Burger company launches blockchain rewards program, stock soars

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The blockchain craze has made it to hamburgers and chicken wings.

Chanticleer Holdings, the owner of a number of burger restaurants including some Hooters restaurants, said on Tuesday it will begin offering its customer rewards program on blockchain technology.

Customers can generate rewards by eating at any of the company's restaurants and use the rewards for future burger purchases, or trade with other people. It will use MobivityMind, a blockchain commerce platform. The rewards or cryptocurrency will be called Merit.

"Use your Merit mined by eating at Little Big Burger to get a buffalo chicken sandwich at American Burger Co., or trade them with your vegan friend so he can get a veggie burger at BGR. And that's just the beginning," the company's CEO Michael D. Pruitt, said in a release.

Chanticleer Holdings stock rose almost 50% following news of its blockchain rewards program to almost $4 a share.

Related: Huh? Tea maker to become blockchain company. Stock soars

The burger company is the latest to take advantage of the cryptocurrency boom and integrate the blockchain into its name or business model.

Long Island Iced Tea Corp. recently changed its name to Long Blockchain Corp. and said it wanted to invest in blockchain technology. Its stock rose 200% on the news.

In December, Vapetek, makers of products for electronic cigarettes, renamed itself to Nodechain and said it would start mining cryptocurrencies. Biotech company Bioptix became Riot Blockchain in October, and began investing and mining digital currencies. Rich Cigars became Intercontinental Technology last month, and pivoted to the cryptocurrency business.

Chanticleer Holdings' move into blockchain continues a trend of small companies banking on crypto schemes to make money in the market -- one that seems will continue into 2018.

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