Chester Races has become the world's first cashless racecourse, partnering with Znap to provide racegoers with quick and easy access to a range of services from ticket purchases to placing a bet in one place on their smartphone.
The move is aimed at further improving the customer experience at the racecourse, providing customers with a more convenient service, vastly reduced queuing times and the chance to benefit from offers and rewards.
The ZNAP app will give customers the chance to enjoy offers and rewards from renowned brands at the racecourse including AB InBev (Stella Artois, Becks and Budweiser) and Red Bull. Later this year, racegoers will also be able to make the same in-app payments when placing a bet with Betfair and Chester Bet, Chester Races' proprietary betting service, and enjoy benefits from a new loyalty programme.
The first stage will see ZNAP™ enable paper-less ticketing, food and drink purchases at more than 30 stalls and restaurants around Chester Racecourse. Transaction services enabled by ZNAP™ will include:
• Ticketing: Chester Races attracts approximately 30,000 customers on race day, and also hosts entertainment events such as Chester Rocks. Customers will be able to buy tickets online or at the ticket office by scanning a ZNAP™ QR code. An extra benefit is that the ticket is protected against counterfeit attempts because it is automatically downloaded to the ZNAP™ catalogue. Customers gain entry by simply scanning their QR code at the turnstile.
• Food and drink purchases: Customers can use ZNAP™ to pre-pay for food and drinks, and even book a table, at more than 30 stalls and restaurants around the venue, significantly slashing queuing times. It will also ensure Chester Races never leave a customer wanting for any food or drink choice, with the ability to keep stock levels at stalls reconciled automatically and in real-time with electronic receipts.
• Merchandise purchases: Customers can use ZNAP™ to buy apparel and gifts at the racecourse or online.
• Offers and promotions: Chester Races and brand partners will be able to share personalised ble to share personalised offers and promotions with opted-in cu opted-in customers before, during and after events based on purchase history. Offers are delivered directly into the app, can never be lost, are always available and automatically redeemable at the point of sale.
• Loyalty: Chester Races will launch a loyalty programme later this year powered by ZNAP™. Customers will be able to accrue and redeem loyalty points in real-time and Chester Races can use the app to tailor their loyalty programme to each individual customer.
• Betting: Chester Races will launch a mobile app for Chester Bet later this year. Customers will be able load funds for Chester Bet and Betfair in-app using ZNAP™. Customers will learn about this service through offers found via ZNAP™.
Emma Blackmore, Commercial Director, Chester Racecourse, said: "Providing a cashless service with ZNAP™ will make our customer's experience even more convenient. Cash is costly and cumbersome, as are the traditional payment and booking systems we've been using to transact with our customers. We pride ourselves on being a centre for innovation and implementing technology that will make a real difference to our partners and our customers. That's why we chose ZNAP™.
"ZNAP won't just make paying, booking and ticketing better, it'll allow us to deliver a personal experience to our customers both inside Chester Racecourse, and critically, outside of the venue. The result is a win-win for everyone - customers will be better rewarded, brand partners will see much better take up of offers and we hope to have a happier, more engaged and loyal customer.
"Our ambition is to establish a loyalty programme that serves both the local community and wider region. We'll be working with our partners and local business to explore new ways ZNAP™ can deliver value to their customers."
Moran Lerner, Executive Vice President, ZNAP, said: "We're delighted Chester has selected ZNAP™, offering their customers a quicker way to make payments, access services and benefit from a range of offers all in one place with a few clicks of a smartphone.
"Chester Races is one of the most prestigious entertainment venues in the country, one that has a reputation for embracing innovation. It will be the first racecourse in the world that will deliver an omni-commerce experience to its customers using mobile business technology.
"Customers can use ZNAP at Chester Races in the coming weeks and by 2015 the course will be using ZNAP™ to manage everything from loyalty to ticketing. It showcases the breadth of our capabilities, as well as our ability to enable smarter and more efficient ways of doing business."
The new offering will be available from May this year.