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E-Sourcing, AI and Game Theory – Edmund Zagorin from Bid Ops

  • 4 min read

Innovation never stops. Alongside the tools that are making manual processes digital, there are also a new breed of tools which are fundamentally changing the way we go about our job. 

How we structure and carry out tenders hasn’t really changed much over the last 20 years. E-sourcing tools have been around since the late 1990s, and have been pretty mainstream for the past 15 or so years (I used them myself way back in 2003)!

There are a lot of cool apps out there that are disrupting the old-school world of procurement. One of these concentrates on simplifying, shortening and using game theory to influence the outcome of sourcing activities. 

Bid Ops was recognised for its disruptive contribution to the procuretech space when it won Best Startup award at the 2019 Digital Procurement World conference in Amsterdam.

This week, I interview Founder and CEO Edmund Zagorin on how they’ve grown, how Covid-19 has changed the landscape and how they’re growing despite cuts to procurement and IT budgets through an innovative business model that delivers value from day 1 to their client base.

Making e-Sourcing Faster and More Effective using AI and Game Theory: Edmund Zagorin from Bid Ops


Bid Ops recently won the best startup award at DPW 2019. 

So, has that propelled growth for BidOps, or is it more down to Covid-19 and everyone needing to deliver more, faster, and with fewer resources?


I ask Edmund how does BidOps differentiates itself from a standard eSourcing tool e.g. SAP Ariba for large organisations, or MarketDojo and RFP360 as a more accessible, cloud based solution for all businesses.

We talk about “Best-in-Breed” cloud based solutions and how the “unbundling” of procurement tech is niching down into more specific applications focusing on one specific area.


BidOps straddles the two niches of being an eSourcing tool and also a platform to utilise AI for simulation of negotiations. I ask Edmund what he sees as being the biggest challenge here, and whether he sees a move-away from more traditional ERP systems for managing RFQs and tenders.

Edmund’s answer about using technology for Sourcing versus using it for P2P optimisation is an interesting insight. Sourcing offers so many opportunities beyond traditional automation and digitisation of operational and transactional practices.


Budgets are tight right now, so I ask Edmund to tell us a little about how Bid Ops has tried to combat this with a more innovative pricing model.


It’s a bit of a hornet’s nets from a legal perspective when you work on a gain share model. How does one prove a saving? Because not everything has a last paid price…


Edmund talks about having to do more with less, and how using gain share to enable immediate implementation of a solution without a lengthy budget approval process is allowing teams to drive results faster. Especially in times where headcount and budgetary constraints are a very real issue for many procurement teams.


How to deal with sceptics: how is Bid Ops able to distinguish and differente itself from some of the more traditional e-sourcing tools which some of us in the procurement space have had a love/hate relationship with over the years? 

There’s a great discussion here about how mutually de-risking the first quote and using game theory in negotiations can lead to a more successful (and shorter, more convenient) outcome from sourcing tenders.


Finally, I ask Edmund the best way to get in touch to learn more about Bid Ops. 

If you’re interested in giving this tool a try, as a certified partner I can also help you learn more about what it can do and connect you to the Bid Ops team for a demo.

How to connect with Edmund:

Bid Ops website

Edmund’s LinkedIn profile

Send Edmund an Email

How to connect with James:

James Meads Consulting website

James’ LinkedIn profile

Book a Call with James

Follow The Procuretech Podcast on LinkedIn