How Carrefour built their innovative cashback idea in just weeks by coupling with Swan

Find out how Swan helped Carrefour validate an innovative cashback method in less than 3 months.

Pico Petershagen & Sarah Wachter
April 13, 2022


Carrefour wanted to launch a cashback program for “Carrefour +” members. Before launching at scale, they needed to test their hypothesis without having to develop a complex system. They set out to look for the most resource-efficient solution that would still allow for a great user experience.


Carrefour set up Swan to handle payouts, and now reliably sends 15% cashback to “Carrefour +” subscribers, for all eligible purchases.


Through this test & learn approach, Carrefour validated their hypothesis and customer appetite for their cashback program. The cashback program augments customer experience while increasing average spend per customer. The approach is full of promise.

When Carrefour wanted to innovate, they needed a fintech partner that could move quickly.

Carrefour doesn’t need much of an intro, especially in Europe. It’s a multinational retail corporation and the 8th largest retailer in the world by revenue with presence across 30 countries. Carrefour is constantly seeking ways to further delight its customers and decided to launch Cashback as part of their “Carrefour +” program: customers receive 15% cashback on eligible purchases. But cashback isn’t the easiest thing in the world to set up: at every single checkout, you need to calculate the cash back value of purchases (only the eligible ones), and then reimburse customers. This means a lot of tiny extra payments to coordinate.

Carrefour built a cashback program fast, by partnering with Swan.

When Carrefour wanted to set up their cashback test, their tech agency, Matters, pointed them towards Swan, essentially saying, “Let’s use Swan to handle pay-out. It’s developer-friendly, we’ll be able to get this set up a lot faster.”

Strategic Project Directors Solène Wertans and Charlotte Lacombe were sold:

“We had a hypothesis to test, so we set about looking for an external solution in order to move quickly. We needed the most reactive, agile, adaptable option possible, and that’s why we chose Swan."

While Swan is younger and smaller than Carrefour, the startup has just as much reach, with banking features available across 30 countries. Thanks to its agility, Swan was able to exceed the expectations of Carrefour:

"Swan was really different from other players. The others described how Carrefour can adjust to fit their product. Swan flipped it around; Swan showed how their platform can fit into Carrefour’s plans. That was important to us."

A quick, smooth launch with no bugs at all.

When it came down to integration and setting up the project, Carrefour described a very smooth collaboration and integration process:

"Integration with the platform was super easy. Swan was reactive. They accompanied us really well, and there were no bugs at all. We’re 100 percent happy with Swan."

The project was built and launched at both physical sales points and online within just 3 months. It works exactly as planned, and excites customers.

To follow the project’s success, project managers use Swan’s interfaces to make sure everything is running smoothly:

"The platform is mega practical. Once integration was done, we have been using Swan’s ready-made interfaces to make sure everything works perfectly with our reimbursements. The UX is extremely smooth and all features are easy to use."

Swan was an accelerator to test financial services ultra quickly while maintaining top-notch customer experience.

With Swan, Carrefour was able to ideate, test, and launch its very own financial services within three months. Their customers were delighted, and average revenue per customer increased, as they had hoped:

"Swan was a real accelerator for us to be able to test something quickly without degrading the client experience. In the end, what I saw was Swan’s ultra reactivity and availability; they have a super quick approach. The partnership was a clear success, and we’re super happy with it. We completed our mission within 3 months, our clients are pleased, and the result is full of promise for the future."

Ready to embed banking services into your own product? Have a chat with our team to explore what you could build.

Pico Petershagen & Sarah Wachter
April 13, 2022
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