VRM is the ‘Salesforce for the Buyer’
When investing in a B2B enterprise SaaS company, we try to put ourselves in the customers’ shoes. Our two big questions are:
- What pain points does the product address?
- Can the category elevate to a strategic position within the enterprise software landscape?
Great Oaks Venture Capital is excited to announce our investment in Terzo Technologies, the leader in strategic Vendor Relationship Management.
Chief Procurement Officers have lost the arms race against selling organizations. Why? CPO organizations have historically been seen as cost centers, whereas sales teams are viewed as engines of growth.
The result? Sales teams have incredibly sophisticated platforms (“CRMs”) like Salesforce, which help them target, track and document every interaction, with every person at customer organizations. Chief Revenue Officers and senior sales leaders have long understood the power of having the right information at their fingertips for every meeting, every product cycle and every sales pitch. Selling organizations are planning and executing interactions with their buyers to prepare them for the next sales push, without the customers even perceiving their actions, as such.
Sellers typically spend 20-35% of gross sales on selling, CRM, marketing and MarTech - all to influence buyers. They spend tens of millions a year on marketing, field sales, sales enablement and inside selling. They deploy analytics and tactics, which are miles ahead of anything a Chief Procurement Officer can deploy in response. The result is that - all too often - large enterprises are overspending each year and are delivered underperforming services. This crowds out their ability to invest in newer technologies and limits their ability to get the most out of established relationships. This imbalance drags down corporate performance through waste, but more importantly, it holds back innovation and progress.
Where does this leave procurement leaders?
There is a growing consensus amongst CEOs, CFOs, CIOs, CTOs and Chief Product Officers that the Chief Procurement Officer and business spend must be looked at as a more strategic business function. Procurement professionals need their organizations to procure for the needs of the business today, but they also need a seat at the table to steer towards big corporate objectives. Why now? No company operates on a vacuum. All companies are dependent on supplier and vendor ecosystems. Technology is linking companies more tightly. This means that management concepts like ‘agile’, ‘flexible’, ‘resilient’, and ‘innovative’ are fundamentally tied to the vendor ecosystem, not just internal processes.
Too few large enterprises treat Procurement strategically. This isn’t a matter of opinion, you can observe under investment relative to other departments. Today, procurement offices rely on general purpose tools like spreadsheets, email and drives. Simultaneously, they juggle a handful of point solutions for different pieces of the puzzle, like a CLM for contracts and a Procure-to-Pay (P2P) tool for the actual purchase motion. There are smatterings of analytics and newer capabilities like AI spread out over different silos.
Today, market forces and competitive realities are signaling a change. Across almost all sectors, there is a movement towards more investment in vendor management, which is underpinned by relationships. But what to invest in?
Meet the new platform, which was conceived and designed from the ground up by people obsessed with the needs of procurement leaders. A platform that works for the line, but delivers to the C-Suite. Think of all the power of a CRM, not just turned inside out to sell more expensive CRM licenses, but really designed so that buyers have a CRM of their own - a VRM!
- Thousands of people in your organization collaborating on the same page, all the time
- Not more data - more intelligence; at your fingertips
- No more scrambling to prepare supplier or vendor reviews or QBRs, They are always ready
- Deep insights into where to cut and where to invest
- A multi-year transformational journey to up-level procurement to drive strategic execution
Can this category become a new ERP or P2P or CRM? Not just “yes”, but “yes” AND “how did this take so long?” We see Terzo as a new and integral part of the core tools used to manage and direct the large enterprise. The platform is implemented on the line, but delivers insights all the way up to the C-Suite. Ultimately, we see Terzo as the control center for strategic decisions and performance tracking of the business ecosystem, integrating to and from other core systems like ERPs, P2Ps and CLMs. The VRM belongs on this list.
Investing in Terzo
As investors, we look at the immediate capabilities of the product and it checks the boxes on real and immediate pain points in the enterprise. We see Terzo as a category leader, not just a best-in-breed procurement platform. This puts Terzo in the ‘sweet spot’ we like to invest in - where we see clear GTM impetus today to support growth, but also a long-term future with Terzo at the center of the much more strategic, much more collaborative, much more highly prized procurement office of the future. Great Oaks Venture Capital is excited to announce our investment in Terzo Technologies, the leader in strategic Vendor Relationship Management. We are honored to support the incredibly talented founders and team as they bring the best software platform to market for buyers at enterprises.