The founders, both just 22, are ex University of Liverpool students, and both champions of the sort of start-ups, shops and services that make our city the place we love.
“Earlier this year we were strolling through the city centre and were just fed up, seeing the same shops you see anywhere in the UK,” David says.
“We started a blog, dedicated to unearthing hidden gems around the city, just as a way to raise awareness. It became very popular, and we realised we really did have a platform to make a difference so that was when we thought about The Card.”
As a symbol of intent, the Card is the missing link that could transform armchair supporters into direct activists: “Apart from your own social conscience there’s nothing that pushes you into these independents,” David concurs, “so having a scheme that incentivised people to support their local independent traders seemed pretty sensible.”
Actually, it’s not just social conscience – if we’re to be blunt – these outlets serve the best coffee, bake the best bread, play the best music and sell the best gear. But we get their point.
“We really believe keeping money in Liverpool is so important for the future of our local economy,” David adds. “We love our city, and we want to see it prosper.”
Citing the recent tax dodging manoeuvres from Amazon, Starbucks and co, David believes he’s hit the market at the right time.
“People are realising just what these big corporate entities are doing, and how unlevel the playing field is,” he says.
“We like to think we’re bringing back a sense of community that, in these tough economic times, we should embrace and support.”
The response so far, David says, has been encouraging. “We’re not charging anyone to be on the card, so as you can imagine, they’re really behind what we’re doing.”
For every pound spent locally, David explains, 50-70p stays in the community, compared to 5p spent in chains: “If we want to get our economy back and create jobs and see our city keep its personality, we must group together now,” he says.
“As far as the future is concerned we’e going to be monitoring the benefit of the card, adding new profiles to our website, and adding new benefits to card holders. We’e also going to be encouraging people in different cities to meet up with us and learn how to develop the scheme in their own city,” he adds.
We’ve just bought ours, and are on our way to grab a free coffee with our Baltic Bakehouse sandwich. We suggest you do something similar.
Find out more, and buy your card here