Hilton Worldwide Wins 2015 AFP Pinnacle Grand Prize
- By Staff Writers
- Published: 10/18/2015
DENVER -- Hilton Worldwide outscored stiff competition from global corporations to win AFP’s 2015 Pinnacle Grand Prize, which recognizes excellence in treasury and finance. Sponsored by Wells Fargo & Co., the Pinnacle Grand Prize was awarded Sunday at the Opening General Session of the AFP Annual Conference.
In anticipation of its $13 billion debt refinancing and $2.3 billion IPO—the largest ever in the hospitality industry—Hilton’s treasury department recognized that it needed to improve its liquidity forecasting capabilities. It succeeded by transforming a static view of multiple business units and regional forecasts into an agile, simplified liquidity forecast. As a result, Hilton has made significant progress towards achieving investment grade status by using nearly all of its free cash flow to repay $1.5 billion in post-IPO debt. In the process, its credit ratings improved and it saw an $8.8 billion increase (45 percent) in its market capitalization.
Wells Fargo donated $10,000 to Hilton’s charity of choice, International Youth Foundation, whose mission is to lead and sustain coordinated action to harness the talent and potential of the world’s youth. Danny Peltz, executive vice president and head of treasury management for Wells Fargo, and Jim Kaitz, AFP President and CEO, hosted the award ceremony.
“Large international organizations often face challenges in developing simplified, timely liquidity forecasts,” Peltz said. “Hilton Worldwide’s approach to liquidity forecasting freed up significant amounts of cash and delivered tangible business results, providing a great example of how a treasury team can deliver benefits enterprise-wide through strategic treasury management."
All three Pinnacle finalists, which also included Covidien and Dow Corning, were selected because their innovative solutions helped their treasury and finance operations run more effectively.
“AFP is extremely proud to honor Hilton Worldwide,” Kaitz said. “Hilton Worldwide’s solution was innovative, forward-looking, and offered the kind of strategic treasury and finance initiative that should inspire its peers.”
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