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CBORD’s UGryd expanding reach of campus card

FREE webinar details new features, showcases Vanderbilt’s off-campus program

Andrew Hudson   ||   May 17, 2019  ||   ,

For those familiar with the CBORD suite, UGryd won’t be a new name. The company’s commerce solution, UGryd is now operating at 250 sites across the country. What is new, however, are a host of features that make expanding the campus card's reach to more third-party providers a reality.

CBORD has been hard at work to better engage with third-party apps with the goal of accepting the campus card as a form of payment. “Think of our Commerce API as the means to expand to third parties that operate in areas like payment kiosks, ticket sales, bookstore merchants, national food and beverage brands, rideshare partners and laundry providers,” says Sami Takieddine, Director of Platform Operations & Patron Engagement at CBORD.

“We’ve gotten smart on our Commerce API side about working with partners,” adds Takieddine. “We have our own services that we believe offer the best value, of course, but if our customers are using a specific third-party product, then there’s typically a reason and we need to listen to that.”

The new additions to UGryd will be discussed in greater detail in an upcoming CBORD webinar entitled “Extend Your Campus Card Program” on Wednesday May, 29 at 2:00 PM EST.

Webinar attendees will hear from Takieddine about the UGryd commerce solution, how it enables campus card holders to make purchases with off-campus merchants, vending machines, on-campus food kiosks, and now at vendors in athletic venues.

Also presenting on the webinar will be Mark Brown, Director of Business Services Technology at Vanderbilt University, who will detail how the UGryd program has taken off in Vandy’s surrounding city of Nashville.

Powered by UGryd, Vanderbilt’s self-op dining services inculcates the local merchant community via the “Taste of Nashville” program. The program sets aside a part of student funds strictly for use at participating Taste of Nashville merchants.

“I think the way that Vanderbilt has structured their off-campus program is ingenious and provides a very student-centric approach to dining,” says Takieddine. “They’re bridging the gap between the local community and students, and actually encouraging students to patronize partnering off-campus merchants as opposed to keeping those funds strictly at on-campus locations.”

Bridging gaps

CR80News recently caught up with Takieddine to discuss some of the new UGryd features ahead of the webinar.

“We’re reimagining what we’ve known previously as an off-campus program,” says Takieddine. “We’re that bridge that links the merchant and the payment equipment, and that network has grown now to nearly 4,000 individual merchants coast to coast.”

Panera Bread is the most recent of CBORD’s partnerships, as part of a process that sees a merchant work with the card system vendor to be certified to accept the student ID card for payment.

With Panera, CBORD is integrated at the on-campus café kiosks to accept the campus card for payment. “The next phase will be acceptance at standard POS registers, and the final step will be campus card acceptance through the Panera Bread mobile app,” says Takieddine.

Another of CBORD’s key partnerships is with Tapingo. “Tapingo’s transactions are 100% on campus right now, and we’ve got about 50 UGryd campus clients that are using Tapingo today,” says Takieddine. “Tapingo has been great to work with because they’re very complex and what they do at each university is unique.”

A new move to concessions

Another exciting addition to the UGryd service is a new partnership with POS provider, Bypass. The relationship is opening up new opportunities for universities to leverage the campus card in athletics concessions.

“Any campus that deploys Bypass as their concessions POS readers -- whether handheld or fixed terminals -- all of those units can now accept the campus card as a form of payment,” says Takieddine. “For this integration, there is no GET requirement, all the campus would need is UGryd to support campus card payments through Bypass hardware.”

UGryd also helps universities navigate campus card acceptance in vending.

“Over 100 of our sites have deployed UGryd to help maximize cellular vending,” says Takieddine. “It’s effortless for campuses, it doesn’t cost the university anything, and in many cases can increase vending revenue because you’re adding the campus card as another payment method.”

Ultimately, the refinements to UGryd are about expanding the way campuses can conduct business via the campus card.

“We believe that if we can engage with third-party providers, then it just makes for a better solution for our customer,” says Takieddine. “We’re consciously working to be more accessible to our customers and be collaborative with their third-party integrations in a way that ultimately benefits the campus and its students.”

For all the details on the UGryd commerce solution, CBORD’s growing partnerships with national brands, and Vanderbilt’s Taste of Nashville program, tune in for the free “Extend Your Campus Card Program” webinar on Wednesday May, 29 at 2:00 PM EST.

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