Optimizing Corporate Portfolio Management: Aligning Investment Proposals with Organizational Strategy / Edition 1

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Optimizing Corporate Portfolio Management
Aligning Investment Proposals with Organizational Strategy

An essential resource for anyone involved with managing or supervising their organization's discretionary investments, Optimizing Corporate Portfolio Management provides practical guidance for C-level executives as well as finance, IT, marketing, R&D, and business managers serious about maximizing and realizing their financial and strategic objectives. With comprehensive coverage, author Anand Sanwal—a leading authority on corporate portfolio management (CPM)—shares a pragmatic and proven framework for building a robust CPM capability within an organization.

Written by a practitioner for executives and fellow practitioners, this crucial resource offers a guide to enabling CPM within an organization by focusing on the behavioral and process dimensions vital to making CPM a success. Starting with a Foreword by Gary Crittenden, Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President of American Express, this book avoids a simplistic "one size fits all" approach to the evaluation of an organization's investments, and instead recognizes that every organization varies its view on investments, priorities, risk tolerance, strategy, and financial goals.

CPM has yielded tremendous results at leading companies, and case studies demonstrating the power of CPM are provided for a diverse array of organizations including American Express, TransUnion, Hewlett-Packard, Cisco Systems, and the State of Oregon Department of Human Services.

Keeping corporate and management jargon to a minimum, Optimizing Corporate Portfolio Management details a practical capability that works best when organizational behavior and process are aligned. It covers relevant topics including:

  • A description of corporate portfolio management and why it is important to your organization's success
  • Mismanaging your corporate investment portfolio: the Seven (and a half) Deadly Sins of CPM
  • A detailed four-step process to bring CPM to your organization
  • How CPM can be applied to various functional areas including IT, Innovation/R&D, Marketing/A&P, capital expenditure, and sales force
  • Useful tools, frameworks, and practices to enable CPM

Filled with proven strategies and examples, this groundbreaking guide will demonstrate how to capture a more holistic view of your company's investment portfolio while working smarter to deploy its finite resources. An invaluable companion Web site supplies forms, checklists, and useful exhibits that can help organizations on their road to achieving an optimal corporate portfolio.

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What People Are Saying

From the Publisher
"Optimizing Corporate Portfolio Management is a refreshing treatise of an age-old problem—how to allocate the resources across the firm.  It makes a very coherent argument for aligning the allocation decisions across financial, strategic and risk objectives.  The reader is guaranteed to be given a fresh look and a broader perspective on how to tackle this very challenging organization.  A must read at the top of the organization!!!"
—David J. Reibstein Professor of Marketing, The Wharton School-University of Pennsylvania

"Finally a book that delivers against an ambitious corporate portfolio management premise. A compelling solution backed by an unparalleled framework, pragmatic implementation steps and case studies. A must have for all organizational leaders trying to maximize the value of their corporate investments."
—San Retna Chair, Enterprise Portfolio Management Council Principal, TransformAction

"Pragmatic and full of real-life examples...a must-read for anyone involved with or practicing portfolio management."
—Piyush Sanghani Director, Portfolio Management, Trans Union LLC

"This book will be very helpful to any executive who wants to improve their organization's resource allocation processes and make smarter investment decisions. Sanwal writes with the perspective of someone who has been 'in the trenches' and provides clear guidance on the realities of implementing rigorous processes in the real world."
—Don N. Kleinmuntz, PhD Research Professor of Policy and Management, University of Southern California Executive Vice President and CFO, Strata Decision Technology, LLC

"Progressive thinking on a staid business problem. A well-thought, useful framework for corporate investment managers everywhere—the professed mountain is not insurmountable."
—Ronald D. Balzan Vice President - Business Analysis & Treasurer, AIG Consumer Finance Group, Inc.

"Allocating capital to new projects and opportunities has a greater effect on strategy than perhaps any other process in an organization. And still, it remains one of the least understood processes in management. Anand Sanwal's in-depth examination surfaces insights on how to link capital allocation to strategic planning. His book provides not only a detailed description of the complexities of the problem, but practitioner oriented advice for what to do about it."
—Clark Gilbert Former Harvard Business School Professor and Co-author of From Resource Allocation to Strategy

"Anand Sanwal's new book does a great job of developing and explaining new approaches to portfolio management. I especially value the emphasis on the need for good metrics to close the learning loop on portfolio decisions."
—Paul Farris Landmark Communications Professor of Business Administration, Darden School, University of Virginia

"Portfolio Management was one of the breakthroughs of modern finance and it's application to the Corporations activities shows much promise—however today it is much more art than science. Anand Sanwal's book is a significant contribution to turning CPM into a science."
—Martin Curley Senior Principal Engineer and Global Director IT Innovation and Research, Intel Corporation

"Optimizing Corporate Portfolio Management articulates a discipline and strategy that will significantly benefit large—and middle-market companies alike. Anand Sanwal avoids simplistic one size fits all approaches which have become commonplace in discussions of portfolio management to deliver keen, no-nonsense insights that will strengthen your organization."
—Rajesh Shah Executive Vice President, MS International, Inc.

"This is a must read for executives, managers, and staff; and beginners as well as seasoned practitioners of portfolio management. Portfolio management is not about IT. It is about the 'business-of-the-business;' organizational efficiency, effectiveness, and investment, resource and operational optimization and differentiation. Anand demonstrates a gifted talent to clearly and succinctly articulate why portfolio management is both so difficult and yet so simplistic. Read it, understand it, embrace the journey—the challenges, the opportunities, the value, the benefits."
—Dennis E. Wells,Information Services Policy and Planning Manager, Oregon Department of Human Services

"Regardless of a company's size, it is very critical to have a compass for investment decisions especially in uncertain business environments. With data driven corporate portfolio management, I am able to lead my company in the right direction in a more effective and efficient way."
—Toshi Sakuma CEO Sakuma International S.A.

"Thorough, to the point and extremely pragmatic, Anand Sanwal has provided an excellent case and strategy for moving away from currently anemic methods of corporate and strategic planning. He provides a clear framework to help organizations align investments with strategic, financial and risk objectives ultimately enabling them to realize the power of corporate portfolio management."
—Guhan Swaminathan Co-Founder and Managing Director Virgo Capital

"Corporate portfolio management does not have to be a mystery. And it certainly should become a practical guide to putting limited resources to work on the most strategically beneficial work. Anand's approach to enterprise portfolio management is direct, practical, and focused, and is based on proven practices that I have implemented in organizations of all sizes worldwide."
—Ernie Nielsen Managing Director-Enterprise Project Management and Masters' Professor of Project Management-Marriott School of Business, Brigham Young University

"This new book points the way to new methods for transforming your organization through better processes and optimizing portfolio management. Leading edge companies moving beyond budgeting can use it to learn how continuous planning can lead to higher returns."
—By Steve Player Program Director, Beyond Budgeting Round Table (BBRT), North America

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470126882
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/27/2007
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Meet the Author

Anand Sanwal is Vice President, Investment Optimization and Strategic Business Analysis, at American Express. Within this role, he is responsible for managing billions of dollars of per annum discretionary investment spent as part of American Express's CPM initiative, and also overseeing the CFO's strategy and analysis group. Sanwal holds a degree in finance and accounting from the Wharton School of Business and is a recognized thought leader on corporate portfolio management, speaking frequently to companies and research organizations including the CFO Executive Board, Beyond Budgeting Roundtable, Enterprise Portfolio Management Council, and Gartner, among others. He welcomes your feedback, insights, and comments and can be reached at asanwal@corporateportfoliomanagement.org

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Table of Contents




Chapter 1. Overview of Corporate Portfolio Management.

Why Is CPM Important?

Framework for CPM Success.

What Should Be Considered an Investment?

Mismanaging Your Corporate Investment: The Seven (and a Half) Deadly Sins.

Chapter 2. Bringing CPM to Your Organization.

Four-Step Roadmap to CPM Success.

Are We There Yet?

Useful Frameworks and Tools: Optimizing Decision Making Within Your Corporate Portfolio.

Chapter 3. Applying CPM to Specific Areas within the Organization.

Information Technology.

Innovation/Research and Development.

Marketing/Advertising and Promotion.

Capital Budgeting/Capital Expenditure.

Sales Force.

Chapter 4. Case Studies.

American Express.



State of Oregon Department of Human Services.

Appendix: Useful Tools, Frameworks, and Practices to Enable CPM.

Personnel Survey: Understanding Current Company Practices and Attitudes Toward CPM.

HP’s Strategic Financial Analysis Curriculum Outline.

Information (Diagrams, Exhibits, and Text) for Building Your CPM Business Case.


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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2007

    First rate pragmatic guide to portfolio management

    Absolutely the best book I've read on this topic. The author offers an in the trenches view of portfolio management that gets away from the platitudes and oversimplifications that most books on this subject and strategy overall are prone to. His focus on organizational behavior and the need to change this in order to be successful in optimizing resource allocation is both astute and refreshing. The checklists provided are immensely helpful as are the case studies. For those who realize the power of optimizing resource allocation to boost organic revenue growth, this is your book.

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    Posted December 7, 2008

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