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Singapore Press : SPH Buzz partners with Mastercard to launch new hybrid store concept

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11/26/2017 | 11:12pm EDT
Singapore, 27 November 2017
- SPH Buzz today launched a new hybrid store concept in partnership with Mastercard that includes attended and unattended retail counters. As part of the partnership, SPH Buzz has integrated Mastercard's mobile commerce platform - Vending powered by Masterpass - in its unattended machines to enable customers to seamlessly order and pay for goods via their smart devices without fumbling for cash or coins.

The opening ceremony took place this morning and was officiated by Mr Anthony Tan, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, SPH; Mr Chua Wee Phong Chairman, SPH Buzz; Mr Chang Yunsok, Executive Vice-President, Market Development, Mastercard and Mr Raymond Yap, Auresys Pte Ltd.

Located at the Cnergy Gas Station along Toh Tuck Road, the Buzz hybrid convenience store occupies a floor space of 827sq ft, with 16 vending machines. Buzz customers will be able to make purchases from the vending machines with their smart devices by using Masterpass1, a secure digital payment service by Mastercard that speeds up the checkout process without requiring consumers to enter their financial and shipping information at every use.

The vending machines manufactured by Auresys Pte Ltd, are modern looking and technologically progressive with the ability to dispense the following:

- Beverages: Bean-to-cup coffee, tea, carbonated drinks, energy drinks, health drinks, water
- Ready-to-Eat meals: From gourmet soups, pasta, sushi to local delights
- Snacks and Confectionaries
- Specialty Snacks: Directly imported from Japan
- Beauty and Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medication
- Novelty and Lifestyle: Activity trackers, electronic accessories, pre-packed presents and mystery gifts

From now till 31 December 2017, customers will be able to enjoy special deals at $1 or a discount on purchases made through the Vending powered by Masterpass app. This partnership with Mastercard embraces the ease of payment as Singapore moves towards a cashless society.

'In retail, both speed and convenience are extremely important to consumers. Even at vending machines, many sales are lost as a result of consumers not having loose cash or because of coin jams in the machine,' said Betty DeVita, Chief Commercial Officer for Commerce Platform, Mastercard Global Products and Solutions. 'With the launch of Vending powered by Masterpass at SPH Buzz, we are removing friction, significantly improving the current experience, and reducing wait time.'

Image: Step-by-step guide on how to connect with the vending machine and complete the purchase

Vending powered by Masterpass is a secure payment system developed by the Singapore R&D team in Mastercard Labs, the global innovation and R&D division of Mastercard. The system leverages a number of patented security features to enable people to use their mobile devices to pay at vending machines with seamless simplicity and the latest security.

The mobile app is available for download on the Google Play store and will soon be available on the Apple App store.

The manned station comprises a café offering local delights and freshly baked artisanal bread. Customers can have access to a hearty meal even when on-the-go.

Ms Audrey Joan Yap, franchisee of the Buzz hybrid convenience store, said: 'With the introduction of the automated station that is both cost-effective and process efficient, I can now focus on providing more interpersonal customer service and experience at the café. Having vending machines solves my manpower allocation problems, especially for the night shift. Also, with SPH Buzz and Mastercard coming together, my business is on the road to becoming relevant as we move towards being digitally enabled.'

To complete the shopping experience at the Buzz hybrid convenience store, customers can look forward to purchasing a wide variety of prepaid services such as Telco top-up cards; tickets to popular local tourist attractions such as Universal Studio, Gardens By The Bay, River Safari and the Singapore Zoo, as well as Google and Xbox stored-value cards. Other services such as FOC wifi, cash withdrawal from the convenience of a smartphone, reloading of EZ-Link Cards, NETS and NETS Flash Pay are also available.

Mr Spencer Tan, Deputy General Manager of SPH Buzz Convenience Stores said: 'The introduction of the first SPH Buzz hybrid convenience store is part of our continuous efforts to meet the discerning needs of our customers. This enables us to provide round-the-clock offerings while at reasonable prices. The backend system helps to forecast demand and alerts us for replenishments. This helps the team to be more productive given the current manpower crunch. We are pleased to partner with Mastercard and adopt its cashless payment mode, and are also appreciative of the unstinting support of our other merchants and vendors. We will explore new touchpoints through different retail formats to offer our customers greater accessibility and convenience.'

Enclosed - Guide to use Vending powered by Masterpass app (step-by-step guide)

Issued by Singapore Press Holdings Ltd
Co. Regn. No. 198402868E

For more information, please contact:

SPH Buzz Pte Ltd
Mr Yeo Siew Chi

Corporate Communications & CSRSingapore Press Holdings Ltd Email: yeosc@sph.com.sg

Mastercard/Weber Shandwick
Ms Celina Lim
Email: Celim@webershandwick.com

Mr Ernest Lee
Email: elee@webershandwick.com

About SPH Buzz Pte Ltd

SPH Buzz convenience stores are a chain of retail kiosks and newsstands located at bus interchanges, bus shelters, MRT stations, shopping malls and heartland areas. Started in 2007 as a franchise model, it currently has 59 stores island-wide.

About Mastercard

Mastercard (NYSE: MA), www.mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world's fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. Mastercard's products and solutions make everyday commerce activities - such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances - easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MastercardAP and @MastercardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau.

SPH - Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. published this content on 27 November 2017 and is solely responsible for the information contained herein.
Distributed by Public, unedited and unaltered, on 27 November 2017 04:11:01 UTC.

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