Contactless -

Pret sees growth in contactless

Contactless payments at sandwich chain Pret A Manger have boomed over the past 12 months, according to the firm’s director of IT, delivery and support, Andy Chalklin.

"Contactless payments in terms of our overall transactions have gone from single digits of probably between 3 to 5%, to about 20% in the last 12 months," Chalklin says in an exclusive interview – reports By Sooraj Shah.

He said that although the firm moved into the contactless area early on, it is only recently that it has seen a huge surge in users adopting and using the technology. "We were a very early adopter and the availability of cards being locked down with the Barclaycard franchise didn’t really take off until last year. With the proportion of card payments rising to one-third or more, even in our sector of the ‘low-basket size’, it is becoming critical to have good, robust, contact support," Chalklin said.

Pret’s director of IT, delivery and support went on to say that Pret already has sufficient IT support, but that the company wants to be ready for the adoption of other technology, including NFC.b "We want to be right at the forefront of it, ready for NFC chips in the iPhone 6, ready for when Google releases its

and so on."

Chalklin is an advocate of NFC as he believes it will benefit both consumers and businesses. "As a retailer it is faster, it is a guaranteed payment methodology; it is not subject to charge-back from the acquirer, it is accessible as people forget their wallets at home but not their phones. And, from a retailing perspective, it is cheaper at the moment; it is 50% of the interchange rate of any chip-and-PIN transaction."

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