Photo of Stuart Fitzsimmons, Whitbread Group plc.
Treasury Manager and Becki Carroll, Front Office Treasury Dealer
Front Office Treasury Dealer
Whitbread is the owner of Premier Inn, the UK’s biggest hotel brand, and with a growing presence in Germany offering quality accommodation at affordable prices. The company has over 800 hotels in the UK and over 78,500 rooms in great locations, as well as over 400 restaurants, under a variety of brands including Beefeater and Brewers Fayre. Employing almost 30,000 people, mainly in the UK, and serving over five million customers every month, people are at the heart of the business.
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Whitbread chooses Mosaic to manage its investments
Historically, Whitbread had a very manual process to manage its liquidity. The company was trading for two entities via telephone with seven money market fund providers in EUR and GBP (two of whom were also accessible on a different platform but from which trades did not feed into the TMS automatically), then manually rebooking trades into its TMS to initiate fund payments. With a lean treasury team, increased volatility with cash flows due to the pandemic, and the added challenge of working remotely, Whitbread wanted to automate its investment process, reduce operational risks, increase controls, and implement system connectivity within its cash management process.
Whitbread implemented Goldman Sachs Asset Management’s Mosaic platform to trade and manage its liquidity fund investments across all money market fund providers on a single system that would integrate seamlessly with its existing TMS provider, including single sign-on access.
Best practice and innovation
Whitbread’s implementation of the new platform significantly reduced the operational risks associated with manual processes, whilst also increasing controls, and providing more robust governance over the company’s cash management processes.
“The full system integration between the platform and our treasury management system not only created efficiencies, but also increased the visibility and transparency of our cash balances, allowing the team to more actively manage our fund investments,” says Becki Carroll, Front Office Treasury Dealer.
- Reduction in operational risks and workload.
- Timely and standardised trade confirmations.
- Increased control over trade flow and release of payments, providing a single system with real time feedback on trade status.
- Full integration between TMS and money market fund trading portal.
- Timely, accurate data sourcing and transmittal to TMS on balances and active investments.
- Reduction in trade fails.
- Increased visibility and transparency on investment portfolios.
- Access to a single point of contact for day-to-day client servicing queries.
- Scalability options for adding new fund providers, currencies, and reporting capabilities as well risk analysis across investments.
The last year has been an unprecedented challenge for companies like Whitbread that operate in the hospitality sector. As COVID-19 forced the team to quickly transition to working from home, it reinforced the importance of reducing operational risk, automating, and streamlining their processes.
“The new platform has come into its own, particularly on occasions when we have been looking to move significant flows to or from our money market funds providers, such as our recent £550m green bond issue and the prepayment of our US private placement notes. In such situations, being able to instruct and track trades and to receive timely and consistent confirmations greatly facilitated the funds flow,” says Stuart Fitzsimmons, Treasury Manager.
Global Co-Head of the Liquidity Solutions Client Business
Goldman Sachs Asset Management
We were excited to partner with Whitbread on streamlining their cash investment process using Mosaic, our open architecture platform that provides trading, settlement, integration and reporting capabilities for managing liquidity globally. Mosaic brings together technological innovation and 35+ years of investment manager expertise. It has enabled Whitbread to spend less time on manual processes and more time on high value initiatives; a shift which was critical to successfully navigating the COVID operating environment. We are committed to delivering solutions that meet our clients’ needs and are thrilled for Whitbread to be recognised for modernising their investment process.
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Global Head of Sales and Account Management
Whitbread required a solution that would streamline and integrate their money market fund management directly within their treasury management solution in order to enhance visibility and reduce operational risks. Our best-in-class solution provides the controls and governance they required around their cash management processes, while optimising their liquidity management via the seamless Goldman Sachs Mosaic integration with ION Treasury’s Reval. ION Treasury is proud to support the digital transformation at Whitbread.
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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.