Author Archives: Nick Heinzmann



Afternoon Coffee: Catalant Raises $41 Million in New Funding, Amazon to Augment Whole Foods Warehouse Operations with Robots

Boston-based Catalant announced Tuesday it had raised $41 million in new funding, according to Forbes. One result of Amazon’s $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods could be a total revamp of the way the organic grocer approaches distribution. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

On the Future of Direct Procurement Tech: An Interview with Dan Willmer, VP Sales and Operations at Jaggaer

Today we present another installment from our ongoing series exploring where manufacturing procurement technology is headed. Produced in collaboration with our sister site MetalMiner, these interviews feature questions from Spend Matters Founder Jason Busch posed to multiple experts at technology vendors on topics such as the current direct procurement renaissance, the increasing centralization of procurement departments, the volatile commodity environment and more. The most recent interview, published earlier Tuesday on MetalMiner, features Dan Willmer, vice president of sales and operations at Jaggaer.

Afternoon Coffee: Takata Files for Bankruptcy, Canada Faces Marijuana Shortage

Japanese airbag maker Takata filed for bankruptcy protection Monday following the enormous recall of its defective product that killed at least 16 people. Demand for pot in Canada currently outstrips the available supply, with some concerned that the lack of product could ultimately push off the start date for the legalization program. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Afternoon Coffee: Tesla Considers Manufacturing in China, RapidRatings Updates Branding to Counter Rising Tide of Risk

Tesla is exploring with Chinese government officials whether it could open a facility there to build electric vehicles for Chinese consumers. RapidRatings, a provider of empirically driven financial health scoring of businesses, announced this week an update to its branding to reflect the “continued trend of investment in risk management technologies across all industries and business areas.” Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Afternoon Coffee: FusionOps Rebrands as Area Technology, Foxconn to Build Production in 7 States

FusionOps, a business intelligence provider, announced earlier this week it would rebrand as Area Technology and launch a prescriptive analytics software platform for global supply chains. Foxconn, which assembles the iPhone in China, said Thursady it would invest $10 billion or more in seven U.S. states to build facilities that would manufacture flat-panel screens and related equipment. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Afternoon Coffee: Uber CEO Kalanick Resigns, How Poor Data Quality Cripples Procurement Performance

Following a series of PR scandals and public draggings by the media, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick said in a statement Tuesday that he would resign as the ride-hailing company’s CEO. BravoSolution and the North Carolina State’s Supply Chain Resource released Tuesday the results of their first annual Procurement Data Governance Survey. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

‘Best of the Best’ 10 Years On: APICS CEO Abe Eshkenazi on the Past, Present and Future of the Procurement Profession

Sales and operations planning hardly seems sexy on paper. Yet as more than 200 cross-functional professionals poured into the grand ballroom of the Chicago Marriott O’Hare for the 10th annual Best of the Best S&OP Conference Thursday, the participants seemed excited to tackle this essential business process, as well as learn from an impressive lineup of senior supply chain leaders. To learn more about the topics the presenters chose to speak on this year, I sat down with APICS CEO Abe Eshkenazi, who provided a fascinating perspective on how the conference has developed over the last decade.

Overheard on the Quad: What We Learned When Supply Chain Finance Went to University

Michigan State University

Even with the increasing shift in focus to the importance of return on investment for a college education, many young men and women these days pursue a college education to answer foundational questions about themselves. It’s no surprise, accordingly, that so many university mottos include the word “veritas,” a nod to students and professors alike searching for “truth.” Likewise, as our sister site Trade Financing Matters explains, supply chain finance recently went back to school, under the tutelage of Professor David Wuttke of the EBS Business School. His team at EBS, in collaboration with Orbian, has been seeking the truth about trade finance, including a few foundational questions of their own.

Afternoon Coffee: World Coal Output Plummets, France Faces Butter Shortage

Global coal production in 2016 declined the most it ever has, as China and the U.S. dug up less of the fuel and burned less of it for electricity. Prices for croissants, brioche and the like are expected to rise quickly if a butter shortage is not soon remedied in France. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Jabil Launches InControl to Take Aim at Supply Chain Point Solutions

Manufacturing giant Jabil launched recently what it calls a supply chain decision support platform, pitting its cross-industry expertise as a contract manufacturer against the services offered by point solutions. Called InControl, the platform offers five applications that provide visibility, collaboration tools and diagnostics for supply chain professionals. The apps cover supply chain visibility, event risk, design for supply chain, risk management and supply chain diagnostics.