Serves the Commercial Small Fleet Market of 10 – 50 Vehicles

Prepaid Expense Card Gives Employers More Control Over Employee Purchases

May 2013, by Greg Basich - Also by this author

Fuel cards are fairly common among fleets, but often small- and medium-sized businesses need to give their employees more flexibility when it comes to company purchases. With flexibility comes responsibility, though, and many businesses want to ensure their employees are buying what they are supposed to buy, and can track those purchases — when they give their employees company credit cards to use.

A company called PEX Card offers a prepaid business expense card program, which provides a mix of flexibility and oversight, including a new mobile app for iPhone and Android smartphones that gives employers information at a glance and control of their employees’ business-related purchases.

Business Fleet spoke with PEX Card CEO Toffer Grant about how small- and medium-sized businesses can use the PEX Card, and its related PEX Mobile app, to monitor and manage expenses related to business use of a company vehicle.

An example of a PEX card used by employers.
An example of a PEX card used by employers.

To start, Grant used transportation companies as an example, saying they use the PEX Card as a centralized purchasing tool.  

“Cardholders are repair shop managers, drivers and office staff, all of whom need to purchase parts, fuel, etc. at various times of the day and for differing reasons, all so they can do their jobs,” Grant said. “Because it is a prepaid card, businesses can feel comfortable giving cards to staff that they normally wouldn’t give a credit card to.”

Although PEX offers a Web-based application for the employee designated as the program’s administrator, the company also offers two apps, part of the PEX Mobile service — one for program administrators and another for the employees using the card in the field.

“Admins can do about 90% on the mobile app of what the Web app can do, and cardholders use it as a quick reference for balance info and transaction detail,” Grant said.

One major benefit to using the PEX Card is that it gives card program administrators a number of controls over how employees can use it. For instance, the PEX Card Web and mobile application provide spending limits based on 11 different merchant categories, such as allowing fuel purchases but disallowing the card’s use at a restaurant.

According to Grant, program admins typically set spend rules based on three criteria: an employee’s job function, what the employee needs to spend money on within that function, and how often the employee needs to make business-related purchases.

“Because the system handles balance and rule changes in real time, all changes made to cards can happen on the fly, meaning the moment the admin makes a balance change is the moment the employee can swipe the card,” Grant explained. “While there are spend rules, there are also card funding rules, too. An admin can set up a card to ‘recharge’ or ‘reload’ according to a schedule, for example, daily, a day of the week, or on the first of the month, which is all good for budgeting and cash exposure management. There is also a trigger balance funding rule so the card can never run out of money; when a card is spent down to a particular balance, it will trigger the system to add more money to the card.”

The PEX Card program is designed to be affordable for a range of businesses. PEX requires payment of a one-time setup fee of $49.95 (per company) and a monthly fee of $7.50 per card. (Note: PEX waives the fee if a business spends more than $50,000 in any given month using the card.) PEX doesn’t charge any fees for support, for transactions or for incidentals, such as account maintenance or automated clearing house (ACH) deposits. But the company does charge $25 for late payments and for select services.

Find out more about the PEX Card at the company’s website at

Twitter Facebook Google+


Please note that comments may be moderated. 
Leave this field empty:

Fleet Incentives

Determine the actual cost of owning and running a vehicle in your fleet. Compare vehicles by class and model.


Fuel Management

Bernie Kanavagh from WEX will answer your questions and challenges

View All


Fleet Tracking And Telematics

Todd Ewing from Verizon Connect will answer your questions and challenges

View All


Fleet Management And Leasing

Jack Firriolo from Merchants will answer your questions and challenges

View All


Sponsored by

Sam Penn contributed significantly to the growth of fuel and vehicle management services and PHH's domestic vehicle management services.

Read more


Market Trends

Mike Antich
Upward Pressure on Fleet Costs Threatens to Increase TCO

By Mike Antich
Recently, I conducted a survey of several hundred fleet managers to identify emerging industry trends. One recurrent theme expressed by fleet managers was the concern that fleet costs are starting to experience upward pricing pressures. Here's what they told me.

How to Minimize Unauthorized Use of Corporate Assets

By Mike Antich

View All

Driving Notes

Mike Antich
2018 Chevrolet Equinox Diesel

By Mike Antich
The Chevrolet Equinox adds a 1.6L four-cylinder turbo diesel to its lineup of engine choices for 2018. The fuel-efficient turbo diesel generates 137 hp and 240 lb.-ft. of torque mated to a six-speed automatic.

2018 Volkswagen Tiguan

By Paul Clinton

View All

Nobody Asked Me, But...

Sherb Brown
Adapting to a Changing Tide

By Sherb Brown
Fleets are often the beta testers of the vehicle market. That shift away from compact sedans we saw in the fleet market a few years ago is playing out in real time in the retail market right now.

Keep Realistic Fleet Expectations

By Sherb Brown

View All

Auto Focus

Chris Brown
Market Forces Driving Car Rental in 2018

By Chris Brown
An analysis of the conference calls of Avis Budget Group and Hertz Global Holdings reveal trends and initiatives involving fleet right sizing, pricing, ancillary revenue opportunities, and renting to ride-hailing drivers.

Trends Moving the Truck Market

By Chris Brown

View All


Up Next

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher