Author Archives: JP Morris



Coupa expands AWS relationship, beefs up its business spend management

cloud solutions

Coupa made two announcements Tuesday morning: It’s expanding its relationship with Amazon Web Services to help enterprises with technology spend, and it bolstered its business spend management (BSM) with several new developments.

Best-of-Breed Solutions with Simple Integration Give Businesses More Choice

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Businesses deserve to have the procurement technology that best suits their needs, and with the rise of the cloud and easier integration of best-of-breed solutions, businesses of all sizes can choose from an array of offerings to solve specific problems.

This increased choice stems from the trend toward more open computer networks and APIs, the application programming interface. What the API does is let companies bring data, workflows and in some cases third-party functionalities to their existing backbone system or ERP to create their own version of an end-to-end suite.

As companies mature in their digital transformation from manual processes to automation, they’re in a better position to consider the buffet of solution options that will help them become more strategic.

With $60 million funding round, Ivalua reaches ‘unicorn’ status of $1 billion valuation

Ivalua, likely the fastest growing privately held source-to-pay procurement suite technology provider, announced Tuesday morning that, with its latest funding round, it has gained “unicorn” status for start-ups by reaching $1 billion in valuation.

It raised $60 million from a new investor, Tiger Global Management, and Ardian Growth, one of Ivalua’s early investors that raised its investment level. Tiger Global joins Ivalua’s founders, KKR and Ardian as shareholders, the announcement said.

Read our analysis of SAP Intelligent Spend Group and SAP’s Ariba, Concur, Fieldglass for the last 12 months

Today's news about SAP’s change in leadership at its new division ("Barry Padgett Leaving SAP and new Intelligent Spend Group") had us thinking about Spend Matters’ analysis of the group recently forming and our ongoing coverage of its components: SAP Ariba, SAP Concur and SAP Fieldglass.

Since early 2018, Spend Matters has given PRO and SolutionMap subscribers deep insights into their solutions, including a comparative analysis of SAP Ariba’s S2P offering and a look at SAP Fieldglass’ Digital Network. Subscribers also have gotten head-to-head comparisons of SAP Ariba with competitors like Coupa, Ivalua, Basware, Tradeshift and GEP. (For companies considering SAP’s procurement solutions, Spend Matters’ SolutionMap Technology Selection Services are also available for procurement organizations that want a one-to-one map between their own business requirements and functional performance).

Ivalua Has Been on Spend Matters’ Radar for Years

Long before becoming a $ 1 billion "unicorn" company, Ivalua has been a procurement software provider that’s consistently shown up on the radar of Spend Matters’ analysts for years. We’ve introduced subscribers to an array of Ivalua’s developments for about the last 10 years, including how the spend management provider matches up against the biggest names in the industry.

Check out our coverage, which features SolutionMap data, head-to-head comparisons with its competitors, and PRO analysis over the years. (Some of our first coverage of Ivalua was done in 2010 before we even had subscribers!)

7 Ways to Improve Your Public Procurement, Acquisition Knowledge

Recently, the lessons we’ve drawn from Public Spend Forum articles have focused on doing the basics of public procurement well, and this week’s post will look at a workforce competency model that PSF has helped create to develop procurement professionals by exploring seven competency areas that can take your government-contracting organization to the next level.

After taking what we learned from the beginner’s guide to the procurement cycle, we’ll see what wider lessons we can draw by looking at advice for government procurement workers given by PSF, a sister site of ours.

So what is the Public Procurement Workforce Competency Model? Read on for the highlights.

Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality Are Spicing Up Public Sector Procurement

It’s time to check in on Public Spend Forum, our sister site, to  see what’s happening in public procurement. And what we see isn’t real. Instead it’s augmented reality and virtual reality technology taking hold. AR and VR don’t seem like the best fit for public procurement, but PSF writes that the innovative technologies can play a key role in a number of areas.

The article begins with an overview of the technology, also known as extended reality (xR). It gives these definitions for AR, MR and VR:

Augmented Reality. This is a type of software which can be run on a device (smartphone, tablet) that uses our reality and incorporates images into it.
Mixed Reality. This is a combination of AR and VR and utilizes a handset and a real environment for a more immersive feeling than augmented reality alone.
Virtual Reality: Instead of projecting an image into our environment, VR instead creates a whole new environment. The user wears a headset as well for a completely immersive experience and a 360-degree vision field.


PSF says that xR has many uses, from offering hospital patients a sense of being outside the facility to education to workplace training — to aiding government work.

New Trump Tariffs Are a Top Issue for Supply Chains, Managers of ISM Economic Reports Say

With the Trump administration’s latest tariff increase on goods from China set to start Friday, the managers of ISM’s economic indexes spent part of their Wednesday webinar addressing concerns about the new levy’s effect on the economy, procurement and supply chains.

“I was hoping we wouldn’t still be talking about (tariffs), but alas we still are,” said Timothy Fiore, chair of the Institute for Supply Management’s Manufacturing Business Survey Committee, which puts out the Production Manufacturing Index (PMI) on the first of every month.

“If we’d had this conversation two weeks ago, I would have been more optimistic,” he said. “With the news this week, I don’t know that I have an opinion. But people who know and that I’ve talked to expect the tariffs to go into effect Friday.”

Visibility is Key to Managing CSR Risks in Indirect Spend, EcoVadis Says (Part 3)

Indirect spend often gets overlooked by businesses because the outcomes from buying those goods and services are not the company’s core product, which relies on direct spend. But the potential for lost money and increased risk is so great that businesses must find a way to manage indirect spend.

“The broad reach of indirect spend, coupled with a lack of visibility creates risk, so the key to gaining visibility and managing this risk is to prioritize indirect spend management within an organization and start assessing indirect supplier performance in a formalized way,” said EcoVadis, a risk mitigation provider that offers business sustainability ratings and intelligence.

EcoVadis joined us for a Q&A to explore the next steps to figure out how to identify weak points, prioritize areas to defend against and create a plan for mitigating risks.

At ISM 2019, Jasdeep Sandhu and other ‘30 Under 30’ winners honored

The Institute of Supply Management’s focus is on the future, and no educational session or speech at the ISM 2019 convention in Houston exemplified that more than recognizing Megawatt winner Jasdeep Sandhu and the other “30 under 30” recipients, the top young professionals in the field of supply chain and procurement. “It’s an incredible honor. If you asked me five years ago if I’d be in this position, I wouldn’t believe it,” said Sandhu, a blockchain specialist for the pharma firm GSK who turned 27 just before the early April convention. “Honestly, what it’s done, it has inspired me so much to continue down this path."

Are Supplier Relationships Evolving with Technology for Better or Worse?

As the digital transformation of procurement matures, relationships with suppliers are changing — in good ways and in challenging ways. To give us a close-up view of developments in supplier relationship management, we did a Q&A with Daryl Hammett, the general manager of ConnXus, a provider whose SRM solution helps buyers and suppliers work together to be efficient, responsible and sustainable.