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Spend Matters Future 5 2023 – Why we chose akirolabs

10/26/2023 By

Spend Matters is delighted to announce the 2023 roster for our ‘Future 5‘ list. For the fifth year in a row, our analysts have highlighted five start-ups that excite them the most. This year, the five companies that have proven themselves as potential future trend setters are akirolabs, Calculum, dSilo, Mithra and ORO Labs.

To warrant such attention, these vendors must have a product that is ideally 2 to 5 years old, is used by more than five customers and displays an innovative application of technology. Moreover, these vendors must have less than $10 million in revenue and our analysts must find them both sustainable and growing with a clear momentum. In this series of articles, we explain what these vendors offer, why they are likely to become future members of our ‘50 Procurement Providers to Watch‘ and ‘50 Procurement Providers to Know‘ lists and what challenges they may face.

Get to know all the procurement tech providers that made our lists this year and the methodology behind the selection criteria: 

In no order of preference, today we are sharing the reasoning behind our selection of akirolabs.

What it does

Founded in 2021 by procurement veterans, akirolabs is headquartered in Berlin. It is a digital solution for procurement that aims to transform the role of procurement from a tactical function to a value orchestrator. By leveraging AI and a collaborative approach, akirolabs supports the development of procurement strategies and enables procurement teams to build and execute strategies effectively.

The platform provides a framework called “analyze, strategize, realize” that allows customers to analyze internal requirements and external opportunities, strategize potential courses of action and realize the chosen strategy through procurement performance management and scenario planning. It offers customizable and adaptable features and has been adopted by organizations in various industries.

Why we chose it

akirolabs is a solution that belongs to a market that is underserved, digital category management, even though the discipline of category management has been a staple of procurement activities for a long time and one that is more critical than ever considering the current business environment (volatile, unpredictable). Category management is used to collaboratively solve complex problems, which, in part, explains the low level of digitalization of this business process.

akirolabs addresses this challenge by seamlessly integrating AI technology (pattern recognition, cross-customer comparison and continuous learning), fostering extended collaboration and leveraging diverse data sources. This strategic use of AI allows procurement teams to navigate new territories efficiently. akirolabs focuses on augmenting procurement teams, not just automating processes, in the area of category management, the linchpin of all procurement (strategic) activities.

Any threats or challenges ahead?

Like every Future 5 provider, akirolabs is still a young company and its product will continue to evolve to bring even more value to customers and foster adoption, boosting market penetration. One area of value generation is its level of recommendations and guidance. The company aims to leverage technology pragmatically to avoid the challenges associated with decision trees, which it believes are not suited to a collaborative process like category management and strategic procurement because they need to consider multiple constraints and perspectives to deliver optimal decisions.

The market for category management digital solutions has attracted the attention of several S2P suite vendors that akirolabs will have to consider in its offering and positioning. This is because the suite vendors are ramping up their product to provide their customers with outside-in intelligence and a toolkit to enable them to build and execute pertinent strategies.

Look out for more featured coverage of the Spend Matters Future 5 next week.

On October 31, our analysts hosted a webinar that explained their selection process and what makes a provider stand out.

Reach out if you like to know more about becoming a Future 5.

If you are thinking about buying procurement technology, try consulting Spend Matters TechMatch for a rapid shortlist.

Future 5