Visa, in partnership with meetings technology provider Arcaneo, launched a new meetings card last week.

“There is an increasing volume of companies looking to get their arms around meeting spend,” says Louis Goodson, senior business leader for Visa Commercial Solutions. The new Visa Meetings card, she says, includes the features of existing Visa products, such as the Visa Purchasing and Visa Corporate cards, but also integrates the spend data from the card with Metron, Arcaneo’s strategic meeting management technology. The integration makes it easier to compare a meeting’s actual spend to its projected budget and to get an aggregate view of an organization’s overall meeting spend.

The Visa Meetings card, “is designed to provide flexibility,” says Goodson. Cards can be issued on a meeting-to-meeting basis or assigned to individual planners. Or, says Goodson, multiple accounts could be established, which could, for example, allow planners to assign accounts for specific categories, such as transportation, food and beverage, and hotels. The cards also provide planners with cash access, Goodson says.

Clement Ng, Arcaneo’s vice president of client services, says the Visa/Arcaneo partnership will be particularly valuable to meeting planners because the technology behind it goes beyond just providing a detailed level of reporting. Metron, Ng says, should also be able to give planners a chance to measure other costs, such as the value of time spent by attendees at a meeting, that enable planners to measure ROI and “develop meeting policies that can really optimize spend.”

The card is now being issued in the United States and Canada, and will become available in the European Union later this year.