The Challenge Facing Leaders and Organizations

So many leaders have a strong business background, but financial knowledge is lacking. Terms like cost of capital, return on capital, and free cash flows can feel overwhelming. Many avoid gaining insights into how to apply such terms in their work. As a result, countless business opportunities are lost. 

For example, consider the amount of value that can be unlocked when managers across an organization understand the financial implications of their business decisions and how they affect value creation. 

Many organic or inorganic growth strategies fail because managers do not consider the importance of cash generation and the need to generate returns on capital above the cost of capital. This can lead to disastrous mergers and acquisitions or the continued investment in business units that fail to create value. Such decisions can slowly kill an organization. 

Consider as well how poor financial decisions make it difficult to convince investors that they should trust your company with their money. To rebound from mistakes, companies can pursue unwise, expensive risk-taking decisions in international markets. Such  risks could be hedged or avoided completely.

On the flip side, organizations can generate hidden opportunities by:

  • Creating a culture of accountability for investments and deals
  • Ensuring that different phases of investments, merger deals and other capital investment projects are well integrated and positioned for value creation
  • Focusing on profitable growth, not just growth at all costs
  • Providing managers tools that allow them to properly structure projects for maximum value creation.

We are here to help you seize such opportunities through our transformative educational experiences and strategic consulting support. 

Nuno Fernandes Biography

Nuno Fernandes is a finance and governance expert, speaker, author, and consultant. He is also Professor of Finance at IESE Business School, Non-Executive Director (Member of Audit Committee) at the European Investment Bank, Research Associate of the European Corporate Governance Institute, and the Managing Partner at Odgers Berndtson Board Solutions, where he focuses on helping boards establish and maintain strong corporate governance. His particular areas of interest are corporate finance, sustainable finance, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions, banking, and financial strategies.  From 2018 to 2023 he was the Chairman of the Board of Auditors at the Portuguese Central Bank (Banco de Portugal).

Professor Nuno Fernandes regularly advises companies and financial institutions in Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. He has delivered speeches, courses, and workshops for well-known companies around the world with audiences ranging from 10 to 1,000 people. Blending real-world examples and practical tips, Professor Fernandes customizes his content to clients’ objectives so that audiences leave the room energized to act differently, thus creating lasting impact for the organization.

A regular contributor to international media – including The Financial Times, Forbes, and The Wall Street Journal – Professor Fernandes is the author of several books, including Finance for Executives: A Practical Guide for Managers (second edition), The Value Killers: How Mergers and Acquisitions Cost Companies Billions—And How to Prevent It, and Climate Finance.

In the past, Professor Fernandes was Professor of Finance at IMD in Switzerland and the Dean of Católica-Lisbon. He has received numerous teaching and research awards and has been published in leading international academic journals, including the Journal of Financial Economics, Review of Financial Studies, Journal of International Business Studies, Journal of Financial Intermediation, Journal of Applied Corporate Finance, The Journal of Portfolio Management, and Harvard Business Review. In 2022, he won the “Outstanding Teacher” award in The Case Centre’s Worldwide Competition, also known as “business education’s Oscars.” He earned his PhD in Management (Finance) from IESE Business School and a degree in Economics from Universidade Católica Portuguesa.