Barclays Bank has partnered with Blackhawk Network to offer an array of merchant gifting options to users of its Pingit mobile payments app.
The bank is also considering providing support for gift card tokens from leading entertainment, dining, gaming, fashion, health and beauty and leisure brands. The launch on Android and iOS device applications is planned for later this month.
Barclays Pingit, which was initially rolled out in early 2012, was Europe’s first free service for sending and receiving money using only mobile phone numbers.
Pingit has been linked to the bank accounts of Barclays’ customers, who in turn, are able to send and receive funds using just the recipient’s mobile phone number. For non-Barclays customers, there is the option of a digital wallet which enables execution of easy payments, top-ups and withdrawals.
In collaboration with Blackhawk, Barclays will make it possible for users to buy and send gift card tokens over the network.
Blackhawk Network Europe managing director Matthew Howe said: "For businesses, e-gifting is a cost-effective way to acquire new customers and maximize incremental spend.
"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."
Blackhawk Network’s gift card solutions enables merchants to gain access to a wide customer acquisition channel, greater opportunity for incremental sales and the increased intelligence facilitated by easier customer data capture.