NEW YORK & COLOGNE, Germany--(BUSINESS WIRE)--HRS, the leading global corporate lodging platform, has announced the signing of a global partnership with Citi to serve corporate lodging programs. Building on award-winning success, the companies will now collaborate on offering lodging and associated payment services to the travel programs of Fortune 500 companies.
As managed travel programs re-launch, an increasing number of companies are turning to centralized and virtual payment technologies to drive more accurate, streamlined and secure processes for travelers. The other relevant benefit: these payment options also eliminate the need for travelers to interact with the front desk at hotels for payment-related functions, minimizing these typically close engagements. By offering significant advancements in fully-automated invoice collection and reconciliation, the partnership stands to help corporations maximize use of preferred suppliers while easing the burdens of legacy expense reporting on travelers and corporate accounting offices.
Technical highlights of the partnership include:
- Citi providing its Virtual Card Account offering in 46 markets, including Brazil, China, India and Russia;
- HRS fully embeds those into B2B travel booking processes to provide Virtual Credit Cards to any accommodation provider worldwide for payment;
- HRS uses its AI-powered invoice engine to collect, audit, correct and provide hotel invoices to corporate clients, enhancing data transparency and making detailed metrics available to joint customers, and
- Citi providing its billing and data capabilities to allow seamless integration into existing accounting processes.
The two companies are well-positioned to seize upon this trend and help companies gain from refined payment technologies. Citi Commercial Cards are used by clients in 100+ countries, offered in 66 currencies and supports over 25,000 global commercial cards programs and 6 million cardholders on a daily basis. HRS’ Lodging as a Service platform is used by more than one-third of Fortune 500 companies, automating the entire procure-to-payment process on a global scale. Citi and HRS already work together to serve mutual clients in APAC, the Americas and EMEA.
“HRS has demonstrated passion for excellence in client experience, deep expertise of the travel ecosystem and a culture of innovation to challenge the status-quo during our initial engagements over the past 12 months,” said Trudy Curtis, EMEA Head of Commercial Cards at Citi. “Coming out of the pandemic, global corporations are keen to upscale their employees’ travel experience while actively looking at technology to do-away with legacy inefficient back-end processes. HRS’ expertise in providing next-gen traveler services - coupled with Citi’s state-of-the art payments infrastructure - are geared to help our clients achieve that ambition while delivering tangible savings in the process.’’
“The possibilities for automated payment are immense in today’s unique environment,” said Tobias Ragge, CEO of HRS. “Payment efficiencies drive an easier, more seamless experience for everyday business travelers, while also advancing lodging program priorities that are vital to the C-suite. We are proud to collaborate with a global champion like Citi that shares our belief in the power of platform-based payment automation to advance travel management.”
HRS is revolutionizing managed lodging programs for corporations, hotels and business travelers worldwide with its proprietary technology and expertise. The company is committed to facilitating safety, savings, security, satisfaction and sustainable hotel options for its global client roster. Leveraging its unique Lodging as a Service platform, HRS oversees the totality of corporate hotel programs for its clients, from initial procurement and rate assurance to booking, virtual payment and expense management. With more than 70,000 hotels joining HRS’ Clean & Safe Protocol in 2020, and the recently launched Green Stay Initiative, the company provides newly-prioritized information on key decision factors impacting post-pandemic travel. The company’s data-driven solutions deliver savings and performance for corporations across all hotel categories, including transient, meetings and long-stay lodging scenarios – all while digitizing processes on the hotel side for a better traveler experience. Founded in 1972, HRS today works with 35 percent of the global Fortune 500, as well as the world’s leading hotel chains, regional hospitality groups and independent hotels. More information at www.hrs.com/enterprise.