FinTekNews is pleased to offer our weekly feature column 3 Questions. Each week, we feature a thought leader within a unique sector of fintech and ask them to answer just 3 questions for our audience in their vernacular. This week, we’d like to introduce you to Jean-Luc Robert, chairman and CEO of Kyriba, a leading provider of cloud treasury and financial management solutions.
NAME: Jean-Luc Robert
TITLE: Chairman & CEO
WEB ADDRESS: www.Kyriba.com
1) What does your firm do/offer within the fintech sector?
Kyriba helps global CFOs, treasurers and finance professionals modernize their financial operations through a cloud-based treasury and financial management platform. It’s a true SaaS model (first launched in 2002) that provides real-time capabilities for cash and risk management, payments and working capital optimization.
Very simply we help our clients in three core areas: 1) drive growth through improved working capital management and actionable decision support, so they can be better partners to the business 2) protect against loss from both traditional financial risk, as well as modern day threats like fraud and cybercrime, and 3) automate key processes so treasury and finance teams can engage in more strategic value-add initiatives. These capabilities are critical, especially in today’s complex, volatile global marketplace.
We are proud and grateful to have 2,000 clients worldwide, including some of the largest brands in the world, with more than 65,000 active users in more than 100 countries.
2) What area/s of fintech do you believe will grow the most in the coming 5 years?
I think we are on the precipice of a significant change in the industry, especially as more and more companies migrate away from antiquated, legacy tools such as on-premise solutions and spreadsheets and begin to adopt cloud-based solutions to meet the needs and challenges of modern finance teams. According to the 2017 Global Corporate Treasury Survey by Deloitte, only 32 percent of treasury solutions are deployed in the cloud.
We’ll see finance teams further embrace and rely on technology in areas like business intelligence and AI. These will be part of the toolbox that will enable and empower companies to compete.
In addition, cybercrime is increasing in both volume and sophistication. Fraud prevention will be of paramount importance for companies of all sizes over the next few years. New technologies are emerging and others will be further developed to combat this. Kyriba recently developed an industry first real-time payment screening algorithms to stop fraud before it happens.
Cryptocurrencies also have been in the spotlight for the past few years and we expect this space will continue to heat up. Blockchain in particular has great potential, for example, in making cross-border payments happen faster and more efficiently.
Robotics, AI, machine learning and smart algorithms are other exciting areas that will make a lot of progress in the future. We have already seen examples of treasury robots managing specified treasury workflows, but new inroads with AI and machine learning will happen so robots can go beyond what we program them to do. And while it is true that eventually robots will replace some human functions, this technology will give rise to new strategic roles within finance departments.
Finally, companies will put more and more focus on cash management and liquidity performance in the coming years, especially as repatriation becomes more prominent for the financial community. Repatriation isn’t as simple as wiring cash back to America. It is a complex process and there is sure to be more pressure on CFOs and treasurers to explain the strategy and reasons behind how they handle this activity to the board and shareholders.
3) What has been the biggest success in your firm to date?
Our true success has been empowering CFOs and their teams to drive digital transformation in corporate finance. We recently crossed a significant milestone with more than 2,000 global brands as customers, in 100 countries around the world.
Kyriba is gaining huge traction because of the demand for real-time visibility into global cash positions that our software enables. Kyriba allows our clients to see, move, and utilize cash instantaneously while managing risk and fraud. This ability helps CFOs in their fight against loss from market volatility or cybercrime and also enables them to accelerate free cash flow with working capital optimization solutions. In addition, our enterprise financial platform empowers senior finance leaders to provide clear reporting, guidance and direction to the board, making them an integral strategic partner to the organization.
This uptick in customer acquisition worldwide is evidenced by our quarter over quarter growth. In fact, in Q1 2018, we announced our most successful quarter to date with 70 percent year over year growth.
Jean-Luc Robert has been chairman and CEO of Kyriba since 2003. During his tenure at Kyriba, he has established the company as the leading global provider of SaaS-based treasury management solutions, expanding aggressively into emerging markets and driving worldwide revenue growth.