eProcurement for the Masses — Coupa Brings in New CEO

Earlier today, Coupa announced that Dave Stephens, one of the venture's co-founders, would step into the role of Chief Evangelist, making room for Rob Bernshteyn who will take over as CEO. I had the chance to catch up and trade thoughts with Rob yesterday and found him anxious to share ideas he thought would resonate in trying to sell eProcurement into small and middle market companies in today's environment. Some of the concepts he shared, such as "real spend control" might resonate well with companies looking to not just reduce maverick buying but to reduce expenditures in the current environment. Period. After all, if employees know that their spending is being tracked, they buy less. With Coupa, Rob claims spend control can happen fast, as Coupa's average implementation time is now down to around 10 hours. But the key will be getting companies that have nothing in place to date to bite. Rob told me that some of his hypotheses, among others, are "that breadth around spend control will be interesting to companies" as will "going up the food chain inside the organization" from both a sales perspective and by offering "dashboard type visibility into spend" that shows CFOs and CEOs of small and medium sized businesses "leading indicators vs. lagging indicators" around their spending. I'd wish him luck, but with some of the most convincing outbound marketing I've seen recently from eProcurement vendors of any size -- not to mention an elegantly simple product -- I suspect he won't need it.

Jason Busch

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