The popular paper Downtown Dollar program in London is being upgraded to a digital gift card system.
Launching today, this upgrade to the Downtown Dollar program is part of efforts to #KeepLondonLocal.
The new gift cards can be loaded with any dollar amount and spent at approximately 100 downtown businesses that currently accept the Downtown Dollars.
The cards can be used in- person when visiting a brick and mortar store, online using the e-commerce platform of a participating business, or on Downtown London’s Online Marketplace.
The new gift card program is being led by Downtown London, a Business Improvement Area Association, that represents around 1,200 members (storefronts and offices) downtown. At 84 blocks, Downtown London has one of the largest BIA districts in Canada with a high percentage of owner operated businesses, including restaurants, grab & go eateries, entertainment venues, live music, sporting facilities, retail stores and personal services.
Executive Director of Downtown London, Barbara Maly, said the reason for moving to a digital gift card was to make an already successful program more accessible and easier to use for our members and their patrons. “The Downtown Dollar program has been operating in London for over 15 years.. We decided to make the switch to a digital gift card system because it significantly streamlines the process for both consumers and participating businesses.”
Participating businesses will be paid instantly rather than needing to bring the traditionally paper Downtown Dollars into the office for payment. Ryan Hooey, a representative from the CNIB Foundation supports this move. “This is a wonderful and innovative idea with accessibility being pushed to the foreground. This is a solution for everyone, not just the community living with a disability. I am proud to be part of the London Downtown core and looking forward to being a part of this rollout.” Not only does this new system allow for greater accessibility, merchants in the downtown core are excited by the opportunity to modernize and streamline the redemption process. David White, owner of David E White Clothiers said, “The new gift card system allows for more spending options for my customers. They can still shop in person with Downtown Dollars but can also shop online. I don’t have to take time out of my day to visit the Downtown London office for redemption anymore, the money hits my bank account immediately similar to a regular debit or credit transaction. It is great to see an already successful program modernize and streamline to make life easier for us business owners.”
The new Downtown London Gift Card is supported by fintech Miconex in association with international payments technology solutions provider EML Payments. Miconex operates its Downtown Gift Card concept in Canada and the US, and over 60 Town and City Gift Card programs in the UK. Downtown Gift Cards can be purchased through the Online Marketplace and will be mailed to the recipient or can be picked up from the Downtown London Office (123 King Street). Paper Downtown Dollars already in circulation will continue to be accepted by downtown businesses.
For media inquiries, please contact:
Colleen Gyori Downtown London,
Marketing & Communications Coordinator