Down the Procurement Pub with Scanmarket, Vincent Godfrey, the NHS and the Avalanches

Here is a very bad picture from the social side of the Scanmarket client eSourcing Summit event this week in London! Unlike the picture, the event was very good - stimulating and enjoyable, and we met some really impressive people. As well as the Scanmarket team, that included a bundle of energy who buys for the film and TV industry and told us what it is like to manage procurement stakeholders who happen to be famous film directors; an impressive blonde speed-skating CPO from Belgium; and one of the most knowledgeable senior procurement practitioners I’ve met in terms of his understanding of how to apply technology to the function. More next week anyway.


Vincent gWe hear that Vincent Godfrey has announced his departure from the Ministry of Justice where he has served as Commercial Director for some 7 years. We don’t know where he is going but he has promised to tell us very soon in return for beer.

If you go back 2 or 3 years, we had Smith, Mosco, Thomas and Godfrey as the big hitters in central government procurement – they are all gone now. Godfrey was comfortably the youngest of those, and this really feels like the end of a procurement era. As we reported here, he deserves a lot of credit for the department’s response to the G4S and Serco prisoner tagging scandal, and he will be a big loss if he is leaving the public sector. Good luck to him anyway.


The NHS Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley CCG and NHS Swale CCG (clinical commissioning group) have been allowed by the High Court to continue with a contract award to Virgin Care for community health services.  That follows a challenge from previous incumbent supplier, Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust (KCHFT), who scored higher than Virgin Care for quality, but not cost in the procurement process. But the challenge itself has yet to be judged; just because the award is allowed to proceed does not mean the procurement process was OK.


Do you remember Australian band (producers and creators rather than a true "band" really) the Avalanches? They made one excellent album, using thousands of samples, way back in 2000, and then … nothing. But finally, they are back, with a forthcoming album and this track from it, which is totally bonkers. Rap, calypso, a tuba, the Sound of Music, it’s all in there.  The video is equally odd, fun and disturbing at the same time….


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