptance innovations, such as contactless, showcased across the Group, helping make payments quicker and easier for those enjoying the entertainment.

The group-wide partnership will see Barclaycard partner the NIA, Birmingham city centre’s venue and next generation arena, with a global reputation for world class sports and headline comedy and music, which is set to undergo a £20.6 million transformation by 2014. When opened, it is proposed the venue will be known as the NIA, A Barclaycard Unwind Experience – underlining Barclaycard’s commitment to providing enriched entertainment experiences for its customers.

The move builds on Barclaycard’s wider involvement in the music and entertainment industry, which includes existing partnerships with Barclaycard Mercury Prize, Barclaycard Wireless Festival and Wembley Arena, A Barclaycard Unwind Experience. Dan Mathieson, Head of Experiential Marketing and Partnerships at Barclaycard, says, 

“Striking this deal gives Barclaycard a chance to showcase innovation in payment at some of the UK’s hottest entertainment events and venues. The eventual rollout of contactless technology across the NEC Group, means customers will be able to pay quickly and easily for shows they want to see, using their contactless cards or contactless-enabled mobile phones, even if they’re on the go.”

Paul Thandi, Chief Executive at the NEC Group says,

“Having a partnership of this calibre is a landmark in the NEC Group’s renewed evolution. This partnership fits our business philosophy around providing meaningful live experiences for our customers. We share a drive to invest in technology and solutions that simplify the customer journey, which means we will be able to offer an outstanding entertainment experience from start to finish. Our customers can look forward to smart technology, exclusive benefits and a next generation arena to visit the world’s best performers.”


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