Mastercard Launches Mobile Virtual Cards for Corporate Clients

The new mobile card allows companies to track and fund contactless employee spending remotely and securely.

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Need to Know 

  • In its next move to support its members amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Mastercard has launched a mobile virtual credit card for corporate clients whose teams work remotely.
  • The new card can be used to manage and fund corporate expenses for remote workers, contractors, and even interview candidates.
  • Mastercard is the latest of a number of major payments networks that have launched virtual credit cards, among other virtual solutions, in the wake of the pandemic.

Analysis

In partnership with Global Payments company TSYS and Extend, Mastercard has launched a mobile virtual credit card solution. The new virtual card allows for secure, contactless payments for work and business expenses and can be used directly through digital wallets such as Mastercard’s MasterPass.

Given the rise of employees working from home due to the pandemic, managing work-related expenses remotely has become a bit more complicated. Mastercard’s new virtual card is a differentiator because it can be loaded to a mobile wallet to be used online or at physical point-of-sale terminals. 

“Now, more than ever, companies are looking for flexible, virtual payment solutions,” said Ron Shultz, EVP, New Payments Business, North America at Mastercard. “By providing a truly virtual end-to-end solution for generating virtual commercial cards and taking them mobile, we’re helping businesses streamline their expense processes while providing employees with fast, simple and secure ways to pay.”

The new card “uses Mastercard Digital Enablement Services (MDES) to tokenize virtual card numbers (VCNs) for secure mobile payments. MDES turns card numbers into tokens that become useless to fraudsters and eliminates the frustration of manually updating card numbers.” 

Businesses can assign a single-use or multi-use card to employees to easily fund and manage corporate expenses. 

The mobile virtual card also allows companies to manage employee spending with set controls such as specific time frames, amounts, and approved merchant categories. Cards can also be issued to interview candidates or contract workers to cover the costs of travel or supplies. 

Explained Scot Yarbrough, SVP of TSYS Issuer Solutions, “[Managers] can understand from a trip-level, or an expense-level, exactly what is required on behalf of the contractor or the employee and the corporation. They’re therefore able to create a payment journey that best fits the requirement of that transaction.”

Virtual payment options have grown in popularity in recent years, but even more so this year, due to the increased need for remote and contactless payments. Mastercard competitors like Visa, Wells Fargo, and American Express have all launched virtual credit cards this year.

Mastercard has launched a number of other virtual solutions recently to support customers throughout the pandemic. 

Mastercard partnered with Stride to offer new medical insurance benefits to gig workers who are Mastercard holders. And last month, the payments company unveiled a new AI-powered security tool to help banks “identify and prioritize threats to their cyber networks.”

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