Treasury Strategy & Transformation
Published 6 MIN READ

Leveraging Technology to Become a ‘Smart Treasury’

In 2014, A. Schulman made the decision to embark on a global treasury transformation to support the group’s evolving business needs in a changing market and regulatory environment, and also to position the company for growth. A. Schulman’s treasury worked with PwC to design a new framework which included centralising treasury activities and reviewing every aspect of its business, across technology, banking relationships, funding, liquidity and risk, to achieve best-in-class processes and decision-making. In this article, Nicolas Tusseau, Global In-House Bank Manager at A. Schulman describes some aspects of the project, and the benefits that have been achieved. 

Key Points

  • In 2014 A. Schulman decided to embark on a global treasury transformation to support the company’s evolving business needs
  • Kyriba was chosen to replace the existing TMS
  • Cash management banks were rationalised from around 30 globally to three, and cash pooling and an in-house bank were implemented
  • The article outlines the factors contributing to the substantial advantages the company has gained from the treasury transformation project

Positioning treasury for success 

The aim of our global transformation was not simply to replace our systems or processes, but to demonstrate best-in-class processes, controls and decision-making. We therefore needed to determine whether we could achieve this objective using our existing infrastructure. We issued a detailed request for proposal (RFP) to both our existing treasury management system (TMS) provider and other leading vendors to ensure that we had the right systems capability to underpin our current and future treasury needs.

Following a rigorous evaluation, we opted to replace our existing TMS with Kyriba for a variety of reasons. Kyriba is delivered on a software-as-a-service (SaaS) basis, which was attractive as it would simplify the ongoing maintenance, upgrading and introduction of new functionality in the system. We were also impressed by Kyriba’s depth of expertise and presence in both the United States and Europe, and the company’s proven experience in working with the partner banks we were appointing as part of our transformation. 

From a functional perspective too, we recognised that the new TMS would be instrumental in supporting our new treasury strategy. For instance, we were seeking to become state-of-the-art in cash and liquidity management, including using XML to exchange payment and account statement information with our banks, and CAMT.086 for bank services billing. We wanted a single system across both cash and risk management, which needed to be intuitive, easy to use and cost-effective. Furthermore, we evaluated potential systems based not only on our current needs, but also on the system’s flexibility, breadth and depth of capability to support our ongoing needs. Kyriba was able to support these requirements, giving us a high degree of confidence in our ability to deliver on our transformation project.