Lightspeed launches into subscription space with new recurring payments product

Lightspeed

Montreal-based Lightspeed has launched a new subscription-based offering that allows retailers using Lightspeed Payments in North America to collect recurring revenue through their point-of-sale system.

The new offering, called Lightspeed Subscriptions, is aimed to give retailers the tools to set up and manage recurring monthly billing, which can come from shipping monthly packages or collecting membership fees. The new solution is intended to handle the process of payment collection for in-store retailers.

“We’re equipping merchants with an exciting new service that promises a source of uninterrupted revenue and will continue to fuel their businesses.”
– Dax Dasilva

The product is an add-on module to Lightspeed Retail and can be set up and managed from within Lightspeed’s existing POS platform. Through its subscriptions module, Lightspeed claims to store credit card information securely for future automatic sales with customer consent.

The subscription product is currently only available to retailers. However, Lightspeed plans to roll out Lightspeed Subscriptions for eCommerce at a later, unspecified date.

Lightspeed’s most recent quarterly financial results indicated a shift from retail to e-commerce in its own business activity, driven in large part by the COVID-19 pandemic. CEO Dax Dasilva said in a recent statement to BetaKit this latest software is targeted toward key retail verticals that are the core of Lightspeed’s customer base. These include apparel, toy, pet, and electronic segments, as they can launch new products or specialty items each month.

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“While we have seen a surge in customers adopting e-commerce, we also launched Lightspeed Subscriptions intentionally to support SMBs and local businesses who are seeing consumers in-store,” Dasilva told BetaKit.

The company said the timing of this launch is aimed to support these sorts of retailers during the approaching holiday shopping season, at a time when 34 percent of consumers are indicating they would pay more for local products due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’re approaching a fundamentally different 2020 holiday sales season, and local retailers need to gear up for a dramatic shift in shopping habits,” Dasilva said. “With this in mind, we’re equipping merchants with an exciting new service that promises a source of uninterrupted revenue and will continue to fuel their businesses into the New Year.”

Lightspeed is one of several retail tech companies offering retail customers the ability to set up and manage recurring orders and subscriptions. Amazon Pay gives merchants a single view of all of their buyer subscriptions and recurring payments, in which merchants can review, modify, and cancel any of them.

Shopify also offers an app to merchants for recurring payments and orders, and offers a Shopify Plus solution created by Manitoba tech startup Bold Commerce, which allows merchants to set up and manage subscription programs.

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Dasilva claimed what distinguishes Lightspeed’s subscription offering is that it integrates into merchants’ existing Lightspeed Retail software in-store, rather than just online.

“Lightspeed Payments supports the new module so that incoming recurring payments for retailers are automatic and uninterrupted,” the CEO added.

Lightspeed recently debuted on the New York Stock Exchange (making it a dual-listed public company), raising $397.7 million USD through an initial public offering. Speaking with BetaKit at the time of its debut, Dasilva said the pandemic has given Lightspeed an opportunity to take advantage of the shift to omnichannel commerce, meaning both in-store and e-commerce.

Dasilva also noted that the success of Lightspeed Capital and Lightspeed Payments was a key reason the company decided to list in the US at the time.

This latest solution also follows several other recently-launched Lightspeed features for retailers such as Mobile Tap, Digital Wallet, and Analytics Core. The company also partnered with Stripe earlier this year to begin offering loans to retailers and restaurateurs in Canada and the United States.

Image courtesy Lightspeed.

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Writer, globetrotter, drone pilot & David Attenborough enthusiast