In a move that may signal a broader trend reversal, the Target shopping chain has announced it will stop issuing its Target branded credit card with a Visa logo and will instead issue only its in-house Target branded card.
"Our financial products are designed to deepen relationships with our retail guests and drive profitable sales for Target," said Terry Scully, president, Target Financial Services. "Recent product testing and guest research underscores the tremendous value enjoyed by Target credit card guests. Target benefits from these powerful guest relationships through increased trip frequency and retail sales."
For some time, the trend had been for store chains to largely abandon their in-house card programs in favor of agent issuing programs with a bank for cards that carried one of the major card brands as well as the store's.
Comprehensive testing conducted at Target over the last several months demonstrated that guests tend to spend more when issued a Target credit card instead of a Target Visa. As a result, Target said, its decision to drop the Visa cards is expected to produce greater retail sales while reducing the amount of receivables it funds.
Target operates roughly 1750 retail stores in 49 states.