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Starbucks Reaches Mobile Payment Milestone

SEATTLE — One in every five Starbucks Corp. sales is now handled via mobile payment, double what the retailer achieved just two years ago, the company reported during its earnings conference call Thursday.

Seattle-based Starbucks now handles nearly 9 million mobile transactions per week, by far the most of any U.S. retailer.

"Our mobile commerce platform is literally stronger than ever," said Howard Schultz, the company's chairman and chief executive.

According to Payments Source, Starbucks’ Mobile Order and Pay capability, which is still in trial mode but has expanded rapidly to 4,000 company-owned stores, is a major source of mobile payment growth. The retailer expects to take this service nationwide by the holiday season.

But Starbucks’ biggest source of mobile payment growth comes from its loyalty rewards system tied to its mobile app. The company is driving more customers to join its rewards program by inking relationships with music service Spotify and travel provider Lyft.

Focusing on retail operations, at stores accepting mobile orders, "lines are shorter, service is faster and in-store operations are more efficient," Schultz said.

Starbucks first began accepting payments via its mobile app in 2009, reported the news outlet.

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