SCARBOROUGH, Maine -- Hannaford Bros. here is planning to process its electronic transactions via a new in-house financial switch by Thanksgiving. Pilot tests in a select number of stores are planned for June, with a chainwide rollout scheduled to begin after the Fourth of July.
All electronic transactions at the point-of-sale will be processed through the switch, including credit cards, debit cards and electronic benefits transfer payments. The system will also handle check authorizations, said Jim Bongiorno, retail systems manager at Hannaford.
These non-cash payment methods account for 60% of the retailer's total sales, and are on the increase, he added.
Previously, the retailer used a third-party processor to handle these transactions. Hannaford expects to achieve cost savings by bringing its financial switch in-house.
"We wouldn't be doing this if we didn't think there would be savings," said Bongiorno. "In addition, we'll be more in control of the process and its reliability."
He would not specify the retailer's time frame for a return on investment.
Hannaford is working with a number of different companies to bring its financial switch in-house. Software for the switch itself is from Open Systems Solutions, Clearwater, Fla. Credit-card transactions will be processed through NPC, Louisville, Ky. Check-authorization data will be provided by Deluxe Payment Protection Systems/SCAN, Bothell, Wash. Buypass Corp., Atlanta, is providing debit- and EBT-processing services for Hannaford.