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Blue Ocean’s Third International Procurement Conference : Experts Look beyond Strategic Sourcing in an International Marketplace

The coveted “Procurement Best Practices Awards 2016” were bagged by Emirates Hospital, Thumbay Group and O&G Engineering Kuwait

Blue Ocean’s Third International Procurement Conference

Dubai : Blue Ocean, the region’s largest knowledge empowerment enterprise held its Third International Procurement Conference (IPSC 2016), at the iconic Atlantis, The Palm, recently. More than 700 top-notch procurement and supply chain professionals from different countries, brainstormed on the future of the procurement and supply chain industry in a war-torn and resource-crunched world.

While increased globalization and advanced use of technology has made supply chains more efficient than ever, risks remained paramount. Experts highlighted the urgent need to go beyond strategic sourcing in the international marketplace and look for sustainable and futuristic solutions to procurement and supply chain issues.

Instituted for the first time in the history of the procurement industry, the Blue Ocean Procurement Best Practices Appreciation Award 2016 were given to the Thumbay Group, O & G Engineering, Kuwait and Emirates Hospital. The awards were instituted to appreciate and raise the bar of procurement practices in the Middle East and given away by the chief guest, Mohammed Al Ali, Vice President, Commercial, First Gulf Bank, UAE.

“By 2020, supply chains will be more agile, better segmented and have advanced forecasting capabilities and high-performing procurement professionals will drive great value for their organizations,” explained Bhanu Pratap, Director of Procurement at Atlantis, The Palm while speaking on “New Trend in Procurement – Procurement 2020.”

Blue Ocean’s Third International Procurement Conference Blue Ocean’s Third International Procurement Conference

Indeed, the time has come for procurement functions to shine and for professionals to take their place at the head of the table. Ramesh Cidambi, Senior Vice President, Information Technology and Logistics at the world’s no. 1 travel retailer, Dubai Duty Free focused on the Retail Merchandising System (RMS) and the way it has helped in the clear visibility of stocks, track stock movements and cost management at location level.

Kurt Warren, Associate Operations Director, Supply and Logistics Department, New York University Abu discussed at length the importance of maintaining a model code of supply chain ethics in the MENA region.

Issues linked to an ageing population and its impact on healthcare procurement was underlined by David McNamara, Director of Logistics, Cleveland Clinic, Abu Dhabi.

The Head of Procurement, ETA Group Rawther A Hameed talked about “Sourcing Strategies and Best Practices for Sustanable Savings” highlighting different procurement models and their relevance to the Middle East Procurement fraternity. Michael Stockdale, General Manager -Supply Chain, Al Fassiliyah Group focused on “ Integration of Supply Chain Strategy and Organisational Strategy “ highlighting the need to align one with the other.

Vibrant panel discussions revolved around “Leading technology Adoption in Business” throwing light on how digital and cloud-based technology is delivering dramatic change in procurement and helping in creating a vision of a technology-driven procurement organization.

High-profile participants at the panel discussion included Srinivas Rao, Procurement Manager, QatarAirways, Kapil Gupta, Director, Solutions Consulting, Sap Ariba, Sameer Makhija, Director, Business Applications, Intertec Systems, Ravi Kumar. Head of Strategy & Innovation, Dubai Trade.

Procuring for Business Sustainability, was a topic discussed at length by Youssef Beydoun, Head of Cargo Planning and Compliance, Dubai Airports –Cargo & Logistics, while focusing on green and ethical procurement practices. The importance of procuring for projects was underlined by Najmul Hussain, Projects Director, Dubai South.

The second panel discussion focused on Disruption in Procurement : The Shift from Savings-driven to Value-driven procurement. Some of the key points of debate were optimization of existing processes, how to change your conversation with your CFO and retraining for new skill requirements. Participants at the panel discussions included Dr. T. Baladhandayutham, Comercial Gas, Oil and Gas Engineering, WLL Kuwait, Shailen Shukla, Head of Logistics, Jumbo Electronics, Abhijeet Devdhar, Head of Procurement, Centrum Dubai, Hozefa Saylawala, Director, Zebra Technologies and Ali Saadedin, Procurement Control Director, EFECO.

Blue Ocean’s Third International Procurement Conference Blue Ocean’s Third International Procurement Conference

The final panel discussion undermined the need for benchmarking in supply chain as companies use the latest technology and manpower skills to push profits and adopt best practices. Among those who brought in their valuable inputs on this topic were Dr. Sathya Menon, Academic Director, Blue Ocean, Rajesh Bhandari, Director, Arihant Foundation, Mazin Hawasli, Head of Procurement, Baniyas Investment Development Company, Ajay Krishnan, Vice President, CSS Group, Abdula Alanazi, Senior Team Lead, Procurement, Amiantit and VP Menon, Managing Partner, UV Consultants.

The conference was the third in an international series, organized by Blue Ocean Academy to initiate dialogue and give a voice to the powerful and dynamic procurement fraternity in the Middle East.

The conference was sponsored by NTCO, SAP Ariba, GCAS, Logical, Sinbo, Haier, CSS, Zebra, Gateway, Hafet, Stor-mat, Intertec, Cricket Sporto, Goldfinch, Jenae Logistics, Procurement Middle East magazine, Wow Digital, bayt.com, Dubai Quality Group and Colourbloom.

The Fourth International Procurement Conference (IPSC 2016) is scheduled to be held in Qatar on August 20, 2016.
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