Payzone, the leading European consumer payments and cash distribution network, and Blackhawk Network, a market leader in prepaid financial solutions and the largest provider of third party gift cards in North America, have entered into a strategic partnership to exploit the emerging EUR20billion electronic gift card market in Europe.
Starting in the UK, the partnership will enable Payzone gift products to be sold to consumers through Blackhawk Network's retail distribution channels while Blackhawk Network's gift cards will be available through Payzone's branded convenience shops.
There are also plans to roll out the Payzone/Blackhawk Network gift card offering in other European countries. Blackhawk Network already has a strong retail presence in UK organisations such as Morrisons, and will now have the opportunity to expand into the 170,000 retail locations operated by Payzone across Europe.
Blackhawk Network, a subsidiary of Safeway Inc., whose Gift Card Store carries an unmatched selection of gift cards from premium brand partners, operates in the USA and Canada.
John Nagle, Chief Executive Officer of Payzone plc said: "Blackhawk is the premier multi-national provider of gift card solutions. Payzone pioneered the introduction of electronic gift cards in Ireland and we recently launched a new range of gift cards for the convenience shop sector in the UK. I believe that Blackhawk Network is the perfect partner for Payzone in the UK and in the other emerging electronic gift card markets in Europe. They bring great expertise to this new but rapidly expanding market and we are proud to partner with them. Both organisations should reap benefits from this partnership that will take gifting in the UK and elsewhere to the next level."
Steve Shutts, Sales & Marketing Director, Blackhawk Network UK said, "Payzone has the largest convenience network in the UK and Europe. Its flexible IT platform makes them an excellent partner for Blackhawk in the UK and Europe. We have high expectations of the benefits from this partnership."