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Article12 Apr 2023

Adam Smith Awards Case Study: Omni

To better support Omni Logistics’ robust global operations, the organization's Treasury team recognized the need to improve its manual processes and automate how it applies investment policy criteria with the mission-critical goal of reducing risk and preserving capital.

The solution

To better support Omni Logistics’ robust global operations, the organization's Treasury team recognized the need to improve its manual processes and automate how it applies investment policy criteria with the mission-critical goal of reducing risk and preserving capital.

The challenge the team faced was that the company’s existing investment practices involved manual execution. Lack of automation meant a team member was tasked with reviewing cash forecasts, then investing cash into bank deposits or money market mutual funds, redeeming those funds when needed to manage the company’s day-to-day working capital needs. 

Omni Logistics’ Treasurer wanted to eliminate the manual decision-making and execution process, bringing much needed automation to treasury. The objective of this change would be to ensure competitive yield based on the company’s risk appetite and market conditions, while ensuring compliance with investment policies and achieving capital preservation goals.

A second issue Treasury faced was managing bank account fees around the world. In addition to automating the process of investments in money market funds (MMFs), the team wanted a solution that would reduce banking fees incurred transacting across the globe.

Omni Logistics’ Treasury team turned to long-time cash management banking provider, Citi, to help address the company’s cash management needs. Citi implemented its optimized liquidity solution to help dramatically improve Omni Logistics’ manual investment process, delivering critical automation. This solution allowed Treasury to designate funds over a pre-set deposit balance to be automatically invested. Citi then provided an Automatic Sweep to Money Market Mutual Funds. This solution incurs no sweep transaction costs while at the same time, greatly simplifying the team’s investment process. The team provided the bank with the intended setup and its investment policy, which detailed the company’s acceptable criteria and counterparty limits. Citi then automated the investment transactions, helping ensure compliance with the policy.

This advanced solution enabled Omni Logistics to invest across multiple MMF families, which allowed counterparty exposure risk to be diversified across institutions and providers.

In conjunction with the liquidity solution, Citi also implemented its Global Earnings Credit Rate (ECR) solution. This ECR solution uses a Citi demand deposit account (DDA) account to generate earnings credits that were then used to offset fees in the U.S, Canada and Western Europe.

Innovation demonstrated

In an increasingly volatile interest rate environment and with growing pressure on Treasury to reduce costs, the combined Citi liquidity and Global ECR solutions have proven invaluable for Omni Logistics. These solutions deliver critical benefits – helping to maximize short-term yield, lower costs, reduce operational risk, and improve treasury efficiency.

By automating the company’s short-term investment function, Treasury has eliminated the time consuming, manual process of monitoring market conditions and cash positions through cash forecasts, then executing investment transactions. The automation of this process has improved Treasury’s ability to reduce timing risk, taking advantage of investment opportunities, while lowering operational risks associated with a manual process and ensuring compliance with investment policies. In addition, automation frees up Treasury personnel to focus on more strategic objectives. 

As a result of implementing the Citi liquidity solution, Treasury personnel no longer have to monitor MMF investments on a weekly or monthly basis. Treasury has taken advantage of no-cost MMF daily sweeps, and by leveraging the unique Global ECR solution, accrued credits are used to offset monthly account fees globally.

The benefits

Citi is Omni Logistic’s long-time cash management banking provider.

Omni Logistics is one of the world’s leading privately held Third-Party Logistics (3PL) providers specializing in unique, custom supply chain solutions for a long list of global clients. The company applies a high level of focus on order accuracy and accountability from inception to the final mile.

The most important reason why Omni Logistics’ Automated Short-Term Cash Management Solution should be awarded is because it delivers on all key goals of corporate outcomes, driving down costs, promoting operational efficiency, and optimizing yield. The solution combines cash sweeps, money market funds, and an earnings credit rate program to create a global, automated cash management solution that automates treasury.

With its unique solutions, Omni Logistics was able to offset fees incurred across continents, both in North America and in Europe, putting their working capital cash balances to use. The solution has eliminated the time consuming, manual process of monitoring market conditions and positions through cash forecasts. It has also saved countless hours for Omni Logistics’ treasury team, allowing the team to give attention to more strategic initiatives. By also automating a sweep to money market funds, the company ensures they are staying in line with market yield while remaining in compliance with their investment policy.

Combining Global ECR and automated investments is a first-of-its-kind solution that helps Omni Logistics to manage cash in a compliant, low-risk, short-term vehicle at a market rate based on the company’s risk appetite.

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