2023 November Forum Agenda

Monday, November 6, 2023
8:00am – 10:00am

Platinum Partner Breakout Sessions

Presented by CRF’s Platinum Partners

CLICK HERE for details about the breakout sessions offered on Monday morning. Please review the session options and register for the session you would like to attend.

Monday, November 6, 2023
10:00am – 12:00pm

​Assessing a High-Risk Customer and What To Do About It

Presented by CRF

This 2-hour education super-session is designed as both an informative and interactive environment where CRF Senior Research Fellow, Steven Isberg, Ph.D., will share techniques on what to look for in today’s economic climate. Matt Skudera, CEO of the Credit Research Foundation (CRF), and Mike Bevilacqua, Chief Content Officer of CRF, will share their combined experiences in Fortune 500 organizations leading the credit function as well as other areas of the revenue cycle. Matt and Mike have a wealth of real life experience in diverse industries, and they will offer techniques on how to effectively communicate credit risk and mitigation recommendations with senior management. During this session you will learn:

  • How to identify a high-risk account – what indicators should you be looking at
  • What dots can be connected to determine the level of risk of non-payment or bankruptcy
  • Tools available to mitigate the Credit Risk
  • How to communicate the risk to senior management and offer guidance and solutions

There is no additional fee to attend this session. Please note your intent to participate on your Forum registration.

Monday, November 6, 2023
12:00pm – 1:00pm


Join us on the patio for a kick-off lunch! Soak in some sunshine, grab some food, and network with fellow attendees before the Opening Session begins!

Monday, November 6, 2023
1:00pm – 1:15pm

Opening Comments

Monday, November 6, 2023
1:15pm – 2:00pm

Proactively Preventing A/R Fraud with a Credit Card Program

Running a Safe & Secure B2B Credit Card Program

Presented by R.J. Ancona, VP/GM, B2B Product, Partner & Client Management and Tamara Bennett, Vice President, Network Business, American Express

Fraud prevention is an ongoing process, and it requires regular updates, attentiveness, and a culture of security within your organization. When setting up a business-to-business (B2B) credit card program, fraud prevention becomes even more integral to keeping your company’s assets and reputation safe. Fortunately, AP and AR automation tools, along with robust processes from credit card providers, can help increase protection.

Join this session to hear best practices of establishing a safe and secure B2B credit card program, including:

  • Policy development
  • Employee training & approvals
  • Use of secure payment platforms & AP/AR technology
  • Protection of data
  • What you can expect in the future

Monday, November 6, 2023
2:00pm – 2:45pm

How to Assess International & Domestic Account Risk

Presented by Rafael Zahralddin, Partner, Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP

This presentation will cover the following topics:

  • Financial Crime Compliance (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing)
  • OFAC and FinCEN
  • Financial Institution Compliance
  • Sanctions and Counter Sanctions
  • Mitigation
  • Insurance
  • Letters of Credit

Monday, November 6, 2023
2:45pm – 3:00pm


Grab some coffee, tea, water or soda…chat with attendees…then return refreshed for another session!

Monday, November 6, 2023
3:00pm – 3:45pm

International Business: Navigating the Risks & Rewards

What you need to know when evaluating an international customer

Presented by Jeff Braunstein, Director of Partnerships & Data Acquisition, Creditsafe

Doing business internationally is a sign of growth and prosperous times ahead. But it’s also fraught with all sorts of risks – from financial and legal to compliance and reputation. These risks can also be affected by economic or political instability, fluctuations in currency exchange rates, trade sanctions and other factors.

But avoiding these risks is easier said than done. You need to understand all the risks that pose a threat to your business. You also need to understand how to build a cohesive risk management strategy with the right people, processes and tools.

In this session, Bill James and Jeff Braunstein will discuss:

  • Global economic and business stability trends – how risk varies across the globe
  • What financial, legal and compliance risks to look out for when doing business internationally
  • How poor data quality leads to skewed analysis, flawed assumptions and more risk
  • How a holistic customer and supplier onboarding process can reduce the likelihood of fraud, money laundering and other regulatory violations
  • And more!

Monday, November 6, 2023
3:45pm – 4:15pm

Update on Payment Types

Hear directly from the folks that govern the ACH Network (Nacha)

Presented by Robert Unger, Senior Director Product Management & Strategic Initiatives, Nacha

Credit managers are tasked with multiple responsibilities related to payment receivables, and, increasingly, payables as well. The purpose of this session is to provide a review of the key electronic payment systems used in order-to-cash and procure-to-pay, which credit professionals often refer to as “EFTs”. This session will highlight basic features and functions to help credit professionals at all levels understand similarities and differences between ACH, wire, RTP, FedNow and electronic payment options.

Monday, November 6, 2023
4:15pm – 5:00pm

Imposter Syndrome – Dealing with Self-Doubt (Executive Professional Development)

Presented by Janine Friedman, Choice Training & Coaching Solutions

Join Janine Friedman on this voyage of self-discovery and transformation as she unveils the complexities of Imposter Syndrome. During this session, Janine will equip you with the tools to conquer self-doubt and stride confidently toward your aspirations.

Imposter syndrome often affects high-achievers and refers to the internal experience of believing you are not as competent as others perceive you to be. In this session, attendees will:

  • Learn about Imposter Syndrome and discuss how it may be impacting your career
  • Examine strategies for overcoming the Imposter Syndrome
  • Participate in empowerment exercises
  • Learn how to lead someone experiencing Imposter Syndrome
  • Commit to doing one thing different based on what was learned in the program

We invite all Forum attendees to complete this survey prior to the session: https://forms.gle/R7VxzcaW5cFWeew67 

Monday, November 6, 2023
5:00pm – 6:00pm

Networking Reception

Join us for a networking reception to cap off the first day of the Forum! Enjoy drinks, cocktails and great company.

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
7:00am – 8:30am


Fuel up with coffee and breakfast before heading into the morning sessions! This is also a great opportunity to chat and network with other attendees.

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
8:30am – 8:40am

Opening Comments

Opening comments and reminders from the CRF team.

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
8:40am – 9:25am

Constructing a Global Order-to-Cash Team: An Expedition Through Practical Insights

Presented by Wadih Bouyounes, International Process Owner, and Derek Curry, Regional Process Lead, Order-to-Cash, International Paper

Learn about the journey of establishing an International Order-to-Cash (OTC) team from Wadih Bouyounes, International Process Owner, and Derek Curry, Regional Process Lead, Order-to-Cash at International Paper. Your Credit & A/R peers will delve into critical aspects to consider, such as:

  • Order-to-Cash global structure considerations
  • Understanding the complexities, proximity effectiveness vs. cost reduction
    • Senior leadership alignment on model, outsource vs insource vs near-sourcing
  • Considerations for Outsourcing
    • OTC excellence center with local resources
    • Global agreed strategy with local views
  • Standardization with Corporate OTC Team – leveraging best practices, standardization, retaining talent and model adoption

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
9:25am – 10:25am

Economic Challenges & Toxic Politics: The Rocky Path Forward

Presented by Philip English, Former Congressman & Co-Chairman of the Government Relations Practice Group, and Justin Kesselman, Bankruptcy Lawyer, ArentFox Schiff LLP

In a turbulent economy, political hyper-partisanship and policy dysfunction create large uncertainties for practitioners. National fiscal imbalances, record public debt and looming entitlement crises challenge the limited capacity of the political class to advance solutions to sustain the economy. Longtime policy strategist and political expert Phil English will explore how political polarization is likely to impact the federal budget, key legislation, and next year’s contentious elections, with the likely fallout for the economy. Congressman English will offer political predictions and assess potential pitfalls for the financial system and economic growth.

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
10:25am – 10:30am


Grab some coffee, tea, water or soda…chat with attendees…then return refreshed for another session!

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
10:30am – 11:15am

How to Minimize the Impact of a Cyber Attack with a Focus on Preparation and Resilience

Presented by Dan Harvick, Senior Vice President – Enterprise Risk, Ben E Keith Company

This presentation will provide an actionable framework shared by a fellow Credit Professional. The lessons learned can be used by Order-to-Cash executives to prepare for an attack against internal or external partner systems.

As with any threat, preparation is a key ingredient. In this case, preparation includes completing a cybersecurity risk assessment to help identify vulnerabilities and assess potential impact to the Credit & A/R team. Using the risk assessment template, your team can develop a cybersecurity strategy and begin building your organization’s plan of defense and mitigation. During this presentation, Dan Harvick from Ben E Keith Company will cover all of these topics to help you outline a plan for your organization that includes:

Developing a Cybersecurity Strategy

  • Policies and Procedures
  • Employee Training and Awareness
  • Incident Response Plan
  • Data Backup and Recovery

Building Cyber Resilience

  • Continuity Planning
  • Business Continuity Plans (BCPs)
  • Disaster Recovery Plans (DRPs)
  • Redundancy and Failover Systems
  • Cyber Insurance
  • Regular Testing and Exercises

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
11:15am – 12:00pm

The Economic Landscape: Perspective from Restructuring Experts

Presented by Rich Newman, Alvarez & Marsal

Gain insights from seasoned experts in the realm of restructuring, courtesy of Alvarez and Marsal. This presentation casts a spotlight on crucial facets that shape their thoughts on the state of the economy, providing invaluable insight for Credit & A/R Executives. By revisiting the past, the conversation will explore economic paradigms, showcasing the nimble adaptability required to comprehend and respond to shifting tides. This session will cover:

  • Update on prior years’ assumptions and thinking
  • Market trends and why they matter
  • 2024 outlook by major industry segments

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
12:00pm – 1:00pm


Refuel and refresh to prepare for the afternoon sessions. And network while you fill your stomach!

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
1:00pm – 1:45pm

The Surge in Chapter 11 Filings: Where Are We Headed in 2024?

Presented by Bruce Nathan, Partner, & Andrew Behlmann, Partner, Lowenstein Sandler LLP

Corporate bankruptcies in the US have surged to levels unseen since the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2008 global financial crisis. Bruce Nathan and Andrew Behlmann of Lowenstein Sandler will discuss the resurgence in chapter 11 filings in 2023, those industries most affected by this surge, the causes of the surge, the trend towards speedier chapter 11 cases, including:

  • more prepackaged, prearranged and sale cases
  • the increased frequency and causes of “Chapter 22” repeat bankruptcies
  • the more creditor friendly formation process for unsecured creditors’ committees
  • the critical role of creditors’ committees enhancing creditor recoveries
  • the explosion in Subchapter V small business filings
  • the precipitous – but temporary – drop in preference litigation

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
1:45pm – 2:30pm

Global Economic Outlook – 2024

Presented by Byron Shoulton, Senior Global Economist, FCIA

This session will detail the major global economic & political trends and how these could impact trade flows over the short to medium term. Mr. Shoulton will provide an overview on key issues in the U.S., Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America & Africa. He will also assess the strengths and weaknesses of the post-pandemic recovery.

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
2:30pm – 3:00pm


Grab some coffee, tea, water or soda…chat with attendees…then return refreshed for another session!

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
3:00pm – 3:45pm

Using AI to Build Flawless Cash Flow Forecasts in any Economic Environment

Presented by Sarah-Jayne Martin, Director of Financial Automation, Quadient

“Today’s forecast is cloudy with a chance of late payments…”

Atradius revealed that overdue B2B invoices have increased by 7% in 2023. As banks raise interest rates, customers are limiting borrowing and clinging onto cash. These late payments make financial forecasting a nightmare, skewing projections and spreading uncertainty. Artificial intelligence (AI) is the tool that can help your business stay on track.

The session will cover:

  • Financial forecasting errors and how to avoid them
  • How AI elevates traditional forecasting methods
  • The power of payment prediction and its role in cash management
  • AI risk/compliance considerations and how it will impact finance careers
  • A case study on an AR team that decreased DSO by 13 days using AI
  • How to tell if a vendor’s AI technology is the real deal

Tuesday, November 7, 2023
3:45pm – 5:00pm

Executive Leadership Roundtable (Interactive Workshop)

Presented by Mike Bevilacqua, CRF

This interactive peer-to-peer Executive Leadership Roundtable discussion will elicit thoughts from program participants in small group discussions.

During this session, attendees will delve into the myriad benefits of collaborative dialogue as we navigate the landscape of 2024, specifically concerning people, processes, and technology. We will engage in a rich discussion surrounding your key areas of focus in the upcoming year. We’ll explore how harnessing the collective wisdom of the group can help identify top priorities and guide you in influencing organizational alignment, which is crucial for implementing changes necessary to pave the way for a successful 2024.

We’ll address several essential aspects, including:

Empowering Your People: We’ll discuss the evolving needs of your workforce, their career paths, the vital training required, and the strategic steps to construct the ideal team to tackle the forthcoming challenges. This collaborative approach ensures your ability to influence both sales outcomes and senior management effectively.

Streamlining Processes: Identifying and tackling the most prominent pain points and process breakdowns within your organization. By collaboratively discussing these issues, we aim to identify the organizational changes needed to reduce bottlenecks and enhance efficiency within the Order-to-Cash (OTC) function.

Leveraging Technology: The discussion will also shine a light on the top technological advancements some of your peers are poised to implement to automate repetitive tasks. These advancements will not only simplify operations but also create a more stimulating and rewarding work environment for team members.

By coming together in this roundtable setting, you’ll have the opportunity to tap into the collective knowledge, experience, and insights of your peers. The power of peer discussion and interaction is instrumental in formulating strategies, solving challenges, and shaping a successful course for the year ahead.

Wednesday, November 8, 2023
7:00am – 8:30am


Join us for coffee/tea and breakfast to fuel up for the final day of the Forum!

Wednesday, November 8, 2023
8:30am – 9:30am

Economic Update

Presented by Steve Isberg, Ph.D., Senior Research Fellow, Credit Research Foundation

Steve Isberg will share his insights related to the economy with a focus on the key drivers impacting the credit worthiness of your customers and overall portfolios.

Wednesday, November 8, 2023
9:30am – 12:00pm

Open Forum

The Open Forum is often one of the most highly rated sessions at our live events. This is an open discussion session giving all attendees a chance to participate – ask questions and/or provide answers to others. As always, this Open Forum session allows for immediate feedback from your peers on the questions/topics that are important to YOU!

Please be sure to submit any questions or topics you would like to discuss on the registration form or email them directly to Angela.