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Kachingo's number is up in NZ

Published: 8:09PM Saturday March 15, 2003

The shopping game Kachingo is to fold in New Zealand, but it may start up offshore.

Kachingo started just over two years ago and offers rewards to people buying groceries and fuel from certain retail outlets.

The game will stop issuing tickets at the end of this month and close down with $1.4 million in prizes still to be claimed.

Critics say the scheme was too hard and too complicated, with consumers forced to wait until the end of each week to check their tickets.

"You'd either have to take it back to the store and check it or go onto the Internet and for those that aren't IT-literate that's a no no," says John Winters of FMCG Grocery Magazine.

The company behind Kachingo insists that the New Zealand market and retailers' pockets are still too small to continue.

The game may have died a death in NZ but those behind it say they are already talking to a three large retail chains in the US and Europe.

If it does take off there, Kachingo tickets will be a thing of the past - overseas punters will be able to claim their prizes simply by swiping a loyalty card.

In the meantime, $1.4 million remains in the prize kitty. New Zealanders have up to six months to claim it - if they don't it will go offshore to a new pool of prizewinners.