Dubai-based savings company National Bonds Corporation, or NBC, on Monday announced a revamped rewards structure that offers one cash award every minute of every day, in addition to monthly prizes including Dh1 million in cash, luxury cars, gold bars and Dh50,000 worth of scholarships.
Mohammed Qasim Al Ali, chief executive officer of NBC, said the new rewards programme that reduced the minimum subscription requirement for draw eligibility to Dh100 from Dh3,000 has been designed to strengthen an inclusive savings culture in the UAE.
NBC, a unit of state-owned Investment Corporation of Dubai, claimed its rewards scheme is the only one in the region that gives away cash award every minute. Effective from May 1, the new Dh46 million annual prize scheme offers 1,440 daily rewards in Dh50 bonds. Of the total daily prizes, 200 have been reserved for minor bondholders, 200 for female bondholders and 200 for regular savers through direct debit arrangement.
Al Ali said the rewards structure has been expanded to include, besides the monthly Dh1 million cash award, double the number of weekly awards that would be distributed across two categories of UAE nationals and expatriates. The monthly awards also include two luxury BMW cars, two gold bars and two scholarship grants worth Dh50,000 for minor bondholders. He said surveys revealed that customers’ priority included children’s education, housing, retirement and marriage. The new scheme links NBC rewards to their aspirations in life.
Al Ali said NBC had changed its prize structure several times since its inception in 2006. “However, we want to reward children, ladies and our regular savers this time.”
He said the new revised structure aligned more closely to the company’s objective of reinforcing the habit of saving among the people of the UAE and rewards more extensively those who save with NBC on a regular basis.
The new scheme will also benefit participants in the National Bonds Employee Saving Programme, or ESP, which is the first of its kind in the region. It enables participating organisations to provide their employees with a reliable payroll deduction platform for building their retirement funds.
Al Ali said the company’s profit last year fell to 1.5 per cent from two per cent in 2011. The size of bondholder fund rose to Dh5.5 billion as customer base, comprising 200 nationalities, grew six per cent in the first quarter 2013 to 690,000 compared to the same 2012 period. Mohammad Bitar, the company’s chief strategy and risk officer, said that between 2011 and 2012 alone, the number of issued bonds increased by 16 per cent and its customer base by six per cent.