Afternoon Coffee: McKinsey acquires Orpheus; Koch buys Infor; Walmart beef supply chain; After Brexit, UK seeks cuts in U.S. tariffs

The consulting firm McKinsey and Co. has acquired Orpheus, a spend analytics firm started in Germany, according to a McKinsey press release today.

Spend Matters Europe has more details on the companies, including this insight from Spend Matters Europe GM Jenny Draper:

"We’re seeing more and more that consulting organizations are interested in making tech acquisitions, particularly with specialist, niche tech solutions within the S2P ecosystem, like Orpheus IT.”

Here is the analysis of this deal from Spend Matters Nexus, which offers M&A insights and content specifically written for founders, CEOs, corporate development leaders, and the private equity and investment community interested in the procurement landscape.

Infor acquired by Koch Industries

Infor, a giant in the cloud ERP business, announced that it will be acquired by Koch Industries, which is a client and investor in Infor.

TechCrunch examines the deal and whether Infor will stay private, seek an IPO — or whether Koch will get more involved in the company.

U.S. may withdraw from WTO’s $1.7 trillion pact on contract opportunities

Bloomberg News reports that in keeping with his promise at Davos last month, President Donald Trump launched the first steps "to reform" the World Trade Organization. Administration officials are circulating a draft executive order that could trigger America’s withdrawal from the WTO Government Procurement Agreement (GPA) — a global trade alliance covering government contract opportunities.

The GPA was meant to open government procurement markets to foreign competition and to help make public purchasing more transparent. An American withdrawal would create chaos for foreign companies that bid for access to the U.S.’s $837 billion public procurement market, the report said.

Report: Walmart’s entry into beef supply chain may not drive short term changes to beef market

Last month one of the U.S.' largest food retailers, Walmart, officially entered the beef business after it inaugurated a case-ready beef plant in Georgia after establishing its own Angus supply chain. A new report from CoBank’s Knowledge Exchange division has pointed out that developing a beef supply chain was the retailer's latest move on its vertical integration strategy for food.

Will Sawyer, animal protein economist with CoBank, said: “While Walmart’s new beef strategy could make waves for the industry in the future, in its current state we don’t see it shifting the price and leverage dynamics of U.S. beef production. By our calculations, this new supply chain will account for less than 5% of Walmart’s U.S. beef business and less than 0.5% of U.S. beef production.”

Post-Brexit, UK now wants major tariff relief in U.S. trade deal

Britain wants far-reaching reductions in tariffs from a trade deal with the U.S., Trade Minister Liz Truss said Thursday, setting out the broad aims of a post-Brexit push to secure new free-trade agreements. “We will drive a hard bargain and, as with all negotiations, we will be prepared to walk away if that is in the national interest,” Truss told Parliament, according to a report by Reuters.

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