Thames Card Technology Dominates Market for Supermarket and Retailer Loyalty Key Fobs

June 29, 2016

Market Responds to Product Quality and Fast Order Turnaround

Thames Card Technology Ltd, one of the UK’s largest manufacturers of plastic cards for payment, gifting, loyalty and membership, today reports that it has established manufacturing contracts with an estimated 60% of the UK’s issuers of plastic loyalty key fobs, also known as key tags, confirming the company as the clear UK market leader and manufacturer of choice for this increasingly popular form factor.

The key to fob success

In recent years, Thames has acquired many customers in this space, including some of the UK’s largest supermarkets and other retail loyalty providers, manufacturing in excess of 50 million key fobs. Its success can be attributed to a number of factors, chief among which are its ability to produce a higher grade of product with a Teslin® substrate for durability, together with the firm’s flexible high-volume manufacturing capacity offered in collaboration with its strategic partner Thames Loose Leaf, the largest encapsulation facility in Europe.

Driving value for brands

Teslin key fobs have exploded in popularity over the last decade, thanks to the brand reinforcement, customer retention and loyalty benefits they offer to high street brands. The fobs can be used both as a promotional item and to capture valuable customer data. Since these convenient and cost-effective tags are always with customers, they offer brands an additional touchpoint, one which is neither hidden in a wallet nor buried in a mobile device.

Paul Underwood, Managing Director of Thames Card Technology, explains: “We understand that loyalty key fobs are a pocket-sized reminder of the issuer’s brand, so ours are manufactured to last. It’s not uncommon, for example, to see important information like the barcode printed onto the fob’s outer layer. This is a quick and easy process but can deteriorate quickly, making them very unattractive and eventually unusable. Instead, we have the expertise and experience to print everything on to the Teslin before encapsulating it all under a strong clear protective layer. This process results in a much higher quality product that retains its physical properties for far longer. The market has clearly recognised the difference; we’re very proud that so many people in the UK now have a piece of plastic manufactured in our plant in Essex dangling from their keyring.”

The infallible fob

Unlike other manufacturers, Thames produces key fobs from PVC or by encapsulating printed Teslin, the latter being a process that has been proven to be the most durable substrate on the market for key fobs, providing optimal strength at the fob’s weakest point, the keyring hole.

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