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Calculum Inc

Eugene Buckley - Co-Founder and Partner of Calculum Inc.

Supply Chain Sustainability

July 6, 2021
Read time:
4 min

Calculum Inc

Press kit

March 5, 2020
Read time:
1 min

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Let’s talk about the current state of liquidity access in supply chains. Having spent many years pitching, selling, and delivering supply chain liquidity solutions to banks, their corporate clients, and their suppliers across the world, I am at a loss for the fatigue that has set in.

For a relatively straightforward product it has become quagmired in complexity and over wroughtness (not a word, a feeling) and under siege; at least in the mainstream press. Having participated in well over a thousand conversations with suppliers over the years regarding the use of buyer-driven supply chain financing solutions, I found few complaints. All things considered, supplier views towards on-demand access to working capital acknowledge the benefits to their cash conversion cycle. No one is ever thrilled with the associated term extension, however, the benefits of having a working capital lever to leverage as and when required to fund their business operation is evident.

Supply Chain Resilience

Where does it go from here? Education through decision support platforms on balance sheet optimization is key. It’s the vanguard of phase 2.0 of the financial supply chain movement that is about to rejuvenate and recast the mindset on access to liquidity. 

The best example appeared recently in the UK press, where Tesco was criticised for allegedly tying access to payables liquidity for ESG (Environmental, Social and Corporate Governance) initiatives they required their suppliers to sign up to. The question is how do the critics expect suppliers to commit to sustainable practices without access to liquidity to fund the investment? 

ESG initiatives are ultimately driven by end consumers as they seek clean and green manufactured goods & services as well as the elimination of exploitation in supply chains. ESG initiatives align the supply chain with the end consumer mindset and establish the supplier as a sought-after partner. You are dreaming if you think these substantial investments can happen without access to accelerated working capital as it is needed to fund the change in business practice. 

When we look into the future of supply chain liquidity three things come to mind:

  • Just because you can extend terms to your optimized position does not mean you should. 
  • If you view your supply chain as your competitive advantage, then you will focus on strengthening and nurturing that advantage by getting involved in supporting the financial health of your trading partners.
  • Access to liquidity is fundamental to fund change that consumers demand in supply chain sustainability and behaviour. ESG is as much about reputational risk as it is a supply chain imperative.

The role  of AI  & automated payment terms analysis

At Calculum, through AI automation, we reinvent the way companies analyze, manage, and negotiate payment terms. We believe in the need for a data-driven platform that measures, analyzes, and drives outcomes to all market participants where investment is required to change business processes. Imposing your balance sheet will, just because you can, is no longer the way forward. When you compare the ongoing and impressive digitization occurring in the physical supply chain, cobbling together a supply chain liquidity strategy manually on a spreadsheet and emailing it with a “good luck” message just doesn't cut it anymore.

My core belief is that educating supply chain participants on supply chain liquidity, optimization of payment terms aligned with ESG initiatives are critical factors as digital processes take root. What I refer to is providing real-time decision support platforms that pull and analyze industry data as well as create defensible multi-scenario-fed arguments during negotiations between suppliers and buyers. Calculum delivers a common view based on one distributed fact set that all can interact with and shape according to their role and needs in the payment terms negotiation journey.

Today, the management of supply chains is at an inflection point. We, at Calculum, are a part of this change and we are delivering the democratization of financial supply chain data via digitally accurate and timely data sets with artificial intelligence-based analytics. Using advanced algorithms and predictive analytics, Calculum’s mission is to transform the way we select trading partners, negotiate payment terms, assess risk, and improve working capital.

Our partners, banks, and corporate clients are aligned with what can be achieved in the global marketplace - an easier, faster, and automated data approach to holistic payment terms decision making.

In the spirit of Calculum’s headquarters in Miami: Viva la revolución!

Come join us and connect with us.

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