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Over the past decade, Boston-based Iron Mountain Inc.–with $2.5 billion in annual revenues–has grown dramatically from being a data protection and records management enterprise serving U.S. businesses, to a global concern with operations in 35 countries. That transformation presented a new set of challenges. Overseas investment of $1.4 billion had created significant foreign exchange exposures, while a legacy holding company structure in Europe introduced significant earnings volatility. The company’s effective tax rate hovered at an intolerable 43%, given the impending consumption of the company’s NOL’s. Lastly, treasury operations and support for Europe was ineffective.

A treasury team headed by Jeff Lawrence, treasurer, together with Iron Mountain’s tax and accounting departments, set out to align its financing strategy with the company’s steadily evolving global footprint, while reducing its tax rate. The goals were to curb earnings volatility, improve liquidity and provide treasury services more directly. The centerpiece of the program was creation of an in-house bank based in Switzerland. This operation will eventually provide other support functions to global operations.

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