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News >  Business

Subway spikes its Sub Club promotion

Associated Press The Spokesman-Review

MILFORD, Conn. — The Subway restaurant chain is ending its decades-old free sandwich promotion, company officials said Thursday, amid concerns that counterfeiters were creating and selling copies of the restaurant’s proof-of-purchase stamps and cards.

Under the Sub Club promotion, which had run in some form since the 1980s, customers received a stamp for every six-inch sandwich they bought. A full card of eight stamps could be redeemed for a free sandwich.

But thousands of stamps are for sale at online auction sites and company officials said franchise owners were increasingly discovering counterfeit stamps.

“It’s possible some of the stamps got by and we didn’t even know,” said company spokesman Kevin Kane. “It’s possible we don’t even know the extent of it.”

Each restaurant can set its own timeframe, but the promotion will be phased out companywide by Oct. 1, Kane said. He said the company had been considering whether the promotion was outdated for some time.

When company officials discovered rolls of stamps available online, Kane said, it sealed the promotion’s fate.

“All that effort and you’re getting free subs,” Kane said. “It wasn’t a cruise. It wasn’t a trip to the Bahamas. You’re getting free subs.”

Subway officials are designing a promotion to replace the Sub Club cards.

The U.S. House of Representatives approved legislation last month that would strengthen anti-counterfeiting laws. The bill would require the destruction of equipment used to make counterfeit goods. Currently, pirated products are destroyed but the equipment is untouched.

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