Partnerships / Acquisitions

Starbucks And Lyft Join Forces To Caffeinate More People

Aiming to get a whole new crop of people addicted to caffeine, Starbucks has inked a deal with car-hailing startup Lyft.

The companies announced on Tuesday (Aug. 9) a multi-year partnership that is designed to enhance value for current customers, attract new ones and reward Lyft drivers. Under the terms of the deal, all Lyft drivers will have the option of joining Starbucks’ My Starbucks Rewards loyalty program as gold members, and both Lyft drivers and their fares have the opportunity to earn My Starbucks Rewards loyalty Stars that are redeemable for free drinks and food at Starbucks.

“With Lyft’s presence in 65 cities across the U.S., where we also have Starbucks serving the same communities, we knew this collaboration would benefit our partners, Lyft’s drivers, as well as our mutual customers who are already coming to Starbucks and using Lyft services,” said Adam Brotman, chief digital officer at Starbucks, in a press release. “This is a great win-win. Our digital loyalty ecosystem can help strengthen Lyft’s ability to attract and retain customers, while, at the same time, accelerating the incrementality of redemption of rewards.”

According to Starbucks, for its employees, one of the obstacles of getting to work is finding reliable public transportation. Because the stores often open early and close late, the needs of its employees don’t match with the hours of pubic transportation. Later in the year, Starbucks said it and Lyft will look into bringing a transportation benefit to Starbucks employees in one test market to gauge interest and long-term viability of such a benefit.

“There are two things most of us do every morning: get a cup of coffee and commute to work. Together with Starbucks, we can make both a friendlier, more enjoyable experience,” said John Zimmer, cofounder and president of Lyft, in the same press release. “Lyft and Starbucks share a lot of the same customers, and importantly, we share a commitment to doing right by our customers and our people. In the days, months and years ahead, we will launch exciting programs for loyal community members and new products that will change the way we move around our cities.”

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