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Amex Teams With Emburse to Offer Virtual Card Issuance

business traveler

American Express (Amex) has teamed with travel and expense software provider Emburse.

According to an Amex news release on Tuesday (May 21), customers can now connect their card programs to Emburse Spend to issue virtual cards, a payment option that replaces a physical card number with a digital card number. The program is designed for American Express business, corporate and corporate purchasing card customers that want a single solution for virtual card issuance, card reconciliation and expense management.

“Embedding American Express payments in Emburse Spend improves automation, strengthens controls and compliance, and boosts employee productivity,” said Widad Chaoui, Amex’s vice president of corporate solutions product management. “We’re seeing businesses benefit from the transparency and enhanced security of virtual cards, which are quickly becoming an integral form of payments.”

PYMNTS explored this trend in a report earlier this week, with virtual cards becoming an increasingly prominent payment mechanism in the B2B space.

“We think virtual cards are really at a tipping point,” Paul Christensen, founder and CEO of Previse, said in an interview with PYMNTS.

He noted that as the value proposition around their use changes, larger suppliers and more businesses have loosened their stance and become more amenable to accepting virtual cards for B2B payments.

“There are trillions of dollars that are going to move to virtual cards in the next two, three, four, five years,” Christensen added. “It is 2024, and we are still licking stamps and putting checks in the mail — that’s mad.”

“The companies that aren’t embracing virtual cards or B2B payments innovations will be the ones that fall behind,” ConnexPay Founder and CEO Bob Kaufman told PYMNTS in March. “The suppliers that are not as flexible and willing to embrace these new forms of payments are going to lose business, while the buyers who are not using them are losing revenue, which results in them not being as competitive in their space.”

Emburse’s partnership with American Express comes one week after the company announced new capabilities that let business travelers receive automated notifications when there is a better rate available at their hotel or at comparable lodgings.

“Enterprise travel leaders are facing increasing pressure on their travel budgets, so are looking for new ways to make their budgets go further, without degrading the traveler experience,” Steve Reynolds, general manager of Emburse’s travel division, said in the news release.

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