Starbucks' Square Deal

Accelerating mobile payments with partnership to process credit, debit transactions

Published in CSP Daily News

SEATTLE -- Starbucks Coffee Co. and Square, which facilitates everyday transactions between buyers and sellers, have announced a partnership to enhance the payment experience on both sides of the Starbucks counter.

Customers will be able to use Pay with Square, Square's payer application, from participating company-operated U.S. Starbucks stores later this fall, and find nearby Starbucks locations within the Square Directory.

Square will process Starbucks U.S. credit and debit-card transactions, which will significantly expand Square's scale and accelerate the benefits to businesses on the Square platform, especially small businesses, while reducing Starbucks payment processing costs.

Using Square Directory, Starbucks customers will be able to discover local Square businesses--from specialty retailers to crafts businesses--from within a variety of Starbucks digital platforms, including the Starbucks Digital Network and eventually the Starbucks mobile payment application.

Starbucks will invest $25 million in Square as part of the company's Series D financing round.

Also, Starbucks chairman, president and CEO Howard Schultz will join Square's board of directors.

By accepting Pay with Square, Starbucks is giving millions of customers another way to enjoy a quick and seamless payment experience at approximately 7,000 Starbucks stores. The partnership will also accelerate the ability of small businesses to grow with Square's technology and a stronger and more widely available Square network.

"As the largest retail mobile payment platform in the U.S., we're excited and proud to accept payments with Square," said Schultz. "The evolving social and digital media platforms and highly innovative and relevant payment capabilities are causing seismic changes in consumer behavior and creating equally disruptive opportunities for business. Both Starbucks and Square take a similar approach when building products and running our businesses, and together we can bring the best possible payment experience to Starbucks customers."

"We're proud that Starbucks chose Square, as we share the value of always putting customers first," said Jack Dorsey, co-founder and CEO of Square. "More than 2 million individuals and businesses can already use Square. This partnership will accelerate our ability to provide them with the tools they need to grow their business and thrive in today's economy."

Beginning this fall, in addition to the existing iPhone and Android Starbucks mobile payment applications, Starbucks customers will be able to use Pay with Square to pay for their purchases at participating company operated Starbucks locations in the U.S. Customers need to download the Pay with Square application and set up an account on their iPhone or Android device.

Square enables merchants of any size--from sole proprietors to national retailers--to accept credit and debit cards.

"As an entrepreneur, I understand how critical it is for new businesses to have easy and affordable access to card processing while also giving customers a choice in how they pay," Schultz said. "Because Square's revolutionary technology allows anyone to accept credit and debit cards, it gives entrepreneurs an essential tool to jumpstart their business while providing existing small companies access to new customers. This development can play a vital role in spurring small business growth and hiring, which remains one of our country's most important issues."

San Francisco-based Square facilitates transactions between buyers and sellers with its free credit-card reader for the iPhone, iPad and Android devices, allowing anyone to accept credit cards anywhere, anytime. Square Register serves as a full point-of-sale (POS) system for businesses to accept payments, track inventory and share menu and location information.

Seattle-based Starbucks Corp. is an international coffee company and coffeehouse chain with 19,435 stores in 58 countries.

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