According to Frank Bekkers, CEO of Joyn, this capital round, led by KBC, ING and the publishing group Mediahuis, was “planned” in advance. The Brussels-based startup, that counts 1.6 million Belgian users, targets at reaching 3 million by the end of next year.

Joyn, originated from a merger of Het Opzet, Qustomer and CityLife, offers an innovative way to strengthen relations between businesses and customers. Its core product is a handy digital loyalty card for local merchants. By using the actual card or scanning the QR code on the merchant's iPad with the Joyn app, consumers get points that count towards fun prizes or discounts at their favourite shops. Since last year, it has become possible to save points and to pay at the same time.

By linking to Payconiq, the payment app that is also supported by ING and KBC, Joyn enhances customer experience. Customers download the Payconiq app and simply link their Joyn card to it. When they subsequently pay using Payconiq, they also collect points at the same time, without scanning the Joyn app or card separately.

Picture: ING.be / Payconiq

1.6 million Belgian consumers already use Joyn loyalty cards at over 6.200 local merchants. By the end of next year, the startup aims at increasing these numbers to 3 million users and 20.000 local merchants, accordingly.

Currently, the startup is investigating international growth opportunities and further product development.

 "We want to build a digital identity that has a functional character," says Frank Bekkers. He refers to the Chinese app WeChat, that offers unique features from payment service to following celebrities and brands or ordering food delivery. "Our conversations with customers show that they are equally interested in renting a bike or accessing a pool with the app."

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