Afternoon Coffee: Coupa Acquires Catalog Expert Simeno, Freelancer.com Launches Enterprise Solution

AdobeStock/Nongnuch Leelaphasuk

Coupa squeezed in one last acquisition for the year Monday with its purchase of Simeno, a P2P provider that specializes in catalog search and management. The deal brings technological benefits to Coupa that will support its open marketplace strategy, as well as expand the spend management platform’s footprint with European prospects.

If the news caused you to ask, “Simeno who?,” be sure to check out our Spend Matters PRO Research Brief on the transaction, including an overview of Simeno’s capabilities and our best guesses as to why Coupa acquired the provider.

Freelancer.com Embraces Enterprises

Freelancer.com is extending its freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace to serve large organizations that want to scale their flexible workforces. The new offering, called Freelancer Enterprise, “is a vendor management system for managing virtual and local workforces, giving companies access to over 26 million freelancers and independent contractors across 247 countries, regions and territories, in 34 languages and 39 currencies,” the company said in a press release.

"Freelancer now appears to be extending its global online freelancer marketplace with functionality and services suitable for enterprises,” said Andrew Karpie, research director for services and labor procurement at Spend Matters. “Upwork, Freelancer's main competitor in the global online freelancer marketplace space, has been moving down this path since 2015, and now quite aggressively. A number of other specialized online freelancer marketplaces, such as Catalant, have also started moving in this direction.”

“Clearly, these digital platforms, which provide access to talent and services, are investing in approaches to penetrate vast the enterprise market on a wholesale basis. One of these approaches is developing a complementary enterprise software solution — something that could be considered a kind of e-procurement/marketplace solution."

Japan-EU Trade Deal

Japan and the European Union have reached an agreement on a free trade pact, Deutsche Welle reports, the biggest such deal ever negotiated by the bloc. The news comes at a particularly good time for the Japanese economy, which is in its longest uninterrupted period of growth since 1994.

Manufacturing Technology 

And finally, an manufacturing update: Orders in the U.S. for manufacturing technology equipment rose 6.3% from September to October, Industrial Distribution reports, an indication that the overall strong US manufacturing economy should continue to expand into 2018.

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