More and more popular brands and large organizations are starting to turn towards cryptocurrencies. The reasons are that some want to be the first ones to join the trend and adopt the new innovative technology of the blockchain, while others want to reduce transaction fees and improve customer experience by introducing fast and easy payments across the world with digital currencies. This is the case with the Brisbane Airport in Australia that is about to implement cryptocurrency payment throughout one of its terminal, in as many retail stores as possible. After Microsoft and others, Starbucks is now thinking of virtual currencies and how they could help the coffee giant.
Starbucks’ executive chairman and former CEO Howard Schultz has openly discussed cryptocurrencies and the blockchain during a business call with shareholders on Thursday. Schultz claimed that Starbucks was thinking of potentially using a digital currency for in-store payments. However, the previous CEO said he wasn’t particularly fond of bitcoin, stating that “One or a few legitimate” cryptocurrencies are coming, but bitcoin is not one of them”. He also expressed his interest in the blockchain technology and said that he believes in its potential for the future. The chairman didn’t want to say too much and give the wrong idea about a potential digital future at the coffee stores, but said “I’m bringing this up … as we think about the future of our company and the future of consumer behavior.” The idea is still in its very early stages.
Howard Schultz has also recently claimed that he was imagining a future where the company could become completely cashless. The chain has already been known to widely accept Apple Pay and other contactless payments, so switching to digital currencies is a possibility. CEO Kevin Johnson has confirmed that the company wants to stay in front of competitors and is looking at all the options. The coffee chain is already trying a completely cashless store in its own city, Seattle.
It will be interesting to see how the crypto markets will react when big corporations like Amazon or Starbucks start accepting digital currencies. For now, the big players are staying on the sidelines but are getting ready to jump in the game.
TLDR: Starbucks’ former CEO Howard Schultz discussed blockchain and digital currencies for the future of the coffee chain. He claimed that there was a real interest to introduce digital currencies in stores but that it would take time and that it wouldn’t be bitcoin.