Friday Congratulations: Will's and Kate's Marriage Goes Off Without a Hitch; There Are Lots of Hats

Look at all of these hats. Incredible headgear aside, I have to say that I'm glad I got up at 4:30 this morning to watch the event live, and I'm amazed and how smoothly it went. Over on Spend Matters UK, Peter Smith provides a joking assessment of the wedding's procurement process, but in all seriousness, we have a lot to be impressed by (especially the military precision timing -- I actually overheard a commentator say, "Well, well, Kate, you're 19 seconds late, getting in that car.")

I also overheard an interview this morning with Brian Rafanelli, Chelsea Clinton's wedding planner. He was asked: how is the job affected when the entire world is watching? Rafanelli replied, "as a planner you have to put the billion people out of your head and focus on the bride and her family. There are obviously a lot of cooks in the kitchen, but it's her wedding day, and you have to focus on that." Furthermore, the Royal Wedding apparently didn't have a Royal Wedding planner, a fact that he found dubious. "Giving this one job to one person would be ridiculous. The fact that there's no wedding planner makes this job all the more challenging, with tons of people telling tons of other people what to do," he said.

In other supply chain considerations, it's thinking about the implications of the royal memorabilia: given the infrequency of such events, how do you discern how much to produce? This article talks about the wedding in terms of "Managing the Memorabilia of the Wedding Supply Chain 2.0," saying, "Product planners in some companies making these goods have had a tough time, firstly trying to work out what will sell, how many of each item to manufacture and most importantly of all ensuring that there are no mistakes on the items being made." Furthermore, think of the difference between this one and Charles and Di's in 1981: "In 1981 you either had to wait until the next day to see the pictures from the wedding in Newspapers or on the evening news, if you wanted to watch the wedding again you would load your video cassette in the VCR and press play."

What else went in to helping this event go off without a hitch? For one thing, 2 billion people viewed the wedding worldwide: cheers to Level 3, the fiber-based communications company that brought the majority of the live HD feed to the US. In a statement, Mark Taylor, vice president of Content and Media at Level 3, claimed that "with a strong control over its network and on the strength of its seasoned event teams on the ground in London and in the U.S., the company will be able to tightly manage the event delivery process from end-to-end. This will allow broadcasters to focus on covering the big event, instead of the technical process of delivering it overseas."

A hearty procurement and planning congratulations from the team at Spend Matters (ok, mostly me, who is obsessed) to making this a beautiful and memorable day. Now let's hope that Peter did his part in procuring enough "Krug 1990, then a Zind Humbrecht '03 Gewurz or Cloudy Bay Sauvignon to start followed by a 98 Grange or a 1990 Montrose" for the reception (anybody want to hear Prince Harry's speech as much as I do?).

- Sheena Moore

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