INTERVIEW WITH SUE DEAN : 

Manager Director, Head of EMEA Treasury Services J.P. Morgan

Sue Dean, is Managing Director and Head of J.P. Morgan’s Treasury Services (TS) business in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). Sue joined J.P. Morgan in 1986 and has since held numerous senior positions within Treasury Services and the Investor Services businesses across the firm.

 

In 2012, she was named Regional Product Head for Transaction Services and was responsible for the maintenance, profi- tability and development of Multi-Currency Payment and Cash Management Services provided to Corporate, Public Sector and Non-Bank Financial Institutions. In 2015, Sue became Head of TS Sales for EMEA, a role she held until she was recently appointed as Head of TS for the region in September 2016.

 

No one could contest that the treasury function has evolved significantly over the last years, after the GFC and with post crisis regulations. How do you see the corporate treasurer’s role in such a moving environment?

 

Two main forces are driving significant changes in the treasurer’s role. Firstly regulation, in particular Basel 3 but also a myriad of other changes including PSD2 and Money Market reforms, are changing the relationship that Treasurers have with their banks as a spotlight is thrown onto the issue of what is and what isn’t operating cash forcing Treasurers to re-think their liquidity management to ensure that cash is best put to work.

 

Secondly, technology is evolving rapidly, particularly in the payments space. Driven by consumer expectation for immediacy, faster payments are becoming more common and the opportunity to get better visibility over cash, and the data that goes with it, has never been greater. Cloud based solutions and APIs, for example, are bringing new management tools to the treasurer that can help improve efficiency and better understand their risks. There is great opportunity for treasurers to re-think their models in the light of these two forces and contribute more than ever before to the wider business strategy.

 

How should we build a treasury department in the new banking environment?

 

Flexibility is key. Treasurers need to re-engineer their treasury structures to one that is malleable enough to respond as regulation and technology developments and the changing banking landscape continues to challenge traditional treasury models.

 

Treasurers should view this as a tremendous opportunity, rather than a burden, and start by thinking about how to support the organisation’s growth strategy. For example, treasurers can work with sales and operations to mine the rich seams of data that can be found through digital channels and cards. By taking advantage of new technologies and digitising processes (for example abandoning cheques) treasurers can build a operation that streamlines liquidity and account structures allowing them to mobilize and deploy liquidity faster, maximise self funding , maximise yields on surplus cash and rationalise currency positions. Leveraging global messaging standards like ISO20022 XML also becomes important.