Just for a dangerous second, could you imagine the procurement implications of this? If you don't feel like clicking through, the above-linked BBC story talks about how in Japan, GE finance is offering loan discounts to their most "intelligent" customers because they are lower risk. Fair enough, but GE describes intelligence as "people who have good English or computer skills, and work in 'high-value" areas such as the law." Hmmm ... this feels like a slippery slope to me. But it would be nice to pay your invoices from "unintelligent" suppliers at some discount to face value.
What a minute ... didn't GM and Ford do this already? And look where it got them! Hmmm ... if GE brought this plan to America, I highly doubt they would gain much by offering the likes of Harold Kutner or Ignacio Lopez -- two long-gone GM procurement execs -- discounts even though both fit their bill as white-collar, English speakers. And my, do these two know their English, especially if you count phrases like "*#&@", "@#$&*@&!", and "*&%@^$-$&@#$$" as frequent terms used to negotiate with and describe your suppliers ... hat-tip: Tony Poshek.