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News Article | April 26, 2017
Site: tech.eu

French spend and procurement management software company Ivalua has raised $70 million from private equity firm KKR. Ivalua’s cloud-based software, like its Source-to-Pay (S2P) platform, is used by companies to manage spending and procurement in one platform. Its customer base includes large clients such as Honeywell, the City of New York, and Deutsche Telekom. “The spend management software market is undergoing a huge transformation, coming out from under the shadow of better-known SaaS sectors. Ivalua is a success story in this strategic market,” said David Khuat-Duy, CEO of the company, which is now headquartered in California. The investment from KKR will accelerate the company’s software development as well as help improve its reach into other markets. The market for spend management software is worth nearly $25 billion, said Lucian Schoenefelder, director at KKR. “The market is currently at an interesting inflection point away from really niche solution providers to more full suite providers like Ivalua; at the same time away from legacy on-premise ERP linked software towards more flexible cloud solutions,” he told Tech.eu. KKR will assist Ivalua with its growth in Europe and the US with an eventual push into the Asian market as well as provide business connections for its software. “We have a big portfolio of around 120 companies, mostly PE-backed companies, that are large and profitable and have significant spend,” explained Schoenefelder. These are all companies that need to manage their procurement costs and may use Ivalua, he added. Ivalua previously raised €3 million from Ardian (formerly Axa Private Equity) in 2011, who remain shareholders in the company.

Filipcic A.,University of Ljubljana | Panjan A.,S2P Ltd. | Reid M.,Sport Science and Medicine Unit | Crespo M.,International Tennis Federation | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine | Year: 2013

This article discusses the relationship between success of professional male tennis players according to the country and world region from which they originate and the professional tournament structure in men's tennis in that world region and country. The success of a country or world region was defined by the number of players in the top 300 ATP rankings and was calculated for seven time periods between 1975 and 2008. The results showed the correlations between the total number of top 300 ranked players, the total number of tournaments, and the annual tournament prize money of the specific country. The correlations were nearly perfect in the 1975-1990 period (r = 0.93- 0.95; p < 0.01) but only high in the 2005-2008 period (r = 0.60- 0.64; p < 0.01), suggesting that the association between the number of top 300 ranked tennis players and professional tournaments, while still significant, is in decline. These data should inform the policy and investment decisions of regional and national federations, particularly as they relate to domestic professional tennis tournament structures and to explore opportunities to include professional tournaments of neighbour countries in their player's development programs. © Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2013).

Babic J.,Jozef Stefan Institute | Petric T.,Jozef Stefan Institute | Peternel L.,Jozef Stefan Institute | Sarabon N.,University of Primorska | Sarabon N.,S2P Ltd.
Gait and Posture | Year: 2014

There are many everyday situations in which a supportive hand contact is required for an individual to counteract various postural perturbations. By emulating situations when balance of an individual is challenged, we examined functional role of supportive hand contact at different locations where balance of an individual was perturbed by translational perturbations of the support surface. We examined the effects of handle location, perturbation direction and perturbation intensity on the postural control and the forces generated in the handle.There were significantly larger centre-of-pressure (CoP) displacements for perturbations in posterior direction than for perturbations in anterior direction. Besides, the perturbation intensity significantly affected the peak CoP displacement in both perturbation directions. However, the position of the handle had no effects on the peak CoP displacement. On the contrary, there were significant effects of perturbation direction, perturbation intensity and handle position on the maximal force in the handle. The effect of the handle position was significant for the perturbations in posterior direction where the lowest maximal forces were recorded in the handle located at the shoulder height. They were comparable to the forces in the handle at eye height and significantly lower than the forces in the handle located either lower or further away from the shoulder.In summary, our results indicate that although the location of a supportive hand contact has no effect on the peak CoP displacement of healthy individuals, it affects the forces that an individual needs to exert on the handle in order to counteract support perturbations. © 2014 Elsevier B.V.

Sarabon N.,University of Primorska | Sarabon N.,S2P Ltd | Panjan A.,S2P Ltd | Latash M.,Pennsylvania State University
Gait and Posture | Year: 2013

The effects of healthy aging on postural sway and its rambling and trembling components were studied. Young and elderly subjects stood quietly for 1. min in different postures, and with eyes open and closed. We found that age-related changes in postural sway and its components were similar to those observed in young participants in challenging conditions. These changes may therefore be viewed as secondary to the increased subjective perception of the complexity of postural tasks. Contrary to our expectations, stronger effects of age were seen in characteristics of rambling, not trembling. The commonly accepted hypothesis that older persons rely on vision more was not supported by this study: we found no significant interaction effects of age and vision on any of the sway characteristics. It was concluded that the reported higher reliance on vision in older persons may be task-specific. The results are compatible with the ideas that much of the age-related changes in postural sway emerge at the level of exploring the limits of stability and using the drift-and-act strategy. Our results suggest that the dominant view on rambling and trembling as reflecting supraspinal and peripheral mechanisms, respectively, may be too simplistic. © 2013 Elsevier B.V.

Voglar M.,University of Primorska | Wamerdam J.,VU University Amsterdam | Kingma I.,VU University Amsterdam | Sarabon N.,University of Primorska | And 2 more authors.
PLoS ONE | Year: 2016

The goal of the present study was to determine the effects of prolonged, intermittent flexion on trunk neuromuscular control. Furthermore, the potential beneficial effects of passive upper body support during flexion were investigated. Twenty one healthy young volunteers participated during two separate visits in which they performed 1 hour of intermittent 60 seconds flexion and 30 seconds rest cycles. Flexion was set at 80% lumbar flexion and was performed with or without upper body support. Before and after intermittent flexion exposure, lumbar range of motion was measured using inertial measurement units and trunk stability was assessed during perturbations applied in the forward direction with a force controlled actuator. Closed-loop system identification was used to determine the trunk translational admittance and reflexes as frequency response functions. The admittance describes the actuator displacement as a function of contact force and to assess reflexes muscle activation was related to actuator displacement. Trunk admittance gain decreased after unsupported flexion, while reflex gain and lumbar range of motion increased after both conditions. Significant interaction effects confirmed a larger increase in lumbar range of motion and reflex gains at most frequencies analysed following unsupported flexion in comparison to supported flexion, probably compensating for decreased passive tissue stiffness. In contrast with some previous studies we found that prolonged intermittent flexion decreased trunk admittance, which implies an increase of the lumped intrinsic and reflexive stiffness. This would compensate for decreased stiffness at the cost of an increase in cumulative low back load. Taking into account the differences between conditions it would be preferable to offer upper body support during activities that require prolonged trunk flexion. © 2016 Voglar et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Voglar M.,University of Primorska | Sarabon N.,University of Primorska | Sarabon N.,S2P Ltd
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine | Year: 2014

Therapeutic Kinesio Taping method is used for treatment of various musculo-skeletal conditions. Kinesio Taping might have some small clinically important beneficial effects on range of motion and strength but findings about the effects on proprioception and muscle activation are inconsistent. The aim of this study was to test if Kinesio Taping influences anticipatory postural adjustments and postural reflex reactions. To test the hypothesis twelve healthy young participants were recruited in randomized, participants blinded, placebo controlled cross-over study. In the experimental condition the tape was applied over the paravertebral muscles and in placebo condition sham application of the tape was done transversally over the lumbar region. Timing of anticipatory postural adjustments to fast voluntary arms movement and postural reflex reactions to sudden loading over the hands were measured by means of superficial electromyography before and one hour after each tape application. Results showed no significant differences between Kinesio Taping and placebo taping conditions for any of the analyzed muscles in anticipatory postural adaptations (F1,11 < 0.23, p > 0.64, η2 < 0.04) or postural reflex reactions (F1,11 < 4.16, p > 0.07, η2 < 0.49). Anticipatory postural adjustments of erector spinae and multifidus muscles were initiated significantly earlier after application of taping (regardless of technique) compared to pre-taping (F1,11 = 5.02, p = 0.046, η2 = 0.31 and F1,11 = 6.18, p = 0.030, η2 = 0.36 for erector spinae and multifidus, respectively). Taping application over lumbar region has potential beneficial effects on timing of anticipatory postural adjustments regardless of application technique but no effect on postural reflex reactions in young pain free participants. Further research in patients with low back pain would be encouraged. © Journal of Sports Science and Medicine.

Voglar M.,University of Primorska | Sarabon N.,University of Primorska | Sarabon N.,S2P Ltd.
Journal of Biomechanics | Year: 2014

It has been reported that altered neuromuscular control of the trunk is associated with lower back pain. In this context reflex delays of the trunk muscles have often been assessed but the reliability of the tests has not been well established. The aim of this study was to test the reliability of measuring reflex delays of the trunk muscles after two types of postural perturbations. 24 Healthy subjects participated in the intra-session study and 13 of them repeated the test protocol within 1-3 weeks, to determine inter-session reliability. Postural reflex delays to unexpected loading and unloading of the arms were assessed in a standing unrestrained position. Each subject performed 40 trials of each test in order to evaluate muscle responses of 5 trunk muscles using surface electromyography. Overall reliability increased with higher number of the averaged trials. Good intra-session (ICC3,1>0.75) and moderate (ICC3,1>0.60) inter-session reliability were reached in most of the monitored trunk muscles. Within the performed number of trials we did not observe any significant systematic intra- or inter-session bias effect. Averaging a higher number of consecutive trials would be recommended in future research and clinical practice. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

Sarabon N.,University of Primorska | Sarabon N.,S2P Ltd. | Rosker J.,University of Primorska | Rosker J.,S2P Ltd.
Measurement: Journal of the International Measurement Confederation | Year: 2015

Different balance tests are used to assess age-related decline of movement function. Good basic metric characteristics are in order for a balance test to become a useful assessment tool for clinical and research practice. By measuring balance of 27 young (22.3 ± 3.6 years) and 23 elderly (82.3 ± 9.6 years) adults discrimination power (ROC curve) of five common and one novel balance test was assessed (maximal lunge, quick step, leaning forwards and backwards, star excursion balance test, forward reach and centre-of-pressure (CoP) tracking, respectively). In all of the tests at least one parameter had high discriminating power (ROC area > 0.8, p < 0.05; d > 0.8). CoP displacement derived parameters in the star excursion balance test had high discrimination power and had the potential to give additional information on balance, besides the outreach distance. The interaction effect between age and direction of reach or lean proved to be insignificant, with the frequency of CoP direction changes in anterior-posterior direction during star excursion balance test being the only exception. The results of this study add to the methodological ground base in clinical balance assessment protocols by identifying parameters with the highest discriminating power of the most commonly applied balance assessment tests. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Fonda B.,S2P Ltd. | Panjan A.,S2P Ltd. | Markovic G.,S2P Ltd. | Markovic G.,University of Zagreb | And 2 more authors.
Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology | Year: 2011

The main aim of this project was to study muscle activity patterns during steep uphill cycling (UC) (i.e., with a gradient of 20%) with (1) normal saddle geometry and (2) with adjusted saddle position ASP (i.e., moving the saddle forward and changing the tilt of the saddle by 20%). Based on our preliminary case study, we hypothesized that: (1) during 20% UC muscle activity patterns would be different from those of level cycling (LC) and (2) during 20% UC with ASP muscle activity patterns would resemble those of LC. Twelve trained male cyclists were tested on an electromagnetically braked cycle ergometer under three conditions with the same work rate (80% of maximal power output) and cadence (90. rpm): level (LC), 20% UC and 20% UC with ASP. Electromyographic signals were acquired from m. tibialis anterior (TA), m. soleus (SO), m. gastrocnemius (GC), m. vastus lateralis (VL), m. vastus medialis (VM), m. rectus femoris (RF), m. biceps femoris (BF) and m. gluteus maximus (GM). Compared to LC, 20% UC significantly modified both the timing and the intensity of activity of the selected muscles, while muscles that cross the hip joint were the most affected (RF later onset, earlier offset, shorter range of activity and decrease in peak amplitude of 34%; BF longer range of activity; GM increase in peak amplitude of 44%). These changes in EMG patterns during 20% UC were successfully counteracted by the use of ASP and it was interesting to observe that the use of ASP during 20% UC was perceived positively by all cyclists regarding both comfort and performance. These results could have a practical relevance in terms of improving performance during UC, together with reducing discomfort. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

Sarabon N.,University of Primorska | Sarabon N.,S2P Ltd. | Rosker J.,University of Primorska | Rosker J.,S2P Ltd.
Journal of Electromyography and Kinesiology | Year: 2013

This study explored the effects of a 14-day horizontal bed rest (BR) without countermeasures on postural sway, maximal voluntary torque and precision of voluntary torque matching. Sixteen subjects were tested before, immediately after and two weeks after BR. The increase in frequency and amplitude after BR was comparable for both sway subcomponents (rambling and trembling) in medial-lateral direction. But in anterior-posterior direction, rambling increased more in frequency (-7% vs. +31%, p<. 0.05) while trembling increased more in amplitude (+35% vs. +84%, p<. 0.05). The drop in maximal voluntary torque after BR was present for plantar flexion (p<. 0.05) but not for dorsal flexion. After the BR, the subjects were less precise in the dorsal flexion torque matching task (p<. 0.05). All the observed parameters, except the dorsal flexion torque matching error, returned back to the pre-BR values after the two weeks of re-conditioning. Results of this study indicate that body sway subcomponents responded differently to BR. Based on these findings, it was not possible to draw clear assumptions on the effects of neural and structural changes on body sway. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd.

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