Introducing the Corporate Recognition and Editor’s Choice Awards 2014
by Helen Sanders, Editor
While there is strong competition for TMI Awards for banks and vendors, the Corporate Recognition Awards that we have been running for the past nine years are also greatly valued by the winners. We are delighted that BNP Paribas has sponsored these awards for the first time in 2014, reflecting the bank’s commitment to promoting best practices and innovation across the treasury profession. On behalf of all award winners, I would like to offer my personal thanks to BNP Paribas for this support.
We have made some changes to the Corporate Recognition Awards this year. Specifically, we have introduced a nominations process allowing wider participation in the awards. Therefore, corporate treasurers, and the banks and vendors that support them, have been invited to submit information on projects in which they have been involved to be considered for awards. In addition, all corporate articles published in TMI during the course of 2014 have been eligible for awards. We would like to thank all treasurers, and their banks and vendors, for their participation in this year’s awards, which have been of the usual high quality that has made these awards such an important part of the corporate treasury calendar.
Corporate Recognition Award for Cash Management
Awarded to: HeidelbergCement
Represented by: David Flory, Head of Group Cash Management, HeidelbergCement
David Flory discussed the cash management strategy he has spearheaded at HeidelbergCement, specifically the role of cash pooling in achieving the group’s cash and treasury management objectives. As he describes, although the concept of cash pooling has not changed substantially since it was first introduced over 30 years ago, the types of solution that can be implemented have evolved in response to the increasing complexity and international reach of corporate treasury, and diverse regulatory conditions in each market. David highlights that cash pooling continues to be a key component of HeidelbergCement’s treasury strategy for the years ahead as an intrinsic element of an efficient centralised treasury. For example, centralising both flows and information has been a catalyst for implementing a shared service centre (SSC) structure and harmonising ERP platforms. By achieving direct SWIFT access with core banks, the company has streamlined its information flows and facilitated automated, secure payments from the SSC. Cash pooling is also a valuable means of wallet sizing with the syndicate bank group.
HeidelbergCement’s article reflected a strong awareness of the strategic, as well as tactical benefits of cash pooling, using a well-established technique to drive focused bank relationships, a robust, streamlined technology infrastructure and an efficient treasury organisation that positions the company for future growth.
Corporate Recognition Award for Risk Management
Awarded to: Dow Corning Corporation
Represented by: Lynn Hendrick, Treasury Specialist, Dow Corning Corporation
Dow Corning’s legacy currency risk management process constrained treasury’s ability to make strategic financial decisions. This led Dow Corning to a comprehensive overhaul of each step, resulting in a best-of-breed system with straight-through processing, standardised workflows and sizeable savings, whilst freeing up treasury specialists’ time to be able to undertake more valuable activities.
The resulting environment provides fast, trustworthy and actionable information, built on fully automated and compatible components and processes. This project not only delivered leading-edge technology; it highlighted treasury’s vision and leadership on a cross-functional and multi-vendor project and showcased a unique Lean Six Sigma (LSS) project management approach with direct savings of nearly USD5 m each year. Crucially, it also freed up more than 600 hours each year of manual, non-value added activities which could be channelled into providing advanced analytics, thought leadership and act as strategic business consultants not only in treasury but within the wider context of Dow Corning.