US digital wallet giant, the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX), has reinforced its position in the mobile payment sector by securing another batch of big brands to back its plans.

MCX, which acts as a mobile payment solution offering a new platform for smartphone-based payments, was created in 2012 by merchants including Walmart, Target, Best Buy Co and 7-Eleven.

In its quest to provide a widely accepted, customer-focused and secure mobile-commerce solution, MCX has announced a string of new merchants that have signed up to the forthcoming innovative payment method.

Southwest Airlines, the parent company of Chili’s Grill & Bar and Maggiano’s Little Italy; Brinker International, Pacific Convenience & Fuels LLC, and RaceTrac are some of the latest companies to sign up.

These brands join other recently added firms including Dick’s Sporting Goods, Hobby Lobby Stores, Meijer, QuikTrip and Wawa – which were announced in January, as part of MCX’s venture.

Competitive Mobile-Payments

MCX goes head-to head with near field communication (NFC) mobile payment rival Google Wallet; which allows users to store debit, credit, gift and loyalty cards, among other things on their smartphones.

Other US players hot on the digital wallet scene include Visa with its digital wallet, Mastercard’s MasterPass and the PayPal digital wallet.

Treasurer at Southwest Airlines, Chris Monroe, said: “Southwest supports efforts to bring a competitive mobile-payments network to the market that also protects consumer and merchant data.”

Initially, MCX’s mobile wallet will be primarily barcode and cloud-based, offering consumers a personalised payment experience integrated with participating merchant offers, promotions, loyalty and location-based services.

A statement on MCX’s website says that development of the mobile application is underway and that the application will be available through ‘virtually any smartphone’.

The companies which back Texas-based MCX collectively operate 80,000 stores and process more than $1 trillion in payments annually. broke the initial news of MCX’s venture in August last year.