When Patrick Kunz, Interim Treasury & Finance Consultant, started at Takeaway.com, the treasury function did not exist. Building one from scratch is the dream scenario for many treasurers. But when – on only the third day of this endeavour – the world went into lockdown as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, that dream could so quickly have become a nightmare. TMI finds out how Kunz managed to come out the other side smiling.
‘Day one: start new project building a treasury from scratch. Day three: global lockdown starts.’ It’s the kind of diary entry that could drive many professionals to despair. But for Kunz, the challenges thrown at him almost as soon as he started with global food delivery service Takeaway.com only made him more determined to create a world-class treasury. And now, having integrated the Takeaway operation into that of its new acquisition, Just Eat, his approach has a fully scaled-up global seal of approval.
In a rapidly expanding worldwide business, relying on disparate and disconnected financial functions to pull together treasury data is a challenge few can sensibly sustain. Finding this scenario upon his arrival at Takeaway, Kunz knew that his role over the next few months was a matter of necessity.
The business had risen in just one decade from a promising SME (small to medium-size enterprise) into an international operation with a number of competitor acquisitions and integrations already under its belt. But without a professional treasury function, it was facing an uphill struggle to provide essential cash visibility. When Kunz challenged the Finance Director to quickly identify the company’s current cash positions, the answer came in the form of a worried look.