CT Awards 2022 – winner announcement! Marquee Awards and Best Treasury & Finance Strategies

Read on to discover the winners of our Marquee Awards and Best Treasury & Finance Strategies.

CT Awards 2022 – winner announcement! Marquee Awards and Best Treasury & Finance Strategies

The CorporateTreasurer team is delighted to be able to share with our readers the winners of our 2022 CT Awards.

After much discussion and deliberation, our jury, comprising 12 treasury experts - has concluded its selection of the best teams, individuals and strategies in the region.

Over the course of the week, we have been celebrating the treasury professionals who operate at the top of their class through winner announcements across three categories.

Relating to achievements between 01 January 2021 - 05 July 2022, these include; 1) House Awards, 2) Marquee Awards (including Best Treasurer, Best CFO, Best Treasury Team and Best Treasury Consultant) and 3) Best Treasury & Finance Strategies.

Please find below the winners of the Marquee Awards and Best Treasury & Finance Strategies categories.

These categories celebrate the best treasury individuals and teams, as well as the best finance strategies across Asia.

Please find below the winners!

CorporateTreasurer Marquee Awards
The winners!

Best CFO
Winner: Joerg Ayrle, IHH Healthcare Bhd


Best Treasurer (two winners!)
Ang Suat Ching, OCBC
Patrick Ng, RGE Group


Best Treasury Consultant
Winner: Peter Wong, Standard Chartered Bank


Best Treasury Team
Winner: Ayala Land, Inc. (ALI)

Team: The Philippines-based ALI team achieved some impressive accomplishments during the eligibility period. The team displayed execution of a comprehensive funding strategy which saw new structured financing facilities from banks and the capital markets to shore up liquidity; capital raises from alternative funding sources; and new short-term revolving facilities. In terms of risk mitigation, the team attained a debt mix of 90% long-term to 10% short-term capital to match its development cycle. It pioneered a number of firsts, including the first institution to use the Philippine Dealing & Exchange Corp.'s (PDEx) e-Securities Issue Portal (e-SIP) and was the only issuer to offer a 10 year repriceable bond with no step-up feature; and overall, the team out-performed its portfolio benchmark by 102 bps.


And now, for the ten Best Treasury & Finance Strategies (winners listed in alphabetical order)


Winner: Bao-Trans Enterprises Ltd

About: Bao-Trans Enterprises Ltd is a global fortune 500 company that manufactures iron and steel products. It is part of China Baowu Steel Group Corporation

Comments on strategy: With a workforce of 130,000 globally and looking to further expand, Baowu Group partnered with Bank of China (Hong Kong) to facilitate a “Bao-Trans” corporate treasury centre in order to centralise its overseas working capital through a tailor-made cash management solution. With varied global bank accounts and idle funds, the group looked to benefit from a higher return on capital to better balance its business needs and requirements. Through dual-channel, host-to-host connectivity, the implementation of Bao-Trans through BOC’s global single sign-on platform and TMS has seen the firm obtain its global cash position and report in a standardised format for convenient reconciliation. Through efficient cash-pooling, the group has benefitted from the increased, secure management of overseas funds, as well as a settlement arrangement with payment limits and an authorisation matrix procedure for approvals. The flexibility of BOCHK’s deposit solution has meant that multiple currencies and accounts can be notionally consolidated on a tier bases, which has improved interest income and maintained liquidity. Agile communication and close cross-border cooperation were required to facilitate this new system, which has also benefitted the firm in terms of paperless process, reducing errors and labour intensity. Since implementation, the staff involved in transactions has reduced by over 37%, while the transactions themselves have increased by over 80%. Additionally, cash pooling efficiency has been raised to 75%.


Winner: BP

About: London-headquartered BP is transitioning from an international oil company to an integrated energy company. Founded at the beginning of the twentieth century, the firm is considered one of the world’s seven oil and gas “super-majors”.

Comments on its strategy: BP recently oversaw an RFP process for its business in Asia (14 countries including Pakistan), for the improvement of its cash management and transactional banking services. The goal was to support the firm’s transition into a global, integrated energy company through the development of strategic relationships with banking partners for the delivery of robust, scalable and flexible solutions. Critical points for address included; implementing regional and country liquidity structures in Asia to optimise resources; to drive the standardisation and automation of processes through integration with BP’s Cash & Banking Hub technology solution; and to reduce transactional banking and FX costs and risks. With a presence in most of BP’s Asian markets, Standard Chartered (SC) stepped in to offer a multi-layered, multi-geography and multi-currency liquidity management structure, which involved the provision of automated end-of-day sweeps, regional interest optimisation in the instance of restricted currencies, a notional pool in Singapore and multibank sweeping from third-party accounts into SC. Success has been achieved through the appointment of a project steering committee with participation from both the bank and BP, multiple workstreams, and expanded host-to-host connectivity, among others. Through partnership with fintech, HighRadius, the bank has been able to offer a full suite of payments and collections services, real time data visibility, yield maximisation, cross-border pooling and most importantly, financial and operational cost reductions.


Winner: China Railway Construction Corporation Limited (CRCC)

About: One of the largest global engineering services, CRCC was founded in 1948 in Beijing as a railway infrastructure provider.

Comments on its strategy: Through partnership with BOCHK, CRCC engineered an innovative cash pooling and ERP system integration solution to achieve greater efficiencies within its global cash management capabilities. Operational in 90 countries and regions with more than 130 oversea entities, the firm sought to overhaul its systems internationally for review by its Hong Kong-based group treasury centre. In spite of a backdrop of protracted Covid-19 lockdowns in both China and Hong Kong, the firms worked together closely to ensure progress to target objectives. System integration saw CRCC’s ERP system connect with the bank globally so each regional team could view and monitor accounts through a single platform; cash pooling structures enabled overseas subsidiaries to benefit from group-wide efficiencies; and an online transaction sweeping function was implemented to fulfil payment obligations when subsidiaries face insufficient funds. The work resulted in significant cost savings and a reduction in manual hours, as well as increased transaction volumes.  


Winner: Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Limited (ICBC), Singapore Branch x 2 strategies

About: Headquartered in Beijing, ICBC is the largest commercial bank in China, with a significant global business. It is engaged in commercial and retail banking, investment banking and other financial services, including securities, insurance and funds.

Comments on its strategy: ICBC’s Singapore branch walks away with two wins in this category, for two distinct strategies.

The first, is focussed on the provision to multinational clients a digital trade solution, to ensure that they have a single point of access to meet their own trade objectives. The bank is particularly strong at delivering this to clients in the commodities trading space, and those enterprises that want to progress towards their sustainability goals by going paperless through its efficient provision of digital trading documents – reducing process time from 5-7 days to a single day. With the support of blockchain, the bank provides an ‘eChian Link’ platform which enables electronic correspondence of key logistical documents such as digital letters of credit. With real time information and fund flow, the documents are traceable and secure, through partnership with platforms including ESSDOCS and Bolero. The bank further tries to contribute to the cross-border trade space through its work with government-led agencies. For example, in 2020 it became the only Chinese bank to connect to Singapore’s Networked Trade Platform (NTP) and it is currently working closely with IMDA (Infocomm Media Development Authority) to enhance blockchain application in the crossborder trade space. Additionally, by the end of June, ICBC Singapore had worked with multinational clients to set up more than 30 physical cash pools linking with China, Singapore and beyond. Its total cross-border allocation has exceeded RMB 200 billion since 2020.

The second strategy relates to a specific solution that the bank delivered for a Temasek-linked real estate multinational that has over 30 new projects per year in Greater China. The Singapore team helped address a number of pain points for the firm; including its lacking visibility and control of over 200 accounts; difficulties in dealing with capital and loan account policies with liaison with small, rural-branch partners, and the issue of “trapped” cash. ICBC worked with the client to provide two separate test environments which ultimately resulted in the development of a centralised, real time API-enabled connection process between the client’s treasury system and ICBC’s account capabilities. The bank has further assisted by laying plans to set up – once approved - a RMB cross-border cash pool between China and Singapore through the Shanghai Free Trade Zone account to open up the firm’s fund channels. So far, ICBC’s support has resulted in the effective management of nearly 80 ICBC accounts across China, Hong Kong and Singapore, as well as the set up of 35 new project companies with a further 58 new accounts across 18 Chinese provinces, with a total investment amounting to over RMB 10 billion. As the only Chinese bank in Singapore that is able to meet the needs of the client given its large number of linked accounts, coverage, and the complexity of the firm’s test scenarios ICBC impressed our panel. The strategy is the most complicated overseas API project that ICBC Group has dealt with to date.


Winner: Olam Agri India

About: Olam is a Singapore-headquartered food and agri-company that supplies ingredients, feed and fibre to global brands. It is among the largest 30 primary listed companies in the city-state. It has a team of over 82,000 and has built leadership positions in businesses including cocoa, coffee, cotton, nuts and spices.

Comments on strategy: Owing to the challenges brought about by the pandemic, Olam sought to overhaul its treasury system to better facilitate remote working, transparency, remove difficult to consolidate views, inefficiencies, information asymmetry, and to improve internal compliance and with industry regulations. To achieve this, the team drew on the capabilities of technology provider, IBSFINtech to automate its treasury function, which also included the integration of its system with technology partners Refinitive and Thomson Reuters in order to access live market data in order to perform precise hedging activities. Since, Olam has commenced onboarding the fintech’s cash flow, borrowings and supply chain finance capability. The success of the strategy has resulted in significantly improved time efficiencies; including overall daily per person effort reduction of 1.5-2 hours, single-click report generation in contrast to its original 3-hour timeframe, 100% growth as a result of increased operational volume, and a reduction of manual effort by 40%, among others.


Winner: RGE (Royal Golden Eagle) Group

About: RGE was founded in 1973 and manages a group of resource-based manufacturing companies. It has bases in Indonesia, China, Brazil, Spain and Canada, over 60,000 employees and has over $33 billion in assets under management. Some of the sectors in which it operates across include; LNG & solar energy, palm oil, pulp and paper, and viscose fibre.

Comments on strategy: RGE achieved record profits in the past year as a result of its strategic treasury function, and is expected to finish 2022 with a strong performance. The firm engaged with financiers with ESG commitments and as a result of three sustainability-linked loans, exceeded its 2021-2022 funding targets with respect to requirements (amount), gearing, exposure, pricing, tenor and forex. The performance particularly exceeded strategic project expectations by adding sustainable elements to the financing structure at what it considered to be “the right moment”, which resulted in an overwhelmingly positive market response. Liquidity and cash have been centrally managed at the firm’s Hong Kong base, with support from treasury centres in Guangzhou and Jakarta. 2021/22 saw the additional strategic achievement of enhancing the firm’s RMB cross-border cash pooling infrastructure which not just improved liquidity in terms of being able to keep less cash on balance sheet, but also reduced negative interest spreads significantly. In spite of the poor economic environment, the central treasury team successfully managed its limits and exposures for all counterparty banks, including customers, LC issuing banks, with all of its businesses having no negative debt experiences in recent years.


Winner: SAIC

About: SAIC Group is China’s largest auto manufacturer by sales. Its main business covers the research and development (R&D), production and sales of both passenger and commercial vehicles. It is now also actively involved in the commercialisation of new energy vehicles (NVEs), internet connected vehicles (ICVs), and is exploring the R&D and other intelligent technologies such as smart driving.

Comments on strategy: To cater to its significant market expansion, SAIC HK International Finance Ltd. incorporated in Hong Kong in August 2020, with a focus on providing centralised treasury management services to the group’s overseas entities. The treasury team worked closely with Standard Chartered Bank to integrate its cash management and trade finance solution in order to improve the firm’s liquidity management and centralised trade financing services. The capability empowers the firm as an in-house bank with full scalability and replicability to serve international treasury management needs. Elements of the solution include a sub-account structure, an export trade facility, receive-on-behalf-of and pay-on-behalf-of services, and a liquidity management structure with end-of-day and just-in-time sweeping. The solid platform helps the treasury team penetrate more overseas member entities and optimises group liquidity through intercompany lending and balance sheet management. As an example of value-add for the export trade line, the group’s China headquarters is now able to receive proceeds six months earlier than accounts receivables’ due dates and can convert them successfully from from a low- to high-rate currency.


Winner: Viraj Profiles

About: India-headquartered Viraj Profiles is one of the largest global manufacturers and exporters of stainless steel long products. With 9,000 employees and a turnover of $1.5 billion, the company exports its products to more than 1,300 customers based across 96 countries, spread over 6 continents.

Comments on strategy: Viraj tapped the capabilities of IBSFINtech in order to completely overhaul its treasury management function, which saw it move from excel. The robust nature of IBSFINtech’s end-to-end automated solution meant that the team was able to immeasurably reduce manual workflow, which had relied upon spreadsheets and ERP input. This meant that certain processes, for example keeping track of open hedging exposure, month-end calculations and fx activity tracking were able to improve significantly and equipped the team with increased data visibility and accuracy across its balance sheet cashflow. Errors were successfully reduced and the integration of the IBSFINtech system alongside the fintech’s collaboration with technology partners Refinitive and Thomson Reuters meant that live market data could be accessed directly for precise actioning. Having an inbuilt document management system further strengthens the system’s propensity for delivering valuable efficiencies.


Winner: Wipro Enterprises

About: Wipro Enterprises is an India-based private firm that operates across the aerospace manufacturing, fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG), hydraulic cylinders, infrastructure, industrial automation and lighting spaces and its activities also include those of a number of specialist subsidiaries.

Comments on strategy: This strategy won for its demonstration of a successful collaboration between a corporate, the largest private bank in India, and technology provider. In this case, IBSFINtech emerged as the trusted middle enabler of seamless communication between Wipro’s corporate ERP and market participants. Wipro turned to the support of IBSFINtech in order to secure more accurate cash flow planning for investment decisions, to consolidate data, to integrate transactions across business units, for auto alerts and connection to its banking partners. With the current market too volatile for delayed decisions, IBSFINtech’s solution won favour for its provision of realtime capabilities that are imperative to successful business decision making. The Wipro team commended the provider for the data transparency and integrity of the platform which ensures holistic control over its liquidity operations of the corporate. The business advocates for more long-term commitments among corporates, banks and fintech partners in India, to help contribute to the digitalisation and longevity of the market’s financial ecosystem.


Congratulations to all of our winners!


Read other winner announcements:

On Wednesday 07 September, we announced the winners of our House Awards – Financial Institutions category. 

On Thursday 08 September, we announced the winners of our House Awards – Service Providers category.