Cochlear has operations in more than 20 countries, requiring bank accounts in multiple currencies across numerous banks. However, the treasury department was lacking a global bank account register and had limited visibility into the bank accounts for the whole group. As a result, liquidity was difficult to manage and control and the organization faced an unidentified and unmeasurable exposure to FX translation risk.
When Cochlear brought on a new group treasurer in 2016, he immediately prioritized the need for cash visibility across the whole organisation. After consolidating bank account information from all the regional finance teams, the company was found to have approximately 150 bank accounts across 33 different banks. Of these, approximately 20 accounts were determined to be redundant and could be closed. It was decided that a further 25 accounts wouldn’t be requested to provide statements to Fides as they had minimal activity.
The next step was to gain visibility into the accounts in order to be able to measure account balances by currency. Using a transaction bank as an aggregator was ruled out, to allow for flexibility to change banks in future if desired. The other options were using SWIFT directly or working with a third-party SWIFT service bureau. Based on their long history in the business and singular focus on multi-banking connectivity solutions, Fides rose to the top of the list.