Thanks to All Our Sponsors – You’ve Been Great!

Coming to the end of my time running Spend Matters UK/Europe, it is time to make the traditional valedictory “thank yous”.

So today, I want to express my gratitude to our sponsors over the years. Clearly, without them, for me personally, this website would not exist, and writing would still be a hobby, not a job! I’ve made a comfortable living for 8 years, thank you – I should say it is nowhere near as lucrative as doing 200 billable days a year as an independent consultant, but all in all, it has been more fun and certainly I’ve learnt a lot more than I did in my consulting or indeed CPO previous lives!

When we started here, we got a number of lead sponsors really quite quickly, thanks largely to Jason Busch, namely BravoSolution, Emptoris, Intenda and Trade Extensions. It is interesting to note that three of those no longer exist independently – Emptoris bought by IBM and then disappeared, Bravo incorporated into Jaggaer with more success (at time of writing anyway) and Trade Extensions swallowed up by Coupa. Intenda carries on although it is a rather different business now.

Many others followed, but the amazing thing really was just how good almost all our sponsors were to work with. There is probably only one firm I would hesitate for a moment about working with again, and in the main the people we worked with were professional, intelligent and often great fun too!

From those original sponsors, Sarah Clarke became perhaps the person we worked closest with over the years through the BravoSolution “Real World” sessions, as well as papers and other activities. She remains probably the most effective marketing leader I’ve worked with in the sector (way ahead of most in areas such as using data for contact and lead management) as well as having the ability to change the atmosphere in a room just by walking in and smiling. We have happy memories of many other Bravo (now Jaggaer) people too.

Garry Mansell at Trade Extensions was another early inspiration, open to interesting ideas we had around marketing, and always someone with whom you could debate anything from football to the future of the procurement profession.

Emptoris were great to work with in the early days, and as others came on board, we made new friends. Some were not well-known firms but proved to be interesting (and successful) in their niches such as Pro-Procure and Comensura, where Jon Milton has been someone else who always has interesting ideas and has been enjoyable to work with for several years now.

Bloom is another excellent firm that has gone from strength to strength in the past couple of years – not just through working with us, of course! And riskmethods gave us a chance to get stuck in to the whole risk management area, which has been fascinating, and the teams at both of those firms have also been a pleasure to work with personally and intellectually.

Other sponsors were and are well-known, such as Coupa and SAP Ariba. Alex Kleiner from Coupa has become a good friend, and that firm has always employed really good and nice people, and while it took some time for us to get aligned with Ariba, Justin Sadler-Smith, Samia Calvet and others have been excellent to work with in the past couple of years. Basware is another firm that has provided a number of excellent folks for us to get to know, from the ProcServe days through to Louis Fernandes and Alex Proddow today.

We worked less on the consulting side of the solution provider world, but thanks to Ed Ainsworth and the team at 4C Associates, Guy Strafford and others at Proxima (yes, we should have done more with you Guy!), Mark Webb at Future Purchasing and others I have no doubt missed.

So, as a matter of record, here is the (approximately) chronological list of all the firms we have worked with over the past eight years (defined as those who paid us real money). I guessed there would be about 30; in fact, there are 54!  Thanks again to all of you – it has been a pleasure.


Trade Extensions

Spikes Cavell







Science Warehouse


SIG (Sourcing Interests Group)






Tejari (BravoSolution jv)

QinetiQ Commerce Decisions




Next Level Purchasing




OFS Portal





4C Associates



Edbury Daley




IQ Navigator

Rosslyn Analytics

Wax Digital



Future Purchasing


eWorld (Revolution events)

SAP Ariba





Dun & Bradstreet


HICX Solutions





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