There has been a lot of backlash over the revamped Starbucks (SBUX) Rewards program launched on Tuesday April 12th.
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Dunkin Donuts (DNKN) customers receive a free item after spending $40.
Starbucks customers now have to spend $62.50 to earn a freebie.
And that’s on top of the $150 that must be spent to reach Gold status.
Many people were “steamed” on social media.
Some said they’ll save money now . . . because they will be going to Starbucks less often.
But we really want to talk to you about “the bank of Starbucks”
The bank of Starbucks?!?
The Starbucks app is the most successful mobile payment ecosystem.
About 20% of all money spent at Starbucks is through the app.
That’s about $1 for every $5 spent at Starbucks.
Starbucks has $1.4 billion loaded on apps and gift cards that hasn’t been spent yet.
That float is huge. It’s about one month’s global revenue.
It’s growing 20% each year.
When consumers use the Starbucks app, Starbucks doesn’t have to pay a transaction fee to the credit card companies.
That’s more profit for Starbucks.
And about $40 million of the float is never spent. So this money is loaded on the app and gift cards which is never spent = more profit for Starbucks.
Starbucks is now offering a pre-paid debit card.
Now Starbucks afficionados can get stars from other retailers when they use their Starbucks debit card.
And since it’s a pre-paid debit card and not a credit card. People could end up loading $500 on their card instead of just $50.
The more money people load on their Starbucks app, the bigger the interest free loan they are giving Starbucks.
And Starbucks gets an even bigger float.
Starbucks reports earnings Thursday April 21st after the bell.
Same store sales grew 8% last quarter.
We’ll see if it can duplicate that sizzling number.
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