Aimia is proud to share the news that Group Chief Executive Rupert Duchesne was named to the Order of Canada today, which recognizes outstanding achievement, dedication to the community and service to the nation. (The release from the Governor General with a list of all those celebrated is here.)
Rupert was acknowledged “for his innovations in loyalty management, which have propelled his firm to the global forefront, and for his dedication to a variety of causes, including the arts and health care.”
His work in loyalty started with Aeroplan when it was a six-person frequent flier program within Air Canada. He was responsible for the spinoff of Aeroplan into an independent company in 2002, and its initial public offering in 2005. Rupert imagined the transformation of Aeroplan from a standard frequent flier program into that of a premium loyalty coalition, the potential to partner with financial institutions, travel service providers and retailers, and the impact such a program could have on one-to-one marketing.
It was the vision of the global opportunity provided by this model of coalition loyalty, and the subsequent expansion of Aimia (explored in this 2015 interview) into a position of global leadership, with a presence now in 17 countries, which underpins today’s honour.
Rupert’s extensive volunteerism throughout his career is also recognized, particularly in the arts (for example, through his current role as trustee and vice president of the board of the Art Gallery of Ontario) and healthcare (including his current role as Chair of the Brain Canada foundation.)
Rupert joins more than 6,000 Canadians who have been similarly celebrated for their lasting contributions to the country, and Aimia congratulates each of those who have been recognized today.