Author Archives: Sydney Lazarus



About Sydney Lazarus

Editor-at-Large - Spend Matters | Sydney is editor-at-large at Spend Matters, where she writes on a variety of supply chain and procurement-related topics. Her reporting interests include labor conditions, corporate social responsibility, and women and millennials in supply chain. Like most of her editorial colleagues, Sydney is an alum of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. Her work has also appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Condé Nast Traveler, and a couple places where she chose to be published anonymously.


Beyond Logistics: 6 Non-Traditional Categories Where Companies Should Apply Sourcing Optimization

What exactly is sourcing optimization, and where can it be applied, besides the obvious areas? Earlier this month, Spend Matters analysts Michael Lamoureux and Tom Finn teamed up with Garry Mansell, sourcing optimization general manager at Coupa, on a webinar on this very topic, “Sourcing Optimization in New Categories: A ‘How-To’ Guide.” As the webinar title suggests, this isn’t about logistics or MRO, but rather some more non-traditional categories — six to be exact — where sourcing optimization can bring significant savings.

Payables Automation Provider Tipalti Raises $30 Million in Series C Round

funding

Tipalti raised $30 million in its Series C financing round last week, bringing the global payables automation solution provider’s total funding to more than $50 million, according to the press release. Zeev Ventures, which focuses on investments on small businesses, led the round. This is the venture capital firm’s first investment in the P2P market, notes David Gustin, lead analyst and founder of Trade Financing Matters. Oren Zeev, the founding partner of Zeev Ventures, is also the co-founder of Tipalti, playing what Forbes has called a hybrid founder-investor role.

Resilinc EventWatch Data: Factory Fires and M&A Activity Rank as Top Disruptive Events

supply risk

Resilinc recently released its 2017 EventWatch Supply Chain Disruption Annual Report, and the top two disruptive event types by a significant margin were factory fires and explosions and mergers and acquisitions. The report is based off the 2017 data collected by Resilinc’s EventWatch software, which monitors and analyzes global events that are potentially disruptive for supply chains and then alerts customers. In 2017, EventWatch published on average five bulletins a day.

Icertis Raises $50 Million in Series D Round, Plans to Invest in AI Capabilities and Global Expansion

funding

Icertis announced Thursday it has raised $50 million in Series D funding, bringing the company’s total funding to $96 million. This funding round was led by Meritech Capital Partners, with PSP Growth and Cross Creek Advisors also taking part. In the near-decade since its founding in 2009, Icertis has become a leader in the contract management market, counting around 50 customers in the Global 500 and about 100 customers in the Global 5000. Moreover, as of Q4 2017, Icertis ranks top in Spend Matters Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) SolutionMap. The provider is a solution leader and a value leader across all four SolutionMap personas.

Preparedness for Data-Driven Procurement Lags Among Manufacturers, New Study Finds

The term “digital transformation” — whether applied to procurement or another field — is bandied around frequently, but as far as the average company is concerned, that transformation is still not in the near future. In a survey of more than 100 senior executives, LevaData found that although nearly all of them agree that data-driven procurement is critical to value creation, cost reduction and efficiency, only half think that their own procurement teams are ready to make use of predictive tools.

Developing a Digital Operating Model: GEP Releases 2018 Procurement Outlook Report

trade

GEP recently published its 2018 Procurement Outlook Report, which provides insight on important business and technology trends for procurement and supply chain professionals. Now in its sixth edition, the report tackles changing political and economic policies, emerging technologies and trends in eight major spend categories. And 2018, according to the authors of the report, will be the year for procurement to develop a new digital operating model.

Word of Mouth May Dominate Legal Services Procurement, But Practitioners Want Better Options

When it comes to legal services procurement, a contradiction emerges in what businesses want and what they do. Although in-house lawyers at companies across the globe value sector breadth and expertise most in a search for law firms, the majority still make their choices based on personal connections rather than a neutral assessment of skill and fit, according to Global Trends in Hiring Outside Counsel: Exploring the Need for a Better Way to Identify and Appoint Law Firms, a new report commissioned by Globality.

U.S. Companies are Rethinking Risk Management Strategy After the 2017 Hurricanes

For many large U.S.-based companies, last year’s hurricanes and the damage they brought have been a wake-up call. A survey of senior financial executives at U.S.-based companies with revenues of more than $1 billion, commissioned by FM Global, revealed that the hurricanes have prompted 68% to adapt their risk management strategy for the future.

Who’s Adopting T&E Management Software, and Who Isn’t? Breaking It Down by Industry and Revenue

Oversight Systems

If expensing that hotel stay or work lunch requires you to keep paper receipts, you are in good company. According to a report from PayStream Advisors, more than a third of employees file expenses either by mailing paper receipts to their AP department or through a combination of scanned receipts and spreadsheets. Nearly two-thirds, however, report that their organizations use a dedicated expense software tool. And as companies move along in their digital transformations, the trend in travel and expense (T&E) management is certainly away from manual systems.

A Guide to Supply Risk Management and Compliance (Including Cyber Risks) in 2018

cyber attack

The World Economic Forum recently released its 13th annual global risks report, predicting the biggest risks that global businesses are likely to face in 2018. Extreme weather events rank top both in terms of potential impact and likelihood. Other top risks included cyberattacks, data fraud and economic bubbles. Meanwhile, Spend Matters has been working on updating our Supply Risk Management and Compliance Landscape Definition and Overview for 2018, highlighting the increasing need for investment in supply risk in the cyber and information security (INFOSEC) area.

Investigative Report Details Toxic Gas Poisoning and Other Serious Labor Violations at Key Apple Supplier

China Labor Watch released a lengthy report Tuesday detailing appalling work conditions at Catcher Technology, a supplier of computers, digital cameras and other products to Apple, Dell, HP, IBM and Sony. The factory under investigation, however, is primarily an Apple supplier, producing iPhone frames and MacBook components. Among many other labor violations, China Labor Watch found toxic gas poisoning, unsanitary food, inadequate protective gear and excessive pollution during its investigation of the Catcher factory in Suqian, China, conducted from October 2017 to January 2018.

A Revamped Operating Model is Key to Alleviating Retail’s Sourcing Woes, Report Suggests

As countries continuously replace one another on the list of new, promising apparel sourcing destinations, a report from Kurt Salmon, part of Accenture Strategy, suggests that this is but a short-term fix. The report, “From Cost-Cutting to True Value Creation — On the Road to Analytical Sourcing and Supply Chain,” proposes a smarter long-term strategy that would require retail to adapt its operating model.