September 19, 2012

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Associated Food Stores Adopts Google Wallet

Press Release

September 19, 2012

Associated Food Stores has entered into a strategic partnership with Google that will enable shoppers to easily discover and redeem digital coupons, as well as efficiently checkout with a tap of their phone using Google Wallet.

“We are incredibly excited to make the shopping experience faster and easier with Google Wallet,” said Troy Thomas, vice president at AFS, one of Utah’s largest retail grocery chains. “Shoppers can add any credit card to Google Wallet, save relevant digital coupons from our website, and quickly checkout in the store by simply tapping their phone at the point of purchase.”

Already in the works for a release date later this year, shoppers at Macey’s and Dick’s Market will have access to hundreds of new digital offers from Google’s national manufacturer partners. Shoppers can click and save coupons to their Google Wallet account directly from AFS’ website at home or in store. AFS will build upon this experience early next year when it deploys Google Wallet’s mobile-commerce technology so that customers can seamlessly transmit payment and coupon information in one simple action from their smart phones.

“We closely analyzed many potential players in the mobile payments space,” said David Rice, executive vice president of retail for AFS. “No one compared to the experience and technological capabilities that Google brings to the table.”

Google Wallet launched in 2011 as a simple way for mobile shoppers to transmit payment, loyalty and offers credentials with a single tap at the point of purchase. The service has since added more than 20 national partners including Walgreen’s, CVS, Toys R Us, Jamba Juice and Old Navy. Last fall, Google bolstered its offers capabilities by acquiring Zave Networks, a real-time digital coupon solution used by thousands of grocery stores in the United States. This technology, which has been integrated with Wallet, will be deployed across point of sale systems within AFS’ corporate-owned banners, including Fresh Market, Macey’s, Dan’s, Lin’s and Dick’s Market.

“Over the last decade, Google’s advertising platforms have been able to add enormous value to the retail category with a very simple model of delivering high returns on advertising investments. We’re very pleased that we’ve been able to extend that model to the Grocery segment where we can engage digitally-influenced shoppers, help them discover relevant coupons and make it easier for them to transact in physical retail stores. This model adds value for everyone in the ecosystem,” said Spencer Spinnell, Google’s director of Emerging Business Partnerships.

“AFS is making several investments to ensure they continue to lead with innovative, forward-thinking programs to improve their position as a strong player in the digital space. We have many interesting and progressive marketing plans in the works for our stores,” said Jason Sokol, director of marketing for AFS. “Our partnership with Google will allow us to move more quickly on several key initiatives. They have already proven to be some of the most professional and knowledgeable people in the business."

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