Technology Round-Up – August 2, 2018

CPO Rising’s Technology Round-Up returns today with assortment of supply management technology news and updates from the past month to share with our community. If you are a sourcing, procurement, or spend management solution provider and you have news to share with us, please drop us a note at editor at cporising dot com. Thanks, and enjoy!

Intelligent Technologies a Major Theme of CPO Rising 2018 Report

This year’s iteration of Ardent Partners’ annual benchmark procurement research study, CPO Rising 2018: The Age of Intelligence, focuses on the people, processes, strategies, and technologies that define not just Best-in-Class procurement organizations, but intelligent procurement organizations. And rightly so. As Big Data for procurement gets bigger, and the value of that data appreciates, Chief Procurement Officers (CPOs) and other business leaders are compelled to not only manage the groundswell of data overwhelming procurement teams, but also find innovative and cost-effective ways to tap into that Big Data dividend. Algorithm-based tools, like advanced (Big Data) analytics, Blockchain distributed digital ledgers, machine learning, natural language processing, and virtual assistants, are making quick work of labor- and time-intensive tasks, like complex search and analysis, while augmented reality, connected devices, and robotic process automation are making the world smaller and more manageable. And the best part is that progressive supply management solution providers have begun integrating these innovations within their front-line product offerings. With “the age of intelligence” upon us, it is an exciting time to work in procurement. Read all about it in this year’s CPO Rising research report (click to download – registration required).

Jaggaer Launches Jaguar 18.2, Enhancing User Interface and Experience

JAGGAER, the North Carolina-based provider of source-to-settle solutions, informed us that it has launched Jaguar: 18.2 in an effort to simplify us, user interfacing (UI) and enhance the user experience (UX). Jaggaer developers incorporated customer feedback into their latest release of the software, which includes: Flexible Approval Routing, which enables approvers to add steps in the approval workflow for items that may require more authorization to purchase; Two Clicks and a Buy, which drives faster, more intuitive purchasing that mimics traditional eCommerce UI and ought to enhance UX; LivePrice Plus, which provides pop-up pricing on punch-out catalog items without forcing the buyer to punch out of the eProcurement system to see pricing on the supplier’s site; RateManager, which allows users to set tax rates and codes, either manually or automatically, at check out and have them extend downstream to the payment process; and Routing Network Optimization, which, powered by Advanced Sourcing Optimization, provides buyers and souring teams with optimization analysis tools to analyze individual sourcing routes by cost, risk, and other variables, and enables suppliers/vendors to bid on specific legs of a product’s transportation journey.

AXS Blockchain Adds Another Chain to its Block

We were informed last week that AXS Blockchain Solutions has acquired fellow Vancouver-based Blockchain solutions provider, Chainlinks Lab, for $4 million Canadian. Whereas AXS is a general Blockchain solutions provider that continues to pursue strategic acquisitions, like Chainlinks, the latter provider has worked to incorporate Blockchain-based solutions and artificial intelligence (AI) component technologies into legacy enterprise systems. Chainlinks’ existing market covers parts of the North American telecommunications, logistics, payment, and billing systems industries, which AXS will now be able to access.

AXS is getting in on Chainlinks at an opportune time, as the latter company prepares to launch a beta version of an automated supplier logistics platform, 1Shift Logistics. According to company officials, 1Shift Logistics will reportedly feature: the ability to share updates and alerts in real time; the ability to verify auditable data between trusted parties, like customers, 3PL, shippers, and carriers; customized dashboards that enable tracking, payment, and the ability to measure budgets, financial metrics, and KPIs; real-time shipping market rates and bidding information; cognitive analytics; and a smart contracts and document/information management system. Initial trials slated to begin in Decembe of 2018 and beta testing will begin the following month.

Equidato Technologies Officially Launches SophiaTX Blockchain Platform

Also last week, Equidato Technologies, a Switzerland-based provider of the Blockchain platform, SophiaTX, informed us that it has officially launched the open source, enterprise-ready platform on the Graphene Blockchain. Users can use SophiaTX to track and trace goods and currencies as they make their way from point to point along the distributed, global supply chain. Interested parties are encouraged to explore potential use cases, including eCommerce, logistics, and supplier discovery, as SophiaTX features an API architecture that is compatible with CRM and ERP systems.

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