Small Businesses Supported by American Express

Along with announcing a new partnership with BNZ, American Express has also launched a new initiative, Shop Small, designed to expand small business acceptance of its Card across the country and drive more spending into small businesses.

Small Business Recovery research by American Express has revealed that around half (48 percent) of New Zealand small business operators say their customers have played a critical role in supporting them during the pandemic, however, only around one in five (19 percent) feel that their wider local community has rallied around them, suggesting that locals need to shop beyond their regular stores and rally together to do more for small businesses.

American Express is bringing its global 'Shop Small' initiative to New Zealand for the first time. Its new partnership with BNZ will add thousands of additional businesses to American Express’ merchant network across the country and ensure that BNZ businesses pay the same rate to process American Express transactions as they do other card schemes.

“This year has been incredibly challenging for many small businesses. More than ever, we need to show our support, which is why American Express is bringing Shop Small to New Zealand for the first time. Shop Small celebrates the valuable contributions small businesses make to their communities and the economy and reminds people of the importance of spending with them,” commented Rob Bourne, Country Manager for New Zealand at American Express.

Bourne noted that small businesses are often the ones to go above and beyond for their local communities and that local sporting clubs, schools and community groups have long benefited from this generosity, so it’s time that the favour was returned.

During Shop Small, American Express is funding a Card Member offer to help drive more spending into small businesses. American Express Card Members who save the offer to their Card and spend $10 or more in-store only at participating small businesses in New Zealand by 31/12/2020, will receive $5 back – up to 10 times.* The offer is limited to the first 40,000 Cards to save the offer. Exclusions, T&Cs apply.

Despite the challenging times, the research released by American Express shows that around half (51 percent) of small business owners feel more determined than ever to succeed and over one-third (37 percent) are doing whatever they can to survive.

“Our research has shown that the resilient Kiwi spirit is alive and kicking and we will continue to look at what we can do to keep the fire burning. Now is the time for Kiwis to explore their local community more, see what else is out there for them and to support small businesses,” said Bourne.

American Express encourages all New Zealanders to support the movement and ‘Shop Small’ by placing a focus on where they shop, together with BNZ they are making it easier for small and medium-sized businesses in New Zealand.

“We’re delighted to work with American Express to extend their merchant presence across small to medium enterprises in New Zealand. It means SMEs who use BNZ merchant services can now take American Express payments at the same standard rates as other major credit card providers,” expressed Dan Huggins, BNZ Chief Customer Officer, Customer, Product and Marketing.

“BNZ is committed to backing Kiwi businesses and payment services are an important part of running a business in New Zealand.  BNZ will continue to increase options to help merchants to provide their customers with easy and efficient ways to pay at the counter, online and from overseas.”

About the Research

This research was commissioned by American Express and undertaken by Juice Research. The research was conducted between August 31, 2020 and September 16, 2020 and explored insights from 506 small business owners via a quantitative survey. The interviews were conducted online among a sample of New Zealanders aged 18 years and over who owned a business with less than 20 employees. Statistics provided here reflect responses from small business owners for whom the relevant statement applied. Results from the full survey have a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

*Full terms, conditions and exclusions of the Shop Small Card Member offer can be found at