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Intellectual Ventures

Woman of the Year Highly Commended: Christy Barwick

Christy Barwick, Intellectual Ventures and Meg Coates

Christy Barwick, Senior Director, Treasurer at Intellectual Ventures has blazed a path for women in her profession. Over 20 years she has worked in treasury for top multinational companies across multiple industries, a testament to her drive and ambition. On top of this incredible focus on her career, Christy has been able to forge a truly fulfilling life outside of the office, actively engaging in her community and offering assistance to individuals and organisations in need.

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Photo of Christy Barwick, Intellectual Ventures and Meg Coates.

Christy Barwick

Senior Director, Treasurer

As Senior Director, Treasurer at Intellectual Ventures, Christy Barwick is responsible for global cash and liquidity, treasury investments, financial risk management, structured finance, and commercial insurances. Prior to joining Intellectual Ventures, Christy worked at Microsoft in treasury capital management where her responsibilities included worldwide cash operations, cash flow forecasting, corporate finance, and Microsoft’s debt portfolio.

Upon graduating from the University of Oregon with a degree in Business Administration, Christy began her career with Daimler Trucks, North America, as an Investment Trust Administrator. After two years in this role Christy joined the treasury team as a corporate cash analyst and was soon promoted to corporate cash manager, responsible for the investment and borrowing activities of US and Canadian operations for the company, amongst other duties.

Wanting to test herself in a new environment and after earning her Masters in Business Administration from the University of Portland, Christy moved to PACCAR in 2005 to work as their Corporate Cash Manager for their domestic and international manufacturing and finance companies. Alongside her treasury duties, it was in this role that Christy developed a passion for mentoring. Responsible for managing the career development of two treasury analysts, she provided them with training and advice to ensure they could thrive in a treasury environment.

A chance to work for one of the world’s largest companies, Microsoft, was one that Christy could not turn down and she moved to the technology giant in 2007 to help steer the company through the financial crisis by supporting the cash management objectives of Microsoft’s wholly-owned subsidiaries in EMEA. Her efforts were noted and she very quickly joined the Treasury Capital Management team, managing global cash operations and liquidity, with responsibility for the cash flow forecast across the organisation and managing the debt portfolio. She also played a pivotal role in the launch of Microsoft’s inaugural bond offering, establishing its first revolving credit facility, and obtaining the highly coveted AAA corporate credit rating.

In 2011, Christy accepted the opportunity to lead the treasury team at Bellevue-based invention company, Intellectual Ventures Management. In this current role, she is in charge of the full gambit of treasury operations, investments, financial risk management and corporate insurance. Christy is also a member of the Intellectual Ventures Senior Women’s Community and Facilitator for the company’s women’s mentoring circle.

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Pioneering achievements

Christy’s career is awash with impressive achievements and accolades – including a Treasury Today Adam Smith Award for Best Financing Solution. One project that stands out is the leading role that Christy played in developing a new asset class and structure dedicated to monetisation of technology-related patent royalties.

This structure resulted in transactions that accelerated cash to the company’s investors and reduced counterparty credit risk. What’s more, the marketing effort involved significant outreach to debt capital market investors to educate them on the value of invention, invention rights and investing in invention through patent royalties.

“This exemplifies Christy’s efforts to expand the role of treasury within the organisation and, more importantly, to build expertise and credibility in her ability to design and successfully execute creative and innovative solutions to complex problems and opportunities,” says Janet Smith, VP & Chief Counsel, Corporate Affairs at Intellectual Ventures Management. “Christy has built a reputation internally and externally as a strong negotiator who represents IV with integrity and professionalism at all times.”

Finding balance

Christy has been able to forge this impressive career whilst still maintaining a rich and fullfilling life outside of the office. Aside from being a mother to two young girls, Christy is active across various organisations in her local community and is involved in a number of not-for-profit organisations. This demonstrates Christy’s belief that true commitment to supporting and inspiring others shouldn’t end when we leave our offices.

Christy is a volunteer with Expand Your Horizons Lake Washington, a girl’s career fair presented by women in established careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Within this, Christy shares her journey in finance and technology to inspire and instil confidence in young women.

The Friendship Circle of Washington is another organisation that Christy has been involved with since 2011. It provides a range of inclusive therapeutic, educational, and recreational activities for families, children, and young adults with special needs. Christy has worked with Dress for Success Seattle, a non-profit organisation to empower women to achieve economic independence, is Troop Treasurer for Girls Scouts of Western Washington and is also actively engaged with Mary’s Place, a non-profit organisation supporting empowering women, children and families by providing shelter, nourishment, resources, healing and hope in a safe environment.

One organisation that Christy is especially passionate about is FIRST Washington Robotics – a non-profit organisation inspiring children, ages six-18, in the sport of science, technology, and teamwork through competitive robotics – because of the impact that it has on students in the community.

Commenting on Christy’s career, Selena Linde, Partner at Perkins Coie LLP said: “It has been an honour to work with Christy over the past six years. She is one of the few women that I work with in this role and she is a role model for women pursuing career paths in treasury and risk management. I truly admire Christy’s work ethic, dedication to her career and the ability to balance her career with the responsibilities of raising two young girls.”

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