Coffee giant Starbucks hints at branded ‘digital collections’ in new Web 3 customer rewards program

Coffee giant Starbucks is working on a new rewards program that includes branded digital kits for caffeine drinkers.

During the company’s third-quarter earnings call on Aug. 2, interim CEO Howard Schultz hinted that Starbucks is launching a Web 3-enabled initiative at its 2022 Investor Day event on Sept. 13 in Seattle.

“We believe this new digital Web 3-enabled initiative will allow us to build on Starbucks Rewards’ current engagement model with its powerful Stars-earned-for-spending approach, while introducing new methods of emotionally engaging customers, expanding our digital third-place community and offering a broader set of rewards, including unique experiences you can’t get anywhere else, by integrating our digital Starbucks Rewards ecosystem with Starbucks brand digital collections as a reward and community-building element.”

Schultz says the coffee chain hopes to retain customers and attract new ones with the new initiative. The executive adds that Starbucks also wants to maintain its appeal to the younger generation.

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“This will create a whole new set of digital network effects that will attract new customers and be active for existing customers in our core retail stores.”

Schultz’s announcement follows Starbucks’ announcement earlier this year that the company will enter the non-fungible token (NFT) business by the end of the year.

“We plan to create a series of branded NFT collections, ownership of which initiates community membership and allows access to exclusive experiences and benefits. The themes of these collections will be born from Starbucks’ artistic expressions, both heritage and emerging, as well as through world-class collaborations with other innovators and like-minded brands.”
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