Concur has a history of making big bets to bring more value to more customers. We moved expense management to the cloud before it was popular, we expanded into small and mid-market business, government and international markets simultaneously, and we introduced the industry’s first open platform approach to transform experiences for business travelers and their employers.
Japan is another exciting frontier for Concur, and this week, our president, Elena Donio, joined Concur Japan CEO Masamune Mimura in Tokyo to engage with customers at our second Fusion Exchange event in the country. They shared Concur innovations designed to address unique challenges the country faces when it comes to managing travel and expense, including shifting to smart phones for digitizing receipts and moving to the cloud.
In one recent example, Concur worked with the Japanese government, economic groups and the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan on the country’s e-Bunsho regulations, which required companies to keep paper receipts even after they’d been digitally documented. Last summer, the Japanese government voted to relax the laws about documentation retention. Thanks in part to Concur, beginning in summer 2016, Japanese businesses can now save receipts electronically rather than having to save paper copies.
With this change, a business traveler can take a photo and toss out the receipt instead of having to file it away. Instead of having to deliver paper receipts to finance departments, who must review them and then store them, businesses can save labor and storage costs by managing receipts digitally. The government will certify vendors to validate receipt, and Concur is working to meet the legal requirements for validating images.
We anticipate that Concur clients like Nomura Securities will save $5 million USD annually. The entire savings to Japan’s businesses is expected to come close to $6B USD per year. In addition, companies will be able to comply with documentation laws more easily, simplify their information-sharing, and help ensure business continuity.
That’s just one of the ways that Concur works to remove barriers to efficiency and innovation. We’re also helping Japanese businesses improve productivity. By enabling companies to capture Japanese Public Train expenses, we’ve helped our clients significantly reduce the amount of time travelers need to log train expenses. And by using Jordan web services, Concur has helped simplify route searches. Concur will deliver an upgraded JPT - Network IC card reader to ensure robust security. Mimura-san demonstrated these new capabilities live in his session at Fusion Exchange Tokyo.
Finally, we’ve created a new Concur App Center for Japan to support the Open Platform for Perfect Expense. The Concur App Center connects employees to more than 100 travel apps globally, and we are proud to introduce several new Concur partners in Japan, including Line Taxi, Fujisoft, Toppan and Streamed.
Since forming the joint venture Concur Japan in 2011 with Japanese technology veteran Shigeru Fujii, we have met the needs of a growing number of organizations in Japan and throughout Asia. We’ve almost doubled our Japan customer base, bringing several new companies into the Concur customer community, including Yokohama, Dena, Asics, Unicharm, and JSR.
We will continue to invest and continue to innovate in Japan. We look forward to another big bet bringing benefit to more customers.