Earlier today, Amazon announced its Amazon Business Marketplace – a highly material expansion of its original business, AmazonSupply, targeting the B2B community and combining in some additional features that we’ll discuss momentarily. Amazonsupply.com was originally launched in 2012, offering 500,000 specific SKUs targeting both the laboratory/science and industrial communities. It eventually grew to over 2 million SKUs, all managed and stocked by Amazon. Amazon told Spend Matters that its AmazonSupply business, combined with business spend on Amazon.com, serves “millions of business customers” who spend “billions of dollars annually on business-related purchases,” representing more than 100 times the selection of AmazonSupply alone.
Category Archives: Industry News
Spend Matters is no stranger to providing the best product/solution reviews in the procurement technology space, so the inimitable analysts that make this site tick must forgive me in advance for my simplistic drive-by review of the latest advancement in the Spend Matters universe: mobile-friendliness. Spend Matters readers and Plus/PRO members, as of the last week or so, can now scan, scroll and dive just as deep into the latest research on a clean interface for mobile phones and tablets as they have on desktop devices in the past. While we continue working on the even better technological rollouts (Spend Matters Drone℠: Coming Soon!), here's a quick spin through the Spend Matters mobile site (iPhone 5 view).
At vendor conferences, the big headlines typically show what e-procurement provider marketing and communications executives want to highlight. But these areas are often out of touch with what customers really care about. Fortunately at Ariba LIVE this year, there were several quieter announcements and center points in the break-out sections focused on product capabilities and features – the items customers actually are interested in hearing. Some of these jumped out and grabbed my attention. While I won’t do justice to all of them, I will share a few...
Last week, Finnish technology firm Basware announced it will acquire Procserve, which is headquartered in London. According to the stock market release on the acquisition news, (Basware is quoted on the Finish stock exchange), “The acquisition price is approximately EUR 25.9 million. In 2014, the net sales of the acquired business amounted to approximately EUR 9.6 million.” Procserve has a strong position as a provider to the UK public sector, particularly with its marketplace technology, having grown from what was initially an early in-house venture into e-procurement by the UK government itself. Esa Tihilä, CEO of Basware, was in London recently to meet and present to the Procserve staff and explain the vision for the future. I was able to catch up with Tihilä as he headed back to Heathrow Airport.
Yesterday at IQNavigator’s customer (and partner) event in Phoneix, Arizona, Joe Juliano, whom I used to work with many years ago at FreeMarkets, kicked off his keynote address by discussing 3 key trends that IQNavigator is observing in the labor markets. While some of these are “motherhood and talent pie” so to speak, it’s worth exploring them as a level-set for how contingent workforce and services procurement programs are evolving as well as the technology providers that are serving and enabling them.
Last night, Andrew Karpie and I landed in Phoenix, Arizona, for IQNavigator’s customer event. Within the vendor management system world, we’ve historically found customer events to be more about the combination of sharing best practices among participants and previewing future product evolutions (centered on sharing emerging capabilities and features) than anything radical or surprising. Such a customer conference agenda is something that would not be possible in the all too familiar “keep-it-close-to-the-chest” nature of most procurement types that attend other events. The level of free flowing ideas and the willingness to share between participants at customer conferences, whether hosted by IQN, Beeline or Fieldglass, is at once both refreshing but surprising for those who come from the traditional procurement and supply chain world. But IQNavigator is shaking things up a bit year.
If looked at from an outsider perspective, Spend Matters has done a fair job covering the services procurement solutions landscape to date. But from my own vantage point, we’ve missed the boat on going deep on so many areas, due simply to team bandwidth constraints and the breadth of what we cover within procurement. Granted, while we’ve ramped our research efforts considerably this year, I believe there’s so much more we could be doing in studying and expanding in the contingent workforce topic and beyond. That's where our newest Spend Matters analyst comes in. We welcome Andrew Karpie to the Spend Matters team.
Easter is tomorrow, and it looks like Americans will spend more celebrating the holiday this year than they did last year: $16.4 billion in all. Flowers, decorations, greeting cards and jelly beans galore will cost the average consumer $140.62, the National Retail Federation has reported. Thats up compared to last Easter's spending of $137.46 per person, or a total of $15.9 billion.Retailers look to Easter as the kick off for spring shopping when consumers stock up on everything from garden equipment, clothing and home goods in addition to traditional Easter items, said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay. Check out the breakdown of what consumers plan to buy this holiday.
From a procurement solution perspective, we’ve always been fans of what Hubwoo has been able to achieve in building surround strategies for customers to get more from ERP and P2P procurement investments, especially in the area of basic and complex e-invoicing scenarios. But as a company, Hubwoo has faced challenge after challenge, virtually none of which is the current leadership’s doing. And, after reading the company's recently released 2014 annual report, we’re left with a number of questions.
Last year, we wrote about Alibaba partnering with Coupa in what appeared to be the Barney partnership of the year. The hookup was said to “provide Coupa customers with an easy way to find and source from suppliers on Alibaba.com. Coupa customers will have immediate, easy access to millions of additional global suppliers from Alibaba.com.” Fast-forward and Alibaba is taking multiple P2P wives, or so it would seem. Anyway, to get back to the title of this article and find out all the eProcurement applications that Alibaba is selling, all you have to do is check out the Alibaba site – which scares us a bit; read on to find out why.
Earlier this morning, Selectica Inc. (SLTC) announced it was acquiring b-pack, a vendor specializing in purchase-to-pay (eProcurement + e-invoicing) technology with broader source-to-pay suite modules as well. Selectica had previously acquired Iasta, a sourcing specialist, which has since been fully integrated into Selectica from a commercial and management perspective (the technology is still independent). Spend Matters analysis suggests b-pack had several clients of substantial size, but essentially all are French or European. They had relatively few North American-originated deals, and those were mainly small firms (despite the management of the organization moving to the US in recent years). As context on b-pack’s capabilities, their suite grew from early P2P origins, whereas their French competitor Ivalua started out with sourcing and later added P2P (and allegedly learned some of their P2P ideas during the two companies' partnership days years ago). Read on for our exclusive first take on the deal (or just jump right into our deeper analysis on Spend Matters PRO)!
Earlier this morning, Selectica Inc. (SLTC) announced it was acquiring b-pack, a vendor specializing in purchase-to-pay (eProcurement + e-invoicing) technology with broader source-to-pay suite modules as well. Selectica had previously acquired Iasta, a sourcing specialist, which has since been fully integrated into Selectica from a commercial and management perspective (the technology is still independent). Spend Matters analysis suggests b-pack had several clients of substantial size, but essentially all are French or European. They had relatively few North American-originated deals, and those were mainly small firms (despite the management of the organization moving to the US in recent years). As context on b-pack’s capabilities, their suite grew from early P2P origins, whereas their French competitor Ivalua started out with sourcing and later added P2P. Read on for our exclusive first take on the deal (or just jump right into our deeper analysis on Spend Matters PRO)!