CT Awards – winner announcement!

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

CT Awards – winner announcement!

The CorporateTreasurer team is delighted to be able to share with our readers the winners of our 2021 CT Awards.

After much discussion and deliberation, our jury – comprising 13 treasury experts - has concluded its selection of the best teams, individuals and strategies in the region.

Over the course of Treasury Week,  we have been celebrating the treasury professionals who operate at the top of their class.

Relating to achievements between January 2020 - 19 August 2021, the CT Awards cover three main categories; 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 these final categories!

CorporateTreasurer Marquee Awards
The winners!

Best CFO
Winner: Darren Tan, OCBC Bank

Best Treasurer
Winner: Vu Minh Truong, Techcombank

Best Treasury Team
Winner: Danone

Team members: Danone’s ASPAME Regional Treasury is a lean team consisting of 3 members, comprising, regional treasury director (Zurab Abutidze), regional treasury manager (Pulat Yunusmetov) and regional treasury analyst (Gwendolyn Ng). Together, they perform functions such as; project management, cash and liquidity management, treasury reviews, FX and risk management, bank and relations management, treasury technology deployment, execution of M&A deals, front office, back-office functionalities, and many more. 


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


Winner: Blue

About: Blue (formerly Aviva Life Insurance) is a digital life insurance company in Hong Kong that provides various protection and savings products.

Comments on strategy: Aiming to build an effective customer journey for an online business model, Blue was looking for ways to improve its customer experience around how insurance premiums are collected from customers to reduce the inefficiencies and limitations in its use of traditional electronic payment channels. Following detailed review of its challenges, DBS implemented a number of API solutions across two phases in order to facilitate real-time collection and reconciliation, as well as real-time indication of FX rates. The setup shortened processes that had taken 4-6 weeks to 1-5 working days, enhancing the overall customer experience, while eliminating FPS payment limitation thresholds and proof of payment follow-up.


Winner: EcoGreen International Group Limited

About: Headquartered in Xiamen and listed on Hong Kong Stock Exchange Market since 2004, EcoGreen International Group Limited (Stock Code: 2341.HK) is a leading fine chemicals company, specialising in the production of fine organic chemicals. Some of the core materials it processes are botanic essential oils, extracted from natural renewable plants and petroleum.

Comments on its strategy: Based on a deep understanding of EcoGreen' s pain point and needs, Hang Seng Bank helped to establisha highly centralised treasury management platform through a multi-currency cross-border cash pool. EcoGreen uses HSBCnet as its treasury centre, which enables it to use idle balances more effectively and rely less on credit lines. It has built up a unified treasury management platform for both Mainland & HK entities, and has realised free and two-way capital flow, improve cash management efficiency. With regards to foreign debt, it uses quota consolidation that avoids complicated procedures of one-by-one registration. The firm optimises its foreign exchange position using a group perspective to reduce the unnecessary cost; in doing so, it selects the appropriate currency for finance in onshore/offshore capital markets to execute natural currency hedging. All of its accounts, funds settlement and FX positions are centrally managed.


Winner: Haier

About: Haier Group Corporation is a Chinese multinational home appliances and consumer electronics company headquartered in Qingdao, Shandong. It designs, develops, manufactures and sells products including refrigerators, air conditioners, washing machines, microwave ovens, mobile phones, computers, and televisions.

Comments on its strategy: Haier worked with DBS during Covid to provide regional relief support for SME distributors, so that they could stay afloat during the challenging times. Using an integrated API system, Haier connects with its distributors to facilitate online financing for their purchase orders within 24 hours. Funds are remitted upon receipt of the application from distributors via Haier's digital supply chain platform. The company has also established a product-resold arrangement for DBS to help sell off the goods in any event if the distributor should fail to repay on time. This enables Haier to record 100% of the sales in their balance sheet, for better balance sheet management. 


Winner: Inditex

About: Established in 1963, Spain-headquartered Inditex started as a family business and has grown to be one of the world's largest fashion retailers, with eight brands (Zara, Pull&Bear, Massimo Dutti, Bershka, Stradivarius, Oysho, Zara Home and Uterqüe) selling in 216 markets through its online platform or its 6,654 stores in 96 markets.

Comments on its strategy: Inditex Group is a significant user of cotton. The Company has set a target to use only sustainable, organic or recycled cotton, sustainable linen and recycled polyester by 2025. To do this, DBS has helped the firm engage with Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs) not only to drive the firm’s sustainability goals but also to enable the improvement of the larger ecosystem, including the financial wellbeing of small farmers.


Winner: Muyuan Foods

About: Muyuan Foods Co.,Ltd. is a China-based company principally engaged in the breeding and distribution of pigs. The Company operates its business mainly through feedstuff processing, hog breeding, boar breeding and commodity pig feeding.

Comments on strategy: Muyuan had increasing need to extend days payable outstanding to release more working capital during the Covid pandemic, while maintaining good relationship with suppliers in order to stabilise its supply chain, while supporting sustainable growth. Leveraging partnerships and connecting with DBS’ API platform, its suppliers can directly raise financing requests via the platform which are routed to the bank via API for further processing.


Winner: Rio Tinto

About: Founded in Spain in 1873, Rio Tinto is a mining and metals company operating in 35 countries around the world. Its purpose is to produce the materials across four product groups (Aluminium, Copper, Minerals and Iron Ore), essential to human progress.

Comments on strategy: Rio Tinto regularly reviews opportunities to streamline company processes. It worked closely with Contour and DBS to address key operating challenges and improve its customer journey. During Covid, its end-to-end process for each secured trade transaction was transitioned to a fully digitalised process, beginning with the approval of key contract terms between Rio Tinto and its buyer,  issuance of a letter of credit for the contract value, and through to the subsequent presentation of export documents such as e-bills of lading (eBL) and e-invoices required by the letter of credit. The need for physical documents to be sent from Rio Tinto to their buyer therefore speeding up the realisation of sales proceeds.


Winner: Singapore Pools

About: is a state-owned horse racing and sports lottery subsidiary company in Singapore, owned by Tote Board, which reports to the Ministry of Finance.

Comments on strategy: Singapore Pools embarked on a digital transformation with DBS to enhance its operational efficiency, reduce overheads and digitise payments and collection for betting account management and prize winnings disbursement.   They sought to improve their prize pay-out process, which had involved customers queuing at physical branches as well as their top-up system for players.Top-ups to e-wallet are now facilitated through FAST collection, where funds can be received by Singapore Pools in real-time, 24/7. End-of-day consolidated reports are now provided and real-time, automated reconciliation is employed.


Winner: Sydney Airport

About: Sydney airport is located 8km outside of the Australian city and is owned by Sydney Airport Holdings (listed ASX: SYD). The airport entered into an agreement earlier this month to a takeover by a consortium comprising IFM Investors, QSuper, AustralianSuper and Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP).

Comments on strategy: In 2020, the airport participated in an innovative private placement, comprising a sustainability-linked element. The SLB involves pricing decreases or increases depending on Sydney Airport's sustainability performance over time, as measured by Sustainalytics, creating a direct two-way link between sustainability performance and funding costs. No issuer had agreed two-way (i.e. discount and premium) sustainability linked pricing in any bond market globally prior to this deal. The deal required considerable education to bring participating and interested sustainability linked investors up-the-curve, with increased investor familiarity reducing execution risk for future SLB issuance.


Winner: Tokopedia

About: Indonesian tech company specialising in e-commerce,  originally founded in 2009 by William Tanuwijaya and Leontinus Alpha Edison.

Comments on strategy: Tokopedia partnered with DBS to support its local and regional business expansion plan and to standardise the payment process with a uniform banking platform. Experiencing high transaction volume growth, the fir was eager to streamline payments to minimise manual work and reduce human errors.  The company also wanted to change its current process for credit card payments from offline to online settlement to improve their user experience. DBS established a direct connection with Tokopedia automate execution of all payments to their vendors/partners directly and perform instant reconciliation. The bank also helped to open accounts across India, Indonesia and Singapore to provide Tokopedia with one digital access channel to all accounts, across all countries.  As the first bank in Indonesia to offer an instant credit card payment solution, it leveraged several APIs to provide a simple yet effective settlement solution. The collaboration delivered faster payment turnaround, improved customer experience, enabled card detail validation, improved operational efficiency, reduced reconciliation issues, and consolidated a single touch point for cash management and overall visibility on funds across the region.


Winner: Woolworths Group

About: Woolworths Group was founded in Sydney in 1924 and is headquartered in Bella Vista, Australia and has extensive retail interests across Australia and New Zealand. It is one of the largest retailers in the region by revenue. It has always been independent of similarly named groups in the UK and South Africa. Its main operations include supermarkets and discount department stores.

Comments on strategy: Over the last 18 months, Woolworths’ Group Treasury team strengthened the Group's position on liquidity, funding and capital management throughout Covid-19, including a quick Business Continuity Plan (BCP) response for the pandemic, a debt capital market issuance, and payment of dividends during a particularly difficult market period.  The team successfully implemented innovative projects in the insurance strategy area including; restructuring the Group's workers compensation security facilities, and establishment of a multi-year property structure. This was completed on top of the heavy workload associated with the demerger of Endeavour Group, which involved standing up an entire treasury function from scratch including new bank facilities, an insurance programme and operational framework. The team supported other business acquisitions and projects including those relating to cash in transit and supply chain financing, on top of usual tasks. Above all, the team transformed from a traditional paper-based operational function to a digital, automated, strategic and transaction orientated function. 


Congratulations to all of our winners!


You can read our other winner announcements here;

On Monday 22 November, we announced the winners of our House Awards – Service Providers category.

On Wednesday 24 November, we announced the winners of our House Awards – Financial Institutions category.