tartup Rearden Commerce Inc. has taken a bold step into the travel market, hooking up with travel-management firm WorldTravel BTI to distribute its on-demand personal-assistant service to corporate travel departments.

The two companies Wednesday revealed an alliance in which WorldTravel will market and sell Rearden's travel product to its clients, working with them to create dashboards to track an array of travel-related expenses. Employees of WorldTravel's clients, meanwhile, will have access to a booking tool that combines personalization, corporate travel policies, and a wide assortment of travel content in a one-stop shop for travel services. Companies that adopt the Rearden service will pay an undisclosed per-seat licensing fee for access to the application, and WorldTravel will get a piece of that revenue.

Rearden wants to help companies tackle the "last-mile spend" in companies, or purchases made by individual employees that don't fall under the corporate purchasing umbrella, by tapping the growing trend of employee self-service. In the travel sector, one of Rearden's initial areas of focus, the idea is to give employees a personalized travel portal that reflects their preferences, knows their employers' corporate discounts and travel policies, and helps them book everything from flights and hotels to dinner reservations and concert tickets. The tool then automatically populates employee calendars with all the appropriate items.

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