Category Archives: Industry News

El Niño Weather Event May Lead to Global Food Supply Disruption

- April 21, 2014 2:38 PM | Categories: Guest Post, Industry News, Price Forecast

Over the past few months, there has been increasing evidence that an El Niño weather event will be forming this year. El Niño, which is also known as ENSO oscillation, is a phase of a naturally occurring climate pattern seen in the Central Pacific. The phenomenon causes extreme weather such as floods, droughts, and changes in wind patterns in many regions of the world. This change in weather can have a detrimental effect on some of the main commodities and could cause disruption to the global food supply.

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Coupa Inspire: Unveiling Release 11 and a Quick Company Update

- April 17, 2014 11:15 AM | Categories: Conferences, Industry News, Solution Providers

I’m currently sitting in on VP of Product Management Raja Hammoud’s morning keynote on the release of Coupa 11. Coupa announced this release earlier today, and it includes many small updates and select significant enhancements and entirely new capabilities (included an integrated inventory management which will be generally available during the summer). The release is being rolled out to 423 customers in 20 languages (across 154 countries and 148 currencies).

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Coupa Gets Closer to SAP with NetWeaver Certification – SAP Does Not Get Closer to Coupa

- April 17, 2014 10:44 AM | Categories: Commentary, Industry News, Solution Providers

Yesterday at Inspire, Coupa announced that its latest release, Coupa 11, has achieved SAP NetWeaver certification. According to the press release that went out, Coupa “has achieved SAP certification as powered by the SAP NetWeaver® technology platform … The SAP Integration and Certification Center (SAP ICC) has certified that the Coupa 11 application suite is powered by SAP NetWeaver." Coupa’s choice of using NetWeaver for SAP integration is a pragmatic one for many reasons.

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Coupa and DocuSign: A Critical Partnership that Bodes Well for Finance, Legal, and Procurement

Coupa announced today that it is partnering with DocuSign to provide integrated digital signing capability with its own set of applications. For customers, this partnership is perhaps the most pragmatic announcement to come out of Coupa Inspire 2014 and is important on many levels for finance, legal, procurement, and supplier collaboration. The integration of digital signatures with source-to-pay suites may seem to be a simple “nice-to-have” for procurement, finance, and legal organizations. But looking ahead, especially as contract management becomes more integrated with standard buying, approvals, invoicing, and compliance workflow in an automated and straight-through-processing (ideally) manner, digital signing will become even more integral to source-to-pay than it currently is. Read on for our analysis of the partnership, its implications, and customer recommendations.

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Coupa Inspire Dispatch – Building Ecosystems the Old-Fashioned Way

- April 16, 2014 11:40 AM | Categories: Conferences, Industry News

I flew to San Francisco yesterday for Coupa Inspire (I’ll be presenting tomorrow). I first spent a couple hours wandering around the city with my family and taking the famous cable cars – now $6 one way! – but now I’m settled into the conference. And I’m not entirely surprised to find the entire event has been dialed up a notch from last year. There are more and more organizations here. I’ve already spoken to numerous Coupa partners and potential partners (some are very, very large companies) that are already or might soon start building out around the Coupa customer and technical ecosystem.

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Coupa Links P2P and Supplier Search with Partnership

- April 16, 2014 11:02 AM | Categories: Industry News, P2P, Supplier Management

Over on Spend Matters PRO this morning, I analyzed the implications of Coupa’s recently announced partnership with, including what it could signal for Coupa’s strategy of working with potential other supplier directory and listing partners. While the marketing value of these relationships is usually strong, there’s actually quite a bit of work behind the scenes (e.g., mapping part numbers and taxonomies) to make them work in practice.

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Coupa and — Partnership Analysis, Implications, and User Recommendations

- April 16, 2014 9:53 AM | Categories: Industry News, Sourcing, Supplier Management

Earlier today, Coupa announced it was partnering with, a company that was once really just a directory service for global suppliers. It has since become as diverse in its holdings (if not more so) than eBay. The purpose of the partnership seems straightforward, but Spend Matters has found that Alibaba overplays its own usefulness in the Fortune 500 as it markets to Chinese suppliers. Alibaba’s supplier listings, catalogs, and directories might be more useful for smaller buying organizations. Potential users of integrated search services connected with source-to-pay applications would do well to consider a number of factors to gauge the actual usefulness of the relationships. Read on for these recommendations, as well as our detailed analysis of the deal.

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A.T. Kearney ROSMA Performance Check FAQs

- April 11, 2014 3:14 PM | Categories: Industry News, Procurement Commentary

We posted a multi-part series on A.T. Kearney’s ROSMA performance benchmark / framework that the firm is now offering through a partnership with ISM and CIPS. We just received a Frequently Asked Questions document that seeks to provide additional details on the ROSMA “Performance Check” and are posting it here for our readers.

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Study Says Women Make Better Auditors, Comcast Says Merger With Time Warner Will Be Good For Consumers

- April 9, 2014 12:24 PM | Categories: Afternoon Coffee, Industry News

A recent study reports that women make better supply chain auditors. In other news, Tesla hasn't decided where its new lithium-ion battery factory will be but says it will source the parts entirely in North America, and Comcast argues the merger with Time Warner Cable will benefit consumers.

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Could SAP, Ariba Build a New ‘Services Network’ with Fieldglass?

- April 4, 2014 10:40 AM | Categories: Analysis, Ariba, Friday Rant, Industry News, SAP

SAP/Ariba's acquisition of Fieldglass has provided plenty of fodder for the Spend Matters crew for the last couple of weeks, but in today's rant we take on a somewhat inquiring perspective. What does the future of networked services procurement hold? Extending the application capability of the Fieldglass VMS to a network-based model targeting new types of value could change the procurement discussion entirely.

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Bid Rigging in a Competitive Market: What Should You Look For?

- April 4, 2014 6:30 AM | Categories: Commentary, Guest Post, Industry News, Perspective

Despite the Sherman Act, bid rigging still exists in many shapes and sizes and is difficult to detect. Almost all forms of bid-rigging schemes have one thing in common: an agreement among some or all of the bidders, which predetermines the winning bidder and limits or eliminates competition among the conspiring vendors. Jim Kiser of GEP breaks down how exactly it happens.

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When Purchase Price Variance Turns Deadly

- April 4, 2014 2:31 AM | Categories: Friday Rant, Industry News

Don't be a slave to PPV! What has the fallout from GM CEO Mary T. Barra's recent testimony on Capitol Hill taught us? That the challenge of measuring total costs and defining a balanced scorecard of supply is daunting, yet crucial. It's essential to align that scorecard to corporate/customer objectives rather than an old-school purchasing-led focus on just one of those metrics.

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