qiibee: Setting the Global Standard for Loyalty on the Blockchain
With the aim of solving the various problems of a highly fragmented, operationally inefficient loyalty market, by consolidating the loyalty market to give brands and customers more value, qiibee was established back in 2015. Apart from providing a robust blockchain-agnostic protocol, qiibee streamlines the integration experience for brands by offering their API and dashboard, which have a direct impact on brands’ time and resources. In this sense, consolidating the loyalty market means creating an infrastructure that is based on the same foundation and enabling different loyalty program owners to either move their existing loyalty programs from off- to on-chain or create their own loyalty tokens and reward their loyal customers. The Journey Thus Far After pondering over various potential names, the team had decided to go with the name qiibee which was the combination of the Chinese word “qi” meaning life force, and the animal “bee”, both of which are important contributors for humanity. Following this, the company started its journey in the loyalty market with a multi-branded, multi-activity loyalty program which brands could use to reward their customers for activities such as shopping, or creating and engaging with content. Gabriele Giancola, CEO of qiibee, said: “Not only did we build a strong track record, an impressive customer base and establish valuable relationships with companies, but learned how to solve the problem of a highly fragmented and operationally inefficient loyalty market.” Founded in 2015 by Gabriele and Gianluca Giancola, the qiibee prototype was launched in late-2016 with 100,000 active customers in Switzerland, making up approximately 1% of all internet users in the Alpine nation. The Rise of qiibee “We adapted our service from a successful and simple off-chain application to a decentralized loyalty ecosystem, which benefits from the experience we have made with partnerships including Burger King and the Swiss Federal Railways (SBB),” he adds. “We believe that loyalty program owners, companies or developers should have the freedom to build a bespoke application that meets their needs. By using blockchain to create a distributed ledger to store all loyalty points, qiibee also increases security and eliminates a single point of failure,” he continued saying. Moreover, qiibee, the company behind the Crypto Valley’s first loyalty token and proof-of-concept: in April, rolled out its partnership with Lattesso — one of Switzerland’s leading cold coffee producers. This partnership was a huge success, with more than 10,000 new digital wallets created within the first month-and-a-half alone, and a total of two million redesigned cups distributed. On top of this, during a 24-hour campaign where people could earn double the amounts of crypto, Lattesso registered an increase in sales of 62% — clearly demonstrating that people value crypto rewards and that what qiibee is doing is generating resonance in the modern world. Standing apart from the Competitors Loyalty startups focus mainly on issuing a single loyalty “reward-currency”, to be used by all brands and to be part of a new eco-system. There also a few other projects, which also offer blockchain infrastructure for companies. The main difference between qiibee and the other projects is their execution. With a running product, first roll-outs completed and a sales pipeline full of companies, they are ready to scale their infrastructure and set the global standard for loyalty on the blockchain. With the qiibee app, customers will always have full control of and transparency about all their loyalty tokens. What is more, they have a larger set of options to choose from and a more convenient way of managing their loyalty points. Also, they are free to exit the ecosystem anytime and can participate in the crypto market without buying crypto with their own FIAT money. Gabriele sums it up by mentioning “We want to offer brands and customers the possibility to easily engage with blockchain technology, directly and indirectly, without the need for cost intensive integration for brands or an upfront investment for customers. By making the loyalty landscape more efficient for brands and user-friendly for customers, we are bringing blockchain to the mainstream. qiibee will set the global standard for loyalty on the blockchain and will be enabling companies all around the world to run its loyalty applications on the blockchain by offering cutting-edge solutions that are easy to use. Two Pioneering Leaders Gabriele is one of the Co-founders and the Chief Executive Officer at the blockchain-powered loyalty ecosystem named qiibee. The serial entrepreneur has co-founded multiple companies including gratis-auto.ch, a start-up focused on mobile outdoor advertising, and a mining farm with around 60 miners. Gabriele holds a Master’s in Business Management from the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland, and is ranked as one of the top five business schools in Europe. He along with Gianluca have shouldered the responsibilities of the company to lead it towards success and establish a name within the blockchain industry. The company’s other Co-founder, Gianluca Giancola is the CDO (Chief Design Officer) at blockchain-powered loyalty ecosystem qiibee. Responsible for creating a seamless user experience for both brands and customers, Gianluca holds a Masters in Graphic Design and Management from Istituto Europeo de Design (IED) Milan, regarded as the best design school in Italy. He co-founded his first business gratis-auto.ch in 2012, a start-up focused on mobile outdoor advertising, and has previously designed for Snips and the University of Basel. Gianluca currently serves as a Board Member of Triplo Sol, an investment and management company.