AkzoNobel: Global Decision Maker is an innovative piece of customization

AkzoNobel is the world's largest producer of paints and coatings and a major producer of specialty chemicals. The company has operations in more than 80 countries and 55,000 employees worldwide.



My business unit, Automotive & Aerospace Coatings, sells automotive paints for automotive repair. Altares Dun & Bradstreet helped reduce our overdue receivables by as much as 60 percent.'

avatar john doe
Michael van der Steen
SBU Credit Manager

1. The Challenge

Better insight into debtors

For our partnership with Altares Dun & Bradstreet is very appreciative. I am especially satisfied with the customization they provide.

At a time of credit crisis and slumping markets, AkzoNobel decided to intensify its partnership with Altares Dun & Bradstreet. Our first need was to gain insight into the quality of our receivables portfolio. The second wish was then to have a better method of monitoring this portfolio, especially the larger customers. Finally, we were looking for an easier way to set our credit limits. Within AkzoNobel we work with the three Cs: customers, costs and cash. With this focus we started screening the customer portfolio, which is spread over more than 20 countries worldwide. Our main aim was to save time in our country organizations. By making work easier for them, they can concentrate on the collection of money. Until the introduction of Altares Dun & Bradstreet, each country worked with its own tools, which did not meet the standards we had centrally envisioned. Another of our objectives was to bring structure to the process of assessing our credit limits. Thanks to Altares Dun & Bradstreet, we started working more uniformly within the company.

2. The Solution

Global Decision Maker (GDM)

'For our initial needs, Altares Dun & Bradstreet recommended that we use Portfolio Manager. Then, for monitoring the debtors, DBAI was recommended as the most suitable product. For setting our credit limits, a standard solution was not sufficient and required customization.

In the end, we chose Global Decision Maker (GDM). We did a regression analysis to see if there is a correlation to be discovered between customers, which is specific to an industry, for example. Together we analyzed the portfolio of our customers over the past two years. This gave us insight into which customers had not paid, but also into the signals they had given.'
The highest quality data
Another important added value of Altares Dun & Bradstreet is the specific knowledge of scoring models. Furthermore, the data is of high quality. Besides the data from public sources such as the Chamber of Commerce, Altares Dun & Bradstreet adds a lot of extra information (such as payment experiences, collections, corporate structures and interviews). With the additional quality control by Altares Dun & Bradstreet, we can rely on that information.'

3. The result

Top 300 customers under the microscope

The results were startling. Overdue receivables, for example, were reduced by 60 percent. Michael van der Steen: "In addition, our payment terms have been reduced by 15 to 20 percent. Thanks to Portfolio Manager we have access to a system in which we can see what our customers are doing at group level, but also at branch level. DBAI gives us the opportunity to monitor the top 300 of our customers.

At AkzoNobel, 80 percent of sales are generated by 20 percent of customers. That's why it's important that we inform ourselves so fully about this group. I see Global Decision Maker as the best result. Based on the regression analysis, a model was built that produces customer lists with a classification into 'good' and 'take a closer look'. We are a separate industry in terms of payments. In the telecom industry, people will always call and buy phones, crisis or not. In our sector you see that in times of crisis people spend less on repairing damage to their car.'
Akzo Nobel - gebouw

"We are a separate industry in terms of payments. In the telecom industry, people will always continue to make calls and buy phones, crisis or not. In our industry, you see that people spend less on repairing damage to their cars in times of crisis."

For our partnership with Altares Dun & Bradstreet is very appreciative. I am especially pleased with the customization they provide. Within Altares Dun & Bradstreet there was a realization that for companies that are in the Fortune 500, a standard solution is not enough. AkzoNobel operates internationally and needs innovative products. Altares Dun & Bradstreet has an eye for the playing field in which large companies operate. With their customized solutions, they are suitable as a partner at the highest level."