Pleo review – A better way to business spending

Could this smart company credit card help your business?

Pleo
Last updated:
Reader Rating8 Votes
4.8

Pleo describes itself as ‘a whole new way to manage business spending’. It promises that you’ll be free from piles of receipts, for easier tax form submissions. If you run a business, could Pleo lead you to paperless success?

First Glance

Not a bank account, but a company card, Pleo can be used for all of your business buying. It scales up, suitable for use by a sole trader or a much larger company.

With so many features, giving more control, could Pleo be your new business payment card?

Read on for more information ‘at a glance’, as well as all of the information you might need to see if Pleo’s perfect for you:

Pros

  • As many cards as you need
  • Automatic transaction categorisation
  • Easy spending reports
  • Set individual spending limits for every company card
  • Scaled pricing to suit every business

Cons

  • No branches for customer support
  • You’ll still need a separate business bank account
  • You’ll need to remember to keep Pleo topped up

What is Pleo?

With Pleo, you’ll get plastic bank cards for you and every employee. There are also virtual cards for secure online spending.

Every payment made is categorised automatically. At any time, export expenses reports and see where your money is going.

You can manage your account through your web browser or download the Pleo smartphone app. Pleo’s app is available on Android and iOS devices, which means that you can stay connected using your iPhone on the go.

Pleo launched in 2015. Today, it’s used by more than 6,000 companies. The founders, Niccolo Perra and Jeppe Rindom, created Pleo with the aim of automating expenses and streamlining company spending.

A simple spending solution for your company

Pleo

Today, Pleo exists in the UK as well as Ireland, Sweden, Denmark, Spain and Germany. It integrates with accounting products like Sage, Xero and Quickbooks. If employees do all of their spending through Pleo, paperwork could be a thing of the past.

Pleo’s features include a real-time dashboard that brings together all of your Pleo card spending. Receipts are matched to transactions, which are categorised straight away, and you can set spending limits to make sure you never go over budget.

Who is Pleo for?

Pleo is a spending solution specifically for businesses. With automated reports to keep track of expenses, users will find it easier to stay on top of their spending.

Sole traders can benefit from Pleo’s features to simplify their tax returns. For businesses with multiple employees, using Pleo gives everyone a spending card with an individual limit. Then, all transactions are brought together so you can see where the money’s going.

Pleo isn’t a bank. It’s not a credit card, either. Instead you’re getting prepaid Mastercards® in physical and virtual forms. As a result, Pleo is suitable for anyone. You’re not borrowing money and will need to top up your card, so you shouldn’t need to worry about your credit rating or proving that your business is successful.

Pleo is best suited to businesses that are usually juggling business credit cards, spending in various places or reimbursing employees for their spending. You will need to load money onto your account before people can spend it. Employees won’t need to use their own money, then claim their expenses back later.

Accounts are available for customers in Denmark, Ireland, Spain, Sweden, Germany and the UK.

How does Pleo work?

You’ll manage your account completely online, using the app or your browser. You must top up your account, so that money can be used for spending on any Pleo card.

Different Pleo cards can have different spending limits, providing more specific control. Perhaps one employee only needs to buy a £3 meal deal each day on the go, whilst another needs the power to purchase costly technology equipment. With a Pleo card for every employee, complicated reports and reimbursed expenses should be a thing of the past.

You can start with a Pleo free trial, to see if it works for your business. For more guidance, you can also book a demo to see how the Pleo system works.

What features do you get with Pleo?

Pleo’s features are designed for business users:

Physical and Virtual Cards

You can get a physical Mastercard for each and every employee. You can also create virtual cards for your online spending. Virtual cards can be used with one supplier, so that you can track your spending. They’re also handy for security, as they can be used once and then deleted if you’re feeling particularly cautious.

Spending Limits

Set different spending limits on each card. All money comes from a central pot, but you can choose which employees will have more spending power than others. You can also set specific rights, choosing where employees can spend money.

Instant Top-Up

Top up your Pleo account instantly by bank transfer.

Spending Categorisation

Whenever someone spends money, Pleo will categorise their purchase. You can quickly see how much is being spent on fuel, on food or on stationery supplies. Receipts can be matched to individual transactions, to keep track of spending for your tax return.

Real-Time Dashboard

At any time, you can see up-to-date information using your online dashboard. See your live account balance and where your cards have recently been used.

Business Software Integration

Pleo integrates with accounting software including Xero, Quickbooks, Sage, and a variety of other products for time and money management.

The Pleo desktop dashboard

What packages does Pleo offer?

There are three different Pleo packages.

The Essential account costs £6 per user, per month. Small businesses will pay a lot less than larger corporations, with a price that scales to make it fair for everyone. With the Essential package, you get physical and virtual cards, transaction categories, software integration and advanced fraud protection. You can use the Essential package for a maximum of five people.

For £10 per person, the Pro account provides access to spending controls. You get advanced analytics and reporting, as well as the option to give your bookkeeper read-only access to your records.

For Premium status, you’ll have to talk to Pleo for an individual quote. With this you’ll have a dedicated account manager, Pleo training at your business and a custom onboarding experience. You also have the option to pay a little more for AXA business travel insurance.

Are there any additional charges?

If you want more than one Pleo card per person, they will cost an extra £10 each.

You will be charged 2% for foreign exchanges and £4 for each ATM withdrawal.

Charges, including your monthly subscription, are taken from your Pleo balance.

How safe is Pleo?

Though Pleo is not a bank account, it claims to offer bank-level security. Funds are held in a regulated ring-fenced account, rather than with Pleo themselves. Your money will be kept with Danske Bank or JP Morgan. There’s also advanced fraud protection to highlight unusual spending.

Using the app or your web browser, you can block any card at any time. You will also be protected by Mastercard’s Zero Liability Policy, which will allow you to claim money back if a loss isn’t your fault.

What about customer service?

You’ll do all of your management online. There are no physical branches, and you’ll need to use your browser or a smartphone app to keep on top of your spending.

You can email [email protected], or speak to an advisor using Pleo’s live chat on their website.

If you’re a Premium user, you will have access to a dedicated account manager. This is the best way to get high-level service whenever your business might need it.

Can Pleo replace your everyday business bank account?

Pleo isn’t a replacement for your business account. It’s not a bank account, but a way to manage spending using prepaid cards for employees.

You’ll need to top up your account using a separate business bank account. The money is then centrally held so that you can use any Pleo card.

If you’re looking for a way to track business expenses, this could be a great way to do it. Your transactions will be put into categories, and Pleo will generate automatic expenditure reports.

If you have employees that need to make business purchases, each can have their own card. You won’t need to spend time validating expenses, checking receipts and refunding money.

To use Pleo, you will still need a separate business account. Your customers and clients can’t pay into Pleo, and you’ll have money to manage elsewhere.

Remember that Pleo comes with ATM withdrawal fees, and that there are no Pleo branches.

Pleo: The Verdict

For businesses, having Pleo could save time and effort. Businesses can track their expenses, save time on reports and avoid huge files of papers and receipts.

As Pleo isn’t a business bank account, it is very widely available. Your financial history won’t come into play when you apply for an account. You can manage Pleo using your smartphone, but also online with a web browser that may be easier to use.

There are no physical Pleo branches or offices that you can visit. You’re also discouraged from using the phone to speak to their team. If you’re going to sign up, you must be prepared to use live chat and email support.

One of the best things about Pleo is that the price scales up. Small businesses can start on an affordable package, without paying for features they won’t need. Larger businesses can pay a little more, though the price is still based on the number of users to keep it very fair for all customers.

The goal of Pleo is to track all expenses and see what your money is spent on. Therefore, it’s understandable that a £4 fee applies to any ATM withdrawal. If you’re doing business abroad, you should also be aware of the charges for foreign exchange.

You can use virtual cards for secure online spending, but will also get a Mastercard for each employee to use. These are widely accepted, wherever Mastercard Debit can be used.

Pleo is not a replacement for your business bank account. But, it does make it easier to manage spending in various places. It could be a very valuable extra, for those that would like to save time. Yet, it’s still worth finding the best business bank account before you think of signing up for Pleo.

Pleo FAQ

Are there any Pleo branches?

No, there are no Pleo branches. You must top up your account online and will need to email Pleo for customer service enquiries.

Can clients pay into a Pleo account?

Pleo isn’t a bank account and isn’t intended for incoming payments. You can top up your account to spend from it but will need a separate bank account for any customer payments.

Will I earn interest on money held in Pleo?

You won’t earn interest on the money that you keep within Pleo. It’s important to maintain it with plenty of money to cover day-to-day business spending, but don’t add too much as you may earn interest by keeping spare money elsewhere.

Does Pleo offer loans or overdrafts?

Pleo does not offer any form of credit. You will need to top up your Pleo account before you can spend on your cards.

Where are Pleo cards accepted?

You’ll receive a Mastercard for each user. This prepaid debit card can be used wherever Mastercard is accepted. You can use your card overseas and in the UK. Pleo also offers virtual cards, to be used online for more secure spending.

Is it free to put money into Pleo accounts?

Yes. You can transfer money into Pleo without any charges or fees.

How much can I withdraw from an ATM?

You can make up to five withdrawals a day. The maximum withdrawal limit is £365. You will be charged £4 for each ATM withdrawal.

Can a Pleo card be shared?

Pleo cards should not be shared and are intended for one person each. You’ll need a card for each employee that you want to give spending power to. This allows you to keep track of all transactions.

What if I don’t set a spending limit?

If you don’t set a spending limit, each Pleo card will automatically default to a limit of £18.25 per day. It’s very important to change this manually if you’d like to give employees more spending power. You will also need to ensure that your Pleo account remains topped up to cover all spending – money can’t be automatically taken from your business bank account.

Pleo Review
Reader Rating8 Votes
Pros
As many cards as you need
Automatic transaction categorisation
Easy spending reports
Set individual spending limits for every company card
Scaled pricing to suit every business
Cons
No branches for customer support
You’ll still need a separate business bank account
You’ll need to remember to keep Pleo topped up
4.8