12 December 2022, etc.venues Monument, London
Business Travel Show Europe, presented by The BTN
21 November, London Hilton Metropole
Concur, the US-based IT expense management company, is aiming to expand in Europe in 2008.
The company has recently opened offices in Frankfurt, Prague and Brussels and also plans to re-locate to larger premises in the UK.
Chris Juneau, Concur's EMEA product marketing director who himself has moved to Prague, said the company was aiming to increase its staff in the city from two to up to 20 by the end of 2008.
"We are looking for multi-lingual individuals to support our development in Prague and also want to increase our sales staff in the UK, Scandinavia and France,” he said.
Mr Juneau said that Concur, which has had an office in Britain the UK since 1989, had "fairly well penetrated the UK" and was now aiming to grow in Germany, Austria, Scandinavia, France and the Benelux countries.
"You are not really going to compete unless you speak the language and understand the culture and to do that you need to get closer.
"We are a US company doing business in Europe with an office in the UK but we need to demonstrate to our clients that we are serious about Europe," he said.
He said the company had "invested significantly on Cliqbook", its corporate booking tool and had also signed agreements to provide rail content from Deutsche Bahn, SNCF, Rail 1, the Belgian network, and Evolvi, a corporate booking tool for UK rail.
Next year, Concur hoped to make Cliqbook available for rail bookings.
"But we still need a tool for both air and rail bookings. If we can consolidate the content, we can drive the adoption of self booking tools. We are moving into Europe to do that," Mr Juneau said.
He said that one area where Concur was also keen to expand was in accessing hotels. "We are exploring closer links with Carlson Wagonlit Travel and with hotel.de (an online hotel booking service based in Germany).
"Because of the number of independent hotels not on the GDS system, we see that as a big challenge in Germany and Scandinavia."
Concur is also talking to the German car rental company Sixt and to a number of taxi companies, Mr Juneau said.
He said that at the Business Travel Show in London next February, Concur would be presenting the complete integration of Cliqbook into its expense management system and also launching Smart Expenses, new software which will enable corporate to receive e-receipts.
This will enable suppliers to e-mail receipts straight in to a corporate's expense management system, ending the need for paper receipts given to the traveller.