In 1987, Patrick Hong launched BankCard Services, which is headquartered in the South Bay region of Los Angeles County. Founded to meet the needs of the Korean American niche, BankCard Services has since grown to serve a multi-ethnic market through its 14 U.S. locations. It now targets Asian-American businesses, which are mostly Korean, Chinese, Japanese or Vietnamese owned.
Since 2007, the enterprise has developed custom technologies to assist merchants with proprietary gift card and POS programs – an evolution that led to the launch of a subsidiary, NAVYZEBRA, in 2014. "We wanted to separate the bank card aspect from the business solutions," said Young Lee, the company's director of sales operations. "It was too generic and limiting, and we wanted our merchants to know we offer more."
According to Lee, card processing companies had become a commodity, and several changes were happening in the market. "Merchants started to demand POS systems, and we wanted to shift our company focus from payment cards to software-as-a-service," he said. "By changing the mantra of our company with NAVYZEBRA, we were a solutions company that became a tech company, and we could hire developers and offer innovative solutions to merchants."
The business specializes in POS systems for restaurants, retailers, salons, nonprofits and online stores, offering 365-day, 24-hour customer service assistance in four languages.
NAVYZEBRA's website indicates its goal "is to always have a solution." The site further promises, "No matter what you need, we will offer it for you or create a customized plan to suit your business. No one will be turned away, and no one will ever hear us say, 'We can't do that'."
The company's product set includes POS, web, online ordering, finance, marketing, and digital commerce solutions, as well as custom software integration services and bank card processing.
"We've been developing POS software and quick-serve-restaurant (QSR) solutions since 2014," said Glen Lim, the company's director of technical support. "In 2016, we developed customized spa and online ordering solutions, and launched an Android-based QSR solution in 2017."
According to Lim, these solutions weren't new to the industry, but the company incorporated new quick response (QR) and near field communication (NFC) technologies. "None of the existing solutions had these technologies in their processing systems," he said. "We used the QR code to get a quick order from the POS system and customers could order at the table from their own phone."
Lim indicated NAVYZEBRA also implemented an NFC system where tables are tracked to help restaurants locate what table the orders came from. Young Park, the company's POS solutions specialist, added, "We implemented a lot of technologies that weren't being used five years ago into the POS to quicken the payment process."
"We also added a headquarter system for franchises and multi-locations to compare store-by-store data and a hierarchy model where food courts can be linked to one app to create a marketplace," Lim noted. "People don't have to use ten different apps to order from ten different stores." According to Lim, this technology can also be used more widely. "Any food or goods from any store or restaurant can be linked into the marketplace app," he said.
NAVYZEBRA will launch a self-order kiosk solution in November 2019 and a food locker application for online and mobile orders in the first half of 2020. "Instead of waiting for servers to give the food, we're working on a food locker solution where customers scan a QR code to show the order is paid," said Lim.
In the latter part of 2020, Lim said, his company also "wants to implement facial recognition." And, it is actively networking and seeking partnerships. "We're ready to partner with different industries and companies in our industry," stated Lee. "We want to extend our 'Customer is King' model to partners by offering competitive residuals and bonus plans."
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