Sky has launched a loyalty programme as it looks to improve its customer experience and reduce churn.

Sky VIP offers the likes of free tickets to major sporting events and Sky shows, prize draws for “money can’t buy experiences” as well as the opportunity to watch the latest films before anyone else.

Customers are divided into four bands depending on how long they have taken a TV or broadband package from the company, with the best rewards saved for those who have been a subscriber for 15 years or more.

The company said its research had shown that new customers wanted rewards based on experiences and Sky shows, while longer-serving subscribers preferred priority service and access to the latest technology.

The service is accessed via the My Sky app and follows Sky Italia launching a similar programme, which the company described as “an outstanding success”.

Stephen Van Rooyen, Sky’s UK and Ireland Chief Executive, said: “Sky has always been a customer led company and the launch of Sky VIP is about putting our existing customers first and showing we value their loyalty.

“This isn’t about tactical deals or collecting points – it’s about offering genuine experiences and benefits we know our customers value and which only Sky can offer.”

Sky saw like-for-like revenues in the UK and Ireland rise four percent to £8.6 billion in the year to June after it added 280,000 customers to reach 12.73 million in total.

However, it said a churn rate of 11.5 percent was “at a level higher than we would like”.

Alongside growth of nine percent in Germany and Austria, and four percent in Italy, group revenues were up five percent to £12.9 billion over the year.

However, group EBITDA fell three percent to £2.1 billion as costs jumped five percent due to rights acquisitions and the launch of Sky Mobile in the UK.

The company said it had sold 97,000 SIMs thus far.

Meanwhile, Switzerland-based operator Sunrise said it had struck a deal with Sky to offer the Sky Sports app to its customers.

The new offering will be made available later this month, with the first three months offered free of charge to existing customers.

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