General News Content

Afternoon Coffee: Proactis Acquires Esize Holdings BV, Amazon Targeted in Federal Procurement Spat

Proactis announced last week it would acquire Esize, a Netherlands-based provider of end-to-end procurement software, for €15.2 million. The bid to move all of the Defense Department’s data onto the cloud is causing a stir with big-name IT companies, which are saying the contract was tailor-made for Amazon. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

The Amazon Prime Effect: Rising Expectations for E-Commerce Delivery and Fulfillment

If the 100 million-plus shoppers who pay $119 a year for fast shipping via Amazon Prime are any indication, a smooth and expedient delivery and fulfillment process is crucial to e-commerce success. And expectations are rising. According to a recent survey of 3,000 online shoppers from Canada, the U.K. and the U.S., younger generations are particularly critical, with less than half of respondents between the ages of 18 and 34 saying that they receive their orders on time and in perfect condition. These findings are published in a new report from Radial, “The Everyday Essentials of Successful E-Commerce Fulfillment.”

Afternoon Coffee: Suppliers Struggling to Meet Demand Amid Parts Shortage, Beeline Partners with CXC Global

U.S. manufacturing is booming, but suppliers are failing to keep up with demand due to shortages of parts and labor. Beeline announced last week it had formed a partnership with contingent workforce compliance solution specialists CXC Global. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Afternoon Coffee: Trade War Maroons Soybean Shipment in Pacific for a Month, New York City Caps Uber Licenses

Bulk carrier Peak Pegasus has been circling China for a month unable to unload its $20 million shipment of soybeans due to the U.S.-China trade war. New York’s City Council passed legislation Wednesday that caps the number of for-hire vehicles for a year while the city studies the effects of the ridesharing industry. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Commodities Roundup: Down Auto Sales, Chinese Capacity Cuts and Slowing Steel Price Momentum


For the buyers and category managers out there, especially those of you deep in the weeds of buying and managing commodities, here’s a quick rundown of news and thoughts from particular commodity markets. From price movements to policy decisions, our MetalMiner editors scour the landscape for what mattered this week.

Afternoon Coffee: IBM-Maersk Blockchain Initiative Gains Steam, Japan Heatwave Strains Beverage Supply

The IBM-Maersk blockchain initiative dubbed TradeLens got a boost Thursday when the companies announced the venture now includes 94 key supply chain participants. Food and beverage companies are scrambling to maintain supplies of frozen desserts and cold drinks in Japan, which has suffered an unusually long heatwave this summer. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Afternoon Coffee: White House Announces Another $16 Billion of China Tariffs, Voice-Activated Buying Remains Unpopular with Consumers

The U.S. will impose tariffs on another $16 billion of Chinese imports starting Thursday Aug. 23. Voice-activated assistants, like Amazon’s Alexa-powered devices, may be popular tools for music playing and information retrieval, but no company has yet cracked the code of getting consumers to consistently buy things with these devices. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

Prices Move South for Brazilian Soft Commodities on Oversupply and a Weak Real


Spend Matters welcomes this guest post from Corrina Hutchings, senior market analyst at Mintec.

During the Rio Olympics 2016, we wrote an article on Brazil and the country’s major commodities, predominately sugar and coffee. Differences between the market place back then and in recent months are notable, to say the least.

The Rise of the Social Enterprise (Part 3): Are Humans and Robots Smarter Together?

Robots are not our overlords (yet), but they will be our colleagues — if they aren’t already. According to Deloitte’s survey of 11,070 business and HR professionals around the world, the findings of which are published in the colossal 2018 Global Human Capital Trends Report, 47% say that their organizations are already undertaking automation projects. Twenty-four percent are using artificial intelligence and robotics to perform routine tasks, 16% are using automation to augment human skills, and 7% are restructuring work altogether.

The Rise of the Social Enterprise (Part 2): Why Corporate Citizenship is Crucial

As the nature of work changes, so too does our understanding of careers. This is one of the most important trends covered in Deloitte’s 100-page 2018 Global Human Capital Trends Report. While 84% of respondents who took part in Deloitte’s survey deemed the ability to build a 21st-century career as “important” or “very important,” only 37% think they are ready to do so. Part 1 of this series covered C-suite, contingent workforce and compensation trends. Today’s post will discuss four more trends in human capital: corporate citizenship, corporate wellness, longer careers and the redefinition of the career itself.

Afternoon Coffee: Nestle Tracks Baby Food Ingredients on Blockchain, Honda Looks to Expand Supply Base

Nestle is collaborating with IBM and a host of other food manufacturers to test blockchain’s ability to trace the source of the fruits and vegetables that go into its products. A cultural shift is afoot at Honda, the Japanese car maker known globally for its reliance on internally developed technology. Afternoon Coffee brings you the latest in procurement and supply chain news.

U.S. Companies Improve Working Capital Performance — But Is It at the Expense of Suppliers?


U.S. companies’ working capital performance is at its strongest since 2008, according to The Hackett Group. However, this is in large part a result of companies shifting their working capital burden on to their suppliers by extending payment terms. The average days payable outstanding in 2017 was 56.7 days, 3.4 days more than in 2016. This data comes from The Hackett Group’s 2018 U.S. Working Capital Survey of the 1,000 largest non-financial companies with headquarters in the U.S.