Curve, the London fintech that now describes itself as an “over-the-top banking platform,” is unveiling a re-vamped cashback feature in a bid to draw in more customers for the premium versions of its Curve card. The company lets you consolidate all of your bank cards into a single Curve card and app to make it easier to manage your spending and access other benefits.
With the new Curve Cash programme, customers get 1% instant cashback on top of any existing rewards cards that they have plugged into the app, potentially earning customers double rewards on purchases. You simply pick from the list of retailers supported for cashback — you are allowed to choose between three and six retailers, depending on which Curve plan you are on — and then get 1% cashback for any purchases made at those stores.
The list of supported retailers spans more than 60 top brands, including most notably Amazon, Apple, Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, TFL, Uber, Gett, Spotify and Netflix. There is no doubt that is a better choice of brands than many existing cashback schemes, and could go someway to softening the blow of losing Amex support for the second time earlier this year.
However, while the revamped cashback offering is available across all Curve products, the free version of Curve offers cashack for only the first 90 days. Otherwise, Curve Metal customers will earn 1% instant cashback on purchases at six retailers at a time, and can receive Curve Cash for an unlimited period; Curve Black customers will be able to choose three retailers at a time, and can also receive Curve Cash for an unlimited period; Curve Blue customers will be able to choose three retailers at a time for an introductory 90 days.
Noteworthy is that Curve’s cashback is being powered in three ways: like many other cards or fintechs offering cashback, the London startup is partnering with a number of rewards providers to support many of the retailers in its Curve Cash programme. Others are offered via direct partnerships it has negotiated. I also understand from my own sources that cashback at some retailers — such as Amazon where Curve doesn’t have any kind of formal partnership — are being cross subsidised from revenue Curve is generating elsewhere.
Meanwhile, the new Curve Cash follows the launch of Curve Customer Protection in February, which attempts to address one of the criticisms of using Curve in relation to losing additional consumer protections typically offered by credit cards you plug into the app. Curve says it now provides faster purchase protection on eligible purchases of up to £100,000 made with any Curve card.