Category Archives: Industry News

Compras y el desarrollo de la economía

- August 28, 2014 6:44 AM | Categories: Industry News, Public Sector, Supplier Management

En estos días se dio a conocer la firman convenio de colaboración Inadem y Ternium mediante el cual Ternium fortalecerá sus cadenas de valor a través del desarrollo de sus proveedores. Esta noticia lleva a dos reflexiones, el suministro como motor de desarrollo nacional y la colaboración gobierno - empresas.

English translation: Inadem and Ternium just signed a collaboration agreement to strengthen their value chain by developing their suppliers. This news leads to two reflections -- the supply as an engine for national development and the collaboration between government and companies.

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Rant: On Corporate Inversion

- August 22, 2014 2:24 PM | Categories: Commentary, Friday Rant, Industry News

AbbVie's $55-billion bid for UK drug maker Shire was approved, providing yet another footnote in the history of corporate inversion on the part of US companies mainly looking to avoid corporate taxes. The combined firm will move to UK, saving upwards of $8 billion in US corporate taxes by some estimates. While such a move certainly rubs policy makers the wrong way, in reality isn't this a perfect case study in the free market economy?

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Microsoft Azure Outage – 5 Things You Should Know About Cloud SLAs

- August 20, 2014 2:18 PM | Categories: Cloud, Guest Post, Industry News

On Monday, Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing services suffered an outage that lasted approximately five hours. The disruption was one of the most severe Azure outages in history, affecting multiple data centers and customers across the globe. So, what happens if you’re one of those affected customers? Or, if you’re considering a move to Microsoft Azure or another cloud computing service? Here are a few things to keep in mind.

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Best of Technology Coverage: SAP, Amazon.com, A Promising T&E Solution, and More

- August 18, 2014 11:01 AM | Categories: Industry News, Innovation, Solution Providers

Every August Spend Matters runs "Best Of" posts from the past six or so months. Today's topic, as you can see from the title, is technology coverage. From individual “Vendor Snapshots” to overarching viewpoints on where the sector’s technology has been and where we see it going, this is one of our favorite areas to explore here at Spend Matters — and one where we are proud of providing original thought, insightful analyses, and unbiased opinion. Hedge, obfuscate, or pander? Never.

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Lessons From Beeline – Areas to Prioritize in Global Services Procurement (Part 2)

In our discussions with Beeline and their customers earlier this summer, we learned about and explored a number of emerging priorities in global services procurement. A number of these customer requirements are already being partially or fully supported by Beeline and other leading VMS providers – other requirements are still on the roadmap or in their early days on the product release schedule. In the first installment in this series, we considered the increased scrutiny that companies are giving to specific geographies where they will or will not host technology, as well as related access permission issues. In the second installment of this Spend Matters PRO series, Jason Busch, Spend Matters founder and managing director, and Thomas Kase, VP of research, turn their attention to the following areas of emerging interest in global services procurement efforts: deeper technical integration between VMS and others systems; security in a mobile world; emerging audited processes and control mechanisms; regional requirements; and cultural observations.

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FCPA – Will the Supreme Court Make the Waters Less Muddy?

- August 15, 2014 1:38 PM | Categories: Industry News, Public Sector

Specifically, will we get a clear definition of what a "foreign official" is? Also, what an "instrumentality" might be? Why is this important? Well, consider that right now, under current statutory constructions (to paraphrase the example used in the FCPA Professor's article), a janitor working for a partially state-owned (or otherwise financially supported) enterprise could qualify as a “foreign official.” That should scare you.

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A Timeline of the Current Ebola Epidemic

- August 15, 2014 6:32 AM | Categories: Industry News

The New York Times ran a story on its front page last Sunday on “Patient Zero” in the Ebola outbreak spreading through Western Africa. Researchers suspect that the current epidemic started with a 2-year-old boy who died on Dec. 6 in Guinea. His mother, sister, and grandmother soon died afterwards, after falling ill with the same symptoms. This week on Spend Matters PRO Thomas Kase covered the implications that Ebola and epidemics in general could have on supply chains. To accompany the research brief, here is a rough timeline of how the epidemic developed.

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Ebola and the Potential Supply Chain Impact – What is Prudent for Procurement?

Ebola is a disease that presents as a hemorrhagic fever. These are not exactly comforting words, as those afflicted bleed profusely (from the inside) and up to 90 percent of those afflicted die, depending on the breakout and treatment. Scary, for sure. But Ebola is not just a virulent killer of people – it is also, potentially, a killer of supply chains.

Let’s move on to procurement issues and see what can be done. First of all, as a starting point there are actually many similarities between Ebola to geopolitical supply chain issues (e.g. extreme kidnapping risks in many areas of Mexico, Venezuela, Afghanistan, Somalia, and other places). But an illness migrates more easily than crime does, and with an incubation period as long as 21 days travellers returning from hot areas have a lot of time to have physical contact with others. Since it is impossible to track all individuals, it seems most prudent to add this to the list of factors (political, natural disasters, geological events, legal, financial, bankruptcies, corruption, crime, violence) that are part of better risk management solutions. In this Spend Matters PRO research brief, VP of Research Thomas Kase looks at how this can be done with an approach based on the solution available from Riskmethods, a Munich-based company.

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Natural Gas Prices Fall Over 20 Percent in July

- August 11, 2014 2:58 PM | Categories: Guest Post, Industry News

Natural gas is the third most used source of energy in the world after coal and crude oil. According to the EIA in the US, “coal-fired electricity generation has traditionally been the largest component of electricity generation, representing 37% of total generation in 2012. By 2035, however, natural gas generation is projected to surpass coal generation. Coal and natural gas each represent 34% of total generation in 2035, but by 2040 the coal share drops to 32%, and the natural gas share increases to 35%.”

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IQNavigator Sells MSP Business to MSX: MSP Background and Deal Analysis

Last week, IQNavigator announced that it had sold its managed services provider (MSP) business to MSX International. Within the procurement community, outside of those specializing in services procurement, there is typically not a great understanding of the role of MSPs. But MSPs are becoming increasingly important outside of just contingent labor, as the charter of many services procurement programs extends into statement of work (SOW) arrangements and diverse categories from management consulting to IT hosting and support services. IQNavigator no doubt had a number of reasons for becoming a pure-play vendor management system (VMS) provider by exiting its MSP business. But before exploring some additional facts and rationale concerning the transaction, it is important to understand what MSPs actually do, since the lines can sometimes be blurred between what services a technology provider delivers (i.e., VMS) and an outsourcer (i.e., MSP) in the enablement of services procurement programs. In this Spend Matters PRO research brief, Founder and Managing Director Jason Busch explores these two areas in more detail.

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SciQuest – That “S” is Now For Sourcing (In More Ways Than One)

- August 8, 2014 2:27 AM | Categories: Industry News, Solution Providers, Sourcing

If anyone had come to us five years ago and suggested that SciQuest, at that time a highly specialized eProcurement provider to the higher education, life sciences/pharma, and public sector markets, was going to pivot around and focus on becoming a top integrated source-to-pay suite with best-in-class capabilities in the sourcing area, we would have laughed. But in recent years, SciQuest has done more than other suite vendors, those that are just paying lip service to sourcing. Not only did it acquire CombineNet for its advanced sourcing and optimization capability in logistics and beyond, it has organically developed a sourcing product that is tightly coupled with the rest of its suite including supplier management and P2P. In our continuing coverage of SciQuest’s 14.2 release, Spend Matters founder and managing director Jason Busch and VP of research Thomas Kase look at the latest from SciQuest in the sourcing area.

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IQNavigator to Sell MSP Division and Focus on Technology

Earlier today, IQNavigator, one of the leading vendor management system (VMS) providers, announced it was selling off its managed services provider (MSP) business to MSX International. IQNavigator was, by spend volume, one of the top dozen MSPs in North America. We think that getting out of the MSP business makes a lot of sense for IQNavigator. On a high level, there are numerous reasons for this.

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