Down the Procurement Pub with Supermarkets, Jaggaer, EU Regs and Kanye

Here are Jason Busch and Alex Kleiner enjoying a glass of something this week in London. Jason was making another brief visit, and had a full day workshop to deliver for a client (which I stayed out of) but we managed to see a few friends and consume a variety of beers and wine, purely to be sociable of course.

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Sainsbury’s and Asda are to merge to form a mega-grocery-and-other-stuff retailer. It’s dirven by fear of (in ascending order) Tesco, the discounters (Aldi / Lidl) and Amazon “disrupting” the grocery market as it has so many other sectors.  Mike Coupa, Sainsbury’s CEO, says there will be price cuts of 10% but won’t say on what, how many, where or when. So this is another example of what we in business call “a load of bo***cks” which firms spout during acquisition processes – remember Kraft’s promises about Cadbury factories? But we might come back and look at what this means for the wider grocery supply chain next week.

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Yesterday I was at the BravoSolution Jaggaer customer user group day in London, checking out the latest announcements about product enhancements and getting a better idea of what the future holds for Jaggaer and their clients post the Bravo acquisition. It was a good day, well-attended, and the mood amongst clients was pretty positive about what they were hearing and indeed about the corporate change. More on this to come anyway.

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OOOOHHHH this is interesting (from a Bird & Bird article on the excellent Lexology legal website). Attention all public sector people! A recent European court decision might cause some fundamental issues for public sector procurement, and lead to real issues for some major UK government “framework” contracts. Basically, and very simply, if there is no real “selection” going on at the first stage, merely a qualification process, then it isn’t a procurement, says the court. G-Cloud for instance? Which would mean the contracting authority who calls off from that list has no “protection” in procurement terms and would need to make sure their own procurement was compliant. If you see what I mean … More next week too.

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After his controversial / stupid / thought-provoking comments in recent days, there is a great article here on Pitchfork about why we shouldn’t excuse Kanye West (and others) even if he is a “genius”.  I agree, but he is a genius. With apologies for the language, I think this is (IMO) the best piece of popular music composed this century. Video not bad either. I know most will not agree.

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