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First Data Corporation, a provider of electronic commerce and payment processing, has announced its acquisition of Perka, a provider of a smart loyalty programs.

Perka is a mobile marketing and consumer loyalty platform that aims to help small to medium-sized merchants engage their customers with location-based smartphone apps. The Perka Punchcard service and Perka Flexpoints for retail stores and restaurants deliver sustainable, personal marketing and incentive programs to consumers, a news release said. The cloud-hosted platform features merchant-validated transactions, triggered offers, mobile messaging, and retail customer relationship data for the merchant.

"The loyalty industry is rapidly moving from being proprietary and closed to open and interconnected. This shift opens up tremendous opportunities for small and mid-sized businesses to run virtually the same mobile marketing programs as major brands," said Alan Chung, CEO of Perka. "We're excited to join forces with First Data to revolutionize the loyalty space and level the playing ground for smaller merchants with the Perka platform."

Perka became a First Data subsidiary on Oct. 4 and continues to operate autonomously as an innovative entrepreneurial company led by its current management and product development team. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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