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8 questions for Treasury Expert Philip who won the award for 2020 Best Fintech Solution

19-04-2021 | Philip Costa Hibberd | treasuryXL

With over 12 years of experience in the financial industry with the last four years in treasury consulting, Philip has recently launched his own consulting activity, Automation Boutique, specialized in (robotic) process automation for Treasury, Risk and Finance.

“I have been coding for fun since I was a kid. This skill has been very useful throughout my career but has become my trademark in Treasury.”

He recently developed the tool that was awarded the “2020 Best Fintech Solution – Adam Smith award” by Treasury Today magazine. He now tries to focus on what he has always enjoyed the most during his career: solving problems at the intersection between ‘numbers’, ‘people’ and ‘technology’.

We are delighted to share the interview with Philip. Let’s dive into his treasury journey where he answers 8 questions…

1. How did your treasury journey start?

As for many of us, it started somewhat by accident. After working in other areas of finance for many years, a few ethical questions started nagging me. Add a sabbatical, some romance, and a few lucky phone calls and I found myself joining the great corporate treasury team at Zanders (a consultancy firm specialized in Treasury, Risk and Finance).

2. What do you like the most about working in Treasury?

I love the diversity of challenges. You are dealing with the financial heart of the company and need to make sure that the right amount of blood reaches every cell. This necessarily means dealing with different kinds of issues, topics and people. This keeps Treasury fun and in constant evolution!

3. What is your Treasury Expertise?

I have been working as a consultant on very different Treasury projects, from interim roles to system implementations. I guess I am what you would call a generalist, but with a knack for using technology and social skills to solve problems. I have been coding for fun since I was a kid. This skill has been very useful throughout my career but has become my trademark in Treasury.

4. What has been your best experience in your treasury career until today?

Going back to the cardiovascular metaphor for Treasury, the best experience was probably when I was called by a client to solve an urgent clot which was at risk of causing severe damage. An apparently simple data migration exercise turned out to be much more complex than anticipated and was at risk of causing severe delays to a multimillion project. The solution involved a robot, a laptop being flown up and down Europe, a wedding and unreliable hotel wi-fi. Surprisingly, instead of being the ingredients for a bad joke, this led to a happy client and to an award-winning solution.

5. What has been your biggest challenge in treasury?

My biggest challenge in Treasury was witnessing the clash of American, Dutch, Indian, Japanese and many more cultures during a global SAP implementation (going live during a pandemic). Holding three nationalities and being exposed to different cultures from an early age didn’t help me as much as I would have hoped. I would encourage anyone working with different cultures to read Erin Meyer’s book “The Culture Map”. It will be helpful.

6. What’s the most important lesson that you’ve learned as a treasurer?

No one is rational and analytical all the time, not even experienced treasury professionals. Good communication is more important than perfect data and models, especially during a crisis. Without it you will lead or be led by emotion and will certainly miss the best course of action. When fear creeps in your own monkey mind, don’t be afraid to have a good conversation with it. Assess how big the actual threat is compared to the shadow being cast by your amygdala.

7. How have you seen the role of Corporate Treasury evolve over the years?

Corporate Treasury has come a long way from its more transactional origins and – as expected – is taking more of an advisory and strategic role within organizations. The boundaries with other specialized professions have faded (risk management and FP&A just to name a few) and I think that this is a good thing. Skilled professionals should be employed to solve interesting problems and come up with great ideas. The best problems and ideas are usually found at the intersection between disciplines and it’s only natural that we tend to all meet there more and more often.

8. What developments do you expect in corporate treasury in the near and further future?

For the near future I expect the focus on the hot topics of the moment to continue: cash visibility, cash flow forecasting, operational efficiency etc.

For the further future, I won’t adventure on guessing exactly what hot topics the next crisis will bring. I will instead share my best guess on the evolution on the corporate treasurer as a person.

My guess is that she or he will be less of a specialist and more of a generalist. The ideal corporate treasurer will be ‘renaissance polymath’ if you will. Our rapidly changing environment makes it more difficult to remain a (useful) specialist for long. Technology also tends to favour the generalist by democratizing specialist’s skills. There will certainly always be room for very specialized knowledge, but the risk of learning too much about too little in a dynamic environment, is that after a while you risk knowing everything about nothing.

 

Philip Costa Hibberd

 

 

 




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How SpendLab recovered more than €200 million EUR for its clients

14-04-2021 | treasuryXL | SpendLab |

Our Partner SpendLab Recovery is the Dutch market leader in spend justification. The company is a former spin-off from the Dutch government with a 98 year old heritage in procurement. It currently specializes in generating liquidity for clients by analyzing -and identifying anomalies in accounts payable data.  SpendLab generates liquidity for clients by using their Accounts Payable Recovery Analyzer (APRA) and thereby is able to recover millions. Last year, SpendLab recovered almost 400 million invoices and recovered over €200 million in Cash & Profit. With a Customer rating of 8.1, SpendLab is able to deliver quality services to its clients.

Find out how SpendLab recovered millions of value for its clients and how SpendLab can help your organization via this interview conducted in collaboration with treasuryXL!

We asked SpendLab 10 questions, let’s go!

INTERVIEW

1. Can you tell something about SpendLab Recovery?

SpendLab is the Dutch market leader in spend justification and has grown significantly during the past years. The organization is a former spin-off of the Dutch government with a 98 year old heritage in procurement. SpendLab is specialized in generating liquidity for clients by analyzing- and identifying anomalies in raw Accounts Payable data. Besides the generation of liquidity as part of Treasury, we provide compliance reports that are used by our clients to achieve compliance objectives.

2. What was the main reason to start SpendLab Recovery?

During our analyses back in the day we identified that a significant number of invoices and payments were processed incorrectly in Accounts Payable departments of organizations. As a result of these incorrect processes, liquidity could be recovered over multiple historical years.

During the years we significantly invested in our technology in order to provide our clients with a value proposition that is comprehensible, covering all aspects of an Accounts Payable recovery audit. Despite the approval of financial years by Auditors and Accountants, we are able to recover liquidity from the Accounts Payable for our clients. Nowadays we provide liquidity, a 100% analysis of the administrative Accounts Payable processes, and compliance -and risk reports that can be used for compliance purposes.

3. What is, in your perception, the core issue that SpendLab Recovery solves?

Administrative departments within organizations consistently encompass irregularities that lead to the loss of liquidity, despite the level of automation that is adopted. There will always be a continuous flow of business operations inside an organization, and if there are any checks in place, then these checks are mostly reactive and are used as an add-on for a team or employee. SpendLab specifically focuses on the Accounts Payable and is able to identify any irregularity within the raw AP data. Thereupon, we recover rightful liquidity for clients that they can use for value-adding activities.

4. What are the biggest advantages of using SpendLab Recovery?

From our own perspective the generation of liquidity from the Accounts Payable of financial years that were audited and ‘’closed’’ is a great advantage for our clients. Specifically, we are remunerated for the amount of liquidity that we recover.

In terms of Procurement, the Procurement department is usually in the lead during the contracting phase. However, after this phase a lack of insights and active control exist in how suppliers perform in processing invoices. Through our approach and the methods that we use, you could say that we are educating the suppliers of our clients in processing invoices correctly. Besides, it creates awareness that our clients are performing Accounts Payable Recovery Audits on a structural basis.

5. How does the customer project phase looks like from start till actual results?

Our recovery analysis consists of six project phases and requires approximately four months to conduct. The first results will be visible after only eight weeks. Below the project planning can be found.

6. How fast can customers experience the impact of SpendLab Recovery after implementation?

The average lead time of a recovery project is four months. The first payments from suppliers, however, will be collected after just two months. SpendLab is only charged based on the payments that are received, on the basis of no cure no pay.

7. What is the biggest challenge you ever experienced with SpendLab Recovery?

In the very beginning of Account Payable recovery audits, research was done based on spreadsheets. In the past five years we have invested significantly in our IT-platform APRA®. Nowadays, we have a team of more than twenty employees in the Technology department that are continuously developing software for Recovery. The transformation from manual research to automated research in combination with Machine Learning and Artificial intelligence has been the biggest challenge within SpendLab, and could not have been possible without the team and the investments that had to be made.

It has been a challenging choice to completely focus on IT development. However, this choice has enormously helped our organization in optimizing our service, identifying anomalies in Accounts Payable data, and remaining thought leader in the field of Accounts Payable recovery.

8. What have been the latest successes around product development?

Remote and safe access to ERP systems. Whereas our Data Collections team used to literally fly all around the world to align data requirements and to safely collect the raw data of the Accounts Payable that we need for our recovery audit, we can now align and safely collect (ISO:27001; ISO:9001 certified) the data remotely with and from our clients. SpendLab is now able to conduct a complete Accounts Payable recovery audit on a remote and digital basis. Since March 2020, COVID-19 has only accelerated this level of digitization and the service that we provide for our clients.

Moreover, as an organization we have completely changed our way of working. We now work from our platform on a digital and remote basis. Just like every success, this could not have been achieved without challenges.

9. Can you give us an outlook on the product developments and tell us a bit more about your vision?

We have gone from subsequent recovery analyses over five financial years to periodical visualizations. Together with our clients we have developed a complete recovery service, which we can utilize several times a year over the current financial year. Instead of conducting subsequent recovery audits, we are now aiming to provide our clients with a subscription agreement in which some of our clients even take care of the recovery themselves.

Despite that organizations keep optimizing their internal -and external processes, there will always be errors in processes. Based on the collaboration with and input from our clients, we have invested in optimizing our compliance -and risk reports. We can now offer the visualization of these reports in Power BI, which allows our clients to have live and real-time insights in the Accounts Payable.

10. The world is always changing, how does SpendLab Recovery stays one step ahead of its competitors?

SpendLab has always chosen to conduct Accounts Payable recovery audits only, and we are now an absolute leader in spend justification. This leadership role allows us to partner up with top leading international organizations and to discuss the current and future capabilities that they require from our recovery service. By commencing structural dialogues with leading organizations and system suppliers we challenge tomorrow’s needs in Accounts Payable solutions.

 

Interested in a free SpendLab Recovery demo and see how your company can benefit?

Contact us!

 

Hoe kunnen bedrijven hun bedrijfsresultaten beschermen tegen de valutamarkten? (Dutch item)

25-03-2021 | treasuryXL | XE |

Komt uw bedrijf in aanraking met vreemde valuta? Wybe Schutte legt in onderstaand interview uit hoe bedrijven de complexiteit van FX kunnen aanpakken.

Maak kennis met…

Wybe Schutte is Head of Business Development Europe bij Xe. Wybe’s carrière is altijd gericht geweest op internationale bedrijfsontwikkeling en het beheren van relaties. Binnen XE spelen beiden een belangrijke rol, aangezien Xe wereldwijd de vertrouwde partner zijn van veel bedrijven en hun helpen bij het beheren en verminderen van het risico die gepaard gaan met internationaal zakendoen en valuta’s.

INTERVIEW

1. Kun je iets vertellen over Xe en haar missie?

Bij Xe draait alles om valuta’s. De meeste mensen kennen Xe van de “Currency Converter”, maar we bieden al meer dan 25 jaar internationale betalingsverkeer diensten aan voor bedrijven. Xe’s Business Solutions ondersteunt bedrijven die in aanraking komen met vreemde valuta door hun te ondersteunen bij het beschermen van de winstmarges, en het verbeteren van de cashflow. Dit onder andere door het valutarisico waarmee ze worden geconfronteerd te kwantificeren en door strategieën te implementeren om dit te beperken. Zodat onze klanten zich kunnen concentreren op hun corebusiness en zich geen zorgen hoeven te maken over hun FX.

2. Welke soorten valutarisico’s zijn er en hoe gaat XE ermee om?

Binnen elk bedrijf kijken we waar de valutarisico’s zitten en hoe we deze risico’s kunnen beperken. Waarbij er verschillende opties zijn voor bedrijven om bescherming te bieden tegen het risico, zoals termijncontracten. Valutarisico kan worden onderverdeeld in drie soorten: 1) Transactie risico, wanneer een bedrijf zaken doet in een land dat verschilt van de basisvaluta; 2) Translational risico, wanneer een bedrijf een activa of passiva in een vreemde valuta op de balans heeft staan, en 3) Economisch risico waarbij een verandering in de wisselkoers een bedrijf een concurrentievoordeel kan geven in de markt.

3. Hoe kan je de verschillende soorten valutarisico’s meten?

FX-risico kan een negatieve of positieve invloed hebben op de bedrijfsresultaten. Als je terugkijkt op de afgelopen 10 jaar, valt er te zien wat de potentiële impact zou kunnen zijn in de meest extreme, minst extreme en gemiddelde scenario’s op een gegeven tijdlijn.
Dit kan worden gedaan door te kijken naar de hoogte- en dieptepunten van de markt en de valutapositie van een bedrijf. Deze stap helpt bedrijven te begrijpen wat de impact op het bedrijfsresultaat kan zijn.

4. Wat zijn de meest voorkomende kritieke FX-problemen die bedrijven hebben?

Bedrijven die een transactionele risico hebben, kunnen een onderscheid maken tussen gecommitteerde of verwachte blootstelling aan valuta risico. Een gecommitteerde blootstelling is wanneer de prijs voor goederen of diensten in een vreemde valuta bekend en gecontracteerd zijn. Hierdoor heeft elke wisselkoersschommeling een directe impact op hun winst of kosten, tenzij ze worden afgedekt. Een verwachte blootstelling is wanneer een bedrijf een inschatting maakt om te zien wat hun vereisten kunnen zijn. De betrouwbaarheidsniveaus in de voorspelde perioden kunnen sterk variëren en het is normaal gesproken zo dat hoe groter de periode, hoe lager de betrouwbaarheidsniveaus.

5. Hoe kunnen bedrijven hun bedrijfsresultaten beschermen tegen de valutamarkten?

Er zijn een aantal belangrijke stappen die een bedrijf kan volgen om de FX-volatiliteit te verminderen. De eerste is het type risico te identificeren om daarna de risico-elementen te kwalificeren en vervolgens een strategie te ontwikkelen en deze tijdens het implementatieproces te implementeren. In deze fases kunt u beslissen welke producten het meest geschikt zijn, zodat u vervolgens over kunt gaan op markttiming en uitvoering. Ten slotte moet u uw aanpak regelmatig analyseren, herzien en aanpassen. Het is belangrijk om te onthouden dat het niet om marktspeculatie gaat, maar om het beperken van uw risico.

6. Wat is volgens jou het grootste voordeel van een werkende FX strategie?

Gezien de altijd onzekere wereld waarin we momenteel leven, kunnen financiële afdelingen en treasury teams op zoek zijn naar een strategie om met deze valutaschommelingen om te gaan. Een strategie die na verloop van tijd een aanzienlijke invloed kunnen hebben op de bedrijfsresultaten van een bedrijf. Een gestructureerde benadering van valutarisico’s kan een bedrijf in staat stellen om strategische beslissingen te nemen, in plaats van te proberen in te spelen op de dagelijkse ontwikkelingen in de markt.

7. Ervaar je verschillen in FX vóór COVID19 en de tijd waarin we nu leven? Wat zijn de verschillen?

Er hebben zich aanzienlijke bewegingen voorgedaan op de valutamarkten tijdens de Covid19-periode en er zijn nog steeds veel factoren die de dagkoersen beïnvloeden. In deze onzekere tijden zijn onze opdrachtgevers op zoek naar zekerheid en stabiliteit. En hoewel prijs altijd belangrijk is, werden andere sleutelfactoren zoals veiligheid en geloofwaardigheid belangrijker. Uiteraard was de impact op onze klanten heel verschillend en we hebben met hun samengewerkt om de oplossingen en flexibiliteit te bieden die ze nodig hadden. We hebben veel nieuwe klanten verwelkomd uit nieuwe industrieën terwijl ze groeiden, en we ondersteunen nieuwe en bestaande klanten die groeiden, het lastig hadden, of hun bedrijfsmodellen aanpasten aan de veranderende markt.

8. De markt verandert voortdurend, hoe blijft XE op de hoogte van de laatste ontwikkelingen in de valutawereld?

We werken nauw samen met onze klanten om hun behoeften continu te begrijpen en hierop aan te passen. Onze deskundige dealers houden de markt nauwlettend in de gaten. Inzicht in de bewegingen, weerstandsniveaus en belangrijke economische en politieke updates die de markt kunnen beïnvloeden zijn erg belangrijk, en we houden die in de gaten zodat onze klanten zich daar geen zorgen over hoeven te maken. Xe werkt ook nauw samen met onze zusterbedrijven en moederbedrijf Euronet Worldwide.

9. Hoe ziet de toekomst van FX er in jouw perspectief uit?

De nabije toekomst zou het hoofd kunnen bieden aan buitengewone niveaus van balansuitbreiding en recessie, wat mogelijk zou kunnen leiden tot een langer stimulerend/ expansief monetair beleid dat op zijn beurt de valutakoersen van de landen die ze dragen, zou kunnen drukken. De gevolgen hiervan op de korte tot middellange termijn zouden een gebrek aan grote economische expansie kunnen zijn, aangezien het kapitaalrendement vaak negatief is wanneer de inflatie wordt meegerekend. Dit kan betekenen dat we een herschikking van de FX-sterkte zien naar op commodity based valuta’s (CAD / AUD / NZD) en alternatieve veilige havens (CHF). We zouden deze verschuiving echter op langere termijn kunnen zien, aangezien met name de overheidsschuld houdbaarder en aantrekkelijker wordt tegen zulke lage rentetarieven en bredere investeringen zou kunnen uitnodigen voor landen en tot op zekere hoogte de particuliere industrie.

We zijn getuige geweest van een grote volatiliteit in de FX-markt door een grotere afhankelijkheid van een smallere data kern. Inflatie en rentetarieven, maar ook verhalen over de overheidsschuld en de uitbreiding van de balans hebben de meeste invloed op de renteschommelingen.

10. Wat is tot nu toe jouw beste ervaring ooit in de wereld van valuta’s?

Een scale-up ondersteunen met hun complexe FX-vereisten en hen in staat stellen hun bedrijf in een korte tijd te laten groeien door het FX-risico te elimineren en gaandeweg aanzienlijke kostenbesparingen te realiseren.

 

Meer over XE

Bij XE draait alles om Valuta. We bieden een uitgebreid portfolio van valutadiensten en -producten aan, waaronder onze valutacalculator, marktanalyses, valutagegevens-API en snelle, gemakkelijke en veilig betalingsverkeer voor consumenten en bedrijven.

XE faciliteert wereldwijd meer dan 13.000 bedrijven per jaar bij het beheren van hun vreemde valuta en het vooruit plannen om de risico’s van valutaschommelingen te beperken.

XE is onderdeel van Euronet Worldwide (EWI), een aan Nasdaq genoteerde wereldwijde aanbieder van elektronische en transactie verwerkingsoplossingen met een marktkapitalisatie van ongeveer 7,5 miljard dollar.

XE Business Services

Internationale betalingen en beheer van valutarisico’s van ‘s werelds vertrouwde autoriteit op valutagebied. De concurrentie voorblijven is al moeilijk genoeg zonder de complexiteit van vreemde valuta. XE kan u helpen tijd en geld te besparen, zodat u kunt blijven doen waar u goed in bent: uw bedrijf runnen. Onze oplossingen bieden u zekerheid in een onzekere wereld en stellen uw bedrijf in staat om de juiste beslissingen te nemen.

Bezoek XE.com

Lees XE blogs

 

 

How businesses in the healthcare & medical industry can improve their FX outcomes

18-03-2021 | treasuryXL | XE |

Having a secure, reliable and cost effective international payment provider as well as the tools and expertise available to support you to weather market volatility is crucial.

Any business that deals with foreign currency, no matter the size or the industry, has the potential to be impacted by the ups and downs of the foreign currency markets. A change in exchange rates from one day to the next could potentially increase importing costs, increase capital expenditure costs, or increase overseas investment costs.

If you are a business in the healthcare and medical industry, preparing for market volatility and knowing how to respond to shifts in currency values is critical. Otherwise, you could end up paying more than you projected on goods or services, which can have a detrimental impact on your bottom line.

Whether you’re importing medical devices and distributing them to local pharmacies or healthcare providers, or purchasing chemicals as part of the medicine production process, having a secure, reliable and cost effective international payment provider as well as the tools and expertise available to support you to weather market volatility is crucial.

How can your healthcare business address foreign currency risk?

Working with a knowledgeable, experienced foreign exchange provider is the first step to safeguarding your business against ups and downs of the currency markets. No one can predict the future, but an FX provider can help you prepare for potential volatility, and will have the tools and guidance to help you respond in the event of unexpected shifts.

Opening an Xe Business account will allow you to take advantage of our full suite of products and services, so you can:

  • Protect costs for imports;

  • Save time through accurate forecasting and quick and easy payments;

  • Save money with cheaper rates and no fees (compared to banks).

Learn More

How can Xe reduce foreign currency risk for your business?

We understand that no two businesses are the same. We work individually with each business in order to identify where their needs lie and what their risk exposures are, and develop an international payments and risk management strategy tailored to their operations.

We offer a range of products and services, including:

  • Spot transfers. Purchase currency and send your international payment at the current rate. If you need to make a quick payment, you can do it on the spot in just a few minutes.

  • Market orders. Identify a target exchange rate, and we’ll initiate your transfer when that rate is reached. If your payment isn’t time-sensitive, you can avoid potential volatility in the future.

  • Forward contracts. Lock in today’s exchange rate and send the payment on a set future date. If you have an upcoming transfer and don’t want to worry about the markets fluctuating, take care of it now for peace of mind later.

  • Risk management. Don’t have the time or the resources to devise a risk management strategy on your own? With our 25 years of experience in the currency markets and dedicated team of currency experts, we can help you to strategise the right one for your business.

How to get started

Signing up for an Xe Business account is completely free, and will take just a few minutes. Interested in learning what the process entails? Contact our expert Maurits Houthoff for quick and transparant information.

Corporates: Caveat IBOR and Build-Up Your IBOR Knowledge!

01-03-2021 | treasuryXL | Enigma Consulting |

Last year November we published the article ‘Corporates: Caveat IBOR!’ regarding the IBOR phase out and the impact on corporates. Let’s have a look why today’s corporate treasurer should be even more aware of IBOR interest rate benchmarks.

It is highly likely that your organisation will be affected by the IBOR transition. Most corporate organisations underestimate the impact, thinking that the ‘only’ thing that will change is a base rate and its calculation method. Before you join their ranks, take some time to reflect on the following:

The IBOR will cease to exist, starting on the 31st December 2021 and be replaced by Risk-Free Rates (RFRs) with a different basis for calculation:

  • These changes will impact financial (e.g. bond, (intercompany) loan, (multi-currency) credit facility) contracts as well as commercial contracts with an IBOR related ‘late payment clause’
  • This in turn will impact processes in the Treasury functions, with knock-on effects to supporting departments, Legal, IT systems, accounting, and tax reporting to name just a few
  • IBOR transition is progressing at a different pace across jurisdictions and financial products (e.g. loans, bonds, and derivatives), adding to the complexity of managing the transition
  • The Working Group on Sterling Risk-Free Reference Rates (RFRWG) published the following milestones regarding GBP LIBOR:
    • By end-Q1 2021, all legacy GBP LIBOR contracts expiring after end 2021 that can be actively converted need to be identified, and progress active conversion where viable through to completion by end-Q3 2021
    • Active steps to enable a shift of volumes from GBP LIBOR to SONIA in non-linear derivative markets: by end-Q2 2021, initiation of new GBP LIBOR linked non-linear derivatives that expire after the end of 2021 will be ceased; and, by end-Q3 2021, complete active conversion

The good news is that there is still time to assess the impact of the pending IBOR changes on your organisation and to act upon it if needs be. The sooner you have a plan for the potential consequences for your organisation, the sooner you will be able to mitigate these. This understanding will also give you more leverage in the coming discussions with your bank(s).

Moreover, the IBOR phase out may bring a golden opportunity for corporates to re-evaluate the current contract agreements and look for better deals. Consider this: during the IBOR migration contracts are in fact ‘renegotiated’ and banks will need to come up with a new offer. Will you take that offer as a corporate client? That all depends on your level of understanding and preparation.

What should you do to prepare?

As the deadline approaches, you will need to know your level of exposure and impact in order to prevent surprises. What will the impact of the IBOR transition be on your TMS and ERP systems, your credit facilities, bank loans, cash pooling, bonds, ISDA agreements and intercompany agreements? What impacts will these have on your processes and supporting systems? Which complexities will need to be managed?

 

 

Having this information at hand will enable you to be a proper sparring partner for your banks when they renegotiate contract terms.

Depending on the complexity of your contracts, the IBOR phase out could substantially affect your corporate organisation. Prevent unnecessary loss by preparing yourself, following this five-step approach:

 

  • IBOR phase out knowledge build-up

Corporates should start to build-up their knowledge regarding the IBOR phase-out and get up-to-speed with developments related to different kind of products and RFRs in order to be able to assess the IBOR phase-out impact. Each corporate organisation has a different situation and a variety of financial contracts. Complexity depends on the type of business. A larger organisation active across multiple regions in the world with more complex non-Euro instruments will be impacted higher than a smaller organisation that only is active locally within the Eurozone. Thorough knowledge about IBOR is a key starting point to assess the impact on your organisation and to be able to assess, plan and implement the migration to alternative reference rates.

  • Assess impact

The second step you should take is to analyse the IBOR related contracts in use throughout your organisation. Determine which contracts have an IBOR related component and the size of the exposure. Once you have assessed the complexity of your IBOR related contracts, analyse the impact on related areas (ranging from Tax and Legal to IT systems, and procedures, reporting, accounting (e.g. hedge-accounting), and the like).

  • Become a prepared discussion partner for your bank(s)

The third step is to be prepared for a call with your bank to discuss an RFR offering! The magnitude of change is well-recognised by banks and financial institutions, and they are demonstrating an increasing sense of urgency to address contracts maturing after 2021. More and more newly issued IBOR related products by your bank(s) will refer to a new alternative reference rate during 2021.

  • Plan actions

Knowing the alternative RFRs is an important input on creating a detailed action plan. Define a project team governance to manage this action plan and the status of the transition across different areas, business lines, and geographical locations. In particular, take care to ensure external resource availability regarding e.g. Legal counselling and system provider experts, as demand for these specialists will rapidly increase as the IBOR transition deadline approaches.

  • Act and implement

Step five is the implementation of your action plan throughout the affected areas of your organisation. In this ‘Act’ phase it is important to maintain the conversation with external parties, such as banks and system providers. It is also of vital importance to support the implementation across all relevant business lines and functions, maintaining support for go-live readiness in line with the defined action plan and deadlines.

A golden opportunity starts with IBOR knowledge build-up

Enigma Consulting supports you in knowledge build-up by providing ‘tailor-made’ workshops in order to discuss the impact on your corporate organisation related to different RFRs for different products based on your specific situation and to help you to prepare and become a discussion partner with your bank.

IBOR may well be a golden opportunity, but it is up to you as a corporate treasurer to seize it by acting rather sooner than later! Corporates: Caveat IBOR and build up your knowledge!

If you are interested in how we can help you to build-up your knowledge and to assess your IBOR related contract complexity or if you want to understand how we can support your corporate organisation in the IBOR phase out transition, you can contact us on:

dpluta@enigmaconsulting.nl or look at www.enigmaconsulting.nl

Daniel Pluta

 

 

 

SurePay | Prevent fraud and errors with The IBAN-Name Check for Organisations

24-02-2021 | treasuryXL |

Award-winning Fintech company, SurePay, integrates the IBAN-Name Check into your business processes. This prevents fraud and errors and allows you to realize more efficient processes.

SurePay was founded in 2016 and has been providing the IBAN-Name Check to all major Dutch banks since 2017. In the years that followed, the group of customers expanded to corporates and partners. Today, SurePay provides the Confirmation of Payee service in the UK, while at the same time introducing new services in the Netherlands. At the beginning of 2020, SurePay became a Private Company and an independent part of the Rabobank Group.

Experience the benefits of the IBAN-Name Check in your business processes

Entering, using and checking customer data is often labor-intensive. By integrating the SurePay IBAN and name check into your systems, you make your processes more efficient, safer and reduce the risk of fraud.

This way, the online registration of new customers runs more smoothly, you collect from and you pay to the right person. Moreover, you know whether you are dealing with a private or business account! Various organisations, like insurers, municipalities and energy companies already use the IBAN-Name Check for organisations. The same solution makes sure that the Covid-19 payments are delivered safely, at scale and to the right people in both the Netherlands and the UK.

2020 recap at a glance

SurePay saw a spectacular growth of 1719% in the number of checks for organisations. More than 125 organisations now use the IBAN-Name Check.

See the complete 2020 year report here.

They use the service in the onboarding process of new suppliers and customers (KYC), in claims and payout processes, in direct debit processes and in fraud investigations. This makes processes more efficient, safer and reduces the risk of fraud and misdirection, avoiding all the damage and hassle that goes with it.

The results are impressive:

  • 90% less drop-outs during onboarding
  • 80% less fraudulent onboardings
  • 50% less uncollectible invoices

Want to know more about the IBAN-Name Check for Organisations?

To know more about the IBAN-Name Check like features, roadmap, use cases and the team behind this proven solution, click here

Thanks for reading, take care.

 

 

Kendra Keydeniers

Director, Community & Partners treasuryXL

How can businesses protect their bottom line against the currency markets?

28-01-2021 | treasuryXL | XE |

Does your company have an exposure to foreign currencies? Wybe Schutte explains in below interview how business can tackle the complexity of FX.

AN INTRODUCTION TO

Wybe Schutte is head of Business Development Europe at XE.com. Wybe’s career has always centered around international business development and managing relationships. Within XE.com both play an important part as globally we XE is the trusted partner of many business in helping them manage & mitigate the risk that is associated with dealing with multiple currencies, be this through simple rate regulation or looking at high level currency risk management & hedging solutions.

We asked him 10 questions. Let’s go!

 

INTERVIEW

1. Can you tell something about XE and its mission?

At Xe, we live currencies. Most people know Xe from the currency converter, however we also provide international money transfer services for business for over 25 years.  Xe’s Business Solutions supports company’s that have an exposure to foreign currency, supporting them to safeguard profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk they face and implementing strategies to mitigate it. So that our clients can focus on their core business and do not have to worry about their FX.

2.What kind of FX risk types exists and how does XE deal with it?

We look within each business to see where the currency risks are, and whether these can be offset. For example, any sales made in Euros could be offset against Euro costs. If there is still an exposure this is where products such as Forward Contracts can be considered in order to provide protection against the risk. Currency risk can be divided into three types: Transactional Risk, when a business deals in a country that differs to their base currency; Transnational Risk, when a business has an asset or liability overseas on their balance sheet, and Economic Risk where a movement in the exchange rate can give a business a competitive advantage when competing for a particular market.

3. How can you measure the different types of FX risk?

FX Risk can either have a negative or positive impact on a business’ bottom line. If you look back over the last 10 years you can understand what the potential impact could be in the most extreme, least extreme and average scenarios over your given timeline.

This can be done by looking at the high & low points of the market and a business’ FX exposure. This step helps companies to understand what the impact of the net exposure can have on the bottom line.

4. What are the most common critical FX problems that businesses have?

Businesses that have a transactional exposure to the currency markets can differentiate between committed and forecasted exposures. A committed exposure is when the price for a good or service in a foreign currency is known and contracted. Therefore, any movement in exchange rate has a direct impact on their profit or cost unless hedged. A forecasted exposure is when a business looks to the period beyond the committed period to see what their requirements may be. Confidence levels into forecasted periods can vary largely and it is normally the case that the further out a business forecasts, the lower the confidence levels.

5. How can businesses protect their bottom line against the currency markets?

There are a number of key stages that a business can look to follow in order to mitigate FX volatility. Firstly, Identify the type of risk, quantify the risk elements, and then look to build a strategy and agree the implementation process. These stages will allow you to decide the products that are most suitable, so you can then move to market timing and execution. Lastly, you should look to review, revise and adjust your approach on a regular basis. It is important to remember that it is not about market speculation but about mitigating your risk.

6. What is, in your perception, the biggest benefit of a working Foreign Exchange strategy?

Given the ever-uncertain world in which we currently live in, finance departments and treasury centres could be looking to build a strategy to deal with currency fluctuations, which over time could have a considerable impact on your company’s bottom line. A structured approach to foreign exchange risk can enable your business to make strategic planning decisions, rather than attempting to respond to day-to-day developments in the market.

7. Do you experience differences in FX before COVID19 and the time we live in now? What are the differences?

There has been significant movements in the currency markets during the Covid19 period and there are still many factors that influence the daily rates. During these uncertain times our clients are looking for certainty and stability. And although price is always important, other key factors like security and credibility became more important. Naturally each of our clients has been impacted very differently and we have worked with them to provide the solutions and flexibility they needed. We have welcomed many new clients from new geographies? as they were growing, and we supported existing clients that were growing or adapting their business models to suit the changing market.

8. The market is always changing, how does XE stay top of mind of the latest developments in the currency world?

We work closely with our clients to continuously understand their needs and adjust accordingly. Our expert Dealers keep a close eye out on the market. Understanding the movements, resistance levels, and key economic & political updates that can influence the market so that our clients do not have to worry about that. Xe also works closely with our sister companies and parent company Euronet Worldwide.

9. How does the future of FX look like in your perspective?

The near future could be set to weather extraordinary levels of balance sheet expansion and recession, potentially leading to a longer stimulative/expansionary monetary policy which could in turn depress currency rates of the countries that bear them. Near to medium term impacts of this could include a lack of major economic expansion as capital returns are often negative when factoring inflation. This may mean that we see a re-composition of FX strength toward commodity-based currencies (CAD/AUD/NZD) and alternative safe havens (CHF). However, we could see this shift in the longer term as public debt, in particular, becomes more tenable and attractive at such low interest rates and could invite broader investment for countries and to a degree private industry.

We have witnessed ample FX market volatility from an increased reliance on a more narrow data core. Inflation and interest rates and also public debt and balance sheet expansion narratives are having the most impact on rate movements. With this in mind; where much of the corrective forces required are formed around policies related to these key issues, it appears that volatility could behere to stay for at least the coming 6-12 months and beyond.

10. What has been your best experience ever in the world of currencies?

Supporting a scale-up with their complex FX requirements and enable them to grow their business in a short period of time by eliminating the FX risk and provide significant costs savings along the way.

 

About XE

At XE, they live currencies. XE provides a comprehensive range of currency services and products, including their Currency Converter, Market Analysis, Currency Data API and quick, easy, secure Money Transfers for individuals and businesses. They leverage technology to deliver these services through their website, mobile apps and over the phone.

Last year, XE helped nearly 300 million people access information about the currencies that matter to them and over 350,000 people used XE to send money overseas. Thousands of businesses relied on XE for information about the currency markets, advice on managing their foreign exchange risk or trusted XE with their business-critical international payments.

International Payments & FX Risk management for business

XE Business Solutions can help safeguard your profit margins and improve cashflow through quantifying the FX risk you face and implementing unique strategies to mitigate it. We provide a comprehensive range of currency services and products to help you access competitive rates with greater control.

At XE, they share the belief that behind every currency exchange, query or transaction is a person or business trying to accomplish something important, so XE works together to develop new and better currency services that put their customers first.

XE is proud to be part of Euronet Worldwide (Nasdaq: EEFT), a global leader in processing secure electronic financial transactions. XE is part of the Money Transfer Division of Euronet and is the unification of HiFX and XE.com.

Visit XE.com

Read XE blogs

Savings and investment banks have a lot of potential for improvement in the onboarding process for customers

24-11-2020 | treasuryXL | Enigma Consulting |

(Dutch Item)

Hoe digitaal en gebruiksvriendelijk verloopt het proces om klant te worden bij spaar- en beleggingsbanken? En wat kunnen zij opsteken van banken die een betaalrekening aanbieden? In een nieuw onderzoek van Enigma Consulting komt naar voren dat spaar- en beleggingsbanken hun onboardingsproces naar een hoger niveau kunnen brengen door te leren van de klantreis van banken die reguliere betaalrekeningen aanbieden. Wat vooral opvalt is dat de onboarding bij spaar- en beleggingsbanken nog hoofdzakelijk via de website verloopt, terwijl betaalbanken de onboarding via de app aanbieden en overduidelijk meer inzetten op innovatieve oplossingen. Een bijdrage van Marc Groot, Managing Consultant bij Enigma Consulting en expert binnen het onboardingsdomein.

Als expert in het klantonboardingsdomein publiceerde Enigma Consulting in juni 2020 een artikel over de onboardingsprocessen van de belangrijkste ‘betaalbanken’ in Nederland. Dit onderzoek heeft een vervolg gekregen, waarin naar de onboarding van spaar- en beleggingsbanken is gekeken, die worden aangeduid als ‘niet-betaalbanken’. Banken die  – onder andere – een betaalrekening aanbieden, noemen we betaalbanken.

Wanneer onboarding niet via de app mogelijk was, is de onboarding uitgevoerd via de website op de smartphone. Het onboardingsproces is per bank doorlopen en beoordeeld aan de hand van verschillende criteria. De onderzoekers hebben zich in het onderzoek geconcentreerd op de klantervaring, waarbij niet achter de schermen is gekeken bij de onderzochte banken. De klantreis is beoordeeld op basis van drie categorieën:

  • Innovatie: door handig gebruik te maken van innovatieve technieken, zoals een selfiefilm en de NFC-chip voor het uitlezen van legitimaties, kunnen gebruiksvriendelijkheid en fraudepreventie bij elkaar gebracht en versterkt worden.
  • Gebruiksvriendelijkheid: het gemak waarmee de klant het proces doorloopt, de doorlooptijd, de begeleiding van de klant door het proces en de aanwezigheid van technische barrières.
  • Veiligheid en fraudepreventie: alle banken hebben de verantwoordelijkheid om fraude te voorkomen en de klant correct te identificeren. De banken zijn beoordeeld op basis van hoe de klant wordt geïdentificeerd,  klantidentificatie- en verificatiemethoden en in hoeverre deze  aan de voorkant voldoen aan de geldende wet- en regelgeving.

De volgende afbeelding geeft weer welke spaar- en beleggingsbanken zijn meegenomen in het onderzoek en welke het beste zijn beoordeeld per categorie.

Niet-betaalbanken weinig innovatief

Allereerst is gekeken in hoeverre niet-betaalbanken innovaties gebruiken in het onboardingsproces en hoe dit zich verhoudt tot betaalbanken. Bij de identificatie van een klant gaat de bank af op de door de klant verstrekte gegevens. Een voorbeeld is een kopie of scan van het paspoort. Vervolgens verifieert de bank de identiteit door vast te stellen of de opgegeven identiteit overeenkomt met de werkelijke identiteit, bijvoorbeeld door een selfie-foto. Innovaties in het onboardingsproces zijn onder meer vernieuwende klantidentificatie- en verificatiemethoden en het uitlezen van de legitimatie via een foto in de app of via een NFC-chip.

Bij de niet-betaalbanken bieden alleen beleggersbanken DeGiro en Semmie de mogelijkheid aan om via een foto het legitimatiebewijs te delen met de bank. Bij de overige niet-betaalbanken dient de klant een scan van het legitimatiebewijs te maken en deze vervolgens te uploaden of te mailen. Daarbij moet de klant de persoonlijke gegevens handmatig invoeren op de website. Dit leidt tot een langer proces en kan leiden tot incorrecte invoer van de klant. Verder bieden de niet-betaalbanken geen van alle een selfie-foto, selfie-film of stemopname aan als middel voor klantverificatie.

Daarentegen gebruikt een meerderheid van de betaalbanken wel innovatieve identificatie- en verificatiemethoden. Vijf betaalbanken laten hun nieuwe klant een selfie-foto maken, drie kiezen voor een selfie-film en twee voor een stemopname. Verder worden bij vier betaalbanken de persoonsgegevens automatisch overgenomen in de app door middel van een scan van het legitimatiebewijs of door het uitlezen van de NFC-chip van het paspoort.

Onboarding via app bij niet-betaalbanken nog in kinderschoenen

Kijkend naar gebruiksvriendelijkheid is het bij vrijwel geen enkele niet-betaalbank mogelijk om de volledige onboarding te verrichten via de app. Dit kan alleen bij vermogensbeheerder Semmie. Deze jonge fintech-onderneming maakt in alle categorieën een goede indruk. Bij de overige gevallen gaat de klant grotendeels door het proces via de website. De klant vult de persoonlijke gegevens handmatig in via een webformulier. Bovendien heeft een deel van de niet-betaalbanken überhaupt geen app waarin zij hun diensten aanbieden.

Bij de niet-betaalbanken onderscheiden BinckBank, DeGiro, Lloyds Bank en Semmie zich positief qua doorlooptijd. De klant weet binnen een uur wat het spaarrekeningnummer is. Bij Semmie moet aangetekend worden dat het rekeningnummer nog niet direct actief is na de onboarding, vanwege de afhankelijkheid van de acceptatie door hun depotbank.  Bij de andere spaar- en beleggingsbanken varieert deze doorlooptijd van binnen een dag tot binnen een week.

Uit het onderzoek komt naar voren dat banken waarbij de onboarding via de app verloopt beter scoren op gebruiksvriendelijkheid en innovatie. Het grote voordeel van mobiele apps in vergelijking met mobiele websites is de betere klantervaring. Mobiele apps zijn geoptimaliseerd voor een grote hoeveelheid aan smartphones en schermresoluties, apps werken sneller dan websites en apps kunnen gebruikmaken van apparaat-eigenschappen, zoals camera of GPS. Bij onboarding via een website zijn deze apparaat-eigenschappen niet mogelijk.

Een belangrijk element van een goede gebruikerservaring is dat de klant zo snel mogelijk gebruik kan maken van de rekening en diensten. Bij een aantal betaalbanken is de rekening binnen een uur al actief en kan de klant transacties uitvoeren. Om dit te realiseren is een gedigitaliseerde klantreis noodzakelijk. Bij de meeste betaalbanken is het mogelijk de onboarding volledig te doorlopen via de app. Duidelijk is dat bij de niet-betaalbanken een flinke stap valt te maken in het aanbieden van de onboarding en dienstverlening via een app.

Veiligheid kan gebruikersgemak verlagen, innovatie is de oplossing

De derde categorie is ‘veiligheid en fraudepreventie’. Voor banken is het van groot belang dat zij op de hoogte zijn van de laatste wet- en regelgeving en de processen volledig compliant zijn in relatie tot KYC en AML.

Zowel betaalbanken als niet-betaalbanken gebruiken de identificatiestorting regelmatig. Bij niet-betaalbanken is het primaire doel van de identificatiestorting het moeten verifiëren van een vaste tegenrekening. Bij betaalbanken gaat het om afgeleide identificatie van de klant.

Bij de niet-betaalbanken komt de identificatiestorting acht keer terug. BinckBank, DeGiro  en Semmie maken het mogelijk om via iDEAL te betalen, terwijl de overige niet-betaalbanken nog steeds een handmatige overboeking hanteren. Deze handmatige overboeking is tijdrovend en gaat buiten de directe flow van de klantreis om. iDEAL is de oplossing hiervoor.

De betaalbanken hebben iDEAL nagenoeg standaard opgenomen in de klantreis. Bij zes betaalbanken die de identificatiestorting gebruiken, kan de klant bij vijf de storting uitvoeren via iDEAL en bij één gaat dit via een handmatige overboeking.

Innovatie en app zetten betaalbanken op grote voorsprong

Uit het onderzoek kunnen een aantal conclusies getrokken worden. Ten eerste lopen niet-betaalbanken ver achter op betaalbanken op het gebied van innovatieve  klantidentificatie- en verificatiemethodes. Ten tweede bieden niet-betaalbanken het onboardingsproces hoofdzakelijk aan via de website, terwijl de onboarding bij betaalbanken verloopt via de app.

Kortom, spaar- en beleggingsbanken hebben veel verbeterpotentieel als het gaat om klantervaring en digitalisering van het onboardingsproces. Tegenwoordig voeren steeds meer bedrijven een ‘app first-strategie’ waarbij alle diensten, en dus ook onboarding, via de app verlopen om zodoende een vlekkeloze mobiele online ervaring te kunnen bieden. We zijn immers tegenwoordig meer online via onze smartphones dan via andere apparaten.

Innovatie en gebruikersgemak zijn op een positieve wijze nauw met elkaar verbonden. Door gebruik te maken van innovaties, wordt de veiligheid van het proces bevorderd zonder dat dit ten koste gaat van de gebruiksvriendelijkheid.

Partner Interview SpendLab | Leaders in Spend Justification

17-11-2020 | treasuryXL | SpendLab |

SpendLab Recovery generates liquidity for clients by using their Accounts Payable Recovery Analyzer (APRA). APRA is a technology platform that combines over 400 algorithms, Big Data, AI, and machine learning, and audits all the raw Accounts Payable data in any ERP system to identify anomalies. Several examples of anomalies include but are not limited to: undue payments, double invoices, overpayments, and overpaid VAT. Over the past years, SpendLab has analysed over 321 million invoices and has recovered more than €200 million EUR for its clients.

We asked the company 10 questions, let’s go!

INTERVIEW

1. Can you tell something about SpendLab Recovery?

SpendLab is the Dutch market leader in spend justification and has grown significantly during the past years. The organization is a former spin-off of the Dutch government with a 98 year old heritage in procurement. SpendLab is specialized in generating liquidity for clients by analyzing- and identifying anomalies in raw Accounts Payable data. Besides the generation of liquidity as part of Treasury, we provide compliance reports that are used by our clients to achieve compliance objectives.

2. What was the main reason to start SpendLab Recovery?

During our analyses back in the day we identified that a significant number of invoices and payments were processed incorrectly in Accounts Payable departments of organizations. As a result of these incorrect processes, liquidity could be recovered over multiple historical years.

During the years we significantly invested in our technology in order to provide our clients with a value proposition that is comprehensible, covering all aspects of an Accounts Payable recovery audit. Despite the approval of financial years by Auditors and Accountants, we are able to recover liquidity from the Accounts Payable for our clients. Nowadays we provide liquidity, a 100% analysis of the administrative Accounts Payable processes, and compliance -and risk reports that can be used for compliance purposes.

3. What is, in your perception, the core issue that SpendLab Recovery solves?

Administrative departments within organizations consistently encompass irregularities that lead to the loss of liquidity, despite the level of automation that is adopted. There will always be a continuous flow of business operations inside an organization, and if there are any checks in place, then these checks are mostly reactive and are used as an add-on for a team or employee. SpendLab specifically focuses on the Accounts Payable and is able to identify any irregularity within the raw AP data. Thereupon, we recover rightful liquidity for clients that they can use for value-adding activities.

4. What are the biggest advantages of using SpendLab Recovery?

From our own perspective the generation of liquidity from the Accounts Payable of financial years that were audited and ‘’closed’’ is a great advantage for our clients. Specifically, we are remunerated for the amount of liquidity that we recover.

In terms of Procurement, the Procurement department is usually in the lead during the contracting phase. However, after this phase a lack of insights and active control exist in how suppliers perform in processing invoices. Through our approach and the methods that we use, you could say that we are educating the suppliers of our clients in processing invoices correctly. Besides, it creates awareness that our clients are performing Accounts Payable Recovery Audits on a structural basis.

5. How does the customer project phase looks like from start till actual results?

Our recovery analysis consists of six project phases and requires approximately four months to conduct. The first results will be visible after only eight weeks. Below the project planning can be found.

6. How fast can customers experience the impact of SpendLab Recovery after implementation?

The average lead time of a recovery project is four months. The first payments from suppliers, however, will be collected after just two months. SpendLab is only charged based on the payments that are received, on the basis of no cure no pay.

7. What is the biggest challenge you ever experienced with SpendLab Recovery?

In the very beginning of Account Payable recovery audits, research was done based on spreadsheets. In the past five years we have invested significantly in our IT-platform APRA®. Nowadays, we have a team of more than twenty employees in the Technology department that are continuously developing software for Recovery. The transformation from manual research to automated research in combination with Machine Learning and Artificial intelligence has been the biggest challenge within SpendLab, and could not have been possible without the team and the investments that had to be made.

It has been a challenging choice to completely focus on IT development. However, this choice has enormously helped our organization in optimizing our service, identifying anomalies in Accounts Payable data, and remaining thought leader in the field of Accounts Payable recovery.

8. What have been the latest successes around product development?

Remote and safe access to ERP systems. Whereas our Data Collections team used to literally fly all around the world to align data requirements and to safely collect the raw data of the Accounts Payable that we need for our recovery audit, we can now align and safely collect (ISO:27001; ISO:9001 certified) the data remotely with and from our clients. SpendLab is now able to conduct a complete Accounts Payable recovery audit on a remote and digital basis. Since March 2020, COVID-19 has only accelerated this level of digitization and the service that we provide for our clients.

Moreover, as an organization we have completely changed our way of working. We now work from our platform on a digital and remote basis. Just like every success, this could not have been achieved without challenges.

9. Can you give us an outlook on the product developments and tell us a bit more about your vision?

We have gone from subsequent recovery analyses over five financial years to periodical visualizations. Together with our clients we have developed a complete recovery service, which we can utilize several times a year over the current financial year. Instead of conducting subsequent recovery audits, we are now aiming to provide our clients with a subscription agreement in which some of our clients even take care of the recovery themselves.

Despite that organizations keep optimizing their internal -and external processes, there will always be errors in processes. Based on the collaboration with and input from our clients, we have invested in optimizing our compliance -and risk reports. We can now offer the visualization of these reports in Power BI, which allows our clients to have live and real-time insights in the Accounts Payable.

10. The world is always changing, how does SpendLab Recovery stays one step ahead of its competitors?

SpendLab has always chosen to conduct Accounts Payable recovery audits only, and we are now an absolute leader in spend justification. This leadership role allows us to partner up with top leading international organizations and to discuss the current and future capabilities that they require from our recovery service. By commencing structural dialogues with leading organizations and system suppliers we challenge tomorrow’s needs in Accounts Payable solutions.

 

Interested in a free SpendLab Recovery demo and see how your company can benefit?

Contact us!

 

Partner Interview Nomentia | Best-of-breed cash & treasury management solutions

10-11-2020 | treasuryXL | Nomentia |

It has been a crazy year for OpusCapita with a lot of positive changes. OpusCapita recently joined forces with Analyste and merged into Nomentia.

Nomentia is a Nordic powerhouse for global cash management. By believing in a world in which businesses can make the right decisions no matter how unpredictable the times are, their SaaS-based platform offers solutions for cash forecasting & visibility, global payments with bank connectivity, reconciliation, in-house banking, guarantees, and FX dealing. Nomentia currently serves 2,300+ clients in over 100 countries processing more than 200 billion euros annually.

AN INTRODUCTION TO…

 

Meet Jukka Sallinen , Deputy CEO at Nomentia.

Jukka is a cash management domain expert with a strong hands-on background from international and complex payment factory and SWIFT projects. Previously Jukka had been working in various R&D roles, focusing on bank and ERP integrations and security topics.

” We are the bridge between finance and treasury ”

 

 

We asked him 9 questions. Let’s go!

INTERVIEW

1. Nomentia, what is the core business and what is its mission??

Our vision is to create solutions that make the life of modern CFO’s and Treasurers easier. We provide best-of-breed cash and treasury solutions that are the bridge between Finance and Treasury. Best-of-breed means that we focus on challenges that matter for modern CFO’s and treasurers to stay ahead of the curve and help their business to prosper.

We solve the challenges that professionals face in their daily work:

End-to-end & total visibility of cash flows is ever important. By visibility we of course mean visibility to cash flows, bank accounts, payments and future cash flows. But today, visibility is also more and more a risk & compliance related challenge. To whom I am going to pay? How do I mitigate the risk of fraud? Another visibility challenge is the whole topic of working capital where cash & liquidity forecasting & analytics solutions will play a role.

While visibility could be classified as internal challenge an example of external challenge Treasurers are facing is financial crime which is globally a trillion-dollar industry. Payment fraud and cybercrime faced by corporates remains significant and growing problem. To fight back corporates are mitigating these risks by harmonizing bank connectivity & payments into a centralized payment hub.

Finally, finance organizations seeking for return of investments from their Treasury or Finance solutions typically look increasing automation and efficiency in financial processes. Automating & harmonizing bank statement processing and accounts receivable reconciliation (automatic matching) holds typically largest savings potential.

By focusing on these challenges that matter to modern CFO and Treasurers, Nomentia is different. Monolithic finance and treasury systems are not quick and flexible enough to face the challenges of today and thus remain largely un-used.

2. OpusCapita recently formed a new company together with Analyste. What was the main reason for this? 

There is a growing need for choosing best-of-breed cloud solutions to solve particular business challenges today’s organizations are facing, which cannot be addressed by traditional monolithic tools. And treasury and finance organizations are no different. We are in a journey to create a leading cloud native cash management company as one.

3. What constitutes this Nordic powerhouse?

We took the best practices of both companies and combined them into one integrated solution for Finance and Treasury professionals. Nowadays, companies need multiple tools and systems. Is anyone convinced that the trend would go backwards? I mean look at your mobile phone. More apps keep coming and we as consumers add more. As business consumers we don’t want to be different, right?

A modern company needs a sales and customer relationship management, marketing automation tools, billing systems, project management tools, HR systems and various business solutions – and Finance & Treasury are no different. Often at some point we fall into the trap of looking for one platform to solve all challenges. But there never will be one, because we cannot possibly know everything a platform needs to solve to adapt in changing business environment. You end up using only small fraction of such monolithic platform with a very high price tag or building very customized solutions.

4.You talk about best-of-breed, what does it mean and what is the customer benefit?

Now, what does this mean for treasury and cash? A one-for-all solution would be a single solution to solve all your finance & treasury & cash management issues. That at least used to be sort of IT’s dream come true. One can clearly see benefits such as having less systems to integrate or less business partners to deal with. Also, commonly heard argument is to claim you would have “all the data at your hand in one place” which often shrinks into a mere sales argument.

While choosing best-of-breed companies can build network of integrated products and solutions. Benefits are often ones like paying and implementing only what you really need, much quicker implementation time and thus quick payback time, more standard features and no customization and vendor locking. Even the integration – a classical tarpit in IT projects – is often surprisingly simple because best of breed providers works very well together

Treasury or Finance is not an island. It is not the treasury that really is changing but the world around it. How companies are purchasing goods, sales are becoming digital, buying journey shifting to marketplaces and technology and software connecting everyone and concerning almost any business will sure keep changing the work that needs to be done by Treasury and Finance teams. Our claim is that networks and best-of-breed is more adapted to change.

5. How does the customer journey look like from start till end? And how long does a project take?

This really depends on the customers and their needs and how their internal processes look as well. We adjust to our customers’ needs.

6. Can you give us an outlook on the product developments that are scheduled?

The most important achievement is that we’ve now released our first versions from next generation Nomentia products that are based on a modern cloud architecture. We have been working on for the last four to five years to come up with the next generation – which is by the way already fifth generation if we look how our products have evolved from 80’s. Our customers should expect a whole new user experience from all our applications as many modules have not only got a completely new front end in HTML5 but a backend and business logic as well.

One of the new developments our customers should be looking carefully is that we are bringing better productized analytics capabilities to our next generation product as we speak. With analytics capabilities we mean payment behavior analytics and statistics, performance analysis and working capital related key performance indicators.

7. What has been your best experience in your career at OpusCapita, now Nomentia?

Next spring shall mark me already fifteen years in the company. Both OpusCapita and Analyste had gone such an exciting journey first as an independent company and then as part of larger enterprises, and finally again independent but together. It’s hard for me to rank all the memories I’ve collected with such a fantastic team and individuals that have participated into this journey. However, I still do remember with warmth some of the early development projects that helped us to become more international, such as joining to SWIFT Lite 2 program as global early adopters in 2013. And of course, winning the hearts of first global customers for the new service back then.

I’ve always got inspiration from challenging projects, working with new technology, and working to productize something that no one has done before. I feel that our employees at Nomentia are in a privileged position, since we work with such an exciting customer base and deliver software for so critical processes.

8. What has been the biggest success story of OpusCapita, now Nomentia, so far?

Although both Analyste and OpusCapita  have their roots in early 80’s we’re truly living the moments of biggest success right now. The company has never been filled with such a talented people, have such great solutions, and finally a market position to grow and create a European (or rather global) Fintech success story.

9. The year is 2025, what have been the OpusCapita/Nomentia successes over the last years?

The world of CFO and Treasurer is changing probably faster than never. Our five-year plan is obviously to grow significantly, which means double-digit revenue growth year-on-year. Much of our growth comes from international markets where I would expect us to cement our positions in several new markets as a viable and market leading choice of a modern CFO.

We will be significantly larger and stronger European Fintech company than we are today. When it comes to successes, I believe it is all about the journey rather than single events. We must work hard every day to win our customers hearts, and to have an atmosphere where employees find it exciting to wake up every Monday and be a part of our success story. Work hard, learn something new every day, and do it with a smile, and the journey will reward you.