Spend Matters Yearly Round-up III: Back With a Vengeance

Welcome from me, Ross Mulkern, to part 3 of my review of the Spend Matters year. Parts 1 and 2 are here and here..

July 2011 brought us… nothing. I mean, I’m sure it brought us some stuff, but according to my notes, nothing of any particular significance happened in July.

Ho hum.

August, however was a veritable firecracker of a month. For a start, our article on the controversial MOD/Alix Partners deal was featured in The Times. I know I’ve mentioned that in every instalment of this round-up so far, but when was the last time you were published in a national broadsheet? Precisely.

It was also in this month that we ran a four part epic entitled “Procurement Outsourcing – current trends and developments”. The series looked at the two key developments that have taken place in outsourcing of late, namely the ability to tailor bespoke commercial and operating models to suit the user, alongside the expanding variety of “outsourcing options” that providers can now offer. I recommend you read the posts for a more in-depth explanation, but the moral of the story is that outsourcing is becoming increasingly relevant with the client’s new found ability to pick and choose what and how they outsource elements of procurement.

September commenced with Coupa’s move into the European market, hiring American Alex Kleiner to take on the role of European VP. Kleiner talked to us about the company’s rather special new cloud-based eSourcing software. Peter was so impressed by the overall user-friendly awesomeness of the product that it inspired him to run yet another three-parter entitled “Coupa – game changers in P2P technology?” over the ensuing fortnight.

Meanwhile, whilst Kleiner prepared to make waves this side of the pond, Peter was jetting off to the US, ostensibly to visit Spend Matters US headquarters and catch a glimpse of famous tax “avoider” and Topshop mogul Sir Philip Green at the chain’s Chicago opening. I also have it on very reliable information that the famous pornography mogul Larry Flint was in town, promoting his illustrious publication with the help of the “Hustler Honeys” just around the corner. Peter strenuously denies any knowledge of this, however.

September 15th played host to the ever glitzy CIPS Supply Management Awards. Thanks are once again in order to BravoSolution, American Express and Hays for sponsoring the event, as well as the obvious congratulations to the winners!

Later that month came the acquisition of Crossgate by SAP. The pair had worked in partnership for some time, with the aim of providing a rival to the Ariba Supplier Network, so news of the merger hardly came as a shock. Coincidentally, Crossgate, BravoSolution Germany and the aforementioned Emptoris acquition Xcitec are all based in Munich. Could this be the new European party capital for procurement types? We hope so!

And we rounded off the quarter by taking a look at a great report from John Hughes and Prof. Marc Day on the future of public procurement, regarding whether the Government should pledge to tax, spend or save. We suspected that the level of thought and detail would blow the minds of most politicians, but it was a worthy attempt to educate and inspire our leaders in the potential for better public procurement!

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