Is underdog Deem ready for a Cinderella story?
I do love a good story – and fortunately, in the case of Deem, I get to enjoy the ride knowing in advance that it has a happy ending.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with Deem’s VP of Product Management Roger Blumberg. He took me back through the journey Deem has been on and where they plan to go from here. They started as Reardon Commerce in 2000, acquired Ketera in 2010 and rebranded as Deem in 2013.
I feel fortunate that I was not asked to predict the outcome of this story back in 2010, when a legal injunction prevented Deem from doing anything more than maintaining their current customers. I am sure I would have made the wrong call. Four years is a very long time to survive without customer base growth. The fact that Deem is still around to tell their tale demonstrates not only perseverance, but validates their value proposition. They announced their re-launch yesterday (read the press release here).
Deem’s solution, which includes modules for spend analytics, contract management, sourcing, and supplier enablement, is aimed at the needs of midmarket organizations, focused on indirect spend. The solution comes pre-loaded with items, suppliers, and best practice sourcing templates, and they have plans in place to increase the information included in the solution as well as to build out compliance reporting and benchmarking capabilities.
I find it interesting that Deem is moving the negotiation of contract terms into sourcing, allowing them to be addressed during rather than after the sourcing process and supplier award. Also noteworthy: their supplier enablement module can sit on top of any eprocurement platform in need of improved supplier and catalog management. (As a side note, this opportunity to use the solution may improve the chances that no-so-open-to-change procurement professionals would actually consider switching from their current in-house eprocurement system.)
Deem’s corporate personality is evident in their corporate blog. When was the last time you saw a spend management solution provider using Marty McFly to explain their market position? Then again, an organization has to be feisty to come out on top in a situation like this one. CEO Patrick Grady has been at the helm since Deem was founded in 2000. The leadership team has been bolstered with a number of experienced new hires in preparation for this month’s relaunch.
Only time will tell if it was worth the wait, and I am looking forward to seeing how they build out the content and functionality – especially around risk management – but there is no denying that Deem is no ordinary organization.