LatAm’s best corporate treasurers talk treasury, regulation and banking

By:
Duncan Kerr
Published on:

As part of Euromoney’s annual best-managed companies in Latin America 2014 survey, the treasurers of four of the region’s largest companies share their views on managing treasury operations, regulation and banking relationships.

 

Best managed companies in Latin America 2014 results

For the first time, Euromoney has recognized Latin America’s best corporate treasurers as part of its annual best-managed companies in Latin America survey.

Some 90 analysts were asked to nominate and vote for those corporate treasurers who they consider to be the best in their industry. Of the 72 nominated, seven are recognized as outstanding, with one overall winner: Fiorella Debernardi, treasury manager and investor relations officer of Peruvian consumer goods company Alicorp.

In their industry sector, the following are also acknowledged as the best corporate treasurer:

Best overall group treasurer
Treasurer Company Sector
Fiorella Debernardi, treasury manager and investor relations officer Alicorp Consumer goods/retail

In their industry sector, the following are also acknowledged as the best corporate treasurer:

Best by sector:
Number nominated: 72
Treasurer Company Sector

Carlos Bartrína, corporate treasurer

Aeroportuario del Sureste (Asur)

Airlines and aviation

Carlos Arciniega, general director of treasury

Grupo Financiero Banorte

Banking and financial services

Mónica Miloslavich Hart, CFO with responsibility for treasury

Graña y Montero

Construction and cement

Leonardo Salido, corporate treasurer

Femsa

Food, drink and tobacco

Daniel Muñiz Quintanilla, CFO with responsibility for treasury

Grupo México

Metals and mining

Ricardo Rivera, deputy CFO and corporate treasurer

América Móvil  Telecommunications

As part of the award, Euromoney interviewed Debernardi together with Banorte’s Arciniega, Femsa’s Salido and Asur’s Bartrína on the role of treasury, how they manage the function, the challenges of regulation, and their banking relationships.

Euromoney: How strategically important is the treasury function to the growth and development of your company?

Winner: Fiorella Debernardi, treasury manager, Alicorp
FD, Alicorp: The treasury function is important for the development of our company, because we ensure to take importance in working capital of the company as well as to reduce the effects of the exchange rate in our financial statements.

CA, Banorte: The stability of a bank lies in its liquidity management, capital management and optimization of financial risk balance, functions that are by definition the scope of the treasury.

LS, Femsa: The treasury of Femsa supports management of the resources generated by the group's business, always seeking capital protection and maximizing yields. The team is also responsible for obtaining the resources for the daily operation of the company, as well as the funds required to continue with the inorganic growth of the company.

The treasury is responsible for monitoring the financial risks, such as currency and interest rate exposure, and reducing them according to current policy risks.

CB, Asur: Through efficient management of the treasury we contribute to good operating performance of the company, maintaining the necessary level of liquidity and optimizing returns on temporary cash resources of the treasury.

Euromoney: What is the single most important decision you have taken as treasurer that has had a material impact on the financial performance of your company?

FD, Alicorp: The most important decision we have made in the treasury has been to determine the appropriate levels of currency hedges in the countries where we operate. It is very important for us to reduce our exposure to exchange rate volatility.

CA, Banorte: Funding mechanisms that allowed us to close the acquisition of Afore Bancomer by Banorte Financial Group.

LS, Femsa: The decision/project more relevant in which I have been part of, is the decision the company took to access again new international debt markets and the subsequent coverage of it. It was a team effort involving all levels of the organization, and it also allowed us to capture international resources, this way improving the financing costs of Femsa and significantly extending its maturity profile. With this arrangement Femsa increased its financial flexibility under extremely favourable circumstances to keep us moving forward in its strategy of long-term growth conditions.

CB, Asur: Recently, a series of exchange transactions that resulted in being favourable for the opportunity in which those transactions were made.

Euromoney: How do you manage the treasury operations? Who is involved, where, and what technology do you employ to enable you to manage this operation?

Leonardo Salido, corporate treasurer, Femsa
FD, Alicorp: Treasury operations are managed according to the complexity of the tasks. There are treasury functions that are executed at a corporate level and others that are executed at a country level. The treasuries of countries have certain autonomy for decision-making.

CA, Banorte: Banks are complex entities that end up having their own proprietary systems. In addition to these systems, we also have access to specialized systems such as Murex, Reuters, Bloomberg and link systems with the central bank.

LS, Femsa: Femsa concentrates the financing, risk management and investment activities at a corporate level. We have a team of professionals with extensive experience in different markets, who are responsible for each of these areas under international standards, which has allowed us to achieve the objectives in the short, medium and long term.