26 August 2013

Blogging from Singapore: New Partnerships and Complexities

 

Flight Path

A New Perspective

Having had an Asia-centric perspective on the world since my university days, I have been fascinated with the Asian approach to business and of course the rate of change in these markets. Landing in Singapore though has given me a new appreciation for the intricacies of doing business and, in particular, managing cash and liquidity across the region. Ultimately it is evident that having the right finance partner across the region is the key.

Large organisations love to have standardised approaches to the way they do things. THis is particularly true of the finance department. Across Asia though it is basicially impossible to achieve. Each market not only has their own local payment systems but they each have unique was of paying for goods and services.

Whether it is derived from the traditional ways of doing business or influenced by the geographic characteristics of the country or in fact simply to do with the availability of technology, the ways of getting paid vary vastly.

Flexibility is Critical

Standards are all well and good but flexibility is the key to success. Not complete anarchy but standards that allow for the idiosyncrasies of each market whilst still giving a consistent view of collections, payments and liquidity.

For example the ability to collect payments in Indonesia (Jakarta pictured left) via the ATM networks is absolutely critical whilst the ability to pay suppliers in Vietnam in Cash needs to be considered carefully with the company's internal policies.

In addition to this a Treasurer must also consider the many and varied legislative freedoms and restrictions on liquidity when determining the optimum strategy for maximising cash performance.

Partnership is key

Many banks and organisations claim to be global but it is important to realise that truly successful banks and corporations, at a global level, are actually cohesive teams with local expertise in each of their chosen markets. This local contact, living and working, within the local market is crucial to understanding how to win. The things that we do everyday in interacting with money are what makes it all work. In other words if you want to get paid for the products you are selling in a local market, make sure the people you are working with know how to pay a bill in the local market.

 

20 November 2012

Businesses agree on Indonesian guest worker plan | News | Business Spectator

Businesses agree on Indonesian guest worker plan | News | Business Spectator:
Re-Post

Businesses agree on Indonesian guest worker plan

Published 3:30 AM, 20 Nov 2012 Last update 3:30 AM, 20 Nov 2012

A trade, investment and economic co-operation agreement being negotiated between business groups from Australia and Indonesia would allow unskilled Indonesian workers with limited English skills to fill labour shortages in Australia, according to The Australian Financial Review.
Trade Minister Craig Emerson will reportedly discuss the plan at the East Asian Summit currently underway in Phnom Penh.
The plan would allow short-term migrant workers with limited English abilities to enter Australia so long as they are accompanied by a skilled Indonesian supervisor and is based on a scheme used by New Zealand to recruit farm workers from the Pacific Islands, the AFR reports.
Business leaders from Australia have been lobbying for such a plan to address labour shortages that they say are undermining economic growth. But unions in Australia have been vocally opposed to any sort of guest worker program.

The plan, outlined in a 100-page paper, has been agreed to by the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Indonesia Australia Business council and the Australian Indonesia Business Council, according to the AFR.
Aside from the guest worker program, talks between business leaders from the two countries have been focused on strategies for expanding the economic relationship between Australia and Indonesia. Two-way trade between the two was worth about $14.8 billion in 2011.

18 November 2012

Asia Celent Blog » China’s road towards Currency Internationalization

Asia Celent Blog » China’s road towards Currency Internationalization:

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China’s road towards Currency Internationalization

Nov 16th, 2012 | Posted by 
Royalty-free Image: Brotherhood of SkyscapersChina is the world’s second biggest economy, largest exporter and second largest importer. Yet China’s currency, the Renminbi (RMB), accounts for less than 1% of global FX turnover. The Chinese authorities have been making concerted efforts since late 2008 to internationalize the Renminbi by trying to increase its use in international trade and investments. Their efforts are paying off as RMB settled trade has grown since late 2010 and accounts for 8-10% of all international trades at present. The following highlights some major successes of their efforts:
  •  From October 2010 to June 2012 value of RMB payments grew by 17 times. Currently 91 countries are processing renminbi payments.
  • Hong Kong is the dominant offshore centre for RMB trading accounting for around 80% of all renminbi payments; share of Singapore, Taiwan are also significant. UK is positioning itself as a major offshore trading centre for renminbi.
  • RMB is world’s 15th most traded currency accounting for 0.45% market share and third biggest currency in issuance of Letters of Credit with a share of 4%.
Three FX markets exist for RMB: onshore CNY market which is tightly controlled, offshore CNH market in Hong Kong which is relatively free, and USD denominated non-deliverable forward market. The currency sometimes trades at different rates in the CNY and CNH markets and many firms, especially large ones with subsidiaries outside borders, use it to conduct exchange rate arbitrage in these two markets. Given that China’s currency is not fully liberalized, this arbitrage sometimes is not settled by market forces and it creates pressure on the currency, as was evident late last year. Some therefore argue that significant proportion of RMB settlement comes from speculation in the two markets while imports are still invoiced and mostly settled in US dollar.

Bank of China Hong Kong (BOCHK) and Bank of China, Macau, are the only two entities approved to clear offshore RMB transactions. Other banks can engage in offshore RMB business through agreement with BOCHK, or through relationship with other banks which have existing agreement with BOCHK. This presents an opportunity for many regional and international banks to tap into this burgeoning market of RMB clearing and trade related services. Moreover, two of the world’s biggest exchanges, the Hong Kong Exchange (HKEx) and the CME Group, recently announced plans to launch offshore yuan futures in Hong Kong by the end of 2012. This is likely to facilitate exporters and importers hedge their currency risks, especially now that the currency is showing some volatility. The forwards market at present is very efficient with tailor made contracts; therefore some think currency futures may not gain traction immediately among traders. However, along with importers and exporters who use currency futures and forwards to hedge exposure, this will also attract asset managers and other financial institutions as the contracts will be standardized and tradable at the exchanges. The outcome of these initiatives remains to be seen, but these moves are likely to further strengthen China’s efforts towards Renminbi internationalization.

It must be mentioned that in spite of these developments, there are challenges with China’s efforts to internationalize the RMB. At a broad level, RMB is mostly used to settle imports, but not exports. Even in imports, invoicing is often done in US dollars while settlement happens in RMB. It is argued many Chinese corporations use the different currency markets (CNH-CNY) to engage in speculative activities and not that much for pure trade purposes. This effectively allows for interest rate speculation between the two markets as well.

Many of these problems are intertwined as China has traditionally had very strict capital control, and the internationalization of renminbi is taking place before fully liberalizing its interest rate, exchange rate or capital account. Therefore how China attempts to internationalize its currency and manages its key rates at the same time will be closely watched.

Muhammad bin Ibrahim: Challenges in compiling and communicating statistics in Malaysia

Muhammad bin Ibrahim: Challenges in compiling and communicating statistics in Malaysia:

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BIS central bankers’ speeches 1
Muhammad bin Ibrahim: Challenges in compiling and communicating 
statistics in Malaysia
Opening remarks by Mr Muhammad bin Ibrahim, Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of 
Malaysia, at the National Statistics Conference (MyStats 2012), Kuala Lumpur, 9 November 
2012.
*      *      *
Saya berbesar hati untuk mengalu-alukan kepada semua yang hadir pada persidangan yang 
julung-julung kali diadakan ini, MyStats 2012, yang memperlihatkan sekali lagi kejayaan 
dalam usaha kerjasama di antara Jabatan Perangkaan Malaysia dengan Bank Negara 
Malaysia. Saya juga amat gembira dan berbangga dengan sokongan yang ditunjukkan oleh 
para peserta yang mengambil bahagian hari ini, yang terdiri daripada sektor swasta dan 
sektor awam, pengguna dan perangkawan statistik, di samping rakan-rakan saya 
daripada Irving Fisher Committee on Central Bank Statistics (IFC). Dengan kehadiran 
kumpulan yang mempunyai pelbagai kepentingan ini, saya yakin forum ini akan menjadi 
platform yang amat sesuai untuk kita berkongsi pandangan, bertukar-tukar pengetahuan dan 
pengalaman tentang statistik, dan akhirnya memperoleh manfaat besar daripada 
persidangan ini.

I am pleased to welcome all of you to this inaugural conference, MyStats 2012, a 
collaborative effort between Department of Statistics Malaysia and Bank Negara Malaysia. I 
am also very encouraged by the strong support from all of you present here today, 
representing both the private and public sectors, users and compilers of statistics, and 
Executives members from the Irving Fisher Committee on Central Bank Statistics (IFC). With 
such a diversified interest group, I believe this forum will be an important platform for us to 
share views, exchange statistical knowledge and experiences.
The objective of MyStats is to provide a platform for our statisticians, analysts, economists, 
policy makers, academicians and media to share, discuss and highlight insights and issues 
in statistical analysis and policy formulation as well as challenges in the compilation and 
communication of statistics. MyStats will not only discuss economic and financial data, but 
will also encompass other socio-economic statistics such as poverty measurement and 
indicators, labour and employment statistics, just to name a few.

I hope that this collaborative effort will one day turn into an annual THE statistics event in 
Malaysia and MyStats will evolve into a regional conference, similar to the well-established 
statistical conferences organised by the International Statistics Institute (ISI), European 
Central Bank (ECB) and IFC. I must acknowledge that this conference was inspired by the 
efforts of the ECB and IFC, which the Bank and I, as the Chairman of IFC, have been 
actively engaging with on statistical initiatives, in particular over the last one year.
For those who are new to the IFC, allow me to mention a few words on the Committee. The 
IFC is a forum of central bank economists and statisticians as well as others who wish to 
participate in discussing statistical issues of interest to central banks. It is established and 
governed by the international central banking community and operates under the auspices of 
the Bank for International Settlements (BIS). Currently, the IFC has about 80 central bank 
members and is actively organising statistical initiatives, particularly conferences, seminars 
and workshops. These initiatives discuss the burning statistical issues confronting the central 
banking community and the issues discussed reflect contemporary concerns of central 
bankers themselves. More details on IFC and its activities can be found on the BIS website.
The theme of MyStats 2012, “Enhancing National Statistics to Meet Public and Private 
Sectors Needs during a Period of Transformation”. This theme is most appropriate given that 
Malaysia is embarking on an economic transformation programme (ETP) to achieve a high 
income high value-added economy.2 BIS central bankers’ speeches
The transformation process would demand richer, more reliable and timely data to assess 
the progress of various change program being taken and ensure initiatives implemented are 
effective in achieving the transformation agenda. This is critical given the transformation is 
taking place amidst a more challenging global economic environment. Downside risks to 
global growth are now more elevated, with heightened uncertainties surrounding the 
European sovereign debt crisis and fiscal issues in the US that would have impact on global 
growth prospects. In this environment, it is of utmost importance that relevant and credible 
statistics are available to policymakers and analysts on a timely basis, to  allow for an 
accurate and comprehensive diagnosis of the economy, so that appropriate and pre-emptive 
policy actions can be taken.
To my mind, there are three perennial issues facing statisticians and authorities; the extent of 
data coverage, granularity and timeliness. Indeed, it has been often noted that the surprise 
element at the onset of economic and financial crisis is often due to the lack of high quality, 
comprehensive and timely data. For example, the Asian Financial Crisis revealed major gaps 
in statistical coverage, especially on detailed cross border exposures and indicators for 
financial soundness, which had permitted serious vulnerabilities to go undetected and 
unresolved for a long time.
Another key lesson learnt, was from the global financial crisis, where the lack of data and 
monitoring of financial innovation that had allowed the build up of financial risks to go 
undetected until it was too late. Another good example was the existent of a large shadow 
banking system that is unregulated and unsupervised. At the same time, insufficient 
coverage and depth of information can potentially place policymakers at the risk of deriving 
at the wrong conclusion and thus, prescribing the wrong policy measures or prescriptions.
The decisions that we make are only as good as the data on which it is based. In this 
respect, I would highlight two areas in particular that requires further data compilation.
First, in the area of labour market statistics, there are notable gaps in terms of data collection 
on the economy-wide wages, hours worked per labour, productivity index, unit labour cost 
and duration of employment. We also do not have data and enough information on the kind 
of jobs that the economy is producing, either by sector, wage level, type of jobs and for 
whom the jobs are created.
The data gaps would complicate the assessment on key issues such as the sustainability of 
household indebtedness, whether we are creating the right type of jobs or whether our 
policies are providing long term or temporary employment.
Second, there are significant gaps in terms of balance sheet data, especially for households 
and corporates. This deficiency in data complicates detection of vulnerabilities, build up of 
risks and propagation of shocks from one sector to another. I  hope the discussion today 
would provide insights into dealing with some of these issues I earlier mentioned.
At this conference, we will have the opportunity to examine areas which we can improve so 
that our statistics are credible, relevant and timely, would facilitate informed policy 
formulation and decision making by the authorities, and enable informed decision makings by 
economic agents such as investors, financial institutions and the general public at large.
In the first three sessions today, our distinguished speakers and discussants will share 
insights and experiences in many areas; the adoption of statistical best practices in data 
management, ways to promote data sharing and communication of statistics, identification of 
statistical gaps and limitations faced by analysts or authorities in the usage of data. The 
session would also explore and provide possible resolution to challenges confronted by 
compilers and users of statistics.
In the concluding panel discussion, the panellists will deliberate on new data requirements, 
the need for more forward looking and pre-emptive data collection and compilation, identify 
best practices to enhance data integrity and communication of statistics, and the role the 
private sector can play in contributing better data collation.BIS central bankers’ speeches 3
Your views today is important as it would provide insights and assistance to statistical 
compilers, policymakers and regulatory authorities to facilitate planning and enhancement of 
existing data measurement or implementation of new statistical initiatives. The end game is 
to facilitate effective analysis, monitoring and surveillance of the economic and financial 
activities and provide accurate assessment of risks and the effectiveness of policy initiatives 
and the state of the economy. This forum will also provide analyst an opportunity to share 
their views on the type of data that would be useful to them.
While debating on the statistical needs of the public and private sectors, there are many 
areas that could be considered, amongst them:
1. Does the private sector benefit given the significant resources that have been 
invested by the national statistics office, regulatory authorities and government 
agencies to compile more comprehensive, timely and granular data? 
2. What type of data that the private analysts require that would improve their 
analytical capability to provide analysis for informed decision making to their client? 
3. Based on past experiences, data compilation always lags behind financial 
innovations and economic developments. Based on this premise, what should be 
the strategy, from the perspective of statisticians and users, to ensure the availability 
of new and appropriate data on a timely basis to meet future needs of users? 
4. How can data compilers and users play a greater role inidentifying new data needs 
of a high income and high value added economy? 
5. How can statisticians play a more proactive role in advising or communicating with 
users on the availability of appropriate data for analysis and surveillance to avoid the 
redundancy of data collection? 
These questions are by no means exhaustive but I hope our distinguished speakers and 
discussants today will address some of them. The speakers and discussants today represent 
a wide spectrum of group of compilers and users of statistics, who have vast experience in 
conducting significant research in many areas that uses national and international statistics.
Through their presentations and discussions, we hope to learn from their knowledge and 
thinking on relevant issues in the field of statistics.
We are also honoured to have two international speakers from the IFC who will talk about the 
international best practices in data management and country experiences in data sharing 
and communication of statistics. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank them in 
advance. I would also like to record our appreciation to the representatives from various 
national organisations for chairing the sessions and sharing their views on the topic that we 
had identified.
Before I end my remarks, I thought it worth emphasising again the importance of greater 
collaboration between statisticians, compilers and end users of statistics in improving data 
compilation, communication and its usage. In this respect, I believe that MyStats will be a 
strong foundation to facilitate and enhance this collaborative effort.
On that note, I wish you a productive and engaging conference.

In with the old and the new » Banking Technology

In with the old and the new » Banking Technology:


There have been some high profile systems failures in the banking world of late – ‘flash crashes’, outages of ATM networks and payments systems. In each case, the corporate communications department of the financial institutions in question scramble to reassure customers and field questions from the media.
More often than not, human error or computer systems have been blamed for the problems. As both wholesale and retail banking becomes more complex, questions are being asked about the core banking platforms from which myriad applications hang.
“Financial services are very complex and the systems are becoming more critical to delivering a range of services to customers,” says Chris Pickles, head of industry initiatives, global banking and financial markets at UK-based telecoms company BT. “But some of the systems banks are working with are positively primeval, dating back to the early days of mainframes.” Pickles says in 1999 he discovered a system from 1971 that was still operating at a bank he was working with. “In fact, some systems still run patches that were applied when the UK switched over to decimalised currency in February 1971.”
Pickles compares the financial industry to that of manufacturing; banks pride themselves on a 98 per cent straight-through processing rate, whereas manufacturers talk about failures in parts per million. “This essentially means that the financial industry is 10,000 times worse than the manufacturing industry in terms of failure rates. And the manufacturing industry dealt with the issue way back in the 1980s when it introduced total quality management and just in time manufacturing.”
He also points up that most financial services transactions cost more today than they did ten years ago; to buy shares online a decade ago cost half of what it does now, he says. “Financial institutions aren’t reaping the benefits of technology efficiency. Just look at how many Swift members there are – the numbers haven’t really changed significantly in the past decade.”
But not everyone – least of all bankers – would agree with these sentiments. Anne Collard, global head of product and channel management, payments and cash management at ANZ, is a staunch defender of legacy systems. “Legacy systems are at the core of helping banks to manage risk, move money and facilitate information flows to help people to make good quality decisions,” she says. “These systems are fit for the purpose for which they were built, but in today’s environment they are no longer capable of meeting our clients’ needs. We need to be able to complement legacy platforms by building client-focused applications around them.”
Part of ANZ’s strategy to complement its legacy platforms has been the implementation of Cashactive Fusion, a solution that helps corporates managing large volumes of payments and collections to optimise working capital and improve finance team efficiency. ANZ has built the solution on UK-based financial software developer Gresham Computing’s Clareti Transaction Control system, which has enabled it to streamline and automate the capture and reconciliation of financial information.
“The financial market and our clients’ agendas have changed significantly in the past decade, a process that had started even before the financial crisis. We don’t look at legacy systems and ask whether they are up to the task; we need to complement legacy platforms with more and more capabilities that are just not possible on these platforms,” she says.
Collard acknowledges that “banks may want to replace some of their old systems”, but says there are two hurdles to such an approach. The first is the amount of time it takes to recreate an infrastructure and the second is the cost. “Financial institutions therefore rarely replace their infrastructures – they can remediate them, build on them or add value.”
Neil Vernon, development director at Gresham Computing, says legacy systems are not on their way out any time soon. “Banks have invested a great deal in legacy platforms and they do what they were designed to do very well. Financial institutions need to look at what works well in legacy platforms and what doesn’t. They can re-energise their technology by replacing the parts that are no longer working to their benefit or to the benefit of their customers.”
But another project, also in Australia, demonstrates what can be done when banks throw off the shackles of their legacy systems. At the end of 2011, Commonwealth Bank of Australia launched Kaching, a mobile payments application that combines peer to peer, social payments and near field communication technologies.
Commonwealth Bank says without its new core banking system, which delivers the ability to provide online, real time banking, Kaching would not have been possible. In 2008 the bank began to replace its legacy systems with a real-time platform, based on SAP’s NetWeaver technology, to underpin its end to end processing systems. The forecast cost of the four-year project is about A$580 million ($600m); for that, Commonwealth Bank believes it will get a better customer service platform and simplicity in IT systems, infrastructure and business services, as well as “significant operational benefits and cost savings”.
Kaching is one of the first fruits of the core banking investment. “None of this would be possible if not for our real time platform,” said Michael Harte, chief information officer at the bank during the launch of the service. “We are the seventh largest bank in the world and have made a multi-billion dollar, multi-year commitment to real time systems. All of our products and services will hang off this real time core. Our customers can get account balances in real time and pay immediately – and get advice of that payment – on any transaction. We are doing all this at a greater speed and on a greater scale than any other financial institution in the world.”
David Lindberg, executive general manager cards, payments and retail strategy at Commonwealth Bank said the app would reduce the reliance on traditional payment methods and transform and simplify day to day payments to friends, family, mainstream retailers and small businesses. “Mobile and online social payment is the next step in transaction technology,” he said. “Already, more than half of our 10 million customers own a smart phone, and Australians are 65 per cent more likely than the British to bank on their phones.”
Lindberg stressed that it was not enough for the technology to exist for an application to be successful – what was also needed was an ‘ecosystem’. To date mobile applications have been closed loop systems, but now the bank has brought together partners such as Facebook, handset manufacturers and the payment schemes. “The inherent problem with payments is that it doesn’t generate that much money as a business. Therefore a bank needs partners who can bring different elements to the table, companies that make money in another business but by participating in payments, make the application stronger.”
South Africa’s Standard Bank has also embarked on a core systems transformation project that it hopes will deliver a more standardised, efficient and cost effective business across its operations. Based on the Finacle digital commerce solution from Infosys, the bank’s transformation project began in 2009. The latest country to go live was Namibia in March this year. At the launch of the new system in that country, Herbert Maier, chairman of the Standard Bank Namibia board, said with the new system, the bank would be able to identify the gaps in its products as well as quickly replicate and make amendments to products as dictated by its customers’ needs.
Like the Commonwealth Bank scenario, Standard Bank is targeting mobility. Says Terry Moodley, chief executive, personal and business banking Africa at the bank: “Mobility is a critical component of our business growth in Africa. We see the rapid proliferation of mobile services and that, in some areas, Africa is leading the way for the rest of the world. It’s a dynamic space and we need to be agile in our response to continually evolving opportunities. We must be flexible to innovate and differentiate ourselves in the marketplace. We now have the technology platform to realise our mobility strategy and to positively impact the communities in which we operate”.
Twenty years ago the joke in financial technology circles was that legacy systems were the kit a vendor had just sold you. Many of the same vendors are driving ‘transformation’ or ‘renewal’ projects today. Some advocate changing core systems, others contend that adaptation can deliver what is needed.
Last month Oracle launched the Oracle Banking Platform, which it says has been designed to enable large, global banks to overhaul their legacy systems. The platform complements Oracle’s Flexcube core banking product and provides core banking deposits and loans capabilities, and origination and collection for personal banking functionality.
“Many banks today are burdened by complex, aging banking platforms and are beginning to look toward technology and platform modernisation as part of their business transformation strategies,” said Frank Brienzi, senior vice-president and general manager, Oracle Financial Services global business unit at the launch of the platform. “However, modernisation is a major investment of time, money and oversight. [The platform]…  makes the replacement of core systems viable for large banks, enabling strategic choices as well as providing a high level of flexibility and value.” The platform was developed in a strategic relationship with National Australia Bank. Oracle Banking Platform is in production at National Australia Bank’s on-line direct bank (UBank) and work is under way on planning the conversions of the bank’s core retail and commercial banking units.
IBM takes a similar approach to legacy systems. The core challenges in modernising banking systems, says the company, are: inflexible and manual banking processes, complex and costly IT infrastructure, and customer demand for tailored products. A cynic may well ask where banks came upon these processes and infrastructures in the first place.
IBM’s Business Agility in Core Banking approach takes an incremental route to optmising and reusing business processes across core banking applications. The idea is to eliminate redundant interfaces and consolidate application services and components.
At business process management software developer Pegasystems, a ‘wrap and renew’ strategy is advocated. This means that banks can “ring as much value” out of their legacy systems as possible, says Ron Wellman, financial services industry principal at the company. “A legacy replacement project can be huge, long and expensive. It eats into time and your budget,” he says.
The wrap and renew approach takes a siloed legacy application on an old mainframe or early Web application and creates a level above this, into which data is pushed or from which it is pulled from the legacy applications. The legacy system is kept as a system of record, while the application layer is the one with which staff and clients interact.
It sounds easy, but Wellman warns: “One of the first challenges of taking this approach can be political. For example, some vendors are not willing to expose their data to external systems, in which case screen scraping technology is needed to facilitate integration. Moreover, in siloed organisations, some staff see integration as a threat to the hegemony they have established over their systems or business lines.”
Any financial institution approaching a transformation project should not bite off more than it can chew, says Wellman. “The ideal would be an application that can be integrated into all of the back office systems in a bank with one touch. But that is simply not reality. Banks should start with the applications that can benefit the most, such as those with high amounts of data entry, and possibly human error, and applications where revenues are not being brought in fast enough.”
Darryl Twiggs, executive vice-president product management at global software and managed services company SmartStream, says banks that are not replacing their legacy systems are not necessarily missing out. “I don’t see many banks looking to migrate from their core banking solutions to another system. The core systems are staying at the heart of the bank and welded to that financial institutions are supplementing operational systems that can feed the mainframes. This enables them to make efficiency gains in their operations.”
The sheer amount of investments banks have made in their mainframe-based systems, he says, makes it very difficult for them to consider migrating to newer platforms. However, many banks are unable to cope with new standards of processing, such as ISO 20022, particularly when it comes to corporate actions. “We are increasingly being asked to provide operations systems that replace the infrastructure or mainframe-based application with something more flexible. Banks are making a leap from the mainframe into the cloud,” says Twiggs.
By providing such hosted solutions, SmartStream is tapping into a definite trend in the financial services industry. “Outsourcing and white labelling have matured. There are many projects now at banks that involve the outsourcing of entire solutions in order to derisk and reduce the burden of IT support.”
BT’s Pickles picks up on the standards theme: “The large global banks are looking to develop global messaging solutions, in order to be able to take control of the messaging environment and integrate the silos they have. Enterprise-wide messaging enables the many standards across front and back offices and different operational functions to be integrated. It also enables banks to decide how they connect with their counterparts, rather than those counterparts dictating connectivity. This is the most cost-effective way of connecting to the world.”

12 July 2012

The Asian Banker | ANZ and Gresham Computing deliver cash and information management solutions

The Asian Banker | ANZ and Gresham Computing deliver cash and information management solutions:

Press Release
Published July 11, 2012
View complete press releases list

ANZ and Gresham Computing deliver cash and information management solutions

Date: Jul 11, 2012 
Categories: Technology & Operations 
Keywords: ANZGresham Computing 

London, July 10th 2012 - Gresham Computing plc, a leading provider of transaction control solutions to international financial institutions, today announced the successful commercialisation of its third major project with Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd (ANZ) – rounding out ANZ’s innovative solution suite for helping corporate clients to increase visibility, control and efficiency in the areas of cash flow and information management.
Using Gresham’s Clareti Transaction Control (CTC) solution, ANZ recently launched ANZ Cashactive Fusion. This solution helps organisations managing large volumes of payments and collections with optimising working capital and finance team efficiency. By streamlining and automating the capturing and reconciliation of financial information to drive insight-led business decisions, it is ideal for organisations in financial services, utilities, telecommunications, health and property sectors.

The bank has also partnered with Gresham to deliver ANZ Cashactive Control and ANZ Cashactive Virtual. While both solutions provide a robust and efficient way of managing, segregating and reconciling funds, they offer the flexibility of addressing different business needs. ANZ Cashactive Control is specifically targeted at helping organisations in accounting, legal, property, government or specialist financial sectors with the compliance obligations involved in managing client monies. When it comes to managing intra-company funds, ANZ Cashactive Virtual is relevant to any organisation looking to maximise their liquidity in today’s challenging environment.

“As well as having strong expertise and credentials in working capital management solutions, Gresham demonstrated an innovative approach and a clear vision for the future,” said Anne Collard, Global Head of Product & Channel Management, Payments & Cash Management at ANZ. “We needed to supplement the work we are doing to enhance our suite of advanced client solutions and meet an aggressive roll-out schedule, so partnering with a vendor we can trust was crucial. Gresham has been collaborative throughout all stages of development and we envisage this to be the start of a long and successful partnership.”

“From the outset we established a very close relationship with ANZ, developing a mutually supportive business model where our commercial success is linked directly to the uptake of solutions by ANZ’s clients. We successfully delivered each phase of the overall project on time, allowing the bank to hit all of its launch date targets,” said Chris Errington, CEO of Gresham Computing. “I look forward to working with ANZ as the solutions are rolled out to local, regional and global clients.”

ANZ Cashactive Virtual was launched in Australia in December 2011, with ANZ Cashactive Fusion and ANZ Cashactive Control introduced in April 2012. Gresham is now actively supporting ANZ as they roll out the solutions across the Asia Pacific region.

Re-disseminated by The Asian Banker

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17 September 2011

SIBOS 2011

Dear Readers,

This year I will be brining you all of the key Cash Insights from SIBOS 2011 (http://www.sibos.com/)

Please let me know if you have any feedback.

Thank you for reading!!

René