GCV Powerlist 2020: Ram Jambunathan

Ram Jambunathan has been leading SAP.iO, the corporate venture capital (CVC) subsidiary of Germany-based enterprise software producer SAP, as senior vice-president (SVP) and managing director (MD) since the unit was formed in July 2016.

Jambunathan additionally added the head of corporate strategy role in October 2019 at the parent firm. He said: “As head of corporate strategy I lead a team responsible for developing and aligning long-term strategy across various SAP organisational – board – areas, including cloud and application strategy, go-to-market strategy, technology and SAP’s lines of business.

“The team combines both a deep understanding of enterprise software with a structured approach to problem-solving that drives unique insights and an ability to help ‘see around corners’. Our understanding of where adjacent opportunities and disruption may come is informed by many sources, including the startup ecosystem, and particularly through SAP.iO, SAP’s strategic business unit focused on accelerating innovations and pathfinding new areas relevant to SAP and its customers.

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Hasura Raises $25M in Series B Funding

Hasura, a San Francisco, CA-based data access infrastructure company, raised $25m in series B funding.

The round, which brought the total raised to $36.5m, was led by Lightspeed Venture Partners with participation from existing investors Vertex Ventures US, Nexus Venture Partners, Strive VC and SAP.iO Fund and new angel investors including John Thomspon, the current chairman of Microsoft.

The company is using the funding to accelerate its hiring and investment in its open source and commercial product development to support its millions of users.

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2020 State of Supply Chain Inventory Management Survey Results

 Verusen, an innovator in artificial intelligence, materials inventory and data management technology, announced today the results of its State of Supply Chain Inventory Management survey. The results from this inaugural research come at a pivotal time for enterprise supply chains, as they continue to act in response to the global coronavirus pandemic and the completely unforeseen impacts it has caused―for which the large majority of organizations were unprepared.

The survey showed that while a majority of organizations rated their supply chains’ maturity levels at “high” or “highest,” only 10 percent of them felt fully prepared for the coronavirus impacts. For most organizations, the impact from the pandemic has resulted in massive revenue losses along with employee layoffs and has now put the spotlight squarely on budgets along with the preservation of cash and working capital.

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Building Better Software: Embedded Context Awareness Differentiates Solutions and Improves User Experiences

When startups and development organizations create software, differentiation is everything. Products that set themselves apart from the competition – by offering enhanced functionality or a better user experience, for example – are more likely to win over decision-makers. Adding context awareness to software is one way to create differentiation.

There are two ways to incorporate context awareness into a product: by making it fundamental to the value proposition or by using it to improve the user experience. Each approach has its benefits.

One example where context awareness is fundamental is software based on location data, such as Google Maps. Such products rely on context, including the user’s location, friends who are in the same area, and information about current conditions – like weather or traffic.

More commonly, though, context awareness is used to improve the user experience – yielding small enhancements that can generate big returns. Even a slight improvement in the user experience can compound over time in terms of user retention. Satisfied users spread the word to others, who also become users who share their experience. In this way, increasing the level of context awareness can become a powerful tool for software developers to differentiate their product.

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ClearMetal Adds Amazon’s Former Head of Global Logistics to Board of Directors and New Executives to Advisory Board

ClearMetal, a leader in Continuous Delivery Experience (CDX) for supply chain and logistics solutions, today announced the addition of Ed Feitzinger to its Board along with two new Executive Advisors, Tom Linton and Walter Charles III.

Feitzinger was most recently VP of Global Logistics for Amazon, with prior roles as CEO of UTi Worldwide and VP Global Logistics at HP. At Amazon, Feitzinger was responsible for international inbound and outbound international logistics, as well as customer fulfillment in Amazon’s emerging countries. Linton most recently served as Chief Supply Chain Officer at Flex and was Chief Procurement Officer at both LG and Freescale (News – Alert). Charles served as Senior Vice President and Chief Procurement Officer at Allergan and held similar roles prior at Biogen, Kellogg, Kraft and Johnson & Johnson.

ClearMetal’s software platform helps companies dramatically reduce freight variability and improve customer experience. “E-commerce has made every shipper acutely aware of the impact of the supply chain on customer experience,” said Feitzinger. “I was captivated by how ClearMetal enables dynamic, door to door freight management, increasing on-time delivery over 50%, improving cash-flow, reducing inventory, and enhancing ClearMetal client’s customer experience.”

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Mercaux Customer Experience Application Now Available for Free Trial and Purchase on SAP® App Center

Mercaux announced that its In-store Clienteling, Omnichannel & Data Platform solution is now available for free trial and purchase on SAP® App Center, the digital marketplace for SAP partner offerings. Mercaux’s solutions integrate with SAP Commerce Cloud, to deliver omnichannel capabilities and personalized shopping experiences to retail businesses using SAP solutions.

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RetailNext Announces ShopSafe Initiative to Help Brick-and-Mortar Retailers to Reopen Safely

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the retail industry in ways no one could have imagined. A vast majority of retailers have needed to close doors, leaving many unemployed or furloughed while sales stalled. As the country begins to reopen, the retail industry is looking to stabilize and welcome shoppers back safely. It is imperative the industry keep guests and employees safe and technology can aid in this journey with transparency of crucial occupancy and shopper density metrics to help guide safer experiences in physical stores.

RetailNext, with support from a consortium of private enterprise companies, retailers, and property owners, has created ShopSafe – a not-for-profit enterprise focused on getting American retail businesses open again with infrastructure to deliver real-time occupancy data for shoppers to better understand precautionary measures in place. This free framework delivers transparency to crucial occupancy metrics to help guide safer experiences in physical stores

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Hasura launches managed cloud solution

Hasura is an open-source engine that can connect to PostgreSQL databases and microservices across hybrid- and multi-cloud environments and then automatically build a GraphQL API backend for them, making it easier for developers to then build their own data-driven applications on top of this unified API . For a while now, the San Francisco-based startup has offered a paid version (Hasura Pro) with enterprise-ready reliability and security tools, in addition to its free open-source version. Today, the company launched Hasura  Cloud, which takes the existing Pro version, adds a number of cloud-specific features like dynamic caching, auto-scaling and consumption-based pricing, and brings those together in a fully managed service.

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HR Tech : Les Français attendent que les entreprises réfléchissent à la « qualité de vie en télétravail »

Odoxa et SAP ont interrogés les français sur leurs qualités de vie en télétravail 

Les enseignements clés du sondage :

Les Français attendent que les entreprises réfléchissent à la « qualité de vie en télétravail »

  • Qualité de vie au travail des télétravailleurs: 93% des Français attendent une meilleure réflexion des entreprises.
  • 96% d’entre eux pensent qu’il est important de travailler sur l’équilibre vie privé/ vie professionnelle ; 89% sur le lien entre collègues et 88% sur les risques de burn-out et de surmenage
  • En dehors d’un mail organisationnel (51%), les entreprises ont utilisé peu d’outils pour améliorer la vie au travail des télétravailleurs
  • Equilibre vie pro/vie perso (96%), lien social (89%), risques de burn-out (88%), formation (80%) et management à distance (80%) : toutes les dimensions de la réflexion sont importantes aux yeux des Français.

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En bref, les actus de Flitdesk, SAP.iO et Des Bras en Plus


SAP.iO Foundry Paris lance un nouvel appel à candidatures pour trouver les startups qui formeront la cinquième promotion de son accélérateur. Pour répondre aux défis posés par la crise du COVID-19, cette cohorte sera spécialisée dans l’approvisionnement. Les startups françaises mais aussi européennes peuvent déposer leur candidature jusqu’au 19 juillet pour espérer bénéficier, pendant 10 semaines, du programme d’accélération de SAP

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Plum Continues to Expand Their Enterprise Customer Base, Gaining Bentley Systems as a Customer

Plum, a software-as-a-service company that provides enterprise organizations with the data they need to quantify the potential of their workforce, announced today that they acquired a new enterprise customer, Bentley Systems, the leading global provider of software solutions to engineers, architects, geospatial professionals, constructors, and owner-operators for the design, construction, and operations of infrastructure, including public works, utilities, industrial plants, and digital cities.  

A number of large enterprises, including Scotiabank, Deloitte, SAP, Bloomberg, and Hyundai, are using Plum to enable data-driven decision-making when it comes to their talent acquisition strategies. 

Plum CEO Caitlin MacGregor says, “We are seeing success growing our customer base with enterprise companies that are focused on improving candidate experience, reducing bias in the hiring process, and helping provide efficiency in their recruitment pipeline. We’re excited to support Bentley Systems in these endeavors.” In September Plum announced a $4.2 million round of seed funding to continue to focus on their product strategy and grow their enterprise customer base.

Working in close collaboration with SAP SuccessFactors and as a SAP App Center partner, Plum provides added value to the SuccessFactors recruitment module. The SAP SuccessFactors partnership was a key factor in the decision to purchase Plum, says Bentley Systems’ Chief Talent Officer Florence Zheng. “Leveraging predictive talent data will enable Bentley Systems’ teams to be even more effective in our process and ensure that we are placing the right people in the right roles,” said Zheng. “There are a lot of great tools out there. The integration of Plum in SuccessFactors, besides the value Plum brings to the talent acquisition process, makes it a perfect choice for us.

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SAP.iO Foundry Paris dévoile les 8 startups HR Tech et « Future of Work » de son quatrième programme d’accélération

SAP.iO Foundry Paris annonce le lancement ce jour de son nouveau programme d’accélération HR Tech et du « Future of Work ». L’accélérateur a retenu 8 startups innovantes dans le domaine pour accompagner leur développement technologique et commercial. A l’issue du programme, les technologies des jeunes pousses viendront compléter la solution RH numéro 1 du marché SAP SuccessFactors utilisée par 125 millions d’utilisateurs à travers le monde. Une opportunité unique pour les startups mais également pour SAP qui entend renforcer son offre aux entreprises de technologies intégrées qui améliorent le quotidien et la qualité de vie au travail de leurs employés.

Paris, 24 mars 2020 – SAP.iO Foundry Paris annonce le lancement ce jour de son nouveau programme d’accélération HR Tech et du « Future of Work ». L’accélérateur a retenu 8 startups innovantes dans le domaine pour accompagner leur développement technologique et commercial. A l’issue du programme, les technologies des jeunes pousses viendront compléter la solution RH numéro 1 du marché SAP SuccessFactors utilisée par 125 millions d’utilisateurs à travers le monde. Une opportunité unique pour les startups mais également pour SAP qui entend renforcer son offre aux entreprises de technologies intégrées qui améliorent le quotidien et la qualité de vie au travail de leurs employés

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Deepgram raises $12 million to train custom speech recognition models for businesses

Deepgram, a Y Combinator graduate building tailored speech recognition models, today announced it has raised $12 million in series A financing. CEO and cofounder Scott Stephenson says the proceeds will bolster the development of Deepgram’s platform, which helps enterprises to process meeting, call, and presentation recordings. If all goes according to plan — if Deepgram’s scale eventually matches that of the competition — it could save organizations valuable time by spotlighting key results.

Deepgram leverages a backend speech stack that eschews hand-engineered pipelines for heuristics, stats-based, and fully end-to-end AI processing, with hybrid models trained on PCs equipped with powerful graphics processing units. Each custom model is trained from the ground up and can ingest files in formats ranging from phone calls and podcasts to recorded meetings and videos. Deepgram processes the speech, which is stored in what’s called a “deep representation index” that groups sounds by phonetics as opposed to words. Customers can search for words by the way they sound and, even if they’re misspelled, Deepgram can find them.

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01 Business Forum – L’Hebdo – Samedi 25 janvier

Ce samedi 25 janvier, Daniel Rezlan, président d’Idecsi, Julien Pierrepont, directeur Innovation chez Leyton, Sébastien Gibier, directeur de SAP.iO Foundry Paris, Emile Leclerc, directeur d’études chez Odoxa, Raphaël de Cormis, VP Innovation Labs des solutions d’identité et biométrie chez Thales, Gilles Lévêque, directeur des systèmes d’information (DSI) du Groupe ADP, Emile Gabrié, conseiller juridique et relations institutionnelles à la CNIL et Grégory Serrano, CSMO et co-fondateur d’Invenis étaient les invités de l’émission 01 Business Forum – L’Hebdo présentée par Frédéric Simottel.

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Queen of Raw Named to Sustaining Voices 2020 with big brands

The sustainability conversation around textile waste often centers on heaps of consumers’ discarded clothing. But within the supply chain, there are billions of dollars’ worth of unused fabrics, sitting in mills, warehouses and factories, which are typically destined for landfills or incinerators.

New York-based startup Queen of Raw is saving these textiles for new uses through a marketplace that allows sellers and buyers to more easily move materials ranging from Italian wool and leather to cottons and performance fabrics. The increasingly global marketplace allows shoppers to search for materials nearby to their production facilities when possible, cutting back on the environmental impact of shipping textiles with geolocated matchmaking.

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