Only 5 days left until the International Treasury Management Virtual Week 2020

| 16-09-2020 | Eurofinance | treasuryXL |

Don’t miss the Treasury Event of the Year! If you haven’t signed up already, here is a reminder to join this great virtual event with incredible speakers and live sessions.

Virtual Event

Now more than ever, we need to learn and engage with other treasury professionals around the world, so that we can navigate and overcome the unprecedented challenges we are facing.

As the current situation unfolds, the role of the corporate treasurer is evolving and becoming more strategic than ever before. The complexities and function of treasury within the business is changing even more rapidly. The question is: What does the future of treasury look like and how will this affect my team? And where can I turn for world-class advice on building resiliency, supporting the business and addressing future challenges?

Look no further than EuroFinance’s International Treasury Management Virtual Week taking place 21-25 September. It will see world-leading treasurers and economists come together to address these issues, deliver big picture global insights and share the essential granular knowledge you and your team need for the path ahead. In the spotlight will be the latest on cash flow forecasting, supply chain finance, tech, liquidity and FX and payments plus much more.

Speakers and Live Sessions

The line-up of speakers is impressive with the likes of Shell, Alibaba Group, HP Inc., eBay, Finnair, Microsoft, Intel Corporation, Schlumberger, Booking Holdings Inc. and Rio Tinto holding centre stage in one of the 75+ live sessions. But don’t worry if you miss a session, they will be available on-demand for you to watch at a time that suits you.

The custom-built virtual conference platform will bring the experience of a live event to life in a virtual world. It offers plenty of opportunities to network and learn from your global peers, plus a smart calendar to build your schedule.

Free Registration

The great news is, the 2020 event comes without a price tag! It is free for corporate treasurers. So, you can get all the world-class expert knowledge and insights you expect from the leading treasury event without the costs of registration, flights, accommodation or even expenses.

What are you waiting for? Set your treasury team up to thrive not just to survive.

Register for free today!

 

EuroFinance International Treasury Management Virtual Week 21-25 September 2020

| 25-08-2020 | Eurofinance | treasuryXL |

The pandemic sent shockwaves through global financial markets and confronted businesses with extreme scenarios.

Virtual Event

Now more than ever, we need to learn and engage with other treasury professionals around the world, so that we can navigate and overcome the unprecedented challenges we are facing.

As the current situation unfolds, the role of the corporate treasurer is evolving and becoming more strategic than ever before. The complexities and function of treasury within the business is changing even more rapidly. The question is: What does the future of treasury look like and how will this affect my team? And where can I turn for world-class advice on building resiliency, supporting the business and addressing future challenges?

Look no further than EuroFinance’s International Treasury Management Virtual Week taking place 21-25 September. It will see world-leading treasurers and economists come together to address these issues, deliver big picture global insights and share the essential granular knowledge you and your team need for the path ahead. In the spotlight will be the latest on cash flow forecasting, supply chain finance, tech, liquidity and FX and payments plus much more.

Speakers and Live Sessions

The line-up of speakers is impressive with the likes of Shell, Alibaba Group, HP Inc., eBay, Finnair, Microsoft, Intel Corporation, Schlumberger, Booking Holdings Inc. and Rio Tinto holding centre stage in one of the 75+ live sessions. But don’t worry if you miss a session, they will be available on-demand for you to watch at a time that suits you.

The custom-built virtual conference platform will bring the experience of a live event to life in a virtual world. It offers plenty of opportunities to network and learn from your global peers, plus a smart calendar to build your schedule.

Free Registration

The great news is, the 2020 event comes without a price tag! It is free for corporate treasurers. So, you can get all the world-class expert knowledge and insights you expect from the leading treasury event without the costs of registration, flights, accommodation or even expenses.

What are you waiting for? Set your treasury team up to thrive not just to survive.

Register for free today!

 

Can you still see your banker as a trusted advisor?

| 22-08-2019 | by Pieter de Kiewit |

Is your banker a trusted advisor or just another sales representative?

The times that you, entrepreneur or CFO, could just accept the advice of your banker is over. Understand that your banker expects you to have more knowledge than before. Do know there are alternatives. And do not forget that your banker has a target (hard or soft), just like others selling products or services.

When I accompanied my father to meet his doctor, it was clear we are of different generations. He listened and accepted, I was looking for dialogue and had questions. The attitude my father showed towards his doctor, I often see with CFOs and owners of smaller businesses. Is this a problem? Where does it stem from? Should relations change?

Your relationship with your banker has changed

Decades ago there was a knowledge gap between what bankers and entrepreneurs knew about financial markets and products. The number of local banks was limited as were funding sources. The interest was higher than it is nowadays (not too hard with current rates). All this led to a power imbalance between banks and their clients. You had to listen to your banker and accept. In those days bankers showed a different attitude than they did later. I often hear remarks about the former ABN boss Jan Kalff, he apparently was trusted like a medical doctor. I am afraid the bankers’ oath does not make current bankers a similar Jan Kalff.

Over time bankers and their clients have, together, changed their relationship. Starting with the one between banks and large corporates with treasury teams. These increasingly bigger teams gained knowledge and opened relations with alternative banking partners. On top of this, banks started rewarding their employees increasingly in an Anglo-Saxon way with an aggressive connection between performance and bonus. Treating your banker like a doctor was not appropriate anymore. Between large corporates and banks a new equilibrium was reached.

Between smaller organisations and banks a lot went well, regretfully not everything. One of many examples is that in The Netherlands sales of derivatives was done wrong in two obvious ways. First, clients bought products without understanding what they bought (and did all bankers really understand?). Second, bankers did not sell these products because their clients needed them to increase their bonus. A lot has been written about this.

Regretfully, a lot of entrepreneurs and also their auditors think they have full understanding of banking products and costs. I have seen too many treasury experts prove them very wrong. This new equilibrium has not yet been set.

An important extra development that has an impact on this topic is that banking services substitutes are being offered. Facebook can facilitate your payments, you can buy currencies cheap from Privalgo and there is a wide variety of extra funding sources coming up. All these solutions do not (yet) have an established market presence.

New banking relationship management

This is not a call for bank bashing. We do not bash the car sales guy for trying to sell a car. I do want to invite you to consider threating your banker as you would like any other supplier. Always remember he has a sales target. Understand that bankers have to balance their oath with this target. On top of this they see many of their colleagues being let go. For them these are no easy times.

Find out if you have the expertise to have a balanced meeting with your banker. Can you oversee your risks, do you understand the products and do you really know what you pay your bank? I have had more than one meeting with a banker in which I learned that banks themselves often do not know what they make on their clients. The amount mentioned on your bank statement about their costs does not cover everything your bank earns on you. Do you know the spread they take on your FX deals, the margin on insurance products? They and you often do not know the product alternatives and their rates. You can get low threshold expertise or send your employees to get relevant education or have them visit events. The expertise is available.

Times are changing

Changing relationships with your bank are only a problem if you ignore the change. The banks did not ignore and have changed. In my opinion these changes are good. Bear in mind that corporate treasury is not rocket science. Spend the time on this topic it deserves. Times are changing, so keep an eye on what is happening. It will save you cost, create opportunities and help you avoid risk. Good luck and drop me an email if you have questions.

 

 

Pieter de Kiewit
Owner Treasurer Search

 

Treasury Intelligence Solutions: Centralizing Corporate Payments System

| 29-1-2019 | TIS Treasury Intelligence SolutionstreasuryXL

Interview with CEO of TIS Jörg Wiemer by CIOReview

In today’s era where the face of IT is changing drastically, enterprises are facing a multitude of challenges germane to regulation, risk management, and most importantly performing business to business payments. Having served as senior vice president and global treasury veteran at SAP, Jörg Wiemer, the CEO and Co-founder of Treasury Intelligence Solutions (TIS) highlights that corporate transactions often involve multiple parties from both internal and external departments, and the legacy systems often cause recurrent delays in payments. The failure to bring this mission-critical process under control may affect the supplier relationship to the extent that the supplier may discontinue the business relationship. In the thick of grave challenges, modern CIOs are keen to bring in a robust technology that assists them to streamline payment processes. At TIS, the leadership brings to bear its vast experience to aid enterprises to efficiently and effortlessly manage corporate payments and cash flows through a SaaS platform.

The platform works as a central hub that is dedicated for enterprises to manage, organize, and analyze their corporate payments flowing across and within the organization. Through the power of SaaS, TIS’ cloud-based platform helps clients quickly connect their ERP systems with different banks to manage bank accounts. Moreover, the platform allows enterprises to perform analysis of liquidity and cash flow in real time. It also conveniently addresses complexities triggered by different communication protocols and channels, enabling clients to communicate and process transactions in their customers’ preferred language. “The clients can simply leverage the library of bank formats and the bank connector, which we have built over the last year, to allow transactions between ERPs and banks seamlessly,” informs Wiemer.

By challenging the status quo of legacy solutions, the TIS platform empowers multiple leadership executives with the ability to make smarter decisions and assists them to process, view, and analyze transactions in real time using a cash flow analytics feature. Cementing the digitalization objective of enterprises, the TIS cloud platform helps keep processes fully under control through increased efficiency, visibility, and transparency in corporate payments and audit trails.

“The clients can simply leverage the library of bank formats and the bank connector, which we have built over the last year, to allow seamless transactions between ERPs and banks”

Citing an instance, Wiemer brings to fore the case of a luxury goods company, Oettinger Davidoff AG, which faced the challenge in standardizing their payment processes while restructuring their ERP systems to migrate to SAP S/4HANA. Aside from centralizing their international payment transactions, the retail company sought to achieve a better overview of a large part of the liquidity in the company. Partnering with TIS, the client had seamless SAP integration and quick bank format hosting, which helped them successively onboard all the bank accounts to SAP without any hassle. Fast-forward to today, the client has about ten bank accounts of foreign subsidiaries in Switzerland that are connected to the TIS platform to perform all of the international payments of local subsidiaries.

Having researched the potential market for corporate payments solutions, Wiemer states that the total market for “ERP systems” is roughly about $80 billion (ERP) per year and for “payments” $1,000 billion per year, respectively. Tapping this huge market, TIS initially plans to expand its wings to Europe and the U.S. within the next month. The success of TIS reflects in its rich portfolio of clients from diverse industries including finance and insurance, retail and automobile, among others. Emphasizing the fact that TIS continues to help customers switch into a new way to collaborate and execute payments, Wiemer concludes saying, “The fintech industry will fuel the payments industry to become more efficient over time, and it will have customers save cost immensely.”

Original published on CIOReview

What corporate treasury can learn from corporate insurance

15-06-2018 | Treasurer Search | TreasuryXL |

Last week Treasurer Search sent it’s monthly newsletter that included below article. Not all people in the market will think the same as the author, but we think it is definitely an interesting way of looking at our insurance colleagues.

 

One of the many benefits of being a recruiter is that every meeting is a lecture of an expert about his professional life and developments. An excellent way to learn and keep up-to-date. Every second week I try to transfer this knowledge to my colleagues in Team Treasurer Search and the risk topic often gets attention. I also want to share my observations about insurance and treasury with you.

First, perhaps a bit cynical, why is corporate insurance reporting to the group treasurer more often? The importance and professional level of insurance is increasing, this is also acknowledged by CFOs. To prevent their span of control becoming too big, they delegate the profession to legal, procurement and recently often to treasury. Many treasurers are not motivated by insurance tasks and ignore the overlap that exists. Traditionally the risk types “market risk” and “liquidity risk” create primary tasks for treasury departments that often motivate the candidates I meet. Recently counterparty or credit risk gets a bigger role, not only with financial services companies. My recent conversations with corporate insurance managers brought me new insights in how risk can be analysed and managed.

In previous blogs I wrote that “new school treasurers” distinguish themselves by better connecting with their business partners and provide understandable solutions that make sales, operations and finance happy. Insurance managers were already forced to talk with the business their whole life. If an insurance manager does not understand what his business partners do, he will not be able to make a proper assessment of the risk. And that does include all types of risk: staff getting sick, goods not being supplied, tornados, computer viruses, politicians starting embargos, etcetera. They are closer to enterprise risk managers than treasurers are. By now there are practical and scientific strategies to mitigate various risk types. Insurance managers know.

In my perception treasurers can learn from insurance how to connect to business partners and help them finding solutions for complex and diverse problems. Do you think me setting them on a pedestal is right or am I too positive?

If you want to find out more about Treasurer Search and their services visit their company profile on treasuryXL.

Letter of Credit – financing international trade

| 19-04-2018 | treasuryXL |

Cash Pooling

 

When a buyer and seller agree to enter into a transaction that is cross border, one of the most used instruments to facilitate this transaction is a documentary letter of credit (LC). This is an international recognised and accepted method that is governed by the rules and regulations of the International Chamber of Commerce. LCs are mainly used for international transactions, where the seller requires additional security and also where the law in 2 deferent jurisdictions are not the same. However, protection is also given to the buyer. Here is a quick guideline to how this instrument works.

Deal

A buyer and seller agree to a trade and, invariably due to the distance between them, the different laws, and the fact that they may have no previous trading relationship, the trade will take place under a LC. Upon agreeing the trade, the buyer will contact his bank and ask them to issue a LC (Issuing Bank). As the bank will provide a guarantee role in this transaction, they first need to ascertain if the buyer has sufficient funding to settle the transaction.

The letter of credit is then sent to the seller’s bank (Advising Bank). Within this document the terms and conditions of the shipment are detailed. The issuing bank lets the seller know what documents are needed to accept the import, together with such items as the latest shipment date.

The seller will arrange for the necessary documentation and shipment. Then they will approach their bank and present them will the documents and the LC. This is all sent to the Issuing Bank who then checks that the documentation meets the terms contained within the LC.

Upon approval by the Issung Bank the following steps take place:

  • Account of the importer is debited
  • Documents are released to the importer so that they can claim the goods
  • Payment is made as per the instructions of the Advising bank
  • Advising Bank credit the account of the seller

As the issuing bank has issued a guarantee, the in the event that all the documentation meets the criteria agreed upon, then they are obligated to make payment to the seller.

It is of course possible that there are discrepancies between the LC and the documents delivered. As the documents are delivered by the seller to their bank (Advising Bank), it is they who have the first task of checking everything. If discrepancies arise, the advising bank will endeavour to ensure that the documents amended. If the discrepancy can not be amended within the agreed time frame, then the documents will be forwarded to the Issuing Bank “in trust”. Sending documents in this way removes the guarantee on the original letter of credit, so caution is necessary. It is possible that despite the discrepancies, the buyer is still prepared to accept the shipment.

The list of necessary documents includes, but is not limited to:

  • Bill of exchange
  • Bill of lading or airway bill
  • Invoice
  • Cargo packing list
  • Certificates certifying to authenticity, inspection, origin
  • Insurance policy

Despite the guarantee from the Issuing Bank, there are always risks – default by any of the parties, legal risks, acts of war, documents not arriving on time etc. A letter of credit specifically deals with the documentation and not the goods itself.

This is one of the oldest and most trusted methods for arranging trade finance, and given the complexity with all the documents and the time it can take to cross the world, this is an area of banking that is very keen to explore the advantages offered by the Blockchain to accelerate the whole process.

 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.