Square inks deal with Harvey Norman and readies to bring more products Down Under

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Payments provider Square is expanding its reach into regional Australia by adding Harvey Norman to its list of retail partners.

Business owners will now be able to purchase the US company’s mobile payment device, the Square Reader, from 90 Harvey Norman stores across the country and through Harvey Norman online, as part of a partnership between the two businesses announced today.

Square introduced the debit and credit card reader in Australia in March this year, having launched its dashboard app locally in July 2015.

Including the Harvey Norman network, the Square Reader is now available from more than 600 retail outlets across the country, including Apple, Officeworks and Bunnings stores, and directly from Square online.

The Square Reader retails for $19 and all card transactions attract a processing fee of 1.9%, with businesses receiving deposits from Square into their bank accounts the following business day.

The Harvey Norman deal helps broaden’s Square reach into regional areas, Square Australia country manager Ben Pfisterer tells SmartCompany.

“Our main aim is to be as accessible to as many businesses as possible,” he says.

“Harvey Norman has a fantastic footprint … and a regional footprint too. That’s one of our areas of growth – we want to offer a solution to regional small businesses too.”

Pfisterer is not ruling out any further partnerships with other retailers, saying Square has been approached by multiple brands since introducing the device into the local market.

“We’re always looking for opportunities,” he says.

“Our main aim is to have good distribution with trusted brands.”

More Square products on the way

Square was founded in 2009 by Jack Dorsey and Jim McKelvey and the listed company currently has a market capitalisation of approximately US$3.11 billion ($4 billion).

While Pfisterer does not disclose the volume of payments currently processed by Square merchants in Australia or the exact number of the merchants, he says the Square Reader is being used by “thousands” of small businesses across the country.

It’s a result Pfisterer describes as “humbling”, given the devices have been available locally for three months.

“You never know until you launch,” he says.

Pfisterer says the focus at Square is being able to “continually innovate” and for the Australian market, that means introducing more products. While the details of those products are being kept under wraps, Pfisterer says the launches will involve both hardware and software.

“In the US market we have a really strong suite of products,” Pfisterer says.

“We want to roll out as many products [in Australia] as quickly as we can, but we also don’t want to rush it.”

Visiting Australia in April, Square co-founder Jack Dorsey said Australia is a key market for the global company.

“Australia has always been interesting to us as a company because we have known it to be a market and nation of entrepreneurs, people who take risks, who use technology to make lives better and to focus on what’s most meaningful to them,” Dorsey said.

This article was first published on SmartCompany.

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Eloise Keating is the editor of SmartCompany. Previously, Eloise was news editor at Books+Publishing, the trade press for the Australian book industry.
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