Best Of: Friday Rants

Happy Holidays! While the Spend Matters team is off merry making, here's some of our best content from 2012 for you to enjoy. We'll see you in 2013!

From me ranting about procurement folk trying to put a price on an idea to Richard pissing of the USPS, we at Spend Matters are certainly not known for keeping our mouths shut when we have an opinion about something (but that's why you keep coming back, right?)

Darwinism and the USPS -- Many of you may not know me. I'm the numbers guy behind Spend Matters. I run Spend Matters Group(Spend Matters and MetalMiner's consulting arm) and I'm also CFO of the parent company, Azul Partners. I tend to lead and manage by the book (and as Jason says, I keep him and the rest of the team in line). When I encounter a lack of process and transparency, my head spins, and such is the case with a recent order from Amazon that the United States Postal Service (USPS) managed to truly butcher.

Marketing and Procurement: Sourcing Ideas -- Many long-time readers know that I come from an agency background. Before Spend Matters, I worked on national print campaigns for HP and T-Mobile. I ran regional printing for Ben Bridge Jewelers at the ripe ol' age of 22. I've freelanced as a proofreader, a copywriter, brand strategist, and producer at all types of agencies, large and small. I've even seen Maurice Levy's office in Paris (he wasn't there at the time). In other words, I haven't just breached the other side's lair; I had an office there.

Friday Rant: Will Oracle Go Shopping? Post Ariba/SAP Acquisition Strategy... (Part 1) -- Last weekend, I chatted with sharedserviceslink's Susie West during her visit to Chicago. Her firm, a conference and community company focused on the shared services industry (especially accounts payable and P2P) held an event in Chicago. Susie herself is a blogger, and during her visit, we had the chance to catch up on the latest SAP/Ariba news, including trading thoughts on where the acquisition places Oracle. We both speculated that there are some deals that Oracle should consider, including OB10 and Transcepta, to even the e-invoicing, supplier enablement and network paying field with its Waldorf-based rival.

Friday Rant: ISM's Risk Conference -- Is Managing Risk Even Possible? -- An inaugural ISM Risk Conference kicked off July 26 at the O'Hare Marriott in Chicago with about 160 attendees from all industry verticals: 3M, American Red Cross, Apple, Boeing, BP, Cintas, GM, Harley-Davidson, Johnson Controls, McDonald's, Northrop Grumman, PG&E, RJ Reynolds, and many more. So far I have attended half the conference, and it is a solid event, much more like something that WBR (that runs ProcureCon events) would put together. It's tightly orchestrated with consistently good speakers, and an intimate atmosphere where you get to know participants. And the participants are of higher caliber. I say this from my experience from perhaps 10 annual ISM conferences; those events are good but owing to their massive scale they become more diluted than a small event like this.

Friday Rant: TradingPartners Trades No More; An Unavoidable Bankruptcy? -- Earlier this week, Spend Matters UK/Europe broke the story that something was amiss at TradingPartners. The company's phone lines were dead. A supplier, which had not been paid, contacted us (he found us through a previous blog on TP). Other rumors (more speculative) circulated as well. Only hours later, we learned the company had become insolvent, shutting its doors, with accounting firm Baker Tilly taking over the orderly closure of the business. In our view, TradingPartners' bankruptcy was almost unavoidable for a number of reasons we'll explore in a minute.

- Sheena Moore

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