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BT's Dublin-based procurement unit starts trading

News

BT Sourced, BT Group's autonomous procurement firm started trading this week.

The new unit is on a mission to 'disrupt' how it spends BT Group's annual budget of about €14.8 billion, led by Cyril Pourrat, Chief Procurement Officer at BT, who apparently proposed the change of location and approach whicch was announced last November.

Big Tech hub

The relocation of BT’s procurement function to the Irish Big Tech hub not popular in some quarters, most notably the Prospect white collar workers’ union – but interesting that the UK’s incumbent has chosen to site its procurement function within the European Union post Brexit – presumably to avoid all that red tape?

Pourrat is a fervent reformer of telcos’ procurement practices, with a track record in doing just that at Sprint in the US and stc in the Middle East. He outlines his thinking in this podcast.

The idea is to digitalise procurement by using tools like machine learning and other kinds of AI, plus analytics to procurement to disrupt how the group buys products and services and to digitally transform the whole approach.

Research by TM Forum, published in 2019, found that the telecoms sector wastes $1 billion (€842 million) annually through outdated, inefficient procurement practices.

Sustainability

Pourrat is also big on compliance with environmental, social and governance (EST) goals, and intends to put pressure on suppliers, sorry technology partners, to reduce the 69% of BT’s emissions which it says are due to equipment vendors.

BT’s ESG requirements are set out in its Digital Impact & Sustainability Report.