Thermo Fisher Scientific just got more scientific about setting its cash position and making its cash forecasts. By stepping up from spreadsheets to an ASP-hosted treasury workstation, the Waltham, Mass.-based provider of laboratory supplies and equipment for clinical, pharmaceutical and scientific uses is part of a growing wave of companies making that move. A familiar story. But by getting its solution through triangulation, it is part of the latest delivery wave, a not-so-familiar story. This triangulation has nothing to do with global positioning and satellites. Its corners are occupied by Gateway Systems, Chesapeake System Solutions and Bank of America, three technology vendors teaming up to push the envelope for slick technology, low cost and good service.
Treasury managers can expect to see more vendor teamwork, predicts consultant Craig Jeffery, managing director of Atlanta-based Strategic Treasurer LLC. That's because banks, battered by their subprime mortgage losses, have cut back drastically on research and development spending. While "cool tools" are coming from banks to help treasury staffs manage the cash conversion cycle and financial supply chain, the more cost-conscious banks may be inclined now to let technology ventures fund the development and then offer their customers white-labeled versions of others' technology, he suggests.