Walgreens Planning Co-Branded Credit Card with Synchrony
It seems that Walgreens has a plan to keep customers’ wallets healthy. This week, the drug store chain announced that it would be expanding its line-up of financial services, including debuting a co-branded credit card product. The upcoming card will integrate with the recently-launched myWalgreens loyalty program, giving customers the chance to earn myWalgreens cash rewards among other offers. Walgreens is partnering with Synchrony to issue the card, which will operate on the Mastercard network.
Not only will customers be able to use their Walgreens co-branded card in Walgreens locations, online, and in the Walgreens app but will also be able to use it for purchases anywhere Mastercard is accepted. While details on rewards weren’t revealed, it will apparently offer accelerated rewards for purchases related to health and wellness. The co-branded card is currently expected to be available during the second half of 2021.
Elsewhere, Walgreens will also be debuting a pre-paid Mastercard debit card. In fact, in a press release, the retailer said that it plans to “explore a number of Mastercard solutions across the payments technology ecosystem.” This apparently includes point-of-sale financing, allowing customers to pay for purchases in installments.
In a statement announcing its upcoming financial services plans, Walgreens president John Standley said, “Walgreens is committed to providing our customers and patients with unparalleled loyalty and rewards experiences for managing their health and well-being, and we are excited to partner with Synchrony and Mastercard, who share our commitment to support healthy communities.” Standley continued, “As we continue to focus on creating new revenue streams, we look forward to exploring and introducing even more health and well-being payment initiatives in the near future.”
Incidentally, Walgreens announced emphasis on financial services comes on the heels of another “Wal” company also making waves in that arena. Earlier this week, Walmart revealed the creation of a FinTech entity in partnership with Ribbit Capital. While details on that what that startup will produce are limited, it was stated that the venture will “deliver tech-driven financial experiences tailored to Walmart’s customers and associates.” Meanwhile, Walmart previously offered a co-branded card with Synchrony but moved to a Capital One partnership in 2019.
Although store credit cards aren’t always a great option for consumers, the ability to use the card at other locations does offer some more flexibility. That said, there’s still a lot to be revealed about the card before customers can determine whether the co-branded card makes sense for them. Either way, it will be interesting to see what Walgreens and Synchrony dispense later this year.