Manufacturers are transitioning to digital and automated procurement workflows due to digitization efforts across the production value chain and industry 4.0. To aid this, startups use artificial intelligence (AI), big data, and blockchain, among others. Further, businesses and government organizations are moving towards sustainable and risk-resilient purchasing processes. The top procurement technology trends empower inventory management and category optimization as well as cater to all supply chain stakeholders. Read more to explore how these trends impact your business.
Innovation Map outlines the Top 7 Procurement Technology Trends & 14 Promising Startups
For this in-depth research on the Top Procurement Technology Trends & Startups, we analyzed a sample of 2 027 global startups & scaleups. The result of this research is data-driven innovation intelligence that improves strategic decision-making by giving you an overview of emerging technologies & startups in the manufacturing and supply chain industries. These insights are derived by working with our Big Data & Artificial Intelligence-powered StartUs Insights Discovery Platform, covering 2 500 000+ startups & scaleups globally. As the world’s largest resource for data on emerging companies, the SaaS platform enables you to identify relevant startups, emerging technologies & future industry trends quickly & exhaustively.
In the Innovation Map below, you get an overview of the Top 7 Procurement Technology Trends & Innovations that impact 2 027 companies worldwide. Moreover, the Procurement Technology Innovation Map reveals 14 hand-picked startups, all working on emerging technologies that advance their field.
Top 7 Procurement Technology Trends
- Sustainable Procurement
- Artificial Intelligence
- Cloud & Mobile Procurement
- Big Data
- Supplier Management
Tree Map reveals the Impact of the Top 7 Procurement Technology Trends
Based on the Procurement Technology Innovation Map, the Tree Map below illustrates the impact of the Top 7 Procurement Technology Trends in 2023. Startups and scaleups are developing novel ways to incorporate feasible sustainable practices into the procurement value chain. Cloud and mobile-based platforms uphold their position as the tool of choice for smart procurement while bringing visibility and flexibility to key processes. Similarly, AI, big data, and blockchain predominantly find use in predictive purchasing and data utilization to improve performance and accuracy. Additionally, supplier relationships and risk management are other key areas where startups and scaleups are advancing sourcing capabilities. Startups are also developing better cybersecurity measures to protect the global e-procurement network.
Global Startup Heat Map covers 2 027 Procurement Technology Startups & Scaleups
The Global Startup Heat Map below highlights the global distribution of the 2 027 exemplary startups & scaleups that we analyzed for this research. Created through the StartUs Insights Discovery Platform, the Heat Map reveals that the US and UK see the most startup activity.
Below, you get to meet 14 out of these 2 027 promising startups & scaleups as well as the solutions they develop. These procurement tech startups are hand-picked based on criteria such as founding year, location, funding raised, & more. Depending on your specific needs, your top picks might look entirely different.
Top 7 Procurement Technology Trends in 2023
1. Sustainable Procurement
Organizations are incorporating sustainable practices in their procurement processes due to governmental regulations and customer interests. Therefore, startups are developing platforms and processes to enable sustainable operations and simplify carbon accounting. Such platforms provide manufacturers with greener alternatives for raw materials, emission-free delivery channels, biodegradable packaging, etc. At the same time, other platforms aid carbon emission tracing and supply chain compliance management. Startups are leveraging procurement analytics, spending audits, and category management to reduce sourcing carbon footprint while maintaining profitability. Sustainable sourcing and procurement is also an important goal of corporate social responsibility (CSR) to bring transparency to the supply chain.
EIVEE empowers Carbon Accountability
Danish startup EIVEE, through its eponymous platform, provides scope 1 to 3 carbon emission accounting. It integrates procurement value chain data and continuously tracks spend-based, activity-based, and supplier input emissions in real time. The platform also offers data-driven insights vetted by procurement and sustainability experts to identify potential emission reduction areas in the supply chain. Businesses use this platform to improve procurement performance and reduce their carbon footprint.
Axiom offers Procurement Intelligence
UK-based startup Axiom develops a procurement intelligence platform that mitigates environmental, social, and governance (ESG) concerns in corporate procurement. The startup’s proprietary AI module, REALESG, combines internal financial data with supplier and market data to deliver intelligence at the point of purchase. It also features real-time predictive insights, dynamic specification enhancement and matching, comparative procurement scenarios, and sentiment analysis. Using these features, corporates and global procurement teams reduce budget wastage, optimize procurement, and receive decision support for sustainable and inclusive procurement.
2. Artificial Intelligence
Startups utilize AI to increase accuracy in procurement tasks such as tendering, auctioning, contract management, error detection, and risk management. AI and machine learning (ML) also automate manual tasks such as data extraction from various sources for effective budgeting and competitor analysis. They enable pattern detection to accelerate strategic procurement and streamline vendor information management, payments, and stock planning. Similarly, natural language processing (NLP) equips procurement teams with dynamic bidding, contract, and pricing negotiation capabilities. In effect, AI enables buyers and suppliers to better predict market conditions and optimize their proposals, offering a strategic edge.
Bidio makes an e-Tendering Platform
Bidio is an Australian startup that provides an end-to-end e-tendering and procurement management platform. It centralizes market data on government tenders and uses AI to provide competitor analysis and industry-wise historical data reviews. Additionally, the platform furnishes information on tender suitability and government spending as well as empowers insight-driven bid strategies. Organizations use Bidio’s platform to save time in navigating and tracking government tendering opportunities and grow revenue by building competitive tenders.
Lhotse enables Autonomous Sourcing
Lhotse is a German startup that offers a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) solution to automate procurement workflows with autonomous sourcing. Its proprietary AI provides autonomous request definition, catalogs, and supplier suggestions, as well as recommends the best match for the requests. The platform’s in-app sourcing and negotiation tools also collect competitive supplier offers to streamline non-strategic spending. It serves as a single source of truth for supplier and procurement team communication, improving transparency.
3. Cloud & Mobile Procurement
Cloud procurement accelerates e-procurement owing to its flexibility, affordability, and reduced time-to-market compared to legacy systems. Startups create cloud-based procurement for easier cross-collaboration using a single interface. Besides, cloud procurement management systems improve customization and visibility, making procure-to-pay processes efficacious. Cloud computing also enables mobile-based procurement and enterprise resource planning (ERP). Mobile procurement equips sourcing teams with enhanced supply chain transparency on the go without the need for expensive software. Such solutions pack all functionalities of regular procurement management systems while offering advanced analytics. Lastly, cloud computing and mobile technologies integrate with other technologies such as AI and big data, aiding activity monitoring.
Pulse aids Proposal Management
Irish startup Pulse develops a cloud-based proposal management console. It allows suppliers to create requests for proposal or tender (RFPs / RFTs) templates and share them with buyers. Moreover, the console stores AI-scanned responses from existing RFPs to suggest best-fitting responses. Its application programming interface (API) links with major accredited tendering sites and enables user content sharing from a single platform. Pulse thus improves tendering accuracy and response times while ensuring high-volume RFP invite catering.
Supplyve makes a Mobile Procurement Platform
US-based startup Supplyve facilitates mobile-based ordering for retailers and vendors. The startup’s mobile application enables catalog reviews, supplier-specific ordering, and auto-generation of purchase orders (POs). Its invoice scanner feature provides vendor price change alerts, budget spending tracking per supplier, forecasting, and return requests. This way, the startup’s mobile solution enables small retailers to simplify manual inventory tracking, product procurement, and pricing analytics.
4. Big Data
Big data and analytics gather data from the sourcing chain and provide opportunities for revenue generation and loss prevention. Buyers and suppliers use big data to cut down direct and indirect costs and better negotiate contract terms. Moreover, it improves strategic procurement planning from source to pay and aids in risk management. The heterogeneity and high volume of data generated from various sources also deliver market intelligence to advance compliance management. Other advantages of leveraging big data include predictive analytics for inventory management, quality assurance, and procurement modeling.
ControlHub provides a Purchase Approval System
US-based startup ControlHub develops centralized procurement and purchasing software. It allows operating teams to request, approve, pay, and reconcile business purchases and expenses through a single platform. The software also supports accounting integration, spending policies, supplier integration, PO creation and processing, and budget tracking while providing a panoramic view of business spending. Further, it facilitates smarter budgets and spending management across corporate procurement and sourcing requirements.
Valerdat enables Automated Purchase Planning
Spanish startup Valerdat creates an AI-powered predictive analytics platform to automate purchase planning. It utilizes ML algorithms and big data to provide demand intelligence and consumption dynamics of products. The platform then optimizes medium and long-term purchase planning through demand forecasting, cost analysis, and purchase distribution. Further, it detects invoice and supply anomalies to reduce time and costs for purchasing departments.
Since procurement involves multiple stakeholders, manufacturers find it difficult to control them and ensure efficient operations. To mitigate this, startups are leveraging blockchain to bring transparency to the value chain. They build tools to track and trace goods or services flow from sourcing to payment. Tamper-proof blockchain solutions also validate product authenticity to prevent supply and monetary fraud. Businesses apply blockchain to securely store information regarding goods movement, bidding transactions, procedure completion, and more. Moreover, procurement stakeholders use smart contracts on peer-to-peer (P2P) networks for direct collaboration with suppliers and automatic execution of agreed-upon terms.
PPE.Exchange offers a Blockchain-enabled Procurement Marketplace
US-based startup PPE.Exchange builds a blockchain-based wholesale marketplace for personal protective equipment (PPE) and other medical supplies. The startup’s platform ensures buyer and seller protection through vendors and compliance verification. Moreover, it features automated bidding, order agreement tracking, and aggregate purchasing for group order discounting. The PO thus becomes a binding contract between the buyer and supplier to ensure payment according to mutually agreed terms. Healthcare workers, businesses, and government agencies use the platform to securely procure medical supplies at competitive prices.
Quillhash increases Procurement Transparency
Indian startup Quillhash builds QuillTrace, a blockchain-based procurement platform. It integrates with existing supply chain management (SCM) systems and tracks products using smart contracts. The platform’s real-time traceability tools monitor logistics conditions, digitally verify assets, and prevent product theft. Additionally, it enables authentic data sharing, product traceability to source, and protects businesses from counterfeiting. This way companies across various industries make their procurement chain transparent, efficient, and secure.
Digitalization of procurement workflows increases the risk of cyber-attacks and data breaches. Therefore, cybersecurity plays a significant role in securing procurement tools and critical business data. Startups and scaleups now incorporate risk management features into their ERP systems and software-as-a-service (SaaS) tools to offer secure services. Financial records and supplier information are critical data that need updated protection against emerging cyber threats. Further, innovative tools enable quick threat identification and response and better analysis of potential risk areas. Risk assessment, data encryption, and network monitoring are some methodologies that startups leverage to improve cyber risk management for manufacturers and corporates.
DetectBee provides Cyber Risk Management-as-a-Service
US-based startup DetectBee offers cyber risk management-as-a-service for supply chains. The startup’s software alerts suppliers and business partners whenever new cyber threats are detected for risk remediation. It does so by providing vulnerability analysis and protection measure recommendations, and verifying whether they are insured against cybersecurity risks. Therefore, the platform allows enterprises and government agencies to defend against phishing, data breaches, and identity fraud.
DMRC simplifies Procurement Fraud Detection
UK-based startup DMRC develops Booly, a blockchain-powered no-code platform for supply chain risk management (SCRM). It simulates market changes using tier-N supply chain mapping tools and what-if scenarios to set up supplier contract risk parameters. The platform’s AI models also detect procurement frauds such as contract tampering, price fixing, bid rigging, and supply vulnerability by continuously monitoring risks. This enables data analysts and finance teams to detect and prevent fraud. Further, the platform identifies fraudulent actors in the supply chain to build resilience.
7. Supplier Management
Managing third-party vendors is a crucial task in enabling a hassle-free sourcing process. Novel software tools to improve supplier engagement, compliance, and relationship management integrate into existing ERP, CRM, and supplier management systems. Supplier lifecycle management is essential to advance strategic and tactical purchasing along with category management. Other emerging tools speed up supplier evaluation and onboarding as well as provide a 360-degree view into their activities. Similarly, supplier performance assessment, optimization, and vendor risk management are issues that startups are tackling with newer technologies.
ProcureNode builds Procurement Management Software
Finnish startup ProcureNode provides multi-channel, end-to-end procurement management software. It monitors direct, indirect, and raw material purchases as well as makes purchase requests to approved suppliers more efficient. For suppliers, the software enables catalog upkeep for a diverse range of offerings and a high volume of buyers. It also offers actionable insights on spending per supplier and transparency in strategic sourcing for small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
Proqura facilitates Supplier Performance Management
US-based startup Proqura makes an e-procurement solution that equips organizations with supplier performance analytics and spending management. The procure-to-pay tool maintains a centralized supplier directory, communication, and translation logs. It tracks each supplier on responsiveness, efficiency, timeliness, and price competitiveness to provide data-driven performance appraisals. Moreover, the tool maintains supplier catalogs and updates supplier profiles for faster order search and re-ordering. Procurement teams use the software to make their business processes systematic, transparent, and efficient.
Discover all Procurement Technology Trends & Startups
Data-driven performance, global collaboration, and novel technologies are making procurement operations more sustainable. Startups are already utilizing the internet of things (IoT) and wearables to make sourcing more connected. However, the future beholds a zero-emission supply chain that is resilient to disruptions such as those posed by the recent pandemic. Inclusive and fit-for-purpose procurement models are also enabling resilient supply chains along with AI and blockchain.
The Procurement Technology Trends & Startups outlined in this report only scratch the surface of trends that we identified during our data-driven innovation & startup scouting process. Among others, sustainability, AI, and blockchain will transform the sector as we know it today. Identifying new opportunities & emerging technologies to implement into your business goes a long way in gaining a competitive advantage. Get in touch to easily & exhaustively scout startups, technologies & trends that matter to you!