Additional financial flexibility for successful strategy execution ensured
Free cash flow and net financial position at record levels
Focus of investing activity remains on own retail business and digitalization of the business model
Principles and goals of financial management
Group-wide financial management is controlled centrally by the Group Treasury department. The goals pursued include securing financial stability and flexibility, ensuring liquidity at all times and the management of financial risks. Company-wide financial management comprises Group financing, cash and liquidity management, the management of market price risks, and the management of counterparty risks. Treasury principles which are applied Group-wide govern all matters relevant to treasury, such as the approval of banking relationships, the handling of financing agreements, liquidity and asset management as well as the management of currency and interest rate risks.
Within Group financing, factors such as market capacity, cost of financing, covenants, and terms to maturity are taken into account when selecting financial instruments. External loans for Group financing are taken out centrally and primarily in the Group’s reporting currency (euro) within the framework of an “inhouse bank” concept. To cover the financing needs of the Group companies, funds are made available in the form of intercompany loans in the respective local currency. This allows the Company to increase economies of scale and to minimize the cost of capital. Occasionally, credit lines are also agreed with local banks in order to take account of legal, tax or other framework conditions. The Group’s financial liabilities are generally unsecured and may be subject to customary market obligations, which are reviewed on a quarterly basis.
The most important source of liquidity for HUGO BOSS is the cash inflow from operating activities. The Group Treasury department optimizes and centralizes payment flows through its cash and liquidity management. Generally, Group companies transfer excess liquidity to the “inhouse bank”, e.g., as part of a cash-pooling procedure. In doing so, the excess liquidity of individual Group companies can be used to cover the financial needs of others. This intercompany financial offsetting system reduces the external financial requirement and thus brings down interest expenses.
Management of market price risks is intended to limit the impact of interest and currency risks on cash flow. The use of hedging instruments, including forward foreign exchange transactions, currency swaps, and interest swaps, is intended to secure HUGO BOSS against unfavorable currency developments. Risk Report, Material Financial Risks
The counterparty risk with regard to banks mainly results from the investment of liquid funds as part of cash and liquidity management and from the use of derivative financial instruments as part of interest rate and currency management. With regard to trading transactions, HUGO BOSS aims for the broadest possible distribution of volumes and ensures that financial instruments are generally only contracted with counterparties that have very good credit ratings.