The owner of Bakkt, the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), has agreed to acquire a leading provider of loyalty solutions for both consumers and merchants. Following the completion of the transaction, Bakkt intends to integrate it to its platform, thus expanding the services that it will provide to its clients.
ICE To Acquire Bridge2 Solutions
According to an official press release, the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) will acquire one of the leading providers of loyalty solutions, namely, Bridge2 Solutions. This is a company that enables some of the largest brands to drive loyalty from their customers. It boasts 4,500 employee perk, incentive, and loyalty programs for different companies in a lot of industries.
Moreover, the company’s Loyalty Pay solution extracts more value from reward programs as it provides consumers with the ability to pay with reward currencies in retail stores, through digital wallets, and at point-of-sale (POS) stations.
Following the completion of the acquisition, Bakkt, a Bitcoin futures trading platform owned by ICE, will acquire Bridge2 Solutions and integrate it within its service list. This is intended to accelerate the development of Bakkt’s consumer application, turning it into a more complete ecosystem for its clients.
Speaking on the matter was Mike Blandina, CEO at Bakkt, who said:
With the launch of the Bakkt app, we will, for the first time, offer consumers a robust platform to consolidate and use all of their digital assets, from crypto to loyalty points to in-game tokens, in one user-friendly wallet. […] Combining Bridge2 Solutions’ embedded relationships with banks and merchants and their innovative Loyalty Pay solution will enable us to launch new products that further drive loyalty and empower consumers to trade, transfer and spend digital assets in entirely new ways.
It’s worth noting that this deal is not going to have a material impact on ICE’s net income and it’s not expected to impact its overall capital return plans.
Bakkt’s Been Busy
The last couple of months have been fairly busy for Bakkt, as the venue strives to bring more services to its clients.
Towards the end of December 2019, the venue announced the launch of the very first CFTC-regulated option on Bitcoin. Initially, Bakkt started as a Bitcoin futures trading platform with physical delivery. This suggests that the traders would receive an actual bitcoin once the futures contract expires. However, the platform has also moved to launch cash-settled contracts.
More recently, the president of the company, Adam White, hinted during a closed event in Tel Aviv, that they might be adding Ethereum futures contracts as well. This is because Bitcoin and Ethereum remain the only cryptocurrencies that the CFTC has provided clear guidance for.