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Treasury and Payments

APAC Treasury Transformation Hinges On Digitization

J.P. Morgan’s Sridhar Kanthadai and Karen Webster, CEO of PYMNTS.com, discuss how digital transformation is driving payment and treasury excellence for the future. This is the tenth episode in a podcast series on the “Digital Transformation of Treasury.” This podcast was originally published on PYMNTS.com.


View Transcript (updates content above)

Highlights

  • COVID-19 has accelerated the adoption of digitization among businesses, particularly in Asia Pacific where roughly 70 percent of firms sped up their own “digital journeys” and transformations, higher than the percentages registered in other regions such as EMEA and Latin America.  
  • The legacy of manual payment modes – like the use of physical checks for payment – as well as regulatory requirements in many markets in APAC that necessitate paper documentation for cross-border movements of funds, have contributed to the digitization shift.
  • Treasury transformation hinges on true digitization and not just simply electronification or moving away from paper. Corporates should look to digitize the entire set of processes that govern operations, whether with their own clients or suppliers, and with banking partners in the middle.
  • “Digital native companies,” especially ecommerce firms, have been able to take faster leadership in digitization because of the nature of their business. The more traditional brick and mortar firms will be more challenged in this journey because of the manual and physical processes they have to overcome.
  • Treasurers are becoming more strategic in their outlook toward using data for cash flow forecasting and liquidity management. The next steps would be to use real-time data, and availability of that data, to make better decisions for the company.
  • Looking ahead, there is a clear move toward a more eCommerce style or “direct-to-consumer” form of transactions, which would challenge business models while giving rise to unique opportunities within the real-time and eWallet payments space.
Sridhar Kanthadai Headshot

SRIDHAR KANTHADAI, HEAD OF TREASURY SERVICES FOR ASIA PACIFIC AT J.P. MORGAN

Sridhar Kanthadai is Managing Director and head of Wholesale Payments, Asia Pacific, for J.P. Morgan, based in Hong Kong. In this role, Sridhar is responsible for Treasury Services, Merchant Services and Trade Finance. He leads the firm’s efforts to deliver market-leading solutions to clients by leveraging J.P. Morgan’s unique global capabilities and technology investments.

Sridhar joined J.P. Morgan in April 2017 and brings over 30 years of experience in transaction banking across Asia Pacific to this role. Throughout his career, Sridhar has held leadership positions within product management, client origination, advisory solutions and services implementation.

Prior to joining J.P. Morgan, Sridhar was the head of Transaction Banking, Greater China and North Asia, for Standard Chartered Bank where he delivered services to clients across Cash, Trade and Securities Services businesses. He also held a number of roles over 12 years at Citi, including the head of Treasury and Trade Solutions for Asia Pacific, Chief Operating Officer for Global Transaction Services for Asia Pacific as well as running business lines within Cash Management.

Sridhar has been recognized as a leading practitioner, and in the last few years, has also been named Transaction Banker of the Year for North Asia and a top 10 leader of Cash Management in Asia Pacific.

Sridhar holds a Masters in Science and a Bachelors in Engineering degrees from Birla Institute of Technology and Science, Pilani (India). 

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