- In a bid to tackle “hidden” payment processing fees that plague restaurant operators, tech giant Oracle this week launched a flat-rate payment software service that allows U.S. restaurant operators to accept all major payment options, including contactless methods, according to a Tuesday news release.
- The new food and beverage payment service, integrated with Oracle’s Simphony point-of-sale system, operates on the company’s cloud infrastructure. “All transactional and payment data is directly imported into a single analytics dashboard so that restaurants can forecast revenue, profits, and cash flow accurately and in real-time,” the release said.
- Oracle is partnering with Dutch payments processor Adyen to enable the service. A key feature of the new service is that it’s available at a fixed rate, regardless of consumer payment methods, without additional fees, a long contract or a monthly minimum volume, the release said.
Oracle is a sizable player in the restaurant point-of-sale market. Thousands of large and small restaurant operators globally use its software and hardware, with its restaurant technology handling about $150 billion in transactions annually, according to the Austin-based company. Chains such as Starbucks, Dunkin’ Brands, Sonic and Pret A Manger employ its Simphony POS platform.
The new service will help restaurateurs manage everything from payments to menus to profit margins. "Hidden fees and long-term contracts have long been an issue with payment processors in the food and beverage industry with many providers capitalizing at the expense of independent operators who often already run on thin margins," Oracle’s senior vice president of food and beverage, Simon de Montfort Walker, said in the release. "With the Oracle Payment Cloud Service's transparent fixed 'pay-as-you-go' pricing model we have eliminated those concerns.”
By partnering with Dutch payments processor Adyen for the new service, Oracle can pitch itself to restaurants “as a one-stop-shop,” because it removes an operator’s need to work with other payment providers, said Dorothy Creamer, senior research analyst at research firm IDC, said in an email.
Adyen, which has targeted North America for growth, also counts Boston-based restaurant payments company Toast as a customer.
Oracle’s payments cloud service allows U.S. restaurants to accept debit and credit cards in addition to Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay.
The COVID-19 pandemic propelled the move toward faster, contactless payments like mobile wallets, and businesses have had to evolve their payment acceptance abilities to keep up with changing customer preferences.
Although many customers aren’t aware of the different ways payment methods or charges are settled, costs associated with each transaction “can add up quickly” for restaurant operators, said Creamer, whose area of focus is hospitality and travel digital transformation strategies. But restaurants want to give customers payment choice, especially as travel picks back up, she noted.
“Typically, operators needed to work with their payment processing partners to enable these payment methods,” Creamer said. “With a point-of-sale partner taking this on, it’s helpful for organizations that don’t have the time or staff to monitor and streamline these considerations in the best interest of their business or to the best, most profitable outcome.”
Oracle’s cloud infrastructure also is compliant with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, per the release. The new service is “not obligatory,” and Oracle will still offer its customers an open platform and support other payment providers, de Montfort Walker said via email.
Oracle faces plenty of competition in the restaurant payments arena, including from Toast, NCR, Block-owned Square and Shift4. This week, another rival, Sausalito, California-based restaurant software and payments company VividPayments, announced its point-of-sale system for smart devices, per a release.