With apologies to Hollywood and those behind a recent Oscar winning film, E-Invoicing is a market undergoing radical transformation from both the inside (and) out. A combination of disruptive new technology models that go far beyond first generation supplier networks and evolving market and customer requirements (and expectations) are in the early process of taking a sleepy accounts payable-centric solution area and putting it front and center as an enabler of broader procurement, finance, supply chain and IT strategies. Spend Matters research and analysis based on interviews with a variety of solution providers, practitioners and consultants indicates the largest visible changes will take shape in the years ahead. This multipart Spend Matters PRO brief provides an e-invoicing outlook and forecast for 2016-2018. Included in this series are 10 technology and mega trends, a market forecast and sizing analysis, market growth and adoption scenarios and a look at the evolving competitive landscape and vendor shortlists, including how e-invoicing will increasingly intersect with supplier networks, invoice discounting, transactional analytics (procurement, A/P, payments), statement/invoice audit recovery and related market segments. For organizations looking to get started with the e-invoicing basics – or accelerate program adoption – we recommend starting with the PRO series E-Invoicing: What it Takes to Get to World Class (see Part 1 and Part 2).
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In February, Arrowgrass Capital Partners, a London-based asset manager, announced it acquired Oxygen Finance. The acquisition is curious, in part because of the existing Arrowgrass and Basware partnership and Oxygen’s unique model, which we explore in this analysis. Oxygen currently has “billions of pounds” flowing through its infrastructure annually, primarily from U.K.-based public sector clients, yet it is not a P2P or e-invoicing vendor like most other providers focusing on discounting. Nor is it like C2F0, which focuses on creating loosely coupled — from a transactional systems perspective — competitive markets that provide greater flexibility to suppliers around participation compared with Oxygen. This multipart Spend Matters PRO brief delves into the Oxygen Finance solution in detail and explores a number of questions that Oxygen and the acquisition raise. These include whether or not the deal signals that additional private funds are likely to make more investments and buyouts in the sector. (Note Zouk investing in Taulia recently.) More important for users, we provide our analysis of the Oxygen Finance model, which is theoretically based broadly on a closed loop buyer network with its suppliers, and whether it might be able to gain the same type of discount scale and supplier adoption that new e-invoicing led trade financing models of the sort Taulia is bringing to market with its SCF+ are hoping to achieve through an alternative means. Finally, we analyze the days payable outstanding (DPO) and working capital impact Oxygen can have in comparison to alternative approaches — and why the public sector appears the most fertile ground for the solution approach.
In the first installment in this series, we provided our own recent history lesson on Taulia and how it got to where it is today — and the crossroads it currently faces from a strategy perspective. As we wrap up our Spend Matters PRO update on Taulia, we explore a number of specific areas of its business today, including a deep dive into its SCF+ offering, a tech-enabled and simplified approach to reverse factoring for the long-tail supplier masses instead of just large vendors. We also explore how Taulia is currently positioning itself today as it engages customers and how, on many levels, its core offering is a Trojan horse for what it really wants to sell with partners (but why that foot in the door with procurement, IT, accounts payable and treasury is an important as a first step and how these different worlds are converging). Granted, it would be easy — and not incorrect — to observe that the broader e-procurement market and purchase-to-pay (P2P) market remains distinctive from Taulia’s core sector today. Yet going forward, one can make the case that the worlds of generic (indirect) and category-specific buying, transactions, financing and payment will come together. And this is where understanding Taulia's emerging strategy matters.
We had the chance to spend two days last week at Taulia Connect, the customer conference of one of today’s largest and fastest growing e-invoicing, supplier network and fintech providers globally. (One hundred customers may not seem like a lot, but in this sector, it is.) Despite its solid momentum since the last event in fall 2014 — including a 100% renewal rate — Taulia has introduced a materially evolved strategy and face to the market since the last time it shared its perspective and vision in this in front of their user, prospect and partnership base. This two-part Spend Matters PRO brief explores Taulia’s product, marketing and competitive evolution and what we perceive to be a current strategic crossroads. And we can’t help but provide some broader perspective and commentary on Taulia's approach to supplier networks, e-invoicing, discounting and supply chain finance — and how the firm is trying to disrupt a number of incumbent ecosystems (and different vendors) in more than one market segment it is competing in today and heading into tomorrow.
As our journey to world-class e-invoicing continues in this multi-part Spend Matters PRO research brief, we discuss five additional elements to diagnose the overall scope, capability and coverage of your e-invoicing deployment — and whether or not your solution provider(s) can enable you to get to world-class levels of performance. If you want to catch up on this series, we encourage you to learn about all the components of the first five elements (invoice capture, collaboration/workflow, matching, compliance/validations and mobile enablement) and a broader introduction to the topic in first installment of this series. Finally, we invite Spend Matters PRO practitioner and consulting advisory clients to reach out to us to discuss their existing and planned deployments. E-invoicing is far more complex a solution area to analyze than e-procurement, in large part because solution capabilities and organizational requirements show so much variation compared with each other.
In this Spend Matters PRO series, we explore what makes run-of-the-mill electronic invoicing (e-invoicing) implementations different from those that are transformative and capable of aligning procurement and accounts payable (A/P) with broader business outcomes and metrics. In this analysis, we delve into topics that are important for procurement and A/P teams to discuss with their solution providers — and prospective providers — to enable a world-class e-invoicing deployment on their terms. Note the italics: No two organizations are alike, and “fit” will always be unique.
As we rapidly approach the end of the year, and as the witches and wizards appeared on our streets in October and the nights lengthen, can our three Spend Matters stock-pickers turn their performance around and beat the market over the final months of the year? We’re talking about our portfolio of procurement-related stocks, of course, and whether myself, Jason Busch and Nancy Clinton can beat the overall weighted portfolio that contains all 24 of the firms with a procurement interest. We had a reasonable month of October, with our portfolio following the market and up some 7%, although it is still some 8.5% below where it started on Jan. 1.
September was a quiet month overall in terms of our Spend Matters Stock Portfolio and most major global stock markets. The Spend Matters portfolio of all 24 firms lost about half a percent of its initial Jan. 1 value during September. Our portfolio follows the progress of quoted companies that operate in whole or part in what we call the procurement solutions market. We are tracking the performance of these shares on various stock markets from Helsinki to New York via Paris and London. Check out the full post to how these procurement companies performed last month.
Yooz, the subject of this Spend Matters PRO brief, offers a cloud-based solution that automates the A/P process from the time an invoice is captured and incorporated into the solution through the completion of the payment process, fully combining the processes of purchasing and receiving. This offers an opportunity for procurement organizations to improve purchasing and A/P linkages, reducing processing costs and accelerating approval times. In this PRO analysis, we offer an in-depth look at Yooz’s solution and its implementation process as well as how we see the provider expanding in the future.
Back in early 2014, Trade Financing Matters’ David Gustin noticed some major changes in the supply chain finance space. Banking and financing firms were increasingly partnering with various supplier B2B networks at a rapid pace. He pointed to this growing trend in one of our popular Ask the Expert webinars, which originally aired in April 2014, titled, Ask the Expert: B2B Commerce Networks Enter the Supply Chain Finance Space. You can check out the full recording of the webinar in this post and learn the difference between trade credit and trade finance and what exactly supplier networks are, how they operate and more.
Unless you spent all of August on a deserted beach without Wi-Fi, you know the month saw the most dramatic stock market falls since the crash of 2008. It began in China, which has seen a real market bubble develop over the last year or so, with stock prices more than doubling. Fears about an economic slowdown led to significant market falls though June and July. The slowdown also impacted stocks in August, including the companies in the Spend Matters Stock Portfolio. We lost 4 % overall last month, but that doesn't look so bad compared to the real world market crashes.
On this Flashback Friday, we are looking back to another popular Ask the Expert webinar we held back in April on current trends in trade financing. Spend Matters’ Jason Busch and Trade Financing Matters’ David Gustin teamed up in Ask the Expert: The State of Trade Financing Technologies to provide an impressively detailed overview of what’s happening in the trade financing world and how these events are signaling a changing market – all in under 30 minutes. Check out the full recording of the webinar and tell us if you have seen these trends play out during the second half of 2015.