Procurement News from the US: SciQuest/Spend Radar, SAP/Ariba, Oracle OpenWorld, and the Chicago Marathon

To say it was  a busy week is putting it lightly. Here’s just a sample of all that’s been going on at our Chicago headquarters lately (not to mention the next month's crazy schedule), and that with Spend Matters team members Jason Busch and Brianna Tonner running the Chicago Marathon this Sunday and me tackling a rowing marathon tomorrow (42,165 meters for me, split with one teammate). Wish us luck!

Check out further coverage on Spend Matters PRO...

SciQuest Acquires Spend Radar: Company and Customer Analysis (Spend Matters PRO) -- Earlier today on Spend Matters PRO, we featured our first detailed analysis of SciQuest's announced acquisition of Spend Radar. We encourage Spend Matters readers to subscribe to PRO content to gain a level of insight into the deal and what it means for customers, partners, prospects, competitors and investors that may be missing elsewhere in the market.

How to deal with the deal.

Ariba and SAP: Integration, Planning and Solution Roadmaps (Part 1) -- Earlier this week, SAP announced that it had closed its acquisition of Ariba, following the deal's clearance by the US Department of Justice (DOJ). We covered this announcement on Spend Matters andSpend Matters PRO on Monday. Of course what really made the deal real to us beyond the press release was looking at Ariba's listing on Google finance (or lack of it) on Wednesday. Written in virtual stone forever is the final market capitalization of $4.58B, a valuation representing over eight times forward revenue.

Walmart looks to new ventures in South Africa.

Procurement in Sub-Saharan Africa -- Walmart's Success with Massmart (Part 1) -- Occasionally, we get the chance to really expand our lens outside the narrow Western procurement world we operate within (yes, even Asia counts for the "west" in our opinion when we're focused on export sourcing). In our view, especially for developing nations (and continents like Africa), effective procurement and supply chain can have transformative effects on improving the quality of life and purchasing power of everyone on the economic totem pole.

Be sure to actually engage with your suppliers...

Getting Creative With Suppliers: Extracting More By Engagement, Not Extortion (Part 2) -- In the first installment of this series, we looked at a number of observations from a recent Supply Chain Management Review blog post considering some ways to engage suppliers more creatively. At the end of his insightful column on the subject, Rob Swanson suggests what we've come to believe is one of the key tenants of better supplier collaboration and development. Engage early, and engage often. As Swanson puts it, "Do not hesitate to engage your suppliers early in the process and ask the hard questions. Avoid the tendency to keep suppliers at an arm's length. Even if your company does not have a mature supplier management program in place, you will see great opportunities by opening up, sharing your pain points and demonstrating a desire to become partners in each other's successes." (Part 1 here)

Part 2 of Alvarez & Marsal’s popular guest post.

Optimizing Marketing Spend in a Digital World (Part 2) -- Diversify Buys: Digital technology has also spawned many alternatives by which to purchase media, including real-time media exchanges and other vertical markets allowing for media buys on the "spot" market. Even though the process for placing an ad through an agency has not changed dramatically from past practices, alternatives eliminate the need to involve an agency. For example, online services like Google's Adwords and Craigslist can be purchased for a fraction of the cost of traditional media outlets, and without an agency. Fact-based decision making will allow marketers to leverage evaluation of these alternative products to pinpoint markets and media channels for maximum effectiveness of marketing resources. In addition, rapid feedback and real-time adjustments in delivery can be made using predictive analytics.

- Sheena Moore

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