January 25, 2002, 12:00 AM

Another C-store chain puts stock in web-enabled kiosks

7-Eleven is rolling out web-enabled kiosks at 89 stores in Texas and Florida to give customers more convenience-oriented services. Web-surfing will take a back seat to providing financial services for now, the company says.

7-Eleven is rolling out what it calls its Vcom web-enabled kiosks at 89 stores in Texas and Florida to give customers more convenience-oriented services. But web-surfing will take a back seat to providing financial services for now, the company says. C-store chain Circle K also is installing web-enabled kiosks in stores.

7-Eleven’s initial kiosk functions--provided in conjunction with Certegy Check Services, American Express Co., Verizon and Western Union--will include ATM cash dispensing, check cashing, money order purchases and money transfers. The web capabilities will initially allow users to access travel directions and maps, weather, news and winning lottery ticket information. Future applications include bill payment, event ticketing, advertising, loans, credit card sign up, stored value services and eventually telephone services and online shopping.

The company says it wants to build on its financial services reputation first and develop a kiosk infrastructure before adding online shopping or portal access to the kiosks. 7-Eleven stores sell $4 billion in money orders each year and has ATM transaction volume of 100 million per year. 7-Eleven expects to do a national rollout to 5,200 remaining U.S. stores later this year. NCR Corp. is providing the kiosk hardware and installation.

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