Down the Procurement Pub with Tejari, CIPS Awards, CCS, Zimbabwe and Iron Maiden

This abstract picture is the best my smartphone camera can do in terms of the amazing night time view from the 8th floor roof garden bar at the Media One hotel in Dubai. You can't see the cream of the Tejari and BravoSolution marketing team in the background unfortunately... But thanks to everyone who came to our two sessions this week in the UAE with procurement solutions provider Tejari. Tuesday it was “Quick Wins for the New Procurement Leader” in Dubai and Wednesday it was “Taking on a New Category” in Abu Dhabi - we'll come back to this next week.

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Congratulations to all the winners at the CIPS SM Awards evening the other night, with National Grid taking the overall award. Couldn't go unfortunately (see above) myself but if anyone who did can remember anything about the evening and wants to write a review for us... we should have organised that beforehand really, now I come to think about it. Anyway, well done to everyone who was shortlisted as well - the competition is fierce these days.

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The UK Crown Commercial Service is consulting about transposition of two European Directives into UK Law - The Utilities Directive and the Concessions Directive. "The consultation seeks comments on the draft regulations transposing the Utilities Directive, to ascertain whether the draft regulations effectively transpose the Directive, and whether they do so in the best way." There are only fairly limited areas of real flexibility, but it is worth organisations in the Utilities industry in particular taking a look at this - you have till September 18th to respond, so you need to get a move on! The same comments apply to the Concession consultation - that is a fairly specialist area, but I guess concessions can cover a wide range of activities, so this may be worth looking at for organisations across quite a wide spread of industries.

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Supply Management reported that "unsound" procurement practices are slowing down economic growth in Zimbabwe, according to its president. In a State of the Nation address last week, Robert Mugabe announced a new Procurement Bill would be drafted and tabled in Parliament before the end of the year. Yes, I'm sure it is procurement practices hitting economic growth, not the many years of mis-rule from Mugabe ...

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Today, in our music slot, an exciting new, young British band that go by the groovy name of Iron Maiden. And here's a poptastic toe-tapper from the fresh-faced poppets - called Speed of Light it comes from the new album "Book of Souls". This is going to be the first vinyl LP sold in Tesco supermarkets ever, and amazingly it is a heavy-metal triple album set that takes that honour!

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