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American Express business credit cards available for Georgian companies

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Georgia’s leading bank, JSC Bank of Georgia (BoG), is offering the new American Express (AmEx) Business credit card - the first business credit card on the Georgian market that gives businesses the opportunity to freely order their financial resources. The plan is to sell more than 20, 000 American Express Business credit cards this year.

The bank’s corporate clients can choose from two credit cards – the American Express Green Business Card and the American Express Gold Business Card. Business card benefits can be shared with companies’ employees, who can order as many additional cards as they need and decide what spending limit to assign to each individual card.

Officials from the Bank of Georgia and American Express’ Global Network Services said at a press conference on 7 February that the credit cards will encourage Georgian companies to control their finances and outstanding value through a host of exciting features, including payment flexibility and around the clock world-class customer service.

Moreover, the new product gives businesses the opportunity to access unique business offers, coupled with benefits such as travel insurance and purchase protection. In addition, Card members can collect Membership Reward Points which can be redeemed against company purchases, and will also receive access to the Selects™ merchant discounts program.

“The credit card holders have the ability to keep close track of expenses and save business costs, while also accessing the key benefits associated with the American Express brand,” said Irakli Gilauri, General Director at Bank of Georgia. According to him, these value-added credit products created “to support the needs of our SME and corporate clients are in line with the Bank’s intention to offer unique products to businesses.”

Colin O’Flaherty, Vice-President of Business Development, at American Express Global Network Services, Europe, Middle East and Africa in his comments at the press conference, highlighted the strengths of the partnership between Bank of Georgia and American Express and the “innovative new products” designed for the Georgian market:

“American Express is committed to working with Bank of Georgia to continue to find new ways to create best-in-class products that meet the needs of their business customers and drive loyal, high-spending customers to American Express merchants,” O’Flaherty said. According to him, the demand for credit cards is high in Georgia and the launch of this new business credit card will increase the customers’ loyalty towards BoG and American Express cards.

Bank of Georgia is the exclusive issuer of American Express payment cards, as well as the American Express merchant acquirer in Georgia since 2009. BoG also issues the American Express Personal Cards including the American Express Rewards Card, American Express Blue, Green and Gold cards.

According to the latest data from BoG, it has issued 627,000 cards, out of which 112,000 are credit cards. The bank has issued 99,364 American Express cards which comprise 75% of the total amount of credit cards.

As of January 1, 2012, the banking sector in Georgia is represented by 19 commercial banks, including 16 foreign-controlled banks and two branches of non-resident banks but most of them only offer debit business cards for corporate clients.

Bank of Georgia is the leading Georgian bank based on total assets with a 36% market share, total loans with a 36% market share and client deposits with a 34% market share as of 30 June 2011.

By Tamar Khurtsia

9.02.2012

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