The biggest hurdle to a retailer-led mobile payments platform, such as the Merchant Customer Exchange, is bringing competing brands together to agree on a single mobile platform that will serve both their consumers, as well as those of their competitors. If the retailer-led mobile payment platform is able to set aside differing interests to finally launch its products for consumers, the four major payment networks in the US will have plenty of reasons to be concerned.
US retailers come together on m-commerce platform
Nearly 40 American retailers and restaurant chains are involved in a new US-based mobile payments platform, dubbed the Merchant Customer Exchange. It already includes retailers like CVS Corp, Target Corp, Darden Restaurants Inc, Meijer Inc, Hobby Lobby Stores Inc, Gap Inc, Dunkin’ Brands Inc, 7-Eleven, Bed Bath & Beyond and Dillard’s Inc. MCX started with just a dozen brands, but now it seems like every other week new retailers join the effort with the most recent including Southwest Airlines and Brinker International Restaurants, the parent for Chili’s Grill & Bar and Maggiano’s Little Italy. The retail partners seemingly cross nearly all verticals, including quick-service restaurants, convenience stores, department stores, petrol stations and travel companies. MCX reports that its partners combined have 80,000 stores and conduct more than $1 trillion in annual sales. There’s no doubt that such a mobile platform has a potential wide consumer base.