Improving visibility through centralization

Millicom

Millicom centralizes banking connections and communications with Fides

Millicom

Branch
Telecommunications & Media
Employees
18,000
Website

Business Need

Millicom handles hundreds of accounts globally through multiple banks located in various parts of the world, using multiple ERPs. The company needed greater visibility into its global treasury operations, more automated, scalable bank connectivity, and a centralized user interface.

Products, Solutions & Services

  • Fides Multibanking Suite
  • Hybrid Service Bureau
  • Reporting
  • Rayments
  • ERP Connection

Benefits

  • Better visibility into global cash flow
  • Centralized payment workflows to increase control
  • Automated data aggregation with ERP integration
  • Improved operational efficiencies and reporting

About Millicom

Millicom is a leading provider of cable and mobile services dedicated to emerging markets in Latin America and Africa. Millicom sets the pace when it comes to providing high-speed broadband and innovative digital lifestyle services through its principal brand, Tigo. As of December 2016, Millicom employed about 18,000 people and provided mobile services to more than 57 million customers, with a Cable footprint of more than 8.1 million homes passed. Founded in 1990, Millicom International Cellular SA is headquartered in Luxembourg and listed on NASDAQ OMX Stockholm under the symbol MIC. In 2016, Millicom reported revenue of USD 6.25 billion and EBITDA of USD 2.17 billion.

Millicom’s business need

Keeping control of operations can be challenging. Millicom works with approximately 150 banks across all its regions, in large part for collection purposes as provider of telecommunications services to residential and business customers. At the corporate level, Millicom was keen to increase visibility into cash flow and digitalize its payment process further. Each region has treasury staff, responsible for managing and reporting on that specific region’s transactions. But collecting and compiling all the regional data into a complete report was time-consuming and the manual processes involved heightened risks of error. There was a clear need to centralize both payments and the location of the payments decision-making process.

Die Kontrolle über seine Geschäftsabläufe zu behalten, kann schwierig sein. Millicom arbeitet mit ca. 150 Banken in allen seinen Regionen zusammen. Als Anbieter von Telekommunikationsdienstleistungen für Privat- und Geschäftskunden ist diese Zusammenarbeit vor allem auf den Einzug von Forderungen ausgelegt. Millicom wollte auf Unternehmensebene vor allem Cashflows transparenter machen und seinen Zahlungsprozess weiter digitalisieren. Alle Regionen haben Treasury-Mitarbeitende, die für die Verwaltung und Berichterstattung von Transaktionen der jeweiligen Region verantwortlich sind. Die Erhebung und Zusammenstellung aller regionalen Daten in einem umfassenden Bericht war jedoch zeitraubend und die manuellen Prozesse erhöhten das Risiko von Fehlern. Es bestand eine klare Notwendigkeit, sowohl Zahlungen als auch den Standort des Zahlungsentscheidungsprozesses zu zentralisieren.

In 2017, Millicom made improving bank connectivity and transaction communications its highest treasury priority. After going through an RFP process, Millicom selected Fides to help make its connectivity strategy a reality.

“We wanted only one connection to our banks, which means Fides.”
Bogdan Carneru, Treasury Project Manager, Millicom

Centralizing communications

There are a number of disparate systems in use across Millicom’s various locations. In addition to an accounting system, there are different instances and versions of Oracle EBS and SAP installed in different countries. To further complicate integration, some countries are in the process of migrating from one system to another.

Prior to deciding to work with Fides, Millicom had directly established a number of host-to-host connections with banks, starting with its Luxembourg headquarters then moving to each country one by one. As the bank defines the standard in these types of connections, every connection is slightly different and therefore the set-up process is time-consuming. It took a year and a half for Millicom to put these connections in place.

Solution

Fides ARS provides centralized access, delivering the visibility into global transactions that Millicom needs. Millicom uses ARS to receive MT940s from its banks, host-to-host transmitted in files divided per country and bank. For banks that don’t send MT940s, Fides is building converters: the files will be transmitted to Fides in their various formats (which may include XML, CSV, PDF, and others) and automatically translated to the standard MT940 format before delivery to Millicom. This also reduces operational risk: as the transaction data load is automated, there is no need for manual data entry any longer.

Millicom is also leveraging Fides EFT for MT101 SWIFT network messages. EFT ensures compatibility with the various banks’ file formatting requirements and delivers the highest level of data integrity and security. Millicom sends XML pain.001 files to Fides via host-to-host connection. Fides will transform those files to MT101 format and send to the bank via the SWIFT network.

Millicom plans to replicate the host-to-host connections with banks that it had established in the past 18 months with Fides. The Fides Bank Connectivity team can handle all of the manual bank set-up, taking care of regulatory requirements and format updates to ensure connectivity continuity.

Planning for the future

Millicom is already looking towards the future, considering adding the option to manually approve payment flows for all its ERPs via Fides EFTweb, and deciding on a TMS.

“Last year, Millicom established host-to-host connections with some banks in LatAm for our operations - at least 2 banks in each country. Next year we will move to a new version of our ERP. Without Fides, we would have had to rebuild all fifteen connections individually”
Bogdan Carneru, Treasury Project Manager, Millicom

About Fides

Fides is the world leader in multibank connectivity, payments and transaction communications. A market leader for more than a century, Fides is committed to making financial operations as efficient, transparent and secure as possible for all organizations. More than 3,500 clients rely on Fides for efficient cash and liquidity management, through connectivity to more than 13,000 banks and comprehensive workflow, reporting, conversion, validation and security services. Whether you access via the secure Fides Multibanking Suite or leverage our seamless integration with third-party ERP, TMS and other backend systems, Fides is the only platform you need.

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