Sramana Mitra: It could very well be that there are opportunities of doing new companies in different verticals in the mid market to achieve similar kinds of integration.
Rob Bonavito: That’s true. Integration is still a challenge. I’d consider it as a roadblock. You look at disparate systems and their ability to communicate is still a challenge. Everyday it’s getting better. If you’re looking at an area to focus in, any of the technologies that could help alleviate that pain point would be an opportunity for an entrepreneur. It’s wide open. Any newer technology that can accelerate that is an opportunity.
Sramana Mitra: The problem there though is in the large enterprises, they have a lot of clout with their suppliers because, often, they are the largest customers. In the mid market, the balance of power is very different. How to drive adoptions is a trickier question for this kind of stuff. Obviously, it’s something that entrepreneurs need to figure out, but it is trickier than the segment that you’re playing in.
Rob Bonavito: That’s true. Times are changing now. Ten years ago, the big buyers told the suppliers what they wanted and how to do it. People are looking at supply chain as a more critical component of their overall business. There is more willingness to adopt new technology and looking at new ways of transmitting information.
Sramana Mitra: In whatever vertical that you’re trying to do something like this, if you bring a number of mid-size companies onto the platform, the platform would have credibility. You can then align the suppliers as well. There are ways of mitigating those kinds of push backs. The trend that you discussed in some level of depth is a trend that we are picking up in our other coverage as well. It’s a very good trend. At some level, it’s an excellent efficiency generator.
My last question, where do you see AI in all this? Right now, everybody is talking about AI in everything. How are you parlaying AI into your strategy. For a long time, it was a buzzword. Right now, it’s penetrating businesses quite significantly.
Rob Bonavito: You’re correct. We have a BI tool. It’s called Spend Radar. You have a lot of challenges around being able to analyze Big Data. Whatever expertise you can design into your product that helps analyze that information is a huge advantage. Everyone is talking about it. People are doing bits and pieces of it. We’re making strides in that area as well. As you mentioned, AI will become a bigger part across the board, especially in the area of Big Data analysis, but we still have a long way to go.
Sramana Mitra: Great. Thank you for your time.