On a recent phone call with my relationship manager at Capital One, I was offered the chance to apply for the company’s Venture X Business Card. The card is unremarkable except in one respect: it comes with a $500,000 minimum spend. By a very large margin, that’s the highest minimum spend requirement I’ve ever seen. What’s Capital One doing here?
The Capital One Venture X Business Card is a rebranding of Capital One’s erstwhile Spark Travel Elite. Like that card, this new card is a premium travel card with an annual fee of $395 that’s geared toward small businesses. It’s not available to apply for online (or to Spark Cash Plus cardholders) and is only available to clients of Capital One relationship managers.
- 2X miles on every purchase
- 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One’s travel portal
- 5X miles on flights when booked through Capital One’s travel portal
- $300 in statement credits annually for travel booked through Capital One’s travel portal
- 10,000 bonus miles annually after your first card anniversary
- Access to the Premier Collection, Capital One’s selection of premium hotels which give cardholders benefits like room upgrades and free breakfasts
- Complimentary access to Capital One Lounges and Priority Pass membership
- TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application fee credit every four years
$500,000 minimum spend?!
Over the past few weeks, I’d heard rumblings about the huge minimum spend requirement on the Capital One Venture X Business Card and inquired recently to get the details firsthand from my relationship manager.
According to him, the welcome bonus for this card is 300,000 Capital One miles and cardholders must spend half a million dollars (!) in the 12 months after approval to get it. Specifically, you’ll get 150,000 miles after spending $30,000 in the first 3 months and another 150,000 miles after spending a total of $500,000 within the first year.
Who is Capital One hoping to woo with this welcome bonus? It seems like nearly the only people they have any hope of attracting are those who don’t know what else is out there.
American Express, by comparison, is currently offering a welcome bonus of 200,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $15,000 in the first three months of opening their Business Platinum Card. Given that Membership Rewards points are roughly as valuable as Capital One miles, American Express’s welcome bonus is literally twice as good as Capital One’s offer for 150,000 miles after $30,000 of spend.
The Venture X Business Card itself isn’t half bad–unlimited 2X on all spend makes it one of the best options out there for everyday spend–but I just don’t get why the welcome bonus is so outlandish. Is this a misstep? Capital One is relatively new to the world of business credit cards, a fairly different space to the subprime market where the company still makes most of its money. Am I missing something?