Digital Finance

Financial consolidation: leverage transition to enhance integrations and augment data quality

Financial consolidation: Leverage transition to enhance integrations and augment data quality - Consolidation financière : Profiter de la transition pour améliorer les intégrations et augmenter la qualité des données

Two weeks ago, I had the opportunity to attend the “Future of Conso” event at the Ritz, Place Vendôme, in Paris. The venue was very nice but the topic – the future of consolidation – is of great concern to all the “consolidators” of major global groups such as TotalEnergies, LVMH, or Danone.

(Lire cet article en français ici.)

What’s next after SAP BFC end of support?

For more than 15 years, many large companies have been using SAP BusinessObjects Financial Consolidation (BFC) to provide their consolidation reports.

Year after year they have built a solution that works, that is stable and efficient. And with SAP ending support for BFC in 2027, they now have to figure out a new solution. As we say in France, « on sait ce qu’on perd mais jamais ce que l’on gagne » (“we know what we’re losing but never what we’re getting”).

They already know the path to their future solution will be difficult, long, and expensive.

Plenty of actors like Onestream, Board, Wolters Kluwer, Fluence Technologies, Amelkis, Insightsoftware, Oracle, Lucanet… are prepared to step in as possible successors.

Those new tools will come with many more features and the ability to process and analyze financial data. At the end of that journey is the promise that it will be more efficient and provide many more insights to the business.

But there are many obstacles along the way.

Challenges of a consolidation migration

One of the biggest obstacles when moving from a long-trusted consolidation solution is the integration and migration of data. Typically, this part accounts for about 40% of the project in terms of costs and workload.

And what has been developed iteratively and manually over the years must now be available immediately and generate the data through transparent and auditable processes.

An enterprise of this scale has to consolidate data every quarter – sometimes even more frequently – from hundreds of business entities.

For the last 15 years, they would add from time to time a new subsidiary, or a new regulation, requiring the IT department to build a new interface. The result is dozens of interfaces, which are black boxes for the finance team that’s forced to manage data extraction, transformation, and load.

Forget about existing integrations.

As soon there is a new target, all these interfaces must be rebuilt from scratch since they are dedicated to the former environment and developed using an IT language that offers no clues about transcoding, normalization, and enrichment.

Think about migrating data from the legacy solution

On the other hand, customers will have to migrate the data being stored within their consolidation solution (i.e., BFC) to their new solution. In doing so, they need to:

  • control the quality of data,
  • enrich data,
  • adapt to new expectations (i.e. change in granularity),
  • and adopt the format of the new solution.

Those two sub-projects alone (integration + migration) will end up representing about 40% of the global project. In our experience, nobody really has a clear assessment of the scale of the work involved, leading to major frustrations by the end of the project.

Simplify integration workload with Axway Financial Accounting Hub

The Hub logic and the use of half-interfaces reduce the cost and burden of developing and testing the interfaces. Moreover, these interfaces are designed in low-code mode directly by the Finance department.

In addition, regardless of the solution you’re eying to replace BFC, using Axway Financial Accounting Hub can help manage the data migration, whether your data originates in an ERP or in BFC. AFAH will allow a reduction of 30% of this workload, accelerating the migration project.

Axway Financial Accounting Hub helps reduce finance information system complexity, with new features that increase operational excellence, business agility, and data reliability for your consolidation team.

With the ability to connect to any data source or target, you’ll enjoy complete audit trails, intercompany processing and reconciliation, and end-to-end submission control and monitoring.

Moving from BFC? Let Axway Financial Accounting Hub give you a boost.

Watch our on-demand webinar on consolidation for more on how to overcome the challenges of data and accounting rules integration.


Key Takeaways

  • SAP ending support for BFC in 2027 creates challenges for companies using it for financial consolidation reporting.
  • Integrating and migrating data from BFC to a new solution is a major obstacle, representing about 40% of the project in terms of costs and workload.
  • Axway Financial Accounting Hub can help simplify integration workload and reduce the burden of developing and testing interfaces, as well as manage data migration, reducing the workload by 30%.