Corporate Purchasing

Corporate Purchasing

Purchasing Cards are issued to employees who make purchases on behalf of their company/organisation. The company guarantees the card and pays the administration costs. In return they have a paperless mechanism for tracking the purchase made by their employees.

These Purchasing Cards are linked to special accounts that produce detailed statements containing full line item detail. These statements are acceptable by Customs and Excise for VAT reporting. They are also used for submission of expense reports. Both of these uses reduce the amounts of administration associated with business purchasing.

Purchasing cards are also referred to as Corporate Cards. If your staff regularly incur business travel and entertainment expenses in the UK or whilst abroad - and if they need detailed management reporting - this is the card for your company.

Line Item Detail


VISA and MasterCard have defined three different levels of data capture and reporting for credit card transactions:

Level 1 is a traditional credit card transaction, usually including either address verification information or card swipe data.

Level 2 adds a few additional elements to the data that is captured as part of a Level 1 transaction (usually tax information and an invoice number). Information about Level 2 transactions is reported back to the company or institution that made the original purchase. This data can be used by that entity to sort, reconcile and report transactions.

Level 3 Line Item Detail is the highest of the three levels of data capture defined by Visa and MasterCard for credit card transactions. It applies only to corporate purchasing card transactions, and incorporates item by item descriptions of each component of the purchase, including full VAT details.

The company originating the transaction receives a monthly report of all captured information from their card issuer. This forms a consolidated VAT report containing all the information contained in a VAT receipt. For all transactions, irrespective of value, it eliminates the need for purchasers to collect and submit conventional VAT invoices for VAT reclamation. The data can also be used to sort, reconcile and report transactions.

The monthly consolidated VAT report is also available in electronic format, making it possible for order reconciliation, VAT reclamation and accounting to be automated. This is the level that MasterCard Payment Gateway Services supports.

Acquiring Banks


MasterCard Payment Gateway Services are currently accredited to process Corporate Purchasing Card transactions with Royal Bank of Scotland Group (NatWest Streamline), Barclaycard Merchant Services and American Express. The process of converting XML requests to the format required by the acquirers is proven and dependable. That means your own accreditation process should be smooth and uneventful.

What cards can the service process?


The MasterCard Payment Gateway Services Corporate Purchasing Card service can process all Visa Purchasing Cards, including the UK Government Procurement Cards. It does not currently support the processing of non-Visa purchasing cards.