June 4, 2019, Hampton Roads, VA – Banding local businesses together across Hampton Roads is not easy, but it has been the aim of the LOVEVA app since 2014. LOVEVA is the unique shopping app that bands together local businesses to reward consumers for keeping their hard-earned dollars in their local community. Consumers can buy at ANY participating business and also redeem at ANY participating business, not just where they have earned their ‘love’.

As the investor behind LOVEVA, Retail Alliance puts their money where their mouth is, partnering with local businesses to develop and continuously improve the LOVEVA app. Two of these businesses stand out for their contributions to the development and ongoing success of the app: TowneBank and TechArk Solutions.

“We endeavor to keep all things local with LOVEVA,” remarked Lisa Renée Jennings, LOVEVA Program Manager. “That encompasses everything from printing to app development. LOVEVA is successful because of our great local partners and businesses who support the program.

“TowneBank is one of our largest supporters, cheerleading and investing in Retail Alliance’s development of the LOVEVA app, from the early stages through to today. We believe, as TowneBank does, in the economic well-being of our community. While LOVEVA is playful with its hearts and love language, we are serious about keeping dollars in Hampton Roads.”

Recently, TowneBank stepped up to sponsor updates to the LOVEVA app, including an area to highlight Buy Local Champions. On the Find A Business and Browse Reward sections of the app, TowneBank now appears as the inaugural Buy Local Champion with 10 rotating businesses underneath.

The current rotating businesses are the Top Ten business nominees for the LOVEVA of the Year Award 2019. The award was presented to Perfectly Natural Soap at Retail Alliance’s Retailer of the Year awards on May 30. This award was sponsored by another local supporter, All-News 102 radio station.

“The LOVEVA app has been a wonderful addition to the buy local movement since it came on the scene in 2014,” noted Allie Wittkamp, Director of Market Engagement at TowneBank and a member of the LOVEVA steering committee. “TowneBank’s continued support of the app and all of the participating businesses is a natural fit.”

Since 2018, local digital creative agency, TechArk Solutions, has been Retail Alliance’s tech partner for the LOVEVA app and website.

“While LOVEVA is busy working to support small businesses across Hampton Roads, TechArk is making the LOVEVA app, website and admin site run together smoothly. It is comforting to know we can focus on what we do best and let TechArk do what they do best!” said Jennings.

“The LOVEVA app is such an innovative and modern concept to seamlessly connect local businesses with customers. It has been a rewarding experience for TechArk’s team to work on this technology-enabled platform of LOVEVA. This app has been a huge success and we are excited about the future iterations and its continued impact,” noted Pratik Kothari, Founder & CEO of TechArk Solutions.

As the fifth anniversary of the app approaches, it is evident that collaborations and relationships among local businesses will continue to drive the future success of the LOVEVA program. In this new era of retail, these partnerships will only continue to strengthen the economic vitality of this region.

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The app was developed to help even the smallest Mom & Pop who are not able to afford such technology. It is a locator and loyalty rewards all in one. No need for several apps on your phone, you need just one, the app that loves you back! www.bealocalloveva.com

About Retail Alliance

Retail Alliance is a non-profit trade association serving the interests of local retailers in Hampton Roads since 1903. The organization promotes and supports the healthy growth of retail businesses and trade through education, advocacy and member benefits. www.retailalliance.com

About TowneBank

As one of the top community banks in Virginia and North Carolina, TowneBank operates 41 banking offices serving Chesapeake, Chesterfield County, Glen Allen, Hampton, James City County, Mechanicsville, Newport News, Norfolk, Portsmouth, Richmond, Suffolk, Virginia Beach, Williamsburg, and York County in Virginia, along with Raleigh, Cary, Charlotte, Moyock, Grandy, Greenville, Camden County, Southern Shores, Corolla and Nags Head in North Carolina. Towne also offers a full range of financial services through its controlled divisions and subsidiaries that include Towne Investment Group, Towne Wealth Management, Towne Insurance Agency, Towne Benefits, TowneBank Mortgage, TowneBank Commercial Mortgage, Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Towne Realty, Towne 1031 Exchange, LLC, and Towne Vacations. Local decision-making is a hallmark of its hometown banking strategy that is delivered through the leadership of each group’s President and Board of Directors. With total assets of $11.57 billion as of March 31, 2019, TowneBank is one of the largest banks headquartered in Virginia. www.townebank.com

About TechArk Solutions

TechArk Solutions is an award-winning web design and software development agency located in Norfolk, Virginia. TechArk’s team leads with integrity, innovation and quality in all the projects. The team works hard every day to guide its diverse set of clients and provide excellent customer experience for their technology and marketing needs. www.GoTechArk.com