Shell Oil to Accept Chase Pay as Bank Steps Up Digital Efforts

  • Mobile-payments service also coming to Starbucks this year
  • Banks gunning for Apple, Google, Samsung in payments race

Shell Oil Co. gas stations will accept Chase Pay, bolstering JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s plan to create a digital-payments service that customers can use at retail stores and on the web.

Customers filling their tanks will be able to use Chase Pay from within the Shell mobile app and eventually the Chase Pay app itself, Jen Roberts, president of strategic alliance and loyalty solutions for Chase, said in an interview.

The addition of a gas-station chain like Shell, which serves 20 million customers a day, marks a big advance for Chase Pay and will help the financial institution better compete with Alphabet Inc.’s Google, Apple Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. in the mobile-payments market. Earlier this year, Chase struck a deal with Starbucks Corp., the world’s largest coffee-shop chain, to accept Chase Pay at more than 7,500 stores in the U.S.

Shell is the first major U.S. merchant to sign on to Chase Pay from the Merchant Customer Exchange, a mobile-payments consortium of retailers including Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Target Corp. that has struggled to build its own mobile wallet. Chase has been in talks with other MCX merchants, and more announcements are coming, Roberts said.

Consumers can now use Chase Pay to buy items from 1-800-Flowers.com, Drs. Foster & Smith, eBags and Gerber Life Insurance Co. by entering their Chase.com or app user name and password, Roberts said. Currently 24 million consumers use Chase’s mobile app, and 42 million access their accounts through Chase.com.

Banks like Chase are building up their mobile-pay platforms and marketing machines to drive growth outside their traditional lending businesses. Enabling consumers to pay for items in stores by scanning their phones -- while enticing them with personalized coupons and rewards -- could help Chase catch up to Android Pay, Apple Pay and Samsung Pay. It can also improve customer loyalty, particularly among millennials, who are more prone to switching banks than their elders.

As a marketing hub, Chase Pay could ultimately become a place for everything from delivering coupons to storing receipts.

“There’s still a lot of paper at the point of sale,” Roberts said. “At some point, we’ll be eliminating all that paper.”

Chase joins other institutions looking to capitalize on consumers’ growing acceptance of mobile payments. Capital One Financial Corp. released its mobile-pay app last fall, and Wells Fargo & Co. said in May that it will unveil its own wallet for paying in stores and making transactions at ATMs.

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