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Treasury Management & Corporate Finance

The programme in Treasury Management & Corporate Finance combines two disciplines of the finance field in an intensive and efficient 18-month part-time programme.

This postgraduate educational design is unique in treasury management education, setting our programme apart from ACT/CFA certificate programmes, which are characterised by mainly technical knowledge, online examinations, and training sessions for the online exam.

Curriculum

The curriculum consists of 6 modules, each covering a clear sub-discipline in Treasury Management and Corporate Finance. Each module consists of approximately 8/9 lecture days, which take place on Thursdays and which have a duration of 4-5 hours (from 15:30 until 20:00). At the end of each module your acquired knowledge and enhanced competences and skills will be tested with a written exam and/or case(s). All modules are organised in such a way to allow for sufficient preparation time for assignments and exams.

Below, the topics addressed in the 6 modules are described using keywords and in a short overview. 

  • Treasury (Financial) Risk Management and International Cash Management are traditional treasury disciplines. 
  • Corporate Finance is part of the Corporate Financial Management and Capital Markets and Funding module.
  • The module in Treasury Organisation discusses the embeddedness of the treasury and corporate finance functions in corporate organisations.
  • Finally, an overview of relevant aspects in financial and fiscal law is given in the module Financial and Fiscal Law & Regulations.

During the programme, you will also be able to write two academic papers on the topics that you are interested in the most. As a result, the acquired knowledge can be applied directly to your organisations.

Masters level

The programme is taught at Master’s degree level and includes interactive sessions with various academic and professional experts in the field of treasury management and corporate finance.  

Excellent team of lecturers

Excellent team of lecturers

The team of lecturers of the programme represents a balanced mix of academic professionals and treasury consultants. Partners in the VU programme are KPMG, Orchard Finance, PwC and Zanders Treasury & Finance Solutions. 

The post-graduate Executive Treasury Management & Corporate Finance programme is a strategic partner of the Dutch Association of Corporate Treasurers (DACT).

teaching treasury management

Modules & Lecturers

  • Module: Treasury (Financial) Risk Management

    The central theme in this module is the set of financial instruments used by corporate treasures in risk management, in particular currency risks, interest rate risks and commodity risks. The valuation of these instruments with mathematical models (including binomial models, Black-Scholes-model, Monte Carlo simulations and volatility modelling) is conducted with great attention. 

    In addition to the technical aspects of financial instruments, case studies allow the study of the hedging strategy of a company. Top professionals in the corporate treasury will share their views and insights.

    Topics:

    • Commodity risk
    • Interest and FX risk
    • Pricing derivatives
    • Pension risk and insurance risk
    • Innovations in financial instruments: credit derivatives, energy derivatives, weather derivatives and emission derivatives
    • Hedging strategy: To what extent should which risks be hedged and at which costs? How is risk appetite determined and in what way is it connected to the company’s strategy and financial situation? How is it converted into a hedging strategy?
    • In addition, necessary mathematics (level Options Futures and other Derivatives by Hull)

    The book by John Hull "Options, Futures and Other Derivatives" is used as reference material.

    For a good understanding of the functioning of financial instruments, theoretical insights into the valuation of these instruments is required. 

    Please note that in order to successfully complete this course, some knowledge of mathematics is required. For those who would benefit from it, additional attention is paid to probability, differentiation/integration, Taylor series, optimisation techniques, regression analyses and time series analyses. This involves practicing with the use of spreadsheet models (Excel Solver), among other things.

  • Module: Corporate Financial Management

    This module combines accounting, financial statement analysis, corporate valuation and corporate finance. After an introduction to the annual report and the accounting standards (IFRS and FASB), the focus will be on financial statement analysis which is key to understanding business models and corporate strategy performance. Insight into the business is essential for corporate valuation, which in turn underpins corporate finance decisions. This section also deals with accounting for pensions (IAS 19), deferred tax (IAS 12) leasing (IAS 17) and derecognition for factoring and securitisations.

    Topics

    • Relevant accounting and reporting for treasury and corporate finance professionals
    • Financial statement analysis (linking finance with corporate strategy)
    • Corporate valuation
    • Credit risk and equity risk pricing models

    In most companies, the treasurer is involved in providing accounting-related information for the financial statements. The treasurer anticipates the consequences for the profit and loss account when financial instruments are used. Accounting rules for the processing of (derivative) financial instruments such as forward currency contracts and interest rate swaps are detailed and complex. The complexity is in the valuation and result (including hedge accounting, IFRS 9) and the extensive and technical disclosures required in the financial statements for the use of financial instruments (IAS 39 and IFRS 7, fair value, amortised cost, effective interest, impairments).

    McKinsey's book "Valuation, measuring and managing the value of corporations" represents the reference material. Starting with the valuation principles outlined in this book, an overview is given of the current state of the art in Corporate Valuation. In practice, corporate valuation is often based on professional "standards" that match the limited theory formation as closely as possible. Both theoretical knowledge and awareness on practical conventions are needed to be able to make judgements in corporate valuation practice.

  • Module: International Cash Management

    This module offers an extensive and detailed overview of the field of international cash management and emphasizes the latest practice.

    The module starts with the international banking infrastructure, including the principles of international payments, the most common payment systems and the role of correspondent banking. Examples are check clearing, SWIFT, CHIPS, SEPA, EURO1 and TARGET. 

    This module also deals with the information technology structure that connects corporates with banking payment systems. The latest developments are discussed, including blockchain technology and crypto currencies.

    Topics:

    • Cash flow forecasting
    • Cash management, payments and clearing
    • Liquidity management
    • Working capital management
    • ST funding and trade finance
    • Treasury systems, cash management systems (technology and security)

    Netting and cash pooling techniques are also discussed (multilateral netting, netting cycle, leading and legging, notional pooling, cash concentration). Attention is paid to legal and fiscal aspects of international cash management (including withholding tax). The working capital management, liquidity management and ST financing disciplines are integral and essential to the daily practice of treasury professionals. 

    As theory building in this field is rather limited, a large number of practical cases/solutions are elaborated in this module.

    In 2018, for example, guest lectures were given on the implementation of supply chain finance, module chain technology and security issues in treasury management systems.

  • Module: Corporate Capital Markets and Funding

    This module deals with the interaction between corporates and their corporate capital market. 

    The module switches between macro perspectives and micro perspectives on corporate capital markets. Financing decisions on a corporate level deal in essence with the matching of a company's business assets to a range of corporate finance alternatives offered by the corporate capital market. Apart from standard forms of corporate financing (equity and bank financing), the module also addresses asset-based financing, cash-based financing, hybrid financing and project finance.

    Topics:

    • Financial markets and institutions
    • Macroeconomics
    • Debt capital markets
    • Bank lending/relationship
    • Project finance
    • M&A and equity capital markets

    Developments in corporate capital markets are key input for corporate finance decisions. Pricing of corporate capital strongly relates to globalization and the international integration of capital markets. Recent developments in capital markets are addressed, including the exceptionally low level of interest rates, regulation and the role of monetary authorities in capital markets.

    A corporate treasurer needs a good understanding of macroeconomic developments. Economic growth, production and unemployment are linked to inflation, interest rates and exchange rates which in turn determine the pricing of financial instruments including treasury instruments.

    Interesting current developments in corporate capital markets include alternatives to bank financing, the development of private placement markets in Europe and the public issuance of bonds in Europe. Developments in corporate equity markets are particularly visible in the M&A market.

  • Module: Treasury Organization

    Here several organizational models for the treasury role within the company are discussed and important is the link between the corporate treasurer and corporate controller. Once choices for the organizational model have been made, the internal control of the treasury function comes into play. Important internal control concepts are outlined (COSO model, segregation of duties, necessity compliance with Sarbanes-Oxley legislation) and are illustrated with practical examples. Next to administrative-organizational aspects, information technology to prevent fraud is also discussed.

    Topics:

    • Treasury function in corporate governance
    • Embedding the treasury function in the organization
    • Risk management systems
    • Treasury control systems/treasury information systems
    • Controllership
    • Compliance

    The role of the treasurer and the treasury department varies across corporates. Central versus decentralized, adviser or agent, cost centre versus profit centre are considerations in the organizational design of the treasury and corporate finance function. The role of the treasurer shifts to a critically investigative, advisory and supervisory role. In short, the treasurer gets a more active role in the management of the company. This postgraduate programme provides professionals with the knowledge and skills to fulfil this role.

  • Module: Financial and Fiscal Law & Regulation

    This module outlines relevant aspects of the fiscal and legal environment for the corporate treasurer, in the context of increasing regulations and growing internationalization in business.

    It starts with contract law and the legal aspects of financial contracts (including securitization, derivatives, ISDA contract and loan agreements). Practical examples highlight the importance of technical details. Subsequently, legal aspects in market corporate finance are addressed: capital protection for NVs and BVs, group financing and the regulatory aspects of the capital market and the use of inside information. Since the corporate treasurer will most likely also have to deal with British law, a brief overview of British corporate law is provided.

    Lastly the module deals with fiscal law. Fiscal profit determination of groups, transfer pricing and withholding taxes on (international) money flows are extensively discussed. Considerable attention is given to specific tax aspects of group financing and a large number of financing instruments, including derivatives.

    Topics:

    • Financial law and regulations
    • Fiscal law and regulations
  • Academic Papers

    Within the programme students write two academic papers. Which allows students to write on topics of their interest. As a result, the acquired knowledge can be applied directly to their organizations.

  • Lecturers

    The team of lecturers in the programme is a balanced mix of academic professionals, corporate treasurers, accounting professionals and treasury consultants. Partners in the VU programme are KPMG, Orchard Finance, PwC and Zanders Treasury & Finance Solutions. 

    • A. Brink-van der Meer

    VU Amsterdam, company law (module Financial and Fiscal Law & Regulation)

    • Dr S.A. Borovkova

    VU Amsterdam, derivatives (module Treasury (Financial) Risk Management)

    • Prof. W. Bolt    

    VU Amsterdam, blockchain technology and crypto currencies (module International Cash Management)

    • M. Botman          

    VU Amsterdam, controlling (module Financial and Fiscal Law & Regulation)

    • H. Buysse    

    Clairfield Benelux Boer&Croon Corporate Finance, partner, M&A (module Corporate Capital Markets and Funding)

    • Prof. E. Clark    

    PSE Paris, risk management (module 6)

    • F. Cleton  

    KPMG, Treasury Management Services, international financial risk management (module Treasury (Financial) Risk Management)

    • Prof. H. Ebbers  

    Nyenrode University, macroeconomics (module Corporate Capital Markets and Funding)

    • A. Frugte

    Orchard, treasury organization (module Treasury Organization)

    • E. Goemans-Verkleij

    Orchard, partner, treasury organization (module Treasury Organization)

    •B.C. de Graaff LLM MSc

    VU Amsterdam, financial analysis (module Corporate Financial Management)

    • B. Hendriks

    Orchard, Senior Manager, treasury organization (module Treasury Organization)

    • S. de Groes

    KPMG, Treasury Management Services, international cash management (module International Cash Management)

    • E. Jackson

    PwC, treasury organization (Treasury Organization)

    • R. Michon

    Orchard, director, working capital management & funding (module International Cash Management)

    • Prof. H.A. Rijken

    VU Amsterdam, Corporate Finance (module Corporate Financial Management & Corporate Capital Markets and Funding)

    • Dr N.J. Seeger

    VU Amsterdam, mathematics for derivatives (module Treasury (Financial) Risk Management)

    • Dr K.A. Springer  

    Friesland Campina, Global Director Treasury, international financial risk management (module Treasury (Financial) Risk Management)

    • S. van Tol

    Zanders Treasury & Finance Solutions, partner, corporate capital markets (module Corporate Capital Markets and Funding)

    • K.J. de Vries

    PwC, partner, accounting for treasurers (module Corporate Financial Management)

    • G. Wognum

    PwC, accounting for treasurers (module Corporate Financial Management)

We’d love to hear from you

Please feel free to contact our secretariat. You can also visit room HG 7A-49 in the VU main building.

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
School of Business and Economics Executive Education
De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV AMSTERDAM

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Myrthe Scholze