Mobile commerce provider CardFree, whose executives have ties to Starbucks' successful mobile payments app, has received a U.S. patent for technology that integrates reservation, payment pre-authorization and transaction management with a merchant's point of sale system.

CardFree offers a variety of mobile payment services, such as mobile gift cards, messaging, special offers, pre ordering and social media integration. CardFree's technology is designed to tie customer relationship management directly to transactions for personalized marketing. CardFree's software can also alert cashiers when a specific customer has entered a store.

CardFree's clients include restaurant chains such as Checkers/Rally's, Taco Bell and Sonic Drive In.

"Our first year was focused on partnering with large quick service restaurants who embraced the opportunities that our integrated mobile solutions offers, which we achieved. With this patent, we are now primed to take on fast casual and other restaurant segments as well as any merchants that use reservations," says CardFree's founder and CEO John Squire in a Feb. 12 press release.

Squire helped develop Starbucks' mobile payment app when he worked at mFoundry, and he was involved with the Dunkin Donuts' mobile app when he was at CorFire. CardFree also employs former Starbucks executives who continued to develop the coffee chain's successful mobile payments app after it stopped working with mFoundry. Today, the Starbucks app is used for 5 million mobile payments a week.

CardFree has also filed for a patent for its Next Generation Stored Value Solution, which is built for mobile and digital consumption, and integrates offers, loyalty and different currencies for merchant transaction processing.

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