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Cardfree unveils mobile merchant platform

11 December 2012  |  4988 views  |  1 Woman shopping with Tablet Computer

With $10 million in funding behind them, a group of Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts m-commerce veterans have teamed up to launch Cardfree, a provider of white-label mobile merchant platforms.

Headquartered in San Francisco, Cardfree, closed a $10 million funding round last month led by chairman Jeffrey Katz, who founded Mercury Payments Systems.

The new outfit's CEO is Jon Squire, formerly CMO at CorFire, who led Dunkin' Donuts mobile efforts and was also SVP of payments at mFoundry, spearheading Starbucks Card Mobile.

He has been joined by a group who of former Starbucks and mFoundry staffers, including president Justin Young; head of product Chuck Davidson; marketing chief Diane Hong; and head of architecture Sen Wen.

The firm says that its platform combines a full range of merchant tools, including personalised offers and promotions, mobile payments, loyalty, order-ahead and social media engagement, and can be integrated into most major POS systems.

Says Squire: "We have reunited the individuals that created the gold standard in mobile commerce deployments. Our goal is to lead merchants to new levels and ensure they remain at the center of their customer relationships, rather than being secondary in third party mobile apps or wallets. We have a fundamental belief that the merchant is the most important piece of the omni-channel ecosystem, and Cardfree built its platform around that belief."

Comments: (1)

A Finextra member
A Finextra member | 12 December, 2012, 06:53

It's good to see a white-labelled platform that not only allows retailers to enrich the moment of payment, but also retain focus on their brand rather than diverting the focus to a third-party payment provider.

The days when retailers were forced to make significant upfront investments in order to enrich the experience for their customers are fast disappearing and the focus of the POS is rapidly shifting from a simple means of facilitating payments to a means of enriching the experience for both the consumer and the retailer.

Whilst the pricing details surrounding the upcoming Cardfree platform are not clear, it's probably safe to assume that it will be priced in a manner that retailers will find hard to refuse.

With the rapid advances that are being made in terms of the value-added services that are available to retailers, it's difficult to see a positive future for the traditional payment providers unless they can very quickly step up their game.

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