Tuesday, November 21, 2006

IBM Fortifies Pay By Touch Relationship


IBM today announced that Thriftway Supermarket in Seattle, Washington is the first retailer to install a new point-of-sale application that provides a turnkey solution for Pay By Touch(TM), a popular biometric payment service that lets shoppers make purchases with the touch of a finger.

IBM SurePOS ACE, starting with release 4.0 and higher, will offer Pay By Touch as an option. With this option in IBM ACE, a supermarket can quickly deploy Pay By Touch to support the growing demand for reduced costs and increased security in electronic payment transactions. The new IBM SurePOS(TM) ACE application was implemented in 13 checkout lanes in a matter of hours. It enables Thriftway to handle biometric payments faster, enhancing customer service.

For simplicity and added security, Thriftway is using IBM e-business Hosting Services. As part of an IBM Software as Services solution, shoppers' Pay By Touch digital wallet information is securely stored off-site at IBM data centers. IBM Software as Services offers clients lower costs that are aligned with usage, minimal upfront expense, rapid implementation and reduced risk.

"Thanks to IBM, we have very little hardware and software to worry about," said Paul Kapioski, President and Owner of Thriftway Supermarkets, which, in 2002, installed the first retail grocery Pay By Touch biometric payment system. "We've seen many operational improvements from using the Pay By Touch system, including fraud reduction and increased transaction speed. With the new IBM ACE underpinning, we look forward to integrating additional Pay By Touch capabilities into our IBM in-store technology."

Using IBM's new SurePOS 700 Series point-of-sale systems running IBM SurePOS ACE software, shoppers at Thriftway Supermarket can now purchase groceries by providing a simple fingerprint image that is linked to their financial accounts and loyalty programs. The shopper selects which account they want to use, the transaction is processed as if a card or check has been presented, and rewards points are automatically recognized and awarded. The checkout routine is faster, helps protect customers from identity theft and eliminates the need for shoppers to carry cash, multiple credit cards, or bring their checkbook.

"As Thriftway shoppers know, Pay By Touch enables consumers to transact with no cash, no cards and no checks. There is nothing to carry, so there is nothing to be lost or stolen," said Ryan Ross, Vice President of Business Development at Pay By Touch. "Our relationship with IBM makes it easy for retailers to bring unprecedented ease, speed and convenience to shoppers everywhere."

"For more than 60 years, Thriftway has offered a wide selection of high quality products and innovative customer services," said Steve Ladwig, General Manager, IBM Retail Store Solutions. "This implementation of Pay By Touch's biometric payment service on the IBM ACE platform is the latest example of how new technologies can make shopping easier and more secure. It's also a great example of how IBM can work with a partner like Pay By Touch on a solution that can be successfully rolled out by a medium-sized retailer."

IBM's Versatile Point-of-Sale Solutions

IBM SurePOS(TM) ACE for 4690 OS is a powerful, versatile point-of-sale (POS) application designed to help retailers improve service and reliability in a flexible environment. It combines checkout support, electronic marketing, data maintenance and account management, and supports the IBM Store Integration Framework -- which enables clients to prepare to integrate an in-store pharmacy, photo kiosks or a personal shopping assistant.

The SurePOS 700 is the most powerful POS solution in the IBM portfolio, and is specifically designed to deliver the speed, availability and on-demand reliability that retailers require to transform the customer experience and increase employee productivity. SurePOS(TM) 700 models deliver fast transactions and personalized service, while providing investment production through a rugged, retail-hardened design.

About Thriftway Supermarkets

Founded in 1945, Thriftway has established a reputation for providing customers with only the highest quality products and services. With 14 supermarkets in the Seattle area, their commitment to the community sets them apart from other retailers. Each year, Thriftway stores donate thousands of dollars and thousands of volunteer hours to local causes: area food banks, little league teams, community fund-raisers, charities, civic events and other worthwhile causes.

About IBM

For more information on IBM Retail Solutions, please visit

With IBM SurePOS™ ACE for 4690 OS, supermarket, hypermarket and chain drug retailers can deploy a single point-of-sale (POS) application that helps enhance customer service, increase reliability and support an on demand business model.

SurePOS ACE combines checkout support, electronic marketing, data maintenance, account management and many other processes to deliver superior POS performance. It also offers outstanding operational reliability and a built-in customer loyalty program to help increase profitability. Plus, it positions retailers to take advantage of the IBM Store Integration Framework, a key component of on demand business. It also offers:

Terminal offline feature records transactions without a server connection
Supports a wide range of integrated fuel pump transactions
Now offers Pay By Touch™ integration and full check image capture
Integrated management tools and security features
Built on the proven IBM 4690 OS platform

Pay By Touch

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