Author Archives: Jason Busch

About Jason Busch

The closest thing to a household name in procurement and supply chain, Jason has led the charge as an advocate, futurist and evangelist since the 1990s. Initially at FreeMarkets and then an adviser to Ariba and other firms, Jason branched out on his own to establish the Spend Matters brand (parent company: Azul Partners), which emerged to become the largest news and information portal covering the sector. Over the years, Azul Partners has expanded this digital portfolio to 12 affiliated properties including leading titles such as Spend Matters UK/Europe, MetalMiner and Public Spend Forum, making it one of the largest independent B2B digital media firms. Jason divides his time between research, speaking, corporate finance advisory and mentoring dozens of firms and procurement organizations in the industry. Prior to Azul Partners and FreeMarkets, Jason worked in consulting and merchant banking. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. Personal investment disclosures: Azul Partners, Inc., Public Spend Forum, LLC, Remitia Ltd., RJSL Group LLC, Sigaria Ltd., Spare to Share, LLC, Spendata LLC, SpendLead, Inc., Spend Matters Europe Ltd., Spend Matters Group, LLC.

More Solution Platform Specifics: Direct Materials Sourcing (Part 4)

direct materials sourcing In our second article, we discussed how the various tools in the direct materials market can be segmented into categories in a way that provides little overlap between each of the areas, at least today, and briefly described the six major solution areas. Then, in our third article, we outlined the major phases of the product lifecycle as well as presented a cycle that outlined the supporting technologies and tools that supported the phases. We continued by discussing the first two solution categories in more detail, and the primary functionalities they required, and now, in this final post, we are going to discuss the last four solution categories so that we can understand what all of the tools are and how they fit together.

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Supplier Networks and Platforms in 2016

- January 20, 2016 10:00 AM | Categories: Ariba, supplier networks, Technology

supplier network To say that the supplier network business model itself has crossed the chasm would be an understatement. For companies like Ariba/SAP, network revenue has become one of the very core components of overall growth — and the network model itself has become a key value proposition to customers, including supplier enablement, transactional connectivity and supply chain risk management. We will be talking about networks and related enabling technologies, including cloud, platform as a service (PaaS) and blockchain, with ISM at the Global Procurement Technology Summit taking place on March 14–16 in Baltimore.

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Solution Platform Specifics: Direct Materials Sourcing (Part 3)

cloud solutions In our last article, we discussed how the various tools designed to support direct materials sourcing can be segmented into categories in a way that provides very little overlap between each of the solution areas, at least today, and briefly described six major areas. In today's article, we discuss the solution categories in more detail. But first, we present a more holistic direct materials lifecycle to illustrate where the different solutions fit. In today's article, we discuss the first two categories of tools outlined in the last post in more detail, and, more specifically, identify key capabilities.

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E-Invoicing in 2016 – Let’s Agree on a Definition First!

- January 19, 2016 8:15 AM | Categories: Invoicing, P2P, Technology

improper payments Within procurement technology, e-invoicing is a simple market to understand on the surface and perhaps the most vexing to analyze as you peel the solution onion — its underpinnings are perhaps more influenced by new and emerging technology than any other related solution area. We encourage Spend Matters customers interested in learning more about what’s changing with e-invoicing and related areas to join us for the ISM and Spend Matters Global Procurement Technology Summit on March 14–16 in Baltimore.

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New Platform Capabilities are Required: Direct Materials Sourcing (Part 2)

direct materials sourcing Our experience across procurement and supply chain design and engineering teams leads us to suggest that we can effectively segment the tools in the market into categories in a way that provides little overlap between each of the areas, at least today. In this post, we define and briefly describe six major solution areas before getting into specifics in our next posts. It is likely if your company is in the manufacturing business, or works with contract manufacturers to produce its products, that there are elements of solutions in each of these areas that you’ll be able to call upon as you consider your direct materials sourcing procurement capabilities and solution architecture. Just be sure not to ignore the touch-points between the various toolsets — not to mention integration with ERP/MRP, CAD/PLM, inventory/supply chain systems, supplier systems of record and third-party data enrichment, when available and applicable.

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E-Procurement Market Outlook 2016-2018: 10 Technology and ‘Mega’ Trends (Part 2)

- January 18, 2016 2:25 AM | Categories: eProcurement / Procurement, P2P, Technology

e-procurement market outlook The e-procurement market is set to undergo substantial technology and solution transformation between 2016 and 2018. In the first installment of this research brief, we covered the first five trends Spend Matters forecasts will drive the near-term evolution of the e-procurement market: the rise of industry and vertical specific scenarios; closer integration with services procurement and e-procurement; the emergence of a handful of “platform vendors”; a mirroring of the automotive OEM and supplier ecosystem and specialization among providers; and the rise of paid pilots. As we conclude our technology and mega trend analysis, we will share the next five trends in this research brief. Additional forthcoming research briefs in our e-procurement market outlook series will include a Spend Matters market forecast and sizing analysis, market growth and adoption scenarios and a look at the evolving competitive landscape and vendor shortlists. Access to the full series is available to Spend Matters PRO subscribers. We also encourage Spend Matters PRO Advisory clients to reach out to us for further information.

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Coupa Buys Contractually to Improve Contract Management

Efficio Coupa has acquired cloud-based contract management solution provider Contractually. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but Spend Matters believes this was not a substantial acquisition in financial terms. From a capability perspective, however, the acquisition appears clever on multiple fronts, even if Coupa is not acquiring a standalone contract lifecycle management (CLM) provider. The acquisition adds collaboration and authoring capabilities that reduce contract risk, reduce errors and increase efficiency.

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AnyData Solutions: Exploring the Customer Experience of a Spend Analytics Provider That Should Be on Your Shortlist

- January 14, 2016 2:32 AM | Categories: Analytics, Solution Providers, Spend Analysis, Technology

AnyData Solutions AnyData Solutions is yet another procurement — and in this case broader analytics — upstart provider that has underinvested in sales and marketing to date, opting to put all of its efforts into its product. While you might not know AnyData yet, we believe you soon will — either as it ramps up its public face or, likely, becomes part of a larger firm, which has happened to virtually all of the long-standing spend analytics providers to date. As we conclude our analysis of AnyData Solutions in this initial Spend Matters PRO series (see Part 1 here), we will continue to delve into a rather complex customer deployment and offer summary analysis and recommendations.

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LogicSource – A 2015 Spend Matters 50/50 Provider to Watch

- January 13, 2016 3:10 PM | Categories: Featured, Solution Providers



LogicSource is one of our 50 Providers to Watch. We will be highlighting 100 companies (50 to Know, 50 to Watch) from our 2015 Spend Matters Almanac over the span of 100 days. Practitioners are encouraged to browse the categories listed in our Almanac to find the provider that best fits their needs.

Sometimes it is impossible to put a label on a firm. LogicSource, a provider that combines professional services, category expertise and its own technology, is one such provider.

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E-Procurement in 2016: Big Shifts Ahead

- January 13, 2016 8:19 AM | Categories: eProcurement / Procurement, P2P, Technology

Pepsi The e-procurement market, one of the original technology segments to center on automating and improving procurement, is starting to go through a number of fundamental shifts. These changes are far more dramatic than the initial “cloud transformation” that began when Ariba and Coupa began to migrate standard deployment models away from the CD world. (It should be noted both of these providers, especially Coupa, have evolved dramatically since this initial shift as well.) We recently started to cover some of these new shifts in the first installment of a Spend Matters PRO research series: E-Procurement Market Outlook 2016-2018: 10 Technology and ‘Mega’ Trends.

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Beyond Spend Analytics: AnyData Offers Fresh Analytical Thinking for any Dataset

- January 13, 2016 2:16 AM | Categories: Analytics, Solution Providers, Spend Analysis, Technology

AnyData Solutions Everybody wants a good spend analytics solution. Rightly so: without it, all sourcing activities — and many other cost reduction activities — will be based solely on gut feel. That’s not scalable, nor particularly efficient. And thanks to a number of acquisitions in recent years, there’s a dearth of independent and creative spend analytics solutions in the marketplace today. Many providers directly (and indirectly) in this market have been snapped up by larger firms and rolled into sourcing and source to pay offerings. Consider the following somewhat recent acquisitions: Spend Radar (by SciQuest), Spikes Cavell (by Xchanging), BIQ (by Opera) and CVM (by Kroll). There simply aren’t that many independent providers left, and other analytics acquisitions by firms, such as Huron and Wipro, are driving further consolidation in the market. But a few remain. AnyData Solutions is one among them, a curious, young and independent spend analytics firm that Spend Matters has looked at and conducted reference calls on. This two-part Spend Matters PRO review provides an introduction to the provider and a deep dive into a client experience where AnyData was used for spend analysis — and more.

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The Smart Cube – A 2015 Spend Matters 50/50 Provider to Know

- January 12, 2016 3:30 PM | Categories: Featured, Solution Providers



The Smart Cube is one of our 50 Providers to Know. We will be highlighting 100 companies (50 to Know, 50 to Watch) from our 2015 Spend Matters Almanac over the span of 100 days. Practitioners are encouraged to browse the categories listed in our Almanac to find the provider that best fits their needs.

“Out-tasking” and procurement are two words one usually doesn’t hear together. At least not yet. But The Smart Cube (TSC), perhaps the largest global “out-tasking” firm centered on serving the needs of procurement organizations, is on a quest to change this.

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