Focusing on cash matters (TT Dec03 p22-24)

Cash management in Electrocomponents at the end of 1999 was a decentralised affair. In the UK, there was a notional cash pool with the main clearing bank, in which sat all the UK operating and holding companies. Group treasury managed the balance on this pool with deposits/borrowings to/from the London money market. Some of the other overseas operating companies had cash balances (which, for various reasons, could be substantial) that they largely managed locally, albeit under guidance from the centre in terms of credit exposure. The borrowing companies were financed with a range of inter-company and external debt, again largely driven and managed locally. It was not very efficient at all. Not only was there a significant loss of interest, but there was also a loss of central control and a lot of local management time was being wasted. A process was initiated to review cash management, currency by currency, starting with the euro first.

Scroll to top