A Rising Star Winner: Angela Brown, Continental

Published: Jul 2021

Angela Brown, Continental

Photo of Angela Brown, Continental.

Angela Brown

Assistant Treasurer, Continental A.G.’s North American Operations

Continental develops pioneering technologies and services for sustainable and connected mobility of people and their goods. Founded in 1871, the technology company offers safe, efficient, intelligent and affordable solutions for vehicles, machines, traffic and transportation.

Determination and dedication in the face of challenges

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While Angela Brown’s path to success at Continental has been steady, her personal determination and dedication in the face of difficult challenges is noteworthy. Angela’s impressive climb up the leadership ladder has to be viewed in the context of her Herculean responsibilities as a single mother raising a child with a debilitating disease. Following her youngest son’s diagnosis with severe Crohn’s disease, Angela has had to balance the needs of her child with those of the business. The ability to juggle both tasks without short-changing either is a testament to her, and her passion to make a difference.

Angela truly loves her role in treasury and is dedicated to the success of the treasury organisation and the company as a whole. Her leadership philosophy is to lead by example and she is never afraid to roll up her sleeves. Angela’s leadership style was formed early in life when she won a leadership scholarship in high school. It was during these formative years where she solidified her core values of integrity and honesty, which carry over into everything she does today. Angela constantly tries to motivate her team through a positive attitude and a recognition of each team member’s contribution.

Juggling complex changes

In terms of her recent success, Angela led the complex task of modernising the entire cash management function and how transactions are processed. This also entailed coordinating with multiple divisions and more than 125 team members around the world, including colleagues in accounts payable, accounts receivable, accounting and tax, ensuring that everyone was always on the same page to achieve the mutual goal.

Angela coordinated and managed the shift of Continental’s entire cash management services to a new provider, updating the treasury function to be more technologically integrated and prepared for more modern products/services, as well as, reducing control weaknesses and enterprise risk for fraudulent transactions. She oversaw the implementation of host-to-host (H2H) connectivity between the bank and dozens of the company’s enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems across legal entities. With more than 90 account openings and on-boarding of numerous new entities, Angela kept her team laser-focused on the task at hand and helped ensure that go-live dates were met by both her team and the bank. At the same time, Angela was responsible for the set-up of a physical cash concentration structure in both North America and EMEA, adoption of mobile deposits, a new Canadian tax payment platform, and a prepaid card solution. Juggling all of these complex changes at one time was no small undertaking, but Angela was able to ensure the H2H solution was completed on time, all milestones were met, and the initiative was a resounding success. As a result, Continental’s North America treasury operation has reduced bank fees, eliminated manual journal entries through EBS uploads, and taken advantage of cash vault and mobile deposits.

Even though she has achieved tremendous success thus far for Continental, Angela is not resting on her laurels. She has already set her sights on bringing greater automation to the treasury function. By putting H2H connectivity in place, she has set the foundation for eliminating manual payments and achieving straight through processing. Angela’s vision is to see treasury and cash management become more data and analytics driven, serving as a consultative function for the business. By automating transactions, treasury will be freed up to examine how cash flows and transaction processes impact different business divisions across the region, offering recommendations on time and cost saving activities, through sharing of best practices, enhancing the function of accounts payable and accounts receivable within those individual subsidiaries. This centralised treasury and cash management intelligence will foster greater overall efficiencies and will better support mission-critical growth strategies.

Committed to the community

Beyond the impact Angela is having at Continental, she is equally committed to helping the local community. Following Hurricane Harvey, she volunteered at the NRG Centre helping disaster victims. She has also given her time to help at the Food Harvest Bank in Charlotte, North Carolina, and the Rock Hill Children’s Home. Because of her son’s illness, she volunteers as often as she can at the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, as well as the Make a Wish Foundation.

Angela’s work ethic and commitment to excellence are strong factors in the success she has achieved thus far and have distinguished her in the eyes of senior management.

Her star burns bright at Continental. She is clearly on the rise.

The Adam Smith Awards is the industry benchmark for best practice and innovation in corporate treasury. The 2021 Awards attracted a record-breaking 309 nominations spanning 40 countries. To find out more please visit: https://treasurytoday.com/adam-smith-awards.

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