Citigroup Inc. on Monday unveiled commercial card features aimed at giving companies more control over meeting and event spending.
The Citi Meeting Card's capabilities include a declining balance function that deducts the amount of credit available on specific accounts as purchases are made.
Instead of resetting a card balance when a payment is made, the balance continues to decrease as a commercial cardholder makes purchases for specific events.
"The balance would continue to come down each month, and only the amount left from the original allocation could be used by the meeting planner," Paul Horn, global product manager for commercial cards at Citi, said in an interview. The feature had been available to U.S. commercial customers for several years but has since been rolled out to all commercial customers globally, he said.
The Citi card's new features also let commercial customers generate virtual-card accounts in real time for specific projects and events, and can integrate with clients' meetings management software.
"We know this is a very large purchasing category and one more often than not that doesn't have a lot of visibility and control," Horn said.
The New York banking company had been working to develop commercial card features for the last couple of years, "but the downturn in the economy and the pullback in spending on meetings and events" prompted Citi to speed up its deployment, he said.
With spending in these categories increasing again, "the time seems right for us to launch into market with our new global solution," Horn said.