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Starbucks (SBUX) Ties-up Marriott Bonvoy, Boost Loyalty Offerings

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Starbucks Corporation (SBUX - Free Report) recently announced a strategic agreement with Marriott International's (MAR - Free Report) Marriott Bonvoy to offer reciprocal earning and redemption benefits to Starbucks Rewards and Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program members.

The alliance will facilitate customers to earn and redeem rewards for coffee purchases and hotel stays. The partnership enhances customer engagement by offering Double Stars at Starbucks locations during Marriott Bonvoy stays and additional rewards during designated promotional periods.

The introduction of exclusive offerings like the Starbucks Reserve Siciliano and sweepstakes prizes further incentivizes members to link their accounts, fostering loyalty and repeat business.

Kyndra Russell, senior vice president and North America chief marketing officer at Starbucks, highlighted that Marriott Bonvoy's commitment to enhancing customer experiences aligns perfectly with SBUX’s mission to elevate daily life. She emphasized that this partnership is part of Starbucks' efforts to develop the Rewards program, offering members increased value and enhanced benefits through travel experiences.

Focus on Loyalty Program Bode Well

The company emphasizes personalized digital relationships to expand its reach with members. This includes program enhancements like Stars for Everyone. Starbucks initiated payment partnerships with PayPal and Bakkt, allowing customers to reload their Starbucks cards through a range of cryptocurrencies (including Bitcoin and Ethereum) coupled with the option of converting digital currencies to physical currency. The company is exploring the blockchain platform to connect the Starbucks Rewards program with other merchant rewards programs and the motive of tokenization of stars. The initiative paves a path for the exchange of value across brands, enhanced digital services and the swapping of other loyalty points for stars. It also launched account-linking partnerships with Air Canada, Bank of America and Delta Air Lines.

The company will likely highlight this format as it might serve as the foundation for a new modern payment that aligns expenses with the value received by customers and merchants.

Zacks Investment Research
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In the past three months, the company’s shares have declined 13.4% compared with the industry’s 5.1% fall.

Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Starbucks currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Some better-ranked stocks in the Zacks Retail-Wholesale sector are:

Wingstop Inc. (WING - Free Report) sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) at present. It has a trailing four-quarter negative earnings surprise of 21.4%, on average. The stock has surged 126% in the past year. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for WING’s 2024 sales and earnings per share (EPS) suggests a rise of 27.5% and 37.1%, respectively, from year-ago levels.

Brinker International, Inc. (EAT - Free Report) carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). It has a trailing four-quarter earnings surprise of 213.4%, on average. EAT’s shares have risen 86.1% in the past year.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for EAT’s 2024 sales and EPS indicates 5.1% and 41.3% growth, respectively, from the year-earlier actuals.

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