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Visibility and Control: Bechtel’s Five-Year Mission

An effective global operating model can benefit treasury in numerous ways – but for companies with operations in multiple countries, regulatory variations can make it difficult to apply a single model in a consistent way. Nellie Lee, Assistant Treasurer at engineering and construction giant Bechtel Group, Inc., talks one-on-one with Liz Minick, Head of U.S. Corporate Treasury Sales at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, about how Bechtel took up the challenge with remarkable success.

LM: How does Bechtel define a global operating model?

NL: When it comes to corporate treasury, the definition of a global operating model varies from company to company. For Bechtel, it is defined as visibility and control over the cash we have all over the world, managed from a central location.

In our case, with more than $30bn in revenue and 53,000 employees around the world, it’s almost impossible to centralise operations into a single location so our global operating model consists of a centralised treasury hub, managed out of San Francisco, which gives us the visibility and control we need. We also have global shared service centres in Arizona and New Delhi that focus on transaction processing, such as payables, payroll and accounts receivable.