Earlier this week, Spend Matters Founder and Head of Strategy Jason Bush wondered how the late Thomas Stemberg, founder of Staples, would react to the proposed Staples-Office Depot merger. In the article, Procurement Saint: What Would Thomas Stemberg Think About the Staples-Office Depot Merger?, Jason wrote how Stemberg tried to buy Office Depot back in 1997 as a cost cutting measure both for the business and customers. The merger attempt, however, halted around the time Staples was aggressively trying to ramp up e-commerce sales.more ▸
Perhaps not surprising, the majority of U.S. consumers plan to do some holiday shopping this weekend. Spending on Black Friday is expected to increase compared with last year, with Americans spending about $369 each over the weekend, up 25% from 2014, according to Deloitte’s 2015 pre-Thanksgiving pulse survey. The report, released Monday, shows 57% of consumers plan to shop this holiday weekend.more ▸
The highly pathogenic avian influenza, also more commonly known as the bird flu, may have wiped out millions of commercial turkeys earlier this year, but the U.S. Department of Agriculture said there is no shortage of turkeys for Thanksgiving Day. Check out what Americans spend eating turkey and other Thanksgiving Day traditional foods.more ▸
Orders for durable goods rose 3% in October, the Commerce Department reported today. Commercial aircraft orders showed the largest growth last month, rising 81%. And, consumer spending “barely rose” in October, increasing just 0.1% from September. Consumers reportedly took advantage of saving opportunities during the month as incomes increased 0.4% last month. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.more ▸
It’s official. While his pending departure from SAP was rumored for months, Tim Minahan, without question the single most influential marketing leader in the procurement space in the past decade, has left SAP for Citrix. Tim had most recently served as chief marketing officer for SAP Cloud and prior to that was the chief marketing officer of Ariba. Before Ariba, he started as journalist/analyst before making the jump to the “dark side” (i.e., the vendor world) as the head of marketing for Procuri — which Ariba eventually acquired.more ▸
U.S. gross domestic product rose 2.1% in the third quarter, the Department of Commerce reported today. This is higher than the previously estimated 1.5% GDP growth. And, the Federal Trade Commission has approved the merger of Fedex Corp and TNT Express. Fedex announced in April it wanted to buy the Netherlands-based delivery company for $4.8 billion. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.more ▸
In the first post of this series, I talked about procurement’s role in divestitures and more broadly in strategic planning, using the recently rumored Staples proposal to the FTC as a case study. My recommendation would be for Staples to carve out the small and medium-sized business (SMB) segment and sell it to a private equity firm that could bring an Essendant-powered supply chain that could reintermediate regional or local office products firms. But what could this be?more ▸
Spend Matters welcomes this guest post by Michael Liberty, of Mintec.
In September, Mintec wrote about rising Turkey prices in the U.S. and the increasing food bills in the run up to Thanksgiving and Christmas. Pork ham prices at the start of November were on average 47% cheaper than turkey prices, a good enough deal to get anyone’s appetite going. As a result, we have a tasty choice: go traditional with turkey or go succulent with roast ham.
U.S. manufacturing activity fell to a two-year low this month, according to the flash purchasing-managers’ index by Markit. The index hit 52.6 in November, down from the 54.1 in October. And, ocean carriers say traffic is picking up again at the Panama Canal after some container ships were experiencing 10-day wait times due to higher than normal demand. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.more ▸
Procurement's role, and a supply chain group's role more broadly, should figure into the strategy as well. Any procurement organization can have a strategy that supports an existing enterprise strategy, but only a truly strategic procurement group can actually help influence the business strategy. So, let’s consider a future case study in the making and consider the situation with office products retailer Staples.more ▸
Afternoon Coffee: 3 U.S. Cities Named Up-and-Coming Global Logistics Hubs, Welsh Government’s Use of P-Cards Under Fire
Philadelphia, Miami and Seattle were named among the 20 global metropolises primed to become “major players in the network for global trade,” according to a report by real-estate brokerage CBRE Inc. Welsh conservatives have called on the Wales Audit Office to review the use of p-cards by government employees, which critics said are being used without proper transparency or accountability. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.more ▸
E-commerce is significantly ramping up, but traditional retailers’ efforts to improve the online shopping experience may be made in vain. A new poll by Reuters and Ipsos shows 51% of consumers plan to do most of their holiday shopping on Amazon.com. Amazon.com is also starting to offer its Black Friday deals a week early, beginning tomorrow on Nov. 20. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.more ▸