As the year comes to a close, it’s not just personal reflection that gives us pause. We are a company founded on innovation and to be that we must consistently assess our business practices and milestones to ensure we are on the right path. Our 2017 year in review proves that we are certainly headed in the right direction and very much looking forward to what 2018 will bring for our company and the industry as a whole.
- Business Continuity During Hurricane Irma
Hurricane Irma may have given us all a good scare but it certainly didn’t trip us up when it came to payments and maintaining outstanding levels of customer service. When you have headquarters in a place like Southwest Florida, it truly is like living in paradise most of the time, but you also have to be aware and plan for the fact that hurricanes are a real threat. When hurricane Irma hit, we launched an airtight business continuity plan that had been developed well in advance, allowing us to act quickly and prevent any downtime. Our Dallas office became our temporary headquarters to handle operations and our clients and vendors never missed a beat.
Business continuity is a proactive plan to avoid and mitigate risks associated with a disruption of operations. It details steps to be taken before, during, and after an event to maintain the financial viability of an organization. Disaster recovery is a reactive plan for responding after an event.
- Launch of our Online Booking Tool
In June, we announced our partnership with AmTrav, an established provider of corporate travel management solutions, bringing the benefits and security of our virtual credit card payments to the AmTrav online booking tool. This marriage of technology gives existing users of our virtual credit card instant access to a comprehensive and cost-effective travel management solution regardless of company size or industry. AmTrav’s online booking tool also pairs seamlessly with our mobile app which offers invaluable functionality and control to travelers after the booking process.
- Integration with Concur’s Compleat
In September, we announced the integration of our highly secure CSI virtual card with Concur’s Compleat, the customizable travel agency automation system. CSI is now directly integrated with Concur’s TravPay Module providing an additional automated payments option and virtual card product for procuring business travel expenses for TMC partners within the mid-office level.
“This integration underscores our position in the industry as a leading virtual card issuer,” said Juliann Pless, SVP, globalVCard Travel. “We are excited about this partnership and the opportunity to offer an advanced virtual card payment solution to hundreds of travel management companies worldwide that use Concur’s Compleat system.”
In July, CSI Kick Start announced its investment in ConnexPay LLC, a financial technology and global payments start-up which has designed a payments solution geared towards reducing risk and the cost of card acceptance within specific industry verticals such as travel and e-commerce. ConnexPay has created a consolidated merchant acquiring and virtual card issuing solution by leveraging the globalVCard virtual card issuing technology.
“We are extremely supportive of the integrated and streamlined business model that ConnexPay offers,” said Keith Stone, CEO, CSI Kick Start. “The success of this venture will be possible not only because of the passion, dedication, and willingness of Bob and his team to learn and solve critical industry challenges that were previously unaddressed, but also due to CSI Kick Start’s support. This business fits extremely well within CSI’s product and corporate culture and we are thrilled to welcome the new partnership with Bob and ConnexPay.”
- Visa Ready
In June, we announced that we were one of the first five companies to be recognized as Visa Ready for Business Solutions. Our integration with Visa’s business-to-business payment services is taking advantage of an API integration to link financial institutions with electronic AP tools they can provide to their own corporate customers.
- We’re in London!
In March, we opened a London office and launched services for the European Market as a major step in our global expansion. This opens new possibilities for American customers too: we now support multiple currencies to ensure that each client and their payees can choose their preferred currencies for their payments. With CSI’s Accounts Payable platform, our clients can send payments to suppliers across the globe, in multiple currencies.
- Partnership with Mutual of Omaha Bank
In August, we announced our expanded relationship with Mutual of Omaha Bank to provide virtual credit card and e-payment services to the bank’s corporate clients. The partnership involves integrating our white-labeled payments platform into Mutual of Omaha Bank’s website that allows the bank’s business clients to send automated, virtual payments to suppliers within seconds.
CSI and Mutual of Omaha Bank have developed and implemented the capability to issue and process virtual card supplier payments on both the Mastercard and Visa networks. The arrangement also enables Mutual of Omaha Bank to offer CSI paysystems integrated accounts payable (AP) technology and program management support to the bank’s corporate clients through direct referrals or via Mutual of Omaha Bank’s website.
CSI leverages Mutual of Omaha Bank’s card-issuing capabilities and credit facilities and is further expanding integration through data exchange via API. Mutual of Omaha Bank’s proven processes allowed CSI to quickly onboard its platform into the bank’s website.
- We’re in China!
In May, we expanded services to China and announced a partnership with Beijing-based E-Life Financial Holdings, a subsidiary of HNA Group. Together, CSI and E-Life will offer Chinese companies electronic supplier payments at an affordable cost.
CSI will use the payment issuance capacity of E-Life for in-country payments and direct settlements through all major banks in China, allowing the company to manage batch payments in one portal. Clients choose CSI for its automated, paperless payments platform, which allows multinational corporations to have the control and visibility in a single platform.
“Expansion into China is a natural progression for CSI as our Chinese and multinational clients see strong demand from the $1.8 trillion Chinese internet finance market,” said Jia Liu, VP of International Payments, CSI. “China’s FinTech industry is rapidly outpacing any other market in the world, and our clients need seamless, central visibility, and customer service there.”
- Power2Change Foundation’s Ramp Up
The first full year of our foundation made a huge impact. The Power2Change Foundation donated over $300,000 and influenced over 3,000 youth with over 500 hours of community service. We also established a key national partnership with Design for Change, impacting thousands of kids across the USA and the world. In addition, we were very focused on hurricane recovery support after Hurricane Irma devastated Puerto Rico and impacted the state of Florida.