12/17/2007 — Find out how Daniels' Foods streamlined paperwork and kept tight control of employee expenditures while earning valuable rewards on products and services.
Daniels' Foods, headquartered in Walworth, Wis., is the parent company of six Sentry Foods supermarkets clustered around the Lake Geneva resort area in southern Wisconsin.
A handful of Daniels' Foods 450 employees hold MasterCard Executive BusinessCard® cards to use for travel purposes — spending about $100,000 per month. By taking advantage of the MasterCard Commercial Card Program, the company, which has annual revenues of $45 million, has been able not only to reduce paperwork but also to take advantage of customer rewards.
The Initial Steps
As the business continued to grow during the past 75 years, so did the number of purchases, bills, and checks that the company produced. Fifteen years ago, company officials began looking at ways to reduce paperwork and pay all their bills at the same time once a month. "We wanted to get one bill at the end of the month, pay that bill, and reduce our paperwork so we weren't writing so many checks," says Terry Daniels, president and CFO of Daniels' Foods, and grandson of the company's founder.
Finding a MasterCard Solution
When the company began searching for a credit card that could help consolidate paperwork, they turned to MasterCard. "I was looking at different credit cards, and MasterCard had the best benefits from my point of view," Daniels says. "A couple of my associates were using the same card, and I could see it was easy to track expenses. I also thought they had a pretty good rewards program." Daniels' Foods has been with MasterCard since his initial decision.
Officials at Daniels' Foods immediately began to see the advantage of using the MasterCard program. "I actually started using it more and more," says Daniels, adding that the reduction in paperwork has provided the most savings for his company.
Controlling Card Use
Controlling who uses the card, where they use it, and for what purpose are issues for all companies that use payment solutions such as credit cards. Daniels says his company's plan is one that works. Daniels' general managers and individual store managers each have their own cards with expenses billed directly to the company, but the store managers sometimes have a lower credit limit. "The way we have set it up works very well for us," he says.
Reaping the Benefits
In addition to solving Daniels' Foods' primary goal of downsizing paperwork, Daniels says he sees other benefits come into play by using his MasterCard Executive BusinessCard. "The three top features we see in the program are the amount of credit we can get, the fact that it's accepted just about anywhere and the rewards program," he says. "I use that quite a bit to my benefit."
The rewards program has come into play in a large way for Daniels' Foods. One of its best perks is allowing each of the company's managers and their spouses to enjoy a vacation at the company's expense. "We use our rewards for airline tickets, both for business travel and personal travel," Daniels says. "You can look at a lot of different cards and find many of them have similar features. But it's in the rewards areas where you start to see the differences."
MasterCard Commercial Card Program — a Win-Win Situation
The MasterCard Commercial Card Program has given Daniels' Foods the practical benefit of rewards while also helping to streamline financial paperwork. "I actually found myself using them for more and more things, and then applying for additional credit. Using MasterCard has made us a smoother, cleaner operation. It has met the expectations we had for it," Daniels says.