Agency transforms its multi-market operation into a scalable global business
October 1, 2020
Cowan is an international brand and packaging design agency, specializing in the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) packaging, with established offices in Melbourne, Sydney, Singapore, Shanghai, Beijing, Vietnam, Hong Kong and London.
Cowan was running separate finance and production systems for each office across Melbourne, Sydney, Singapore, Shanghai, Beijing, Vietnam, Hong Kong and London. This resulted in operational inefficiencies and lack of financial visibility across the organization:
- Duplicate data entry across production and accounting systems
- Minimal visibility of detailed foreign activity
- Manual consolidation of group results on a monthly basis
- Inefficiencies in the recording of related party transactions
- Group forecasts managed in Excel was error-prone
- Minimal job profitability analysis
In 2013, Cowan centralized its financial management workflow within the Accountability platform, integrating its production and accounting operations globally.
Cowan required a system that was capable of linking multiple local and global offices in one database and a partner that understood the added complexity of a multi-country operation. Accountability was implemented to ensure that local accounting requirements were met while making it very easy to transact with related entities.
Working with Accountability to implement the system was achieved through a smooth transition with outstanding training and ongoing support to all Cowan staff. They always provide prompt support and are keen to work with us to answer any queriesMina Lekkas, Financial Controller
Cowan gained significant benefits from centralizing its financial operations within the Accountability platform:
- Greater capacity to analyse job profitability at various stages of a project
- Standardised processes and procedures across the Group to ensure operation and financial consistency
- Tools to provide the Group with streamlined budgeting, forecasting and reporting processes
- The ability to transact in numerous currencies
- Increased efficiency and a reduced headcount in our finance division
The success of the Cowan implementation has largely been as a result of a successful working relationship between Accountability and Cowan.Mina Lekkas, Financial Controller