Adam Smith Awards

Adam Smith Awards winners announced

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2021 award categories

See 2021 winners

Open to any corporate treasury team that has made an outstanding contribution to its organisation over the past 12-18 months. This award recognises those who have blazed a trail in the world of corporate treasury. This could be purely the treasury team, or a broader team effort involving different disciplines (eg tax, legal, procurement) across the enterprise. This award will showcase your team’s achievements – whether it be a complete treasury transformation, the integration of a new acquisition or the delivery of a suite of projects, or addressed skills and training to respond to new challenges, or responded to a particular crisis; Treasury Today’s Top Treasury Team Award is the most coveted.
For treasury, any solution which demonstrates how the company manages/forecasts its cash is eligible for this award. It could be a simple single country/single currency/single bank solution, or a multi-country/multi-currency/multi-bank solution. It might simply improve cash visibility/cash flow forecasting; show how a hybrid/virtual account structure has been implemented; involve complex cash pooling structures, or support a full regional treasury centre (RTC), shared service centre (SSC) or in-house bank (IHB) structure. Perhaps you use APIs? All are valid to win the award in this category.
Efficient working capital is a key challenge for corporates of all shapes and sizes. What has your business done to improve key performance indicators (KPIs) of DPO, DSO, DIO and/or DWC? Has your cash conversion cycle been improved? How was it achieved? Perhaps you have taken the step from straight-through-processing (STP) to straight-through-reconciliation (STR), automating the reconciliations process? Have you streamlined your AR/AP processes or perhaps you have implemented an ‘on-behalf-of’ (POBO/ROBO/COBO) structure? Maybe SWIFT, open banking or APIs are the key enablers of your solution. Tell us how it’s been achieved.
This is another new category in 2021 to not only encompass cards but to recognise the emerging cash replacement solutions such as e-cash, digital currencies (crypto-currency/bitcoin) and e-wallets. Has your business implemented/re-engineered a card programme to achieve increased control and/or visibility and/or improved your T&E processes? The winning solution, including virtual cards, could cover any aspect of corporate cards or perhaps you are using one of the new e-cash solutions. Please tell us your story.
This category combines both trade and supply chain finance to acknowledge the special relationship between buyer and seller. Any solution which addresses the supply chain, either financial or physical, qualifies for this award. Perhaps your business is looking at reverse supply chain. Have you embraced electronic documentation or are you using blockchain to improve the process? Have you implemented a smart solution involving letters of credit, guarantees and/or do you practice open account trading? Have you opened a new trade corridor in an emerging market or perhaps you have implemented a paperless trade solution and/or a supply chain finance solution? Tell us your trade/SCF story.
Many corporates are exploring alternative sources of funding, diversifying and/or refinancing their funding sources. Has your company issued commercial paper, medium term notes or bonds? Perhaps you have looked at financing an acquisition or considered securitisation, IPOs, crowd-funding, peer-to-peer or the private placement market? Maybe you have reviewed your funding mix? Whether a single transaction, or as part of a company’s overall debt strategy, this category is open to all types of funding.
Sustainability is a key issue for us all and corporate treasury can play its part too. What has your organisation done to address sustainability and the environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues. Solutions here could include sustainable funds, green bonds, impact investing, active ownership and credits for sustainable projects. Finance related to the mitigation of and/or adaptation to climate change/CO2 emissions also qualify in this category, as do investment strategies which incorporate ESG factors and any other projects which address sustainability in your organisation. Perhaps you have introduced Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to measure ESG and/or your approach to ESG/CSR has had a positive impact on your credit rating. Tell us your story.
Risk continues to be top of every treasurer’s agenda; the winning solution could relate to any aspect of risk which arises in the corporate treasury arena. Have you changed the way you control foreign exchange risk, counterparty risk, commodity risk, interest rate risk, cyber risk or your supply chain risk? Does currency volatility open your eyes to new risk management concerns, or are you rethinking your hedging strategy? Are you monitoring new risks such as sovereign risk, weather risk, employee risk or perhaps even reputational risk? Has the recent COVID-19 pandemic or the post-Brexit environment changed the way you view risk and what are you doing to mitigate fraud?
This is a new category for 2021 specifically to recognise the challenges posed by the coronavirus or COVID-19. This pandemic has created unprecedented times, with supply chains being adversely impacted, teams having to adopt entirely new working practices, relationships with internal as well as external parties changing beyond recognition, cashflow coming under the spotlight like never before and the entire corporate treasury environment has been turned on its head. Perhaps another crisis, perhaps a response to the post-Brexit world, not related to the recent pandemic, has required other measures. How has your organisation responded? Tell us your story.
This category captures any traditional treasury solutions where the use of technology is central. Solutions here could involve a full-blown Treasury Management System (TMS) and/or Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system or the use of a single, simple technology solution (eg netting solution) to address a particular area of treasury.
Another new category for 2021 to address the emergence of digitisation. Have you re-engineered your processes where digitisation is the key enabler? Perhaps the use of APIs is central to your solution. We have heard much about the fintech revolution, open banking, artificial intelligence (AI), big data analytics, robotics, APIs, blockchain and other distributed ledger technologies. Has your company moved beyond the ‘proof of concept’ stage and is now using one or more of these emerging fintech/digital solutions? Solutions here could have been developed in collaboration with a fintech, bank or by an in-house innovation team. Perhaps you have transformed your entire treasury function through fintech/digitisation. Tell us your story.
Cyber-security continues to be a major issue for corporates. Many household names have been victims of cyber-crime in recent months. What has your organisation done to address this issue? The solution could involve new technology, training, process re-engineering or a combination of all these factors. Tell us how your company is mitigating the threat of a cyber-attack.
This is a new category for 2021 introduced to recognise that a company does not need to be a large/major multinational/conglomerate to qualify. If you are a small/medium sized enterprise please tell us about your treasury solution. (* For the purposes of this category a SME is defined as employing <100 employees and an annual sales turnover of <€100m and a MME is defined as employing <250 employees and an annual sales turnover of <€500m.)
A new category this year and open to any company that has implemented a treasury related solution, or is in the process of being implemented, in North America, Latin America, Central America and/or the Caribbean.
Any company that has implemented a treasury related solution, or is in the process of being implemented, in the Middle East and/or UAE will qualify, including Shariah compliant/Islamic banking solutions.
Any company that has implemented a treasury related solution, or is in the process of being implemented, in Africa will qualify.
This category is extended in 2021 to include short, medium, and long-term investments to show how your organisation has optimised and/or diversified its investment portfolio. How have you addressed the trade-off between yield, liquidity, cash preservation and counterparty risk? Have you explored alternative investment vehicles? How have you overcome the low/negative interest rate environment, and have you had to consider the new regulations in the world of liquidity/money market funds (MMFs)? Perhaps you have considered ESG factors when investing. Do you use CNAV, VNAV funds or Low Volatility Net Asset Value (LVNAV) funds? Perhaps you have been subject to share cancellation as a way of distributing ‘negative income’ in a negative yield stable NAV or had to convert to a floating NAV. This is your chance to shine.
This category incorporates any relationship (internal as well as external) managed by the treasury function, such as investor relations, employee relations, ratings agencies, procurement etcetera, in addition to your core bank(s)/other service provider(s) relationships. Economic turmoil has certainly focused the attention on relationships. Perhaps you have introduced a new RFP/bank selection process or had to innovate to maintain credit lines? Are you looking at bank charges, bank account analysis, managing mandates, using digital signatures, KYC or eBAM perhaps? Do you benchmark your bank(s) or have you had to change how the treasury function interfaces with procurement or taken a fresh look at investor relations. Has the COVID-19 pandemic and/or Brexit changed the way you handle relationships? We’d love to know.
This category includes any solution implemented, or is in the process of being implemented, which addresses foreign exchange. It could be a single transaction, a suite of transactions or a complete change in your FX strategy or policy, a hedging programme, use of specific instrument(s) or a new FX requirement as a result of entering a new market or dealing with a new currency and/or client/supplier. Have you entered new markets and, if so, how have you dealt with any currency volatility encountered?
This is a new category for 2021 to recognise the work companies are doing in the field of diversity, inclusion, equal opportunity, and career development of their employees. How is your treasury addressing these issues? Do you encourage coaching and mentoring? Do you support professional qualifications and how do you train and develop- the careers of the next generation of Group Treasurers and CFOs? Tell us how you manage your talented teams.
This category is open to any woman operating in the corporate treasury environment who can demonstrate real innovation, achievement and someone who is an inspiration in her current role. Do you know someone in treasury who is a role model to other women? Someone who has overcome real adversity? Who may have had a career changing experience? Who has helped others? Someone who may have demonstrated real innovation? What have they achieved? Why do they stand out? You might be our Woman of the Year, or you might want to nominate someone else. You can attach or submit by email any material to support your nomination.
Another new category for 2021 to recognise an individual corporate treasurer who has made a real difference to their organisation. You need to demonstrate real innovation, achievement and someone who is an inspiration in their current role. Do you know a corporate treasurer who is a role model to other treasury personnel? Someone who has overcome real adversity, who may have had a career changing experience, who has helped others or someone who may have demonstrated real leadership? What have they achieved? Why do they stand out? You might be our Corporate Treasurer of the Year, or you might want to nominate someone else. You can attach or submit by email any material to support your nomination.
This category recognises talent coming through the corporate treasury ranks. Have you excelled in a professional qualification? Are you a future Finance Director or CFO? Whilst this category may fit a junior person, later arrivals to the world of corporate treasury are also invited to enter. Nominate yourself or someone you think fits this category and shine a spotlight on your/their talents. You can attach or submit by email any material to support your nomination.