Waiting for the E-Wallet? POS Cards Here and Now

Google, Facebook, American Express, Groupon and others are all working on electronic wallet concepts that can help store and process deals along with other promotions and event tickets.

At least one deals vendor, however, is banking that it will take a very long time before a standard develops. The rollout of wallets is just “handing merchants a problem,” says Max Goff, a technology platform industry veteran who together with company founder John Saltas has launched Kostizi, a deals platform. ”There is a disconnect with the merchant’s back office.”

Goff’s solution is a physical point-of-sale card that can store and process any number of deals from a wide variety of merchants. The Kostizi card, which can complement other Web- and mobile-based options, has the benefit of immediate gratification for consumers, says Goff.

It can also be co-branded by participating media partners that utilize the Kostizi deals platform — they can put their own logo on cards they distribute — and easily activated by any POS device with a simple swipe. The card can be migrated to mobile solutions as they become more widely available.

Kostizi cards have now launched on the back of The Salt Lake City Weekly, an alternative weekly (and the city where the company is based). The company is also working with alternative weeklies in Sacramento; Chico, California; Reno; Pittsburgh; and Jacksonville.

The company, which is angel-funded, is also developing additional media partners in those cities and others. Business development is led by newspaper sales vet George Dratelis.

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