Antonio Rami (Kantox): Treasury’s Digital Transformation
Antonio Rami, Co-Founder of Kantox and Chief Growth Officer talks us through the need for a revolution in the treasury department, and how technology is going to be the key for survival.
What is the key challenge obstructing Treasurers when it comes to currencies?
If I may take it to the extreme, in a word, “indifference”. Companies today see currency management as a finance/treasury-only topic, an administrative obligation to be handled at best, and often dismiss it as a non-value-added task. This can result in a flood of operational problems, from an overload of manual processes to issues regarding exposure visibility.
Yet, FX is such a transversal topic. It goes beyond just the treasury department. It’s going to impact competitiveness and revenue, it’s going to affect earnings, and unfortunately, it’s going to be hidden in many business lines. FX needs to be seen as a business priority, and treasurers need to carry the flag of educating the whole company on the strategicness of this topic. However, they can only lead this change by embracing the power of technology, and no, spreadsheets are not an investment in technology; I’m sorry.
What is the impact for the treasurer if they don’t start embracing technology?
When treasurers don’t have the technology, which can integrate the end-to-end FX process, they’re going to end up with issues of data quality, especially in terms of the timely, granular and exhaustive capture of exposure data. This will result in FX programs which are ineffective and do not comply with the company FX policy.
All of this is going to cause a domino-like effect within the company, with earnings at risk, increases in costs - both financially and in terms of resources - and ultimately missed opportunities for growth.
At Kantox, we launched our Currency Automation Management software as an essential technological tool for treasurers to tackle these issues. Our systems offer global companies the tools to digitise their FX workflow. In turn, this allows for an integrated and effective FX program and an opportunity to protect profits and establish a competitive edge.
How can Treasurers reinforce the strategic role of currency management?
In the context of currencies, treasurers need to become an ally of the commercial organisation. While most companies acknowledge the benefits of buying/ selling in foreign currencies, the reality is that most only embrace a limited number of currencies due to the risks and time costs involved.
Treasurers who understand how to leverage technology to scale up the number of currencies they deal in, whilst still keeping risk under control, can enable their commercial team to benefit from buying/selling in local currencies. In the end, it’s not only about treasurers reinforcing the strategic role of currency management; but currencies reinforcing the strategic role of treasurers.
Our Currency Management Automation solution provides corporates with a system which can boost the capacity of currencies being managed. It works by automating manual tasks such as exposure collection or processing, and by setting up the right FX program customised for every company.
“Spreadsheets are not an investment in technology; I’m sorry.”
Antonio Rami, Co-Founder and Chief Growth Officer, Kantox