BELLIN: Two-Fold Approach to Strategic Treasury

Written by Beate Haumesser on . Posted in Treasury & Tax Management

Founded by a treasurer and built on the expertise of over 100 experts, BELLIN has been exceeding expectations since 1998, always thinking one step ahead. In a rapidly evolving regulatory and political environment, a solid working capital management strategy as well as technology and advisory partners that add significant value and flexibility are critical to those treasury offices that add value to other parts of the business. BELLIN aims to make a fundamental difference in the world of corporate finance and searches for the next great idea and the next great technology to delight multinational organizations.  With the fully integrated, web-based software tm5 as the centerpiece, BELLIN offers solutions for all corporate treasury requirements: be it in-house banking, global payments, cash management; netting, risk and receivables management or trade finance, topped off by services such as Treasury as a Service (TaaS), BELLIN SWIFT Service or BELLIN Matching Service. 

 

 


 

Treasurers are under increasing pressure to support global growth strategy and objectives. As automation and technology enable efficiency gains of treasury’s transactional backbone; treasury professionals are called on more urgently to expand into strategic and transformative leadership roles. These unfold in wider ranging business issues such as compliance, risk, analytics, corporate development, forecasting, and capital strategy.This evolution from the “traditional” purview of Treasury reflects scarce resourcing across the corporate world and heightens awareness on strategic and business critical cross functional partnerships. BELLIN’s response to these developments is two-fold. The Concept of Load Balanced Treasury On one hand, BELLIN software solutions turn data collectors into strategists.

Group-wide data in real time, down to the smallest detail and at the touch of a button, gives treasurers a powerful basis for strategic decision making. Whether it is liquidity or risk management, treasury professionals no longer need to spend all their energy on obtaining an overview of the situation in all group companies. With all the information they need available, they can now face the financial decisions that are crucial to the company: which investments make sense? Which interest and currency risk can be identified and how do I respond to them?

While Treasury centralisation is often overwhelmingly championed, the debate around what works best for achieving the optimal benefits is not a 'one size fits all' decision. The goal to achieve a coordinated treasury network that cuts across business units and geographic silos is clear; however, the need for partners that can help companies assess the specifics and provide solutions for global, regional, or hybrid models with agile capabilities built in can only make alternative model assessment, capital management strategy and other strategic decision making approaches more sustainable. All this is driven by powerful technology. One of the core principles of BELLIN’s philosophy is that the workload of treasury should be shared across the organization.

At BELLIN, this is called the concept of 'Load Balanced Treasury'. What it means is that a central treasury application is provided to all group companies to support their local day-to-day work. What is needed to achieve this is a fully web-based solution that is available to everyone from everywhere from any device: desktop computers, laptops or handheld devices such as smartphones. Treasury relies on the information from various parties throughout the organization and treasurers can use tm5 as an engine for data collection. By giving local experts access, treasury can rely on accurate data, which in turn can be used for the management of the group’s cash and financing positions. The result are decisions built on the full picture of what’s happening around the group.

Treasurers are essentially networkers who link the various stakeholders in the group that have an impact on the financial situation of the group. tm5 offers a higher level of integration and cooperation paying heed to the fact that if I benefit from something, I’m also going to invest in it. The treasury management system should benefit local units as much as central treasury.

This strong collaboration also refers to the relationship between corporate treasury and tax teams; this is now more prominent, made even more significant by the prospect of the Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) initiative leading to changes in tax rules in jurisdictions around the world. Tax is a crucial risk for multinationals and the effect that BEPS-related legislation may have on companies with cross-border operations and how a company’s pooling structure may affect its tax obligations further strengthens the argument that all financial aspects which have an impact on business ultimately also concern treasury.

Treasury as a Service
(TaaS) BELLIN recognises that the automation and streamlining of processes as well as the reduction of manual processes is crucial to freeing up treasurers for strategic decision-making. While Load Balanced Treasury and the technology it is based on go a long way in supporting corporate treasuries with this work, some daily treasury tasks might still exceed the capacities of a team. Maybe staffing is tight? Maybe the achieved level of automation still leaves teams short of time. Or maybe a business would simply like to benefit from the results of a powerful treasury organisation without having to implement any software or set up a corresponding organisational structure. BELLIN’s other answer to the strategic role of treasury is Treasury as a Service (TaaS).


"We need to look no further than UK politics to fully understand the real impact and the scope of this strategic role of treasury."


The objective of TaaS is essentially the objective of modern treasury management: eliminate repetitive and inefficient tasks that could be performed by someone else. Depending on the size and strategy of a company, that can concern a number of different tasks: starting with account statement collection and verification, daily financial status reporting, to multilateral reconciliation processes or netting runs. This makes for effortless and efficient treasury in a one stop solution. With the expertise of BELLIN consultants and the resourcefulness of their services and solutions, corporates get all the information they need and can tap their strategic potential.

They profit from a global overview of accounts and liquidity, visibility of financial deals, daily cash positioning and group-wide financial status, liquidity forecasting, or the organisational setup for the netting of intercompany receivables and payables. In turn, this gives them time for comprehensive planning and analysis. Why this is more relevant than ever Powerful software solutions for treasury departments or outsourcing with Treasury as a Service: both options meet the needs of today’s business issues, whether it is compliance, risk, analytics, corporate development, forecasting or capital strategy, as outlined earlier.

We need to look no further than UK politics to fully understand the real impact and the scope of this strategic role of treasury. In light of Britain’s decision to leave the European Union, it could be argued that treasurers have never been more important for businesses in the UK. Never before has visibility been more key, and it is treasury that can provide the data, the insights but also the analyses that expose and highlight risk factors and outline strategic plans for many possible scenarios.

This may concern FX volatility and hence scenario analyses and forecasts, as well as hedging. It also concerns cash and liquidity, with daily cash management and reporting, and counterparty risk. Treasury can be the rock that inspires confidence and can provide a calm and sound basis for navigating difficult times. Treasurers are the ones preparing their businesses so they are ready for the future – whatever it might bring. BELLIN is there to lead the way.

A long list of firsts is proof of the “one step ahead” that has characterised BELLIN’s journey ever since Martin Bellin founded it as a one-man company in 1998: first to offer a 100% web-based treasury management system (2004); first to offer a SaaS-based treasury solution (2005); first to offer fully integrated payments functionality (2006); first to offer embedded direct SWIFT connectivity and Matching Service (2014); first to offer embedded full-service EMIR reporting (2014); first to offer fully integrated trade finance solution (2014); and last but not least first to offer TaaS - Treasury as a Service (2015). Or as Martin himself puts it, “The philosophy of Load Balanced Treasury behind tm5 is completely unique. From the very beginning I was focused on the idea of a global platform. This is why we have been able to offer so many firsts in the last 15 years.

TaaS is the logical next step. Finding skilled treasurers is not easy and not cheap. Spending resources in treasury on non-value-adding work is a waste of time and money. The consequence is the outsourcing of everything which does not require individual decisions and is not adding any value to the corporation.”

Discover more about BELLIN Solutions at www.bellin.com or visit us at Swiss Treasury Summit, Zug SIBOS, Geneva | CH Finanzsymposium Alpbach | AT EuroFinance, Vienna | AT AFP Annual Conference, Orlando, FL | US SWIFT for Corporates Day, Salzburg | AT StructuredFinance, Stuttgart | DE

Website: www.bellin.com