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Squawk! The Angry Birds just slingshot their way into the banking scene in Russia, with a Russian bank releasing bank cards based on the immensely popular franchise.
A report on The Moscow News said Internet Retail Solutions (Irsol) and Promsvyazbank are to produce the branded cards starting June 4.
The report said the cards featuring the feathered heroes and their enemy pigs will be Rovio Entertainment’s first official “Angry Birds” branded product produced in Russia.
“We hope that customers will actively use this ‘plastic’ to pay for goods and services,” said Promsvyazbank’s director of retail products and technology department Ivan Pyatkov.
He said the bank planned to draw income from the new cards not via service fees, but through turnover and payments made using the card.
The Moscow News cited an RBK Daily report quoting Pyatkov as saying the bank planned to initially issue some 100,000 Angry Bird cards and would then measure customer demand.
He said the target market was the game’s fans aged 25 to 35.
“For the bank this is quite an attractive segment, which we will be able to offer not only a card, but also other products such as loans and deposits,” he said.
On the other hand, Irsol’s general director, Alexander Semyonov, said the co-branding would be interesting to other market players.
“Potentially, this could be interesting for the corporate sector. I hope our company will become the first corporate customer for salary projects with Promsvyazbank Angry Birds cards,” said Semyonov.
The report said the first year’s annual service fee for a MasterCard Standard bankcard would be 299 rubles and the 499 rubles every year after that.
Bank accounts attached to the cards would receive 4 percent interest per year.
Also, the card users would receive a 10 percent discount of all Angry Bird branded products purchased through its official internet store and partner retail outlets.
A separate article on Mashable, however, said there do not appear to be additional perks for using the card, unlike American Express’ perks for some Zynga games.
“A move towards financial services comes after Rovio launched a very successful toy line based on Angry Birds and has dabbled in other categories, including baby clothes, to further the popular brand,” it noted. — TJD, GMA News