Five innovative uses of blockchain technology in retail — Retail Technology Innovation Hub

2. Costa Coffee

Costa Coffee has launched a trial of a new blockchain technology powered reusable cup scheme called BURT. 

BURT – which stands for ‘Borrow, Use, Reuse, Take Back’ – starts this week across 14 stores in Glasgow and will last for six months.

Costa Coffee will be using the trial to gain feedback from customers and learn about uptake and behaviour towards reusable cups. It will then use its findings to develop a scheme that will roll-out more widely across the UK in phases. 

To participate in the trial, customers must set up an account by scanning a QR code displayed in one of the participating stores. 

By making a one off £5 payment to join the scheme, they can then scan the QR code on the base of a BURT cup, which links the cup to the customer’s account, via blockchain technology. They can then pay at the till as normal while a barista prepares their coffee.

The cup can be returned to a participating Costa Coffee store at a time that suits them, where it will be scanned back in by the team, delinked from their account, and machine washed in-store, ready for the next customer. Customers will be given a new BURT cup with each new order.

3. Moon

Moon, a US-based startup that enables crypto payments for e-commerce sites, has raised $2.1 million.

The funding round included participation from Fenbushi Capital, New Form Capital, SBX Capital, Manresa Ventures, Fulgur Ventures, Flight.VC, Bentaus, Block0, Litecoin creator Charlie Lee and Bill Murphy, the former CTO at Blackstone.

Moon CEO and Founder Ken Kruger told CoinDesk the company is using the cash to expand into a web and mobile application, making it possible to fund Moon cards with accounts from other exchanges (currently it only uses Coinbase). 

It is also looking to expand its geographic reach, enable users to pay with stablecoins in addition to Bitcoin and bring in new employees

Plans are also afoot to make its product available for merchants outside of the US.