Down the Procurement Pub with Achilles, Capita, MCA and GO Awards, and Peace

Oddly enough, I haven’t done much pubbing recently, in part because I'm trying the 5:2 diet. Shall I bore you about that? Maybe not today. So in these cold, snowy days, (the A1(M) was decidedly “interesting” in various blizzards yesterday afternoon as I drove home), let’s remember that we are only seven months away from the sunshine (maybe) and heat of the UK’s August Bank Holiday weekend, and Reading & Leeds Music Festivals. Something to look forward to...


Achilles, the supplier information management firm, announced two new senior appointments this week; we wish them good luck! Steve Lane is the new Chief Information Officer, and Mike Viator is Global Oil and Gas Director. Lane was the Chief Technology Officer at the Decision Analytics division of Experian where he was responsible for the global software development function. He will take responsibility for overseeing the development of Achilles’ IT infrastructure and strategy to provide global companies with a single view of all supplier data.

Viator will work from the US as Global Oil & Gas Director for Achilles. Mike brings more than 30 years’ experience in the oil and gas industry, both globally and in the United States. He will oversee Achilles’ 10 oil and gas ‘pre-qualification’ communities across the world including FPAL in the UK and Europe, FPS in Asia Pacific, Siclar in Latin America, JQS in the Nordics, NJQS in Nigeria and FPK in Kazakhstan.


On a slightly related supplier information note, the UK government has sold the Constructionline supplier database to Capita for £35 million after a competitive bidding process. Minister Matthew Hancock said the sale would “cut red tape” to allow the service to “achieve its full potential”. The operation has a database of over 20,000 suppliers, and revenues of £9.3 million and profits of £4.1 million in 2014. That makes it a pretty high multiple of revenue at least for Capita to pay, but they have been operating the service under a concession agreement for some time, so obviously know its potential better than anyone. With the gloss coming off the firm’s share price over the last six months too, Capita perhaps needs some positive coverage and new growth engines.


It’s awards season, and the finalists for the National Government Opportunities (GO) Excellence in Public Procurement Awards 2015/16 have been announced here. The awards dinner is at the Midland Hotel in Manchester on February 26th – and Spend Matters will be there to give you the lowdown on what’s going on. We look forward to seeing lots of our readers in person too!

Different awards, (but with me as a judge as the common factor); the Management Consultancies Association awards shortlist has also just been announced. That dinner is on Thursday 23rd April at the Westminster Park Plaza Hotel. I guess Crown Commercial Service are maybe not going to be guests of honour this year...


Here is one of our favorite bands, Peace, whose "difficult second album" (that is the compulsory cliche we have to use in the rock reviewer world) is out in early February, with their latest "single", World Pleasure.


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