Best in Class Treasury Solution in ASEAN Highly Commended: China Duty Free International (CDFI)

Published: Apr 2022


Photo of Yan Jiaqiang, Director.

Yan Jiaqiang

China Duty Free International (CDFI)

China Duty Free International (CDFI) is located in Hong Kong and is part of the miscellaneous non-durable goods merchant wholesalers’ industry. The company has 169 employees.

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Solution for CDFI

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The challenge

The Hong Kong office of CDFI acts as an overseas treasury centre and payment hub for the region. The high volume of transactions brings stress and costs to the finance team. Automation of payments from offline to online is a major need for the group.

The solution

The solution that has helped to address these challenges is as follows:

Single sign on for visibility – the solution gathers all account information onto Bank of China (Hong Kong) (BOCHK)’s intelligent Global Transaction Banking (iGTB) platform for CDFI to view from one sign in. iGTB is an online platform to provide e-banking, ERP, and mobile banking app services, which allow users to access with ease and deal with over 400 worldwide suppliers. CDFI can access account information at the bank’s branches in Hong Kong, Macau and Cambodia on the global online platform. All information is consolidated to one point with account activity information displayed in a tailor-made layout on CDFI’s ERP. With respective authorisation set-up, the teams in different regions can view and monitor their respective accounts.

Tailored payment format for efficiency – tailor-made templates are brought to the ERP platform with pre-approval within the group, which allows a faster payment process and reduces time spent on each payment. The details can be downloaded, and local staff can create customised reports within the platform.

Geographical coverage – over 20 accounts in 10 currencies for around 10 duty-free shops in Hong Kong, Macau and Cambodia are brought to the platform. There is one master account in Cambodia and one in Hong Kong to manage cross-border cash flows.

Localised novel collection channels – in Hong Kong, CDFI cooperated with BOCHK to add a special tool Faster Payment System (FPS) in addition to traditional channels (such as Visa, Mastercard and UnionPay) for duty-free shop collection. FPS is a local instant payment clearing system that allows phone number/email address as receiver’s information and can be conducted with mobile apps, which provides easier handling for customers, faster settlement, and lower transaction fees. The bank also proposed a solution in Cambodia to handle payments of Wechat Pay and Alipay from duty-free retail channels to reduce local burden in handling cash.

Key benefits

  • Number of transactions per month increased from 750 to 5,000.
  • Monthly transaction volume increased from US$169m to US$560m.
  • Average account balance in the treasury centre increased from US$100m to US$500m.
  • Currencies used in Hong Kong account increased from three to ten.

Angela Lam

Deputy General Manager of Global Corporate Banking Department
Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited

Bank of China (Hong Kong) Limited has leveraged its regional coverage to demonstrate its dedication and flexibility in the implementation of CDFI’s project. Our solution has not only helped CDFI overcome its challenges, but also enabled the transformation of CDFI from a financial platform to a strategic profit centre, bringing risk control, efficiency, and yield enhancement.

With our close relationship with CDFI, we will continue to support CDFI’s global business development in future through providing our full suite of cash management products and services in Southeast Asia. Customers’ success is always our top priority.

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The Adam Smith Awards Asia is the industry benchmark for best practice and innovation in corporate treasury. The 2021 awards attracted a record-breaking 497 nominations. To find out more please visit treasurytoday.com/adam-smith-awards-asia

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