by Donna M. Airoldi | November 10, 2010

Staples Inc. has chosen digital gifting and incentive company CashStar's technology platform to power its new foray into electronic gift cards. Retail customers of the massive office products supplier can now order and send online e-gift-cards, which can be personalized with a message or photo.

“Staples strives to make buying office products easy, and our digital gift card program is no exception,” says Allison Ledoux, senior manager of Staples Gift Cards. “With CashStar’s platform, we can provide a convenient and highly personalized gift card option for our customers.”

In addition to personalizing their orders, customers can select the card denomination and set the day and time the gift should be delivered via email—either instantly or at a later date. The e-card then can be printed at home and redeemed at any Staples store location; there are no fees or expiration dates for the products.

One downside of the new service is that the cards cannot yet be redeemed online—that option will be made available in 2011, said a CashStar spokesperson. Another is that for now Staples is offering the e-card option for retail customers only, not its incentive and corporate clients.

“With our gifting platform, Staples can maximize the potential of its digital gift card program just in time for the holiday season and beyond,” says David Stone, CEO of the Portland, ME-based CashStar. “Digital gift cards provide a highly personal and cost-effective option for retailers like Staples who are looking to provide a convenient gifting option for its customers. We are thrilled to team with Staples to help them take advantage of this growing and innovative gifting category.”