Afternoon Coffee: ERP report forecasts $20 billion spend growth; Global container shipments drop 30%; ’50/50′ video for Simplify Workforce

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The ERP Software Procurement Market Intelligence Report has forecasted over $20 billion in spend growth between 2019 and 2024, Business Wire reports. The implementation of ERP software has been growing and becoming more necessary in the BFSI, IT, manufacturing and automotive industries.

The report shows that ERP software suppliers are increasing investments in AI, RPA and big data analytics that automates their software, Business Wire said. Part of the reason for the increase is the growing shortage of skilled labor as well as strict regulations around the world.

Global container shipments to fall 30%

Due in large part to the coronavirus disruption, global container shipments are expected to fall 30% over the next few months, Supply Chain Brain reports. Warehouses are currently so full that retailers are asking shipping companies to push back deliveries. Shipments have already fallen as much as 15% so far this year, the report said.

The shipping industry is also being hit by restrictions on personnel aimed at curbing the spread of the coronavirus, the report said. One chairman quoted in the report claims that some container ships have been running at only 20% capacity. Second-quarter year-over-year declines will be determined by global governments reopening economies.

Analyst videos highlight Simplify Workforce on new ‘50/50’ lists

Spend Matters’ analysts chose 2020's top procurement technology vendors for the “50 to Know” and the “50 to Watch” lists that were recently published, and our analysts also have done videos about some of the providers that will attend the digital SIG Procurement Technology Summit, which begins May 11. The videos are out now, and Afternoon Coffee will feature one of them each day.

Simplify Workforce, a contingent workforce solution provider:

Analyst Andrew Karpie, our Research Director for Contingent Workforce and Services issues, says, “Simplify Workforce's solution was designed with mid-size businesses in mind. And while the solution may not have the depth of a legacy VMS, it makes up for it in breadth, seamlessness and its ease of use.” See our full Simplify Workforce video here.

The 50/50 lists are part of Spend Matters Almanac, a directory of more than 500 providers that offers deep insights on the players in the procurement technology market.

Amazon fulfillment slows, adds $4 billion to operational costs

Amazon’s shipping costs increased by 49% in the first-quarter compared to levels at the same time period in 2019, reaching $10.9 billion worldwide, Supply Chain Dive said about the company's earnings report. There were $600 million in costs related to the coronavirus, mostly in the form of increased compensation, decreased productivity and personal protective equipment for employees.

In a statement, CEO Jeff Bezos: "Under normal circumstances, in this coming Q2, we’d expect to make some $4 billion or more in operating profit. But these aren’t normal circumstances. Instead, we expect to spend the entirety of that $4 billion, and perhaps a bit more, on COVID-related expenses getting products to customers and keeping employees safe."

U.S. has processed $500 billion in small business loans

More than $500 billion in loans for small businesses have already been made in the U.S., Reuters reports. About $145 billion remains of the small business loan program. The average loan size is about $79,000, according to the report.

So far, the Small Business Administration has processed about 2.2 million loans worth over $175 billion. The second round of funding launched last week, following accusations of large U.S. banks prioritizing loans for their own customers over small businesses.

Spend Matters PRO offer extended for May

Now through May, a Spend Matters' special PRO Expert Survival Pack is available to procurement practitioners only* at up to 50% off. The discount applies to PRO subscription content from our analysts and other services. — Learn more

Read all of Spend Matters’ coronavirus coverage here.

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