Barclays Bank is teaming with Blackhawk Network to provide a range of merchant gifting options to users of its Pingit mobile payments app.
The bank plans to add support for gift card tokens from leading entertainment, dining, gaming, fashion, health and beauty and leisure brands.
Originally launched in 2012, Barclays Pingit is connected to the bank accounts of Barclays customers, who in turn are able to send and receive funds using just a recipient's mobile phone number. For non-Barclays customers, a digital wallet is created so easy payments, top-ups and withdrawals can be made.
Barclays has already dipped its toes in the mobile commerce arena with a QR code-reading app for Pingit users to buy products from print advertisements.
In partnering with Blackhawk, Barclays will make it possible for users to buy and send gift card tokens over the network.
"Gifting through mCommerce is a leap forward for the payments market. For businesses, e-gifting is a cost-effective way to acquire new customers and maximize incremental spend," says Matthew Howe, managing director, Europe at Blackhawk Network. "For consumers, the ability to purchase and send gift cards across digital channels provides far greater ease and convenience than having to make a trip to a particular merchant to purchase a physical gift card."
The service is scheduled for launch later this month.