CardStar adds Groupon to loyalty app

By Wailin Wong
Posted Feb. 9 at 2:54 p.m.

CardStar Inc., a company that makes a popular mobile application to organize store loyalty cards, is now including daily deals service Groupon in its app.

Boston-based CardStar said it is the first mobile loyalty app to integrate with Groupon. CardStar launched its app for the iPhone in January 2009 and has 1.3 million users. The CardStar app uses the GPS technology built into mobile phones to identify a user’s location and display Groupon deals for that area. Users will need a Groupon account to buy the deals.

“The notion is if you’re moving around, you’d always get the deals that are relevant to you for that particular time,” said CardStar Chief Executive Andy Miller. “The experience is really easy.”

Groupon has its own mobile apps for the iPhone, Android and BlackBerry platforms that allow users to view and purchase deals from their phones. Miller said his strategy “can bring Groupon to a different group” outside the company’s core demographic because 60 percent of CardStar users are “soccer moms” and unlikely to download the Groupon app.

The CardStar app is available for the iPhone, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phone 7 platforms. But the integration with Groupon is available only on the iPhone for now and does not link to Groupon’s rewards program, where subscribers can get deals for free if they have enough credit in their accounts.

Miller said if enough CardStar users adopt the Groupon “card” within the app, he will look into a deeper integration with Groupon. The Groupon loyalty card should be ready for Android by April, CardStar is also open to working with other deal providers, Miller said.

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