No Department Spared in CFO Cost-Cutting Trend

Francois-Xavier Roger, CFO of Takeda Pharmaceutical

Consumers aren’t the only ones trimming their wallets. CFOs are increasingly charged with the task of eliminating unneeded spending and excess costs. Meet CFO Francois-Xavier Roger, who joined Takeda Pharmaceutical in September. As the most recent financial chief, Roger is charged with planning and executing a $1 billion cost-cutting program for the company.

Implementing a cost-cutting program should be easy from the perspective of an outsider, right? That’s what Takeda Pharmaceutical is betting on with the appointment of CFO Roger. The goal is to slash a minimum of $1 billion from the drugmaker’s cost infrastructure over the next four years. The idea is that reduced costs result in bigger margins.

To accomplish the goal, Roger is disregarding any special interests in pursuit of practicality, efficiency, and mobility. One of the most notable budget changes is in the marketing department, as Takeda plans to centralize its efforts. By consolidating advertising and marketing efforts around the globe, Takeda hopes administrative costs and efficiencies will improve.

Cost-Cutting to Spill Over into 2014

Takeda Pharmaceutical isn’t the only one aggressively pursuing cost-cutting measures. Daimler CFO Bodo Uebber has announced that the company has already accomplished 70 percent of its cost-cutting goals. The company is responsible for producing and assembling Mercedes-Benz luxury cars. Regardless of the industry, it’s clear that financial executives are pursuing aggressive cost-reduction measures to strengthen their company’s financial portfolio. To do this, CFOs are:

  • Establishing and maintaining corporate accounting policies. Principle-based approaches are making a comeback regardless of industry. Compliance with company policy ensures that all team members are on the same page and working as efficiently as possible to accomplish the same goal.
  • Getting data right. IT developments are continuing to improve efficiency and the ability to make complex decisions. Analytics and real-time data track financial data at deeper levels and help create a deeper understanding of expenses.
  • Figuring out how to cut costs. Knowing how to cut costs is just as important as knowing how much to cut costs. CFOs are focusing on long-term cuts that aren’t dependent on the economy. Sustainability is critical to their budget, ensuring lasting success. No departments are spared financial scrutiny.