The American Chinese Restaurant brand partners with Blackhawk to expand its gift card program using CashStar Consumer technology
PLEASANTON, Calif. – August 27, 2020 – Global branded payments provider, Blackhawk Network, announced that the nation’s largest Asian dining concept, Panda Express, has launched a digital gifting program powered by Blackhawk’s CashStar Consumer technology. Using Blackhawk’s end-to-end suite of services, the partnership allows Panda Express to provide a seamless ecommerce experience for customers in digital channels across devices. The program was officially rolled out for consumers in June to support the restaurant’s more than 2,000 locations across the country.
“As consumers continue to be faced with limited gifting options as a result of the pandemic, we are excited to be able to offer digital gifting solutions to help us meet our guests’ expectations,” said Scott Varley, Senior Manager of Retail & Off-premise, Panda Restaurant Group. “Through our partnership with Blackhawk, we were able to not only simplify the experience for our guests, but also triple our eCommerce gift card sales in the first two months on the platform.”
Sales data from Blackhawk Network’s partners revealed that gift cards sold directly from a restaurant or merchant’s website since mid-March are up 70% over 2019. It’s more important than ever to have an optimized ecommerce gift card program, and Blackhawk’s technology allows for a flexible, tailored experience that includes distribution, automated marketing promotions and fraud mitigation.
“Even before the rapid shift to digital that we are experiencing now, everything was moving toward being conducted digitally. This new program perfectly positions Panda Express to continue serving their customers across devices, wherever they are,” said Jennifer Philo, GVP, Business Development, Blackhawk Network. “By leveraging our digital gifting platform, Panda Express is able to not only cater to today’s diverse, cross-channel shopping behaviors, but also to deliver a customized, engaging experience for their customers.”
For more information about Blackhawk’s capabilities, visit www.blackhawknetwork.com.
 Gift card growth findings are based on 2019 and 2020 sales data from Blackhawk Network.
About Blackhawk Network
Blackhawk Network delivers branded payment solutions through the prepaid products, technologies and network that connects brands and people. We collaborate with our partners to innovate, translating market trends in branded payments to increase reach, loyalty and revenue. Serving 28 countries, we reliably execute security-minded solutions worldwide. Join us as we shape the future of global branded payments. Visit www.blackhawknetwork.com.
About Panda Express®
On a mission to inspire better lives, Panda Express, an American Chinese trailblazer, is the largest Asian dining concept in the U.S. Family-owned and operated since 1983 by co-founders and co-CEOs Andrew and Peggy Cherng, Panda Express is best known for creating a wide variety of industry-first recipes, including its best seller the Original Orange Chicken® and award-winning Honey Walnut Shrimp, which have defined the category of authentic American Chinese cuisine. Each dish at Panda Express is thoughtfully crafted with quality ingredients and inspired by bold Chinese flavors and culinary principles. The restaurant brand has more than 2,200 locations throughout the U.S. and has introduced American Chinese cuisine to more than ten international countries. Powered by this global family of associates, Panda Cares®, the organization's philanthropic arm, has contributed more than 216 million dollars and countless volunteer hours in bettering the health and education for over 12 million youths as well as supporting communities in need since 1999. In 2020, Panda established the Panda Cares Scholars Program to provide the necessary funding, academic support and leadership development to help high school and college students learn, lead and thrive towards a bright future. For more information, visit pandaexpress.com, or find us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.