BMO Spend & Payment Solutions: 3 Business Survival Strategies for 2009 - Eliminating Waste, Loopholes & Silos: Those Who Do Will Thrive



    TORONTO, Feb. 19 /CNW/ - Recent economic forecasts suggest the current
recession may be deeper and last longer than originally estimated. In that
context, BMO Spend & Payment Solutions, a division of BMO Financial Group
(NYSE, TSX: BMO) offers its Annual Spend and Payment Strategies for Business
Survival for 2009.
    "In difficult economic times, roles like procurement and sourcing can
truly shine," said Terry Wellesley, Managing Director, BMO Spend & Payment
Solutions. "Companies that leverage these functions to generate and manage
strategies to eliminate waste, tighten loopholes and create a sound financial
footing will emerge stronger and with more opportunities."
    BMO Spend & Payment Solutions, which works with customers around the
world to help them eliminate inefficient processes and to improve their
business practices and controls, has identified three strategies to drive
optimum levels of efficiency and the accountability organizations need to
weather the current economic challenges:

    
    -   Tear down the silos between operational and financial supply chains

        -   By eliminating divisional silos between these two critical
            backbones, organizations can improve visibility and control
            over spending and investment and optimize working capital and
            cash flow. Inter-departmental collaboration streamlines the
            entire process from sourcing to payment for everything from raw
            materials to IT consulting services. This drives immediate
            benefit by reducing direct and indirect costs.

    -   Make Travel and Entertainment management a leading standard for cost
        management excellence

        -   Ensure that travel spend aligns with corporate travel policy.
            Mandate the use of corporate card products for all travel spend
            in order to capture rich data from each transaction. With the
            resulting increased transparency, organizations can monitor
            policy compliance more effectively, drive efficiencies and
            identify savings opportunities. This is a quick win with
            immediate bottom-line benefits.

    -   Leverage technology to automate processes and improve control

        -   Technology makes it possible for organizations to reduce the
            number of human touches to any part of the operational and
            financial supply chain. E-sourcing, spend analytics, electronic
            invoice presentment and payment (EIPP) and contract lifecycle
            management deliver advantages well beyond cost cutting. This
            includes increased spend visibility that drives best practices,
            improved process control to ensure compliance and the flexibility
            needed to navigate uncertain times.
    

    A Holistic Approach to Spend & Payment

    BMO Spend & Payment Solutions delivers a uniquely integrated offering
that breaks through the traditional boundaries between finance and supply.
CFOs and CPOs require critical information and knowledge about each step in an
organization's procurement and payment process in order to make timely and
intelligent decisions about how best to manage their working capital. BMO
integrates its existing banking solutions such as credit cards, lines of
credit, lending, cash management, wire payments, trade finance and foreign
exchange, for example, with a comprehensive spend-management suite to create a
superior, one-stop offering that keeps both the finance and supply side
connected and communicating in real time, enabling them to more effectively
execute their spend strategies.
    With operations throughout North America, BMO Spend & Payment Solutions
helps customers save money and improve productivity by eliminating the need
for paper invoices, purchase orders and cheques, while strengthening expense
controls, broadening payment terms to vendors and enhancing management
reporting.
    To learn more, download the webinar, "Do You Have the Right Spend
Management Tools to Survive the Economic Crisis?" at:
http://www.bmospendandpayment.com/index.html.

    About BMO Spend & Payment Solutions

    A division of BMO Financial Group, BMO Spend & Payment Solutions is a
leading commercial card, spend and payment solutions provider in North
America. BMO Spend & Payment Solutions' products are widely used by
corporations, non-profit and government-sector organizations to manage,
control and gain better visibility into their commercial spending.





For further information:

For further information: For news media inquiries: BMO Financial Group:
Ralph Marranca, (416) 867-3996, Ralph.Marranca@bmo.com, Internet: www.bmo.com;
Corporate Ink: Nina Gill, (617) 969-9192, ngill@corporateink.com


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