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Visa distributes location-based merchant offers for holiday shopping

Visa Inc. is targeting budget-conscious consumers via the Visa Mobile application for Apple’s iPhone with offers from merchants such as Papa John’s, Holiday Inn, Meineke, 24 Hour Fitness and Zales.

Cardholders now have access to more than 50 unique merchant offers ranging from clothing and dining to entertainment via the Visa Mobile application, which is available as a free download from the iTunes App Store. Participating U.S. retailers include 24 Hour Fitness, Jos. A. Bank, Meineke, New York & Co. and Zales are providing discounts through the Visa Mobile application, helping them reach more consumers with targeted offers.

“Visa’s strategy behind the launch coincides with our strategy to continue making mobile commerce a global reality,” said Prakash Hariramani, senior business leader of global mobile products at Visa, San Francisco. “The iPhone application provides Visa cardholders with access to mobile coupons and discounts to participating merchants across the United States.

“Participating merchants are now able to target the right customer at the right time,” he said. “Partnering with Visa to distribute mobile coupons assists in driving foot traffic to merchant locations by utilizing location-based capabilities of device, which allows the cardholder to easily locate the nearest merchant location where they can redeem the offer.

“We can help drive higher redemption since redemption rates for mobile coupons are higher—we believe that in-app coupons have the potential for growth as long as offers are relevant, tailored to users’ preferences and profile, and contextual, using location based services.”

Visa is a global payments technology company that connects consumers, businesses, financial institutions and governments in more than 200 countries and territories to digital currency.

Merchants tap Visa to distribute mobile coupons
Visa is working with a select list of merchants to deliver exclusive offers to Visa accountholders, helping them save money on every-day purchases.

In addition to 24 Hour Fitness, Jos. A. Bank, Meineke, New York & Co. and Zales, Planet Hollywood, Papa John’s Pizza, Tourneau, Holiday Inn, Ramanda, Crowne Plaza, Pearle Vision, Meineke, Buca di Beppo, Cold Water Creek and Hard Rock Café are also providing discounts through the Visa Mobile application, helping them reach more consumers with targeted offers.

Offers are automatically delivered and stored in the application, can be tailored to consumers’ lifestyles and preferences, and can be redeemed either online or at physical retail locations.

The application uses location-based technology to provide consumers with a map and directions to a nearby retailer where they can redeem merchant offers.

Merchants are looking for new and more efficient ways to reach customers, while budget-conscious consumers expect a more rewarding and convenient shopping experience, per Visa.

The Visa Mobile application is designed to meet the needs of both merchants and consumers using an iPhone.

Visa application features
Key Visa application features include Visa Offers, which can be tailored to match consumer lifestyle and interest.

Visa accountholders can select from several merchant categories such as clothing, dining, jewelry, travel, entertainment or retail goods.

This is designed to ensure consumers only get offers they want, and can help increase merchant traffic, loyalty and customer satisfaction.

Account holders with Visa Signature cards will receive special Visa Signature offers in addition to the standard offers.

Visa is continuously adding merchant offers available through the Visa Mobile application.

A list of participating merchants can be found at

Using location-based technology, the Visa Mobile application shows consumers nearby merchant locations and provide directions to locations where they can redeem offers and allows them to find the nearest ATM.

Visa is working closely with handset manufacturers, carriers and technology providers worldwide to bring Visa payments to the mobile channel.

The Visa Mobile application for the iPhone was developed in partnership with Monitise plc, a British business that is a global mobile banking and payments platform.

Visa signed a global alliance with Monitise in June 2009 to custom-develop mobile services for Visa across a spectrum of handsets to ensure Visa accountholders have a consistent, user-friendly and secure mobile payment experience.

“Visa entered into a strategic alliance with Monitise in 2009 to facilitate the delivery of Visa mobile payments and related services to consumers around the world,” Mr. Hariramani said.

“The alliance provides Visa with a strategic development partner for its comprehensive suite of mobile services, including mobile payments, mobile money transfer, mobile transaction alerts and mobile marketing offers,” he said.

“This application is a great example of that, since Monitise developed this mobile application and helped optimize the user experience.”

Final Take
Dan Butcher, associate editor, Mobile Commerce Daily