Hilton has launched a new platform aimed at encouraging small- and medium-sized businesses to book with the group.

The Hilton for Business “digital-forward programme” is free to join, and promises discounted rates across the group’s portfolio, as well as milestone bonuses within the Hilton Honors scheme.

Companies enrolling in the new platform will receive 7,500 bonus points after any programme member completes their first hotel stay, and 5,000 bonus points after every ten nights stayed by a programme member.

The bonus points “are housed within the business’ company account and can be used to distribute to themselves and/or any member of their Hilton for Business programme”.

Individual travellers – including both owners and employees – will continue to earn their personal Hilton Honors points and benefits each time they stay, and on the homepage of the Hilton for Business website the group notes:

“All multiple room reservations will be treated as one room only for purposes of Milestone Bonuses, stay and night credits. For maximum benefit, we recommend Members book individual reservations under the Business profile.”

Once a company is registered for the Hilton for Business platform, individual travellers can then create separate personal and business travel profiles within their own Hilton Honors account, and business owners can delegate programme management to any number of administrators.

The platform also allows companies to both track upcoming spend and review historical spend.

The creation of Hilton for Business follows data which the group says shows 75 percent of small- and medium-sized business customers book their own business trips and manage their own travel in-house, without outsourcing.

Commenting on the news said Chris Silcock, president, global brands and commercial services, Hilton, said:

“At Hilton, we listen to the needs of our customers and then innovate to provide a superior hotel experience for every stay occasion.

“This includes our small- and medium-sized business customers who have been looking for a travel platform – and loyalty benefits – that meets their unique set of needs and reduces friction points, from booking to billing.

“We’re thrilled to officially launch Hilton for Business today as our strategic solution to enrich the business travel experience for these customers and their employees.”

In October American Airlines launched AAdvantage Business, rewarding companies and their employees with AAdvantage miles and loyalty points when booking business travel.

American Airlines unveils loyalty scheme aimed at businesses