“Given the global nature of Destinations of the World’s operations, it was essential that any solution incorporated FX capabilities as we wanted to reduce our FX risk,” explains Keith Fernandez, Founder and CEO.
In addition, the company sought to improve its control and reduce the potential for fraud. Flexible reporting capabilities were also required in order to improve efficiency and compliance.
To overcome this challenge Destinations of the World selected Citi’s Virtual Card Account solution. This provides a real-time link to Citi’s systems, allowing easy access to Virtual Card Accounts. When Destinations of the World needs to purchase a hotel booking it enters the necessary information into its front-end tool, which automatically pulls a card number, expiration and CVV2 card verification value from Citi’s systems.
Virtual cards can be raised in 14 currencies, reducing the FX risk for the company and offering the flexibility to purchase foreign currency at the best rates to settle its monthly statements with Citi. Destinations of the World has control over the dates when the card number can be processed, the amount authorised, and the merchant that can authorise the payment. This gives it the protection and control it needs to limit fraud or incorrect charges.
Each card is also tagged with extra data associated with the flight or hotel information which is then fed back to Destinations of the World’s systems once the card transaction is completed. This data enables easy reconcilement of payments across the company’s supplier base. Furthermore, the Citi Virtual Card Account solution is simple to use and provides bespoke reporting capabilities, helping to improve compliance.
Best practice and innovation
The project has been delivered without the disruption and need for retraining that would normally accompany a new solution. Instead, the functionality of the virtual card solution has been seamlessly integrated into Destinations of the World’s proprietary front-end tool. Most importantly, the solution includes a fully-integrated FX capability across 14 currencies in 13 countries in Europe and the Middle East, with further expansion across multiple Asian markets planned this year.