Ben Bastianen, treasurer of Milwaukee-based Johnson Controls Inc., can make global cash management sound easy: concentration accounts for each country in which Johnson Controls does business that are zero-balanced daily to a master account whenever possible. He uses Bank of America to handle cross-border transactions. Voila!

Let's face it, not every company is Johnson Controls, No. 86 among the Fortune 500 with $20 billion in annual revenues and $1.7 billion a month flowing between collection and concentration accounts. And not every bank can do what Bank of America can do for Bastianen.

Hence, there's a problem for many treasurers who would love to follow in Bastianen's footsteps on going global: With so many companies chasing consolidation in their cash management, there are not enough sufficiently global banks from which to choose, and the relatively low return on investment, as well as the need to provide sophisticated systems and a branch network, discourages most newcomers.

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