Afternoon Coffee: What Workday-Scout RFP acquisition means for procurement; Coca-Cola on board with SAP’s blockchain solution

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The Workday acquisition of sourcing technology provider Scout RFP has many abuzz this morning.

Announced yesterday afternoon — when Spend Matters broke the story — the acquisition of Scout RFP by Workday is worth some $540 million in cash, and “opens up more of the extremely fast growing S2P space to Workday (which some value at $50 billion as a total addressable market), and Workday benefits from a product known more for its usability and adoption than just about any other sourcing platform on the global market,” said Michael Lamoureux, Spend Matters’ lead analyst in sourcing technology.

Quick on our breaking story’s heels came a first-take analysis by Jason Busch on newly announced subscription platform Spend Matters Nexus, outlining Scout RFP’s background, strengths & weaknesses and the rationale of the deal (paywall). Then came a competitive analysis for the ERP market segment including providers.

Not yet a subscriber? Spend Matters has published this handy-dandy guide (free) with some quick takes on this deal. 

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U.S. Navy Secretary Richard Spencer has told the Financial Times that the American supply chain for military warships was "fragile." This meant the Pentagon was at risk of having to rely on political adversaries such as Russia and China for critical components. The navy secretary said a review this year which he had ordered found many contractors relying on single suppliers for certain high-tech and high-precision parts, increasing the chances of having to procure from geostrategic rivals.

Development of trustworthy 5G equipment supply chains a must: TIA chief

Keeping in mind the upcoming 5G changes and corresponding changes in federal laws, the telecom industry must do its utmost to safeguard the nation’s telecommunications systems, said David Stehlin, CEO of the Telecommunications Industry Association. Stehlin, writing for Bloomberg Law, said that a secure and trusted telecommunications network was critical to the U.S.’ national security and economic growth.

U.S.-China competition in artificial intelligence heats up

On Monday, a U.S. government commission on artificial intelligence (AI) said in a report that keeping in mind national security, the U.S. government needs to fund more A.I. research and train an A.I.-ready workforce, according to Fortune. The National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence, which is chaired by former Google chief executive Eric Schmidt and includes the CEOs of Amazon Web Services and Oracle, raised concerns about A.I. development in China, where the government invests more in A.I. than the U.S.

Coca-Cola embraces blockchain technology by SAP

Coca-Cola has become the latest major corporation to recognize the advantages of blockchain technology. USA Today, in quoting a Business Insider report, said Coca-Cola's bottlers now rely on the blockchain solution, which was developed by German software giant SAP to keep track of all transactions that take place within 70 franchises.

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