Enterprise Innovation — Starbucks expanded its digital ecosystem with the launch of its mobile app in Japan, which introduced mobile payment and eGifting to the company’s fourth largest market. With the app, customers can pay for their in-store purchases at more than 1,100 stores across the market simply by scanning a bar code linked to their registered Starbucks card.
Enterprise Innovation — Starbucks Coffee Korea launched in November the new Starbucks app on the Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch in South Korea. Through the app, customers can track their My Starbucks Rewards status and pay for Starbucks purchases directly from the wearable device, a first in Asia.
WiWide, a Chinese startup that provides public wifi networks to stores and restaurants, has received an RMB 300 million (US$49 million) series C funding round from Tencent and Dianping, according to TechNode. Over 500 domestic and international franchises use WiWide in China, including Starbucks, Burger King, and several airports. Its advertising clients include Jaguar, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Nokia, Lenovo, and HTC, whose ads get pushed to customers once they connect. Altogether, the company runs over 30,000 hotspots.