Supply Chain Now
Episode 1151

Over the last couple of couple of decades, the best companies have optimized within the enterprise. But across enterprise? Upstream, downstream, connectivity, collaboration… you have to establish a connection, establish communication, and then continuously collaborate for better efficiency.

-Padhu Raman, Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer, Osa Commerce

Episode Summary

Digital innovation is fueling change in supply chains through new trends and transformational technologies. As customer and consumer demands increase, many retailers, brands, and logistics providers are feeling pressure to optimize their operations to navigate greater complexities and competitive landscapes.

Padhu Raman is the Co-Founder and Chief Product Officer at Osa Commerce. He has a strong track record of creating and implementing innovative solutions for end-to-end commerce, including eCommerce & supply chain technology, fulfillment automation, back-end management, warehouse robotics adoption, sustainability, finance, and 3PL/4PL operations strategy.

In this livestream-based episode, Padhu explores the importance of putting customers at the heart of supply chain operations with hosts Scott Luton and Greg White:

• How collaborative visibility helps forge strong partnerships between suppliers, logistics providers, and other stakeholders

• Why building end-to-end visibility helps improve risk management and drive innovation

• The benefits and challenges of adopting new technologies, such as blockchain, artificial intelligence, robotics, and automation

• How digital capabilities can enhance supply chain efficiency, visibility, and resilience— all with the goal of simplification and customer satisfaction

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:00:03):

Welcome to Supply Chain Now, the voice of global supply chain. Supply Chain Now focuses on the best in the business for our worldwide audience, the people, the technologies, the best practices, and today’s critical issues, the challenges and opportunities. Stay tuned to hear from those making global business happen right here on Supply Chain Now.

Scott Luton (00:00:32):

Hey, good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you are. Scott Luton and Greg White with you here on Supply Chain Now. Welcome to today’s live stream. Gregory, how we doing today?

Greg White (00:00:44):

Very well.

Scott Luton (00:00:45):

Yes?

Greg White (00:00:45):

Really, very well. Yes, and I am — I’m pretty excited to have our guest back. Can I say his name? Come on, let me say his name.

Scott Luton (00:00:52):

Please.

Greg White (00:00:52):

Come on.

Scott Luton (00:00:53):

Please.

Greg White

Padhu, I’m glad to have him back. And what did we determine? It’s been three years?

Scott Luton (00:00:59):

About three years, that’s right.

Greg White (00:01:01):

Three years.

Scott Luton (00:01:02):

And he has not aged a day. We need to get his — get some of his DNA, Greg.

Greg White (00:01:06):

It’s all that running.

Scott Luton (00:01:07):

Oh, yes, which we’ll talk about in just a second. But Greg is kind of letting the cat out of the bag because we do have a friend of the show, repeat guests here, a big show here today. Supply chain leaders, Greg, really everywhere, are trying to make things easier for their teams, their suppliers, and especially for the customer. So, today we’re going to be discussing four ways to reduce complexity in your supply chain. And just saying that, Greg, brings serenity to my mind.

Greg White (00:01:35):

I can feel my blood pressure being lowered, yes.

Scott Luton (00:01:39):

That’s right. All right. It’s a great show. And as Greg mentioned, our dear old friend Padhu Raman with Osa Commerce. He’s going to be joining us momentarily. Doing big, big things out in the industry —

Greg White (00:01:48):

Not just with, co-founder.

Scott Luton (00:01:49):

Right. That’s right. That’s right.

Greg White (00:01:51):

So, I know you want to announce his title. I’m sorry, I’m just on — I’m just on — in spoiler mode today. Spoiler mode.

Scott Luton (00:01:57):

We need that from time to time.

Greg White (00:01:58):

I think so. Yes.

Scott Luton (00:01:59):

But folks, get ready because not only do we get to hear from Padhu and Greg, of course, but we get to hear from all of you all. And we’d love for you to chime in on what we’re going to be talking about here today. Really important, important topic. To that end before we bring on our guest, I’m just going to shoot through a couple of folks. Great to have you here. So, John Peterson is back from Marietta. Great to see you, John. Josh Goody, good morning from once again rainy Seattle.

Greg White (00:02:24):

Ah, OK. The world is back on its axis.

Scott Luton (00:02:27):

That’s right.

Greg White (00:02:27):

It’s raining again in Seattle.

Scott Luton (00:02:29):

All is right again, Josh says. Great to have you back, Josh. Always enjoy your contributions. Jose, via LinkedIn is back with us. Great to see you. Helene, wonderful to see you back. I believe from France, if I’ve got that right, via LinkedIn. Abdullah via LinkedIn, welcome, welcome. Jesus, also via LinkedIn, great to see you.

Scott Luton (00:02:49):

All right. Folks, well, as I mentioned, you’re in for a wonderful show here today. So, with that said, Greg, let’s move right in to introducing our guest here today. Padhu Raman, co-founder and chief product officer at Osa Commerce.

Scott Luton (00:03:07):

Hey, hey. Padhu, how you doing?

Padhu Raman (00:03:09):

I’m doing great, Scott. Very nice to be here again.

Scott Luton (00:03:12):

We are —

Greg White (00:03:12):

I guess we don’t have to ask you what you’ve been up to for the last three years.

Scott Luton (00:03:16):

Really. I mean, you look like it — it hasn’t — you haven’t aged a day. And being in the startup space, we know how tough that can be.

Greg White (00:03:26):

Right.

Scott Luton (00:03:26):

So, kudos to all of your good, healthy habits. I want to ask you, Greg and I, inquiring minds want to know. So, the Peachtree Road Race, Padhu, you’re a fellow at — live in the Atlanta area as well. The Peachtree Road Race held on July 4th each year in Atlanta for over 50 years now. Man, over 50 years. It is the world’s largest 10K road race. which we had no idea. I didn’t, at least. So, with that as a backdrop, because the last one just was a few weeks ago, you were registered to run the Peachtree Road Race in 2024, as well as a couple other marathons. So, tell us why do you run or jog, and why do you do the marathon circuit, Padhu?

Padhu Raman (00:04:09):

It’s like — it’s a good one. I mean, so finally I started three years or four years. I go more from keeping the health, right? Health as a priority and focusing on that. And as part of that, I also started while walking and slowly started running as well, that engaged. It focused on two primary factors, right? One is the physical ability. It automatically helps to improve that. And thanks to shows like Supply Chain Now, which is very educative, very (INAUDIBLE) excitement and engaging. So, I also developed my intellectual ability as well.

Padhu Raman (00:04:43):

So, now I make it two things at the same time. OK. Not only run, also learn about supply chain from the best people you bring guests here, and then create like a more passion about it, right? And that’s the aspect of it. And you won’t believe, as I was doing a lot of things, I just — somebody introduced me to the Strava app. I started implement — using that.

Padhu Raman (00:05:04):

And it resonated similar to Supply Chain where it enabled to collaborate with other runners in that area. They were able to guide me, provide good communication in terms of encouraging motivation. And as part of that, they encouraged me, why don’t you go and run these races? I’ve never — I always used to run for my own as a physical and intellectual ability.

Scott Luton (00:05:25):

Right.

Padhu Raman (00:05:26):

And then it just motivated me to start looking at these competitive races as well. So, I registered one for a 10 miler in October.

Scott Luton (00:05:36):

Right.

Padhu Raman (00:05:36):

And that’s a half a marathon in November of — by — the investing firm QQQ, you know, in Wisco. And there’s a Publix Marathon in 2024 in February. So, just to build up to that. And with that collaborative aspect, I was able to get guidance from people who have run close to 50 marathons and novice like me just starting the first marathon. So, it’s interesting.

Scott Luton (00:06:01):

Well, you — man, you took like a fish to water. So, Greg, you got to be careful. When Padhu runs, he’s getting stronger and smarter. So, watch out competition. Is that right, Greg?

Greg White (00:06:13):

Yes, especially the smarter part. I mean, not that he wasn’t already smarter than I am, but now he’s really literally outrunning me.

Scott Luton (00:06:22):

Oh, man. Well, I can’t wait to get into it. Padhu, as passionate as clearly you are about running and marathons and stuff, you bring the same level of passion that can do passion and innovation to the world of supply chain. We’re going to get into that in just a minute.

Scott Luton (00:06:39):

And by the way, from Crawford Ratnesh [phonetic], Jay. Welcome in, Jay. Hello from Boston, she says. First time attending. Welcome everybody. And we look forward to you all being part of the conversation. Greg, you were going to add something before I segued?

Greg White (00:06:51):

Yes. Well, two things. One, Crawford, let us know if you won trivia last night. He was doing really good when we left. And the other is we need one of those little sounds effects that says, Hi, Padhu. You know, where — like, in every show —

Scott Luton (00:07:08):

Right.

Greg White (00:07:09):

— he’s running. And then everyone could tell us what — you know, that runs or does their exercises during the show. And then we could just have, oh, man, that would be really disruptive though, wasn’t it? A.I.n’t it?

Scott Luton (00:07:20):

Yes. Hey, I have a hard enough time protecting my attention span.

Greg White (00:07:25):

Scott Luton (00:07:25):

So, we’ll look at that. We’ll get Scott works team on that.

Greg White (00:07:27):

Well, since he’s the first, we could really just make it a high to everyone, right?

Scott Luton (00:07:31):

That’s right. Hey — but Padhu, one quick aside. So, Greg mentioned Crawford — this is Crawford Stop Rockets McCarty, and Crawford earned that nickname a tough way a couple years ago. So, Crawford, hope this finds you well, and let us know who won that trivia contest.

Scott Luton (00:07:48):

OK. So, Padhu, we got a lot to get into. And, you know, we want — I want to start with some really good news beyond the running and marathoning, and staying strong and smart, and getting stronger and smarter. You recently attended the Lead Innovation Summit where Osa Commerce, get this, was named one of the leading 100 innovators of 2023. Now, Greg and I warned you all, Padhu isn’t messing around when it comes to driving good change in the industry.

Scott Luton (00:08:16):

So, Padhu, tell us about some of — as you were there networking with, you know, global business leaders, what were some of your key takeaways from this year’s event?

Padhu Raman (00:08:24):

Yes, there are — there were multiple shows I attended, conferences that I attended this year. Starting from Manifest, then ProMat, and Ryder [phonetic] Supply Chain, and now to the Lead. Everything as a team, Manifest was more focused on transportation, the ProMat automation and robotics as a key. The Ryder’s [phonetic] was more planning. And then Lead was more focused on the retail, downstream.

Padhu Raman (00:08:50):

I think the broader focus has been as, one, retail commerce continues to hold very big significance, right? So, the retail is not going away. There are a lot of innovations in that area. The second aspect I really thought was that DTC brands are reaching an inflection point. Even that is a case when even Amazon aggregators as well, that is some things that needs to be focused on.

Padhu Raman (00:09:14):

And a lot of actually, we saw value driven and marketing, which is more in terms of engagement, right? The social commerce is really, really picking up the lot of topics and discussions about it. And also, the not — the Leads are many things but these are the four takeaways that I could take from there. Is the democratization of the luxury brands, right? How that luxury brand is being adopted by the more from a brand — broader, teeny [phonetic], perspective audiences as well. And how is that actually coming into the market as e-commerce as well? What it was not seen before, right? And that is changing.

Padhu Raman (00:09:49):

So, even if you think from a retail perspective, you had the past three decades focused on experience, then it — at Amazon, it became convenience as a factor. Now, engagement social commerce is big, and then future with all the sustainability with e-commerce coming in picture, that is coming into a big highlight.

Scott Luton (00:10:07):

All right. So, you — Padhu, you jumped right out of the gate. That’s a truckload of things to work our way through. Greg, out of all of that, those key takeaways that Padhu shared, what’s one thing that you’d like to pick out and make sure folks are keeping it front and center?

Greg White (00:10:21):

Yes. Well, I think, we have to acknowledge that traditional bricks and mortar is what we used to call it, pre-Covid retail has come crashing back through the door, and people are actually going into stores now. And I think one of the realizations that was — that has occurred with a lot of companies is that the, sort of, false wall that they put up between e-commerce and traditional e-commerce, for lack of a better term for it, is a very big hindrance for them. It creates a lack of visibility. They lose a lot of economies of scale, and it creates, in some cases, an entirely separate organization for what effectively is just another channel of retail.

Greg White (00:11:06):

And I think, you know, what Padhu is trying to do here, you know, with Osa Commerce, I believe, is help to bring those aspects of the business back together, not just within your four walls, but outside your four walls. And more companies need to really be focusing on how to remove unnecessary hindrances, borders, whatever you want to call them from, you know, from their business.

Scott Luton (00:11:33):

Well said Greg. And we’re going to dive into a lot more of that with Padhu. And folks in the cheap seats, in the sky boxes as it were. Hey, let us know. What are your thoughts on the everchanging landscape when it comes to the retail experience as a consumer, which we all are, or how supply chains, what they got to do to keep up with those ever-evolving expectations.

Scott Luton (00:11:54):

OK. So, moving right along Padhu, as we have learned, in some cases the hard way, visibility is absolutely critical. And I would say it’s fast becoming table stakes in global supply chain. But tell us about collaborative visibility, what that means and how it’s relevant to supply chains, retailers, 3PLs, alike.

Padhu Raman (00:12:14):

So, if in fact I’ll quote Greg’s, you know, comments in the past.

Scott Luton (00:12:20):

Oh, he’s going to love that, Padhu.

Padhu Raman (00:12:22):

You know, Greg always says visibility is not just one alone will take you anywhere in the future, right?

Scott Luton (00:12:30):

Yes.

Padhu Raman (00:12:30):

It has to be followed by a very strong insights based on the data, right? And actions around it, right? So, it has to be a collaboration of not only providing the data in the way we can be consumed, but correspondingly analyzing the data, centralizing the data in a more actionable way, right? It’s — that’s the key aspect. That’s where the collaborative visibility comes into picture.

Padhu Raman (00:12:53):

Now, the — that extended to a certain extent where you’re not only enabled to connecting all the ecosystems together. Today, the world has changed our supply chain not within an enterprise, but across an enterprise, right? So, when you have an across enterprise, you have to have visibility in every aspect for the enterprise to perform well, analyzing the data, breaking the data silos, and then driving actions in a more centralized view and a decentralized execution. And that is the key for future.

Scott Luton (00:13:25):

Padhu, that is a beautiful thing. And man, you just lit up my Greg White bingo card with a lot of what you shared there. Because, Padhu, I’m going to double down. When Greg mentioned this — I think he called it visibility and answers, or visibility and solutions, I think was the actual quote a month or so ago. I loved it. It made so much sense to me. And we touted it out there in the marketplace. And Greg, we got some blowback from some, what I’ll call traditionalists out in the industry that kind of want to keep celebrating, you know, the gains we’ve made. But that’s not good enough. That’s not good enough.

Scott Luton (00:13:59):

That’s — and thankfully, Padhu and other real disruptors are continuing to push new heights that we can take the industry and new ways we can serve consumers. But that’s enough for me. Greg, weigh in on what we just heard there from Padhu.

Greg White (00:14:14):

Yes. Well — I mean, I — you know, the — I think the specific quote was, we’ve been whining about visibility for the last 30 year —

Scott Luton (00:14:21):

Long time.

Greg White (00:14:21):

Was it 20 or 30 years? Something like that. And now it’s not enough because what we said was visibility is not enough. It takes actionable, right? It takes actionable recommendations. And that was an eye-opening experience for me because I was like, really, people have been whining about visibility for 30 years because in some form or fashion, not as robust as what Padhu you’re proposing, that visibility has been out there. The ability to do it has been out there and companies have just simply refused to capitalize on it. I think in some cases, because a lot of these old school practitioner, they want to hide what they’re doing and they want to create silos between them and their vendors.

Greg White (00:15:04):

They see this as an adversarial and, sort of, covert operation, right? Rather than an overt and open relationship with where everyone is interdependent on everyone else. And it is strongly to your benefit to share data. Retailers — as Padhu knows, retailers have known this for decades.

Scott Luton (00:15:27):

Yes.

Greg White (00:15:27):

Because they are on the front line with consumers, and consumers demand a lot. And because consumers demand a lot, and they’re literally, and until Covid, we’re physically right in front of these consumers, they hear it big time.

Scott Luton (00:15:41):

Yes.

Greg White (00:15:41):

Believe me, I’m a retailer. I know I’ve been read out by a consumer before. How could you not have a starter for a 72 Chevy? It’s the most popular engine on the planet. Excellent. Anyway, or it was something like that. But I think we have to recognize that that transparency is demanded not by your trading partners. It’s demanded by the consumer and therefore you all must comply.

Scott Luton (00:16:10):

Yes.

Greg White (00:16:10):

Because today the consumer is in control.

Padhu Raman (00:16:13):

I think that the social commerce plays a big aspect, right? If you want to engage with your consumer, you need to provide the right data, the right information. And in fact, hyper-personalization, right now people are actually looking at TikTok videos or — in fact, Google has actually shut down their marketplace and started focusing on your video. YouTube purchase — shopping purchase, right? There, you need to have the real-time integration and interaction so your manufacturer or brand is able to look at the information real-time and cater to that hyper-personalization needs of the end consumer. Right? And that’s where the visibility and connectivity and actions come into picture.

Scott Luton (00:16:51):

Yes, the rubber hits the road. All right. So, we — before we switch gears, and we’re about to get into the four ways to reduce complexity in your supply chain. All righty. Padhu and Greg, this is already one of my favorite recent conversations. I love what we’re talking about here. And, you know, retail is one of the most intriguing aspects of global business right now.

Scott Luton (00:17:11):

But hey, we have the smartest audience, global audience in the world. Let me — we asked and they deliver it. So, let me share a couple quick comments. Memory talks about how we get a lot more value by integrating our delivery channels. Well said. Jose says, visibility and collaboration are integral to the success of modern supply chains. Embracing technologies and practices that improve visibility and encourage collaboration among supply chain partners that across the ecosystem, empowers businesses to stay agile, responsive and customer centric. Always want to say agile in a really long southern way. Agile.

Greg White (00:17:47):

I like agile. And I also like integral, because that’s like the emphatic way of saying it.

Scott Luton (00:17:53):

OK.

Greg White (00:17:53):

That was a great, seriously, that was a great way of saying that.

Scott Luton (00:17:56):

Oh, it — Jonathan, collaboration is key. Data silos that potty reference between trading partners are causing friction, disputes, and lost income for retailers and distributors.

Greg White (00:18:06):

Yes.

Scott Luton (00:18:06):

And finally, Kaya talks about the malls that are dying in many cases and how some commerce, platforms are using them for warehouses. Great comments.

Padhu Raman (00:18:17):

I like — oh, I like all the comments because that’s the reality today, right?

Greg White (00:18:22):

Yes. Exactly.

Scott Luton (00:18:23):

It really is. And folks, I know we can’t get everyone’s comment here today. We’re going to make sure thought Padhu and his team sees them all. Who knows, it might be — lead to a post-livestream, cup of coffee and to share thoughts. But you better be jogging and running to catch up with Padhu.

Greg White (00:18:39):

Yes, I was going to say it might — yes. Get your wind about you because you may have to have this discussion while running.

Scott Luton (00:18:45):

That’s right. That is right. All right. But keep it — keep the comments coming.

Scott Luton (00:18:49):

All right. So, Padhu, I want to get into the central theme. I love checklists and I love reducing complexity, not just in global supply chain but in businesses everywhere. Our teams, we got a lot of pressure on them. And so, it’s incumbent upon us leaders to find ways in making things easier. So, when we talk about the four ways or four other ways to reduce complexity in supply chains, where are we starting, Padhu? What’s number one?

Padhu Raman (00:19:14):

The number one is basically establishing connection, right? The connection across the ecosystems. I’ll give an example, right? Today the market is so big. And I’ll take an example of one of our customers. They have lot of artisans as their customers, right? And majority of these artisans are coming from India, Asia, and they’re also extending to Africa as well. And these artisans, in traditional world, they used to actually sell this product to a consolidator or retailer at a low cost and everything. But now there are new avenues that is coming up where they want to connect directly to these specialized marketplaces, like demand channel. Somebody’s a demand channels like Etsy or Wayfair. There are many other marketplaces where they can actually sell their product.

Padhu Raman (00:19:58):

So, now there are new business model emerging where you have a consolidator who are connecting these artisans to the real network. Before challenge was there, how do you connect it? Today, if you go to India, in remote village, people are using smartphones. Their payment is done through smartphones. In fact, in couple of episodes we talked about Excel and Excel being still used and relevant.

Padhu Raman (00:20:19):

Now, you think about these artisans who may not be that educated and everybody, but they all have access to smartphones in their local language, right? Very simple. They’re able to take the picture of the product, enable the product to go through the streamline, connecting to the one of the marketplaces and selling it.

Padhu Raman (00:20:37):

Now, the challenge comes as, how do I fulfill logistically? How do I consolidate and from India, get the product delivered, come into a household in New York, and somebody’s ordering that specific artisan products from either from India or from Africa or any other place, right? So, connection is a key thing where you are connecting across ecosystems, and with the advancement of technology, that connectivity is becoming more simple, easier, and achievable across multilayers.

Scott Luton (00:21:05):

Love that, Padhu. Greg, your thoughts on the first one. First of four ways, connect — connecting folks, connecting nodes, I’d call it.

Greg White (00:21:14):

Yes. Well, I mean, you — you know, that’s, I mean, that’s the essence of visibility, isn’t it? I mean, you have to know what your supply chain looks like. Who your partners are? Who your customers are, right? All of that. So, it’s got to be the core of what you do. It’s also very, very difficult to do. I know lots of companies have been trying to do this. Some of the largest in the world —

Scott Luton (00:21:38):

Right.

Greg White (00:21:38):

— have been trying to do this. And it’s utterly impossible because I think what a lot of — certainly a lot of consumers don’t think about. Obviously, politicians and administrators don’t think about because of the onerous burden they’ve put on companies now with the scope three emission standards and things like that. Is that there are upwards of five, seven or nine tiers of suppliers. Companies that, for instance, a Walmart may be doing business with that they don’t even know exists because they’re a vendor of a vendor of a vendor of a vendor of a vendor of a vendor, right, to Walmart.

Greg White (00:22:15):

So, they don’t know exist. And that is — that’s part of the trouble for these companies, is they don’t know who’s in their network. So, that connection is absolutely mission critical.

Scott Luton (00:22:28):

Well said. Well said. All right. So, that’s the first of four. We got three more truckloads of actual insights that come from Padhu. So, Padhu, what is number two on our list?

Padhu Raman (00:22:40):

Communication, right? Once you’re established, as Greg said, when you’re communicating across and then looping them, because ultimately today with advancement, you are connecting the end demand to the supply, and the supply could be ordered be — in a bulk or going through multi-levels of consolidation. But how do you communicate, right?

Padhu Raman (00:23:00):

The communication has to be very clearly established. Now, I can see the demand and supply, and you can plan well now, find the best logistic way of delivering it. I’ll give you another use case using brand aggregators as an example. You saw a big growth of brand aggregators in the past three years, right? And actually. now they’re tapering down, and again, consolidating and happening in that area as well. But brand aggregators by nature, you — they’re consolidating lot of brands, either selling in Amazon, Walmart, or Target, or any of the marketplaces. The reason they’re consolidating is basically to optimize on the inventory or efficiency of delivery and everything.

Padhu Raman (00:23:38):

Now, by nature, they have multiple demand channels, multiple brand selling, multiple fulfillment sources they may have inherited then want to operate it in the same model till they’re able to consolidate and reach an efficiency. So, communication, whether across the fulfillment players, the transportation providers, or the suppliers, or the manufacturers, all this complex communication can happen as they are scaling the business. Right?

Scott Luton (00:24:03):

Yes.

Padhu Raman (00:24:03):

So, you connect and you establish communication.

Scott Luton (00:24:05):

Yes. And, Greg, I’m get your thought here, but one of the things that comes to my mind as Padhu was kind of sharing that example was all the different ways, as we grow, we’re adding tons more complexity to our businesses, our supply chains, you name it. And so, naturally we got to find ways as we go. It’s like the rollercoaster of change, right? Adding more complexity, and then we got to strip it out so we can grow more and add a little more complexity again. Greg, your thoughts with the — on this second one of communicate?

Greg White (00:24:32):

Yes. Well, particularly in manufacturing or brand management acquisition has become the primary means of growth. And, you know, when that occurs, you have two teams of — two complete teams. You have two sets of technology. You have two sets of production and transportation. Just imagine, everything that goes into a business has now been duplicated

Scott Luton (00:25:00):

Right.

Greg White (00:25:01):

Right? So, there’s a ton of opportunity, right, by, you know, by connecting, of course, but because of this, the communication is very difficult. And you have to figure out where you’re going to apply those economies of scale which takes communication, hopefully, upfront as you plan for these acquisitions, and then to the acquired companies, and then among the acquired companies to create a singular whole at some point, right?

Greg White (00:25:34):

So, it becomes a very critical operation and it’s harder than it looks. I mean, I think that’s — the difficulty is, these words are important but they are so complex, which is why there are problems for Padhu to solve, right?

Scott Luton (00:25:49):

Yes.

Greg White (00:25:50):

This means of growth acquisition creates incredible inefficiencies with — at least temporary inefficiencies within a company on the path to getting to incredible efficiencies.

Padhu Raman (00:26:03):

And just adding to Greg’s one part of thought is also this — the complexity in the communication, not only for the mechanism, but also the timing, right? Everybody wants it to be real time so they can make proactive decisions rather than reactive decisions, right?

Scott Luton (00:26:16):

Yes.

Padhu Raman (00:26:16):

As Greg said before, all these retails, processes, establishment has been for 30 plus years and everything have been innovating continuously. Amazon did a lot of things as well. And many people are trying it. But still the problem exists in terms of having real-time access to information, breaking the data silos, communicating effectively, whether still e-mail is the best communication tool everybody’s using, but that’s OK. But how do you absorb that and then still make that communication easier and productive?

Scott Luton (00:26:46):

Well said, Padhu. OK. Let me — before we move on to number three. I want to add just a couple quick comments here. We got a bunch of them. And Padhu, you and your team will enjoy going back and looking at these. Memory says, developing those relationships to harness other people’s power, power sources and resources to advance supply chain overall performance for the whole ecosystem. Well said, Memory. Crawford is enjoying what you’re sharing, Padhu. He says, everyone struggles with connecting data. Doing it poorly can result in your data lake becoming a data swamp.

Greg White (00:27:17):

Yes.

Scott Luton (00:27:17):

Love the insights, Padhu. And —

Greg White (00:27:19):

Which is great for gator fishing, but not for data retrieval.

Scott Luton (00:27:22):

That is right. And one more point. We got so many, but one more point here I want to add a little news item. Padhu represents to me lots of constructive dissatisfaction, and that is a brand mantra of UPS, of course. And John Peterson reports, speaking of communicating, tentative deals struck between UPS and Teamsters. So, we’ll dive into that really, really soon. But I appreciate —

Greg White (00:27:46):

You know, what’s the most important thing about that announcement? Thank you, John for that. The most important thing about that announcement, Scott, is we were right.

Scott Luton (00:27:53):

That’s right. That’s right. Oh, man.

Greg White (00:27:56):

Yesterday on a show, we predicted that the Teamsters would back down and, yay.

Scott Luton (00:28:04):

That’s right. I can’t wait to learn [phonetic] more.

Greg White (00:28:05):

I mean — I’m sorry, Scott. The most important thing is that it’s saved commerce and jobs. Not that we were right.

Scott Luton (00:28:11):

That’s right.

Greg White (00:28:12):

That’s second — it’s second, we were right.

Scott Luton (00:28:15):

OK. All right. So, Padhu — and thanks. You all keep the good stuff coming. All right. So, we’ve — we’re halfway through our list of four ways to reduce complexity in your supply chain. Lots have been there, done that, expertise from Padhu. So, we’ve talked about — number one was connect. Number two was communicate. What is the third, Padhu?

Padhu Raman (00:28:33):

The topic we’ve been talking, collaborate, right? Continuously collaborate across the ecosystem. We have multi-tiers, right? As Greg said, there’s a vendor, and vendor, and vendor and vendor. Now, the — with the establishment of technology, we are able to connect your end customer to your end supplier, right? The end level of — loop level of connectivity. Everybody looking at the same data.

Padhu Raman (00:28:58):

Because what happens in collaboration is able to — in three things, right? One, it increases the operational efficiency, right? Ultimately, you want to continuously improvise. Supply chain over a period of time is continuously working on improving that, right? Next, you want to look at productivity. How do I increase my productivity? There’s a challenge in the labor, right? Just a quote from whether what happens with the UPS and Teamsters plan challenge there, right?

Scott Luton (00:29:23):

Right.

Greg White (00:29:23):

Right.

Padhu Raman (00:29:23):

If you don’t have it, how do you get labor? And labor has been a big problem. And before Covid and post Covid as well.

Greg White (00:29:29):

Right.

Padhu Raman (00:29:29):

We have not reached that normalcy state, right?

Scott Luton (00:29:32):

Yes.

Padhu Raman (00:29:32):

Having run a fulfillment center, I can tell you the challenges that you face with labor and everything, right? So, you have to have — continuously looking at productivity improvements and also efficiency, right? Efficiency becomes — and not only within an enterprise but across an enterprise, right? Because that is the key. Even the best of the companies that optimized over a couple of decades within an enterprise. But across the enterprise, upstream, downstream, connectivity, establishing collaboration. So, you have established a connection, established a communication, and then continuously collaborate for better efficiency.

Scott Luton (00:30:06):

All right. Padhu, I love that. This is a great list so far. Greg, weigh in on what you heard there with the third one on the list of collaborate.

Greg White (00:30:14):

So, this has been a long-time initiative for retail. In fact, I come from the days, a decade or so ago, where this whole notion of CPFR, collaborative planning, forecasting, and replenishment, was one means of collaboration between companies where each would share their capacities along with their partner’s demand and kind of create this almost purchase orderless flow of goods because of that. But you have to share a lot of data.

Greg White (00:30:49):

So, I want to be clear that these are not new problems.

Scott Luton (00:30:55):

Yes.

Greg White (00:30:56):

What Padhu is introducing is a new perspective on these problems. And we now have so much more robust data and so much more capable technology, right? And technology that can learn in the same way that humans do, except at hyper-speed and also never forgets, so that’s A.I., in case anybody’s wondering, we had to say it because we’re on a supply chain show.

Greg White (00:31:23):

And it’s not ChatGPT, right? It’s more than a party trick. This is real, real learning technology that can infer and learn new things, not just regurgitate other things. So, I think that’s — that capability is what makes this problem newly solvable and more effectively solvable because so — there have been so many fits and starts in supply chain, as we all know, as practitioners in attacking these problems.

Greg White (00:31:54):

And so, that’s what — I wanted to make sure we get that out there. That the availability of robust data and the availability of highly capable technology and adaptable technology, agile technology, Scott, let’s call it that, agile technology now gives us a new means and a new capability to solve these problems.

Scott Luton (00:32:15):

Well said. Love the context. Very important. And as we’re saying, agile in a distinctly southern way. Genuine is another word, if you say it that way. It sounds like you’re where I’m from.

Greg White (00:32:26):

I love living in the south, man. I love — you guys have your own language down here.

Scott Luton (00:32:30):

We do. We do.

Scott Luton (00:32:31):

All right. So, Padhu, you’re walking us through, as Greg mentioned, a very important point, not old problems, but new and exciting ways of addressing old problems and some of the newer ones. So, we’ve talked about connect, communicate, and collaborate. Who would’ve thought that Vanilla Ice back in the early ’90s was just trying to find new ways of removing complexity from supply chains. OK. So, Padhu what is number four on our list?

Padhu Raman (00:32:54):

Number four is actually a little different, right? That all the three that has been traditionally been there and we are trying to using technology to solve in a much better way. It’s the technology, also as Greg mentioned, is A.I. factor coming in. It’s a coexistence. The coexistence with multiple different systems, right?

Padhu Raman (00:33:13):

We are — because what traditionally we had, we had automation and where human was driving it, we had a — some level of automation mission — man mission. With A.I., that has actually exponentially grown in a different level of man mission integration, right? So, you are now may have a system and human actually operating a system, talking to other side and A.I. — an actual intelligence talking to an artificial intelligence system, right? How do those actually coexist and talk and make effective decisions? And that is actually becoming more complex because one, most of the players are in a different level of technology maturity.

Padhu Raman (00:33:51):

Some are civil operating Excel. Some are using the advanced phone, smartphones, which can read a — scan a product automatically. It can derive the product descriptions and connect to the channels and enable to sell. And some are, you know, in between, right? We are ERP systems. We are WMS in different level of maturity. And all of this is connecting to the automation and robotics as well, right?

Padhu Raman (00:34:15):

And how we coexist with four key factors under that, right? One is in fact, Professor Yossi Sheffi actually talks about in his book, the recent book, and I think he also — on this show as well.

Scott Luton (00:34:24):

Yes.

Padhu Raman (00:34:25):

Where he talks about four key things which is important from a coexisting standpoint. One is interoperability. Interoperability across all systems, not only the traditional systems, but also A.I. and the other systems as well, right?

Scott Luton (00:34:39):

Yes.

Padhu Raman (00:34:39):

Now, authority of balance. Who actually will own the authority and make the decision? Is it A.I. overriding humans or humans overriding A.I.? Which one takes the precedence, right? Transparency is always there because once you connect, communicate, and collaborate, you have the transparency of data. In just matter of what is accuracy of data to make those decisions and establishing a mutual learning, right?

Padhu Raman (00:35:01):

So, that coexistence is very important. I’ll give you one simple use case, which I have seen in practically as well. So, we have multiple marketplaces. The brands want to be in every marketplace. The customers are shopping. So, you have an order in Walmart, I order in Amazon, but most of the time brands are actually outsourcing to one single fulfillment center, either their own fulfillment center or through a 3PL. Say the 3PL is implementing automation system or robotic system. It could be a — there’s a concept called goods to person, which basically the goods comes to the person, the person picks it, right? If that — if the integration of understanding that the customer has placed the order from two different marketplaces, it’s efficient to store the product in one robotic system and it brings in, and picking that, that level of complex exchange of information has to be streamlined, right? And that is where the man mission complexity comes into picture. How multiple system coexist and how we can derive efficiency out of it.

Scott Luton (00:36:01):

OK. All right. So, Greg weigh in. You know, Padhu shared a lot on the delivery and the truckload delivery of the fourth one here of coexist. But pick something there that folks got to keep front and center.

Greg White (00:36:15):

Well, it’s the interoperability. I mean it — you know, you’re leading to that point with every one of the pre — prior steps, right? But the ability to share that data and action it is critical, and oh, so difficult because the 3PL uses a different — may use a different ERP or operational or WMS or other systems than the retailer does, or then the manufacturer does.

Greg White (00:36:47):

And so, creating that connection, right, interoperability between these companies is greater than just connecting them. It’s reconciling those differences and turning them into something greater than just data sharing into an action that can be derived from reconciling those technology differences, and data differences, and probably business process differences into something that benefits both parties, right, by streamlining that process. So, you know, that to me, that —

Padhu Raman (00:37:26):

Interoperability.

Greg White (00:37:27):

Interoperability. I didn’t say it right then either, but I said it faster so it sounded better. Anyway, you know, that interoperability — that’s the last time I’m trying it. OK?

Scott Luton (00:37:39):

OK. All right.

Greg White (00:37:40):

Is — it’s crucial. It’s just like the communication between human beings or enterprises. It’s the partnering aspect of that, of the enterprises, their technologies, their data, their operational organizations or business processes.

Scott Luton (00:37:57):

Yes. Not just coexisting, Padhu, I would suggest co-thriving.

Padhu Raman (00:38:03):

Co-thriving.

(CROSSTALK)

Padhu Raman (00:38:04):

I will steal this one. I will use it —

Scott Luton (00:38:06):

Please.

Padhu Raman (00:38:07):

— in my —

Scott Luton (00:38:07):

It’s yours.

Padhu Raman (00:38:08):

— future investor meetings, I’ll use that one.

Scott Luton (00:38:11):

All right. Good, good, good. Wait, we’ve got a ton. We still — we’re only halfway through the show. We got a ton of great comments here. I want to share a couple here. So, Gerardo, great to have you here with us today. Says, I was it a green — earlier point, Greg met –Greg made, he says, remember those days, centuries ago, when having access to Walmart retail link was a gold mine of data to run CPFR.

Greg White (00:38:31):

Right, right.

Scott Luton (00:38:32):

Reminiscing the good old days. Jose says, the benefits of combining visibility and collaboration are endless and set you one step ahead. Love that. It’s very poetic.

Greg White (00:38:40):

Oh, look at that, Jose, right into the marketing mantra.

Scott Luton (00:38:44):

Right? Bonita —

Padhu Raman (00:38:46):

Jose is our great partner.

Scott Luton (00:38:48):

Bonita says, collaborate and listen. Vanilla Ice reference cracks me up, Scott. Hey, we try. We try to keep everybody on their toes. OK. And I got to add this one. Ryan says, it is a tough word and he doesn’t envy us trying to have to say interoperability.

Greg White (00:39:00):

Thanks, Ryan. I appreciate the sport, man.

Scott Luton (00:39:02):

All right. And so, Padhu, you got some great questions there in the chat. We’ll let you and your team get back to all of our wonderful cheap seats, members on some of those questions. I want to — oh, one other mark — and to Amanda and Catherine, as always, thank you for driving production behind the scenes.

Scott Luton (00:39:19):

Padhu mentioned Dr. Yossi Sheffi, and we had a great conversation, Greg and I did, with Yossi. If you could drop that link to that chat we published probably a week or two ago, that would be wonderful. OK. So, Padhu, we’ve got our four things, connect, communicate, collaborate, coexisting, co-thriving, whatever you’d like to go with there. I love the context and the examples behind all those things. So, folks, let us know your favorite part of those. I want to move forward before we make sure folks know what Osa Commerce does and some other resources. Padhu, when it comes to investing in new technologies, right? We’ve been in that do loop for a long time. Give our audience a few tips as to how to make sure it saves the business money amongst other things.

Padhu Raman (00:40:06):

It’s a good question. So, the one primary aspect is with the current supply chain. You have to move to a technology which supports a more of an ecosystem model, right? Because ultimately one system cannot solve everything in the supply chain. It has to be, again, focusing on these para — four principles that is there. You are actually going into an ecosystem model, which enables you whether you want an inward visibility, whether you are trying to focus on a post-customer engagement.

Padhu Raman (00:40:35):

Because one other thing that you all remember, today’s world, when you’re going to different marketplaces, when the customer walks out from Amazon or Walmart or shops, you always say, I shop in Amazon or Walmart. The brand is actually losing that value, right? So, you need to have process where you are doing a post-order engagement. And then again, it comes to that ecosystem model where you are trying to engage with a customer.

Padhu Raman (00:40:55):

I’ll give you an example. We have a partnership with a company called, Undocked. And they actually put a barcode or references on the physical product. When the physical product reaches the customer, they can scan and then all the interaction can happen. Engagement can happen, right? So, one look at ecosystem model, which then can connect to all the different systems in a much better way. Focus on the data, the data accuracy, because other — the biggest problem in this ecosystem, I’ll call the AAA. You need to call the AAA for supply chain which is primarily accessibility to the data, availability of the data, and accuracy of the data, right?

Padhu Raman (00:41:34):

So, you need to focus on a system or a technology which solves these three problems effectively and connect accordingly. And technology’s there, right? Whether you have, you know, a PDF document, you can use an OCR to scan and consume the data. So, there are a lot of technology available. All we need to do is how to connect these things to make the end-to-end productivity much better. Phones are penetrating the market like anything. Your smartphone solves most of your problem. Focus on ecosystem model, focus on the data, break the data silos, and then connect through that aspect. And then focus on the people, right? Ultimately the people process platform, that is what is going to drive. And with more automation, more advancement, with more A.I. and all coming in, which is artificial intelligence, end of the day, actual intelligence will take over, and that is more important to the people, right? The people is where it’s contributing everything and establish good processes and the platform will support it.

Scott Luton (00:42:32):

Well said, Padhu. And I — a couple of things there. The AAA, as AAA customer, I love your notion there of, we need to have AAA you can call to help with global supply chain. Love that. Greg, as we — you know, you have, of course, as we’ve talked about time and time again, have implemented thousands of technologies and been through those processes. What was your take on what Padhu shared or how would maybe you advise folks to ensure that they — that they’re picking the right technology and one that adds to the business?

Greg White (00:43:07):

So, there’s a couple litmus tests that I’ve found. And one is particularly in supply chain is make sure that the leaders, founders, operators, implementers know supply chain. I mean, they’ll have to know it inside out. They have to know the core principles. There are so many, you know, we hear this all the time, and of course, I get pitched all the time for investments. So many people who come to supply chain as a disruptor, and they don’t know a thing about supply chain and they grossly oversimplify the complexity of the business problem that we’re solving, which is literally touching every single aspect of every single product. All the way from the consumer, back to the raw materials that produce it or vice versa, whichever direction your entity happens to go. And there is so much complexity in that. So, that knowledge of supply chain cannot be underestimated.

Greg White (00:44:00):

And secondly, and this is rare, and we talked about this earlier in the show, find someone who’s got that experience in supply chain, but recognizes that things need to change. Not somebody who says, hey, visibility is enough because we’ve been waiting 30 years for it, so it’s finally here, so that’s enough. Right? Somebody who recognizes that visibility is just a way point to the actions that are required to impact your business. And that, you know, the fact that we waited 30 years for it, if somebody foolishly did that, waited 30 years for some kind of visibility, doesn’t mean you should wait another 30 years until you action that, right? That —

Scott Luton (00:44:44):

Well said.

Greg White (00:44:44):

— as I said, those people — and I, you know, like Padhu who recognized that the inflection point that we’ve reached with technology and supply chain is not the disruption or even the awareness in supply chain. It is the confluence of more and more robust data, and more and more capable and agile technology that can capitalize on that data and provide humans and companies with greater and greater solutions than they ever could have conceived in the past, right?

Greg White (00:45:00):

So, someone who has their eyes out front, not begging for thanks for providing visibility. But saying, yes, OK, we provided visibility and here’s what we’re going to allow you to do with that. And we’re — and continuing to look forward, that’s the critical thing. You got to deliver today, of course, but you have to always be looking forward.

Scott Luton (00:45:41):

I’m with you.

Greg White (00:45:41):

That’s a fair combination of gifts as

Scott Luton (00:45:44):

As Bonita says, mic drop, Greg. Between you and Padhu — and I love your pilot analogy. And I’m going to paraphrase what you said there, make visibility be a waypoint, not a destination. That is supply chain gold. And then other thing, Padhu, that you spoke to as you were sharing, some of the AAAs and whatnot, adoption, right? So, even after you select the right technology and, you know, that aftercare to ensure that the users see the value and how it makes life easier and allows them to be successful, that’s going to help drive adoption. Without adoption, as Greg we’ve talked about, what do you have, right?

Scott Luton (00:46:24):

All right. So, Padhu — Greg, you — I thought you were about to answer that question.

Greg White (00:46:28):

I was thinking a really pretty screensaver is what you have. You’re — but you’re absolutely right. And — but you know, and it probably bears saying, and I’m glad you said it. And by the way, you said whatever it was I said much better than I did. So, thank you for that also.

Scott Luton (00:46:41):

Waypoint destination.

Greg White (00:46:42):

Yes. The — I consider great technology to include the ability to both engage and simplify the user’s role in conducting the process, right? It should — technology should never be a hurdle or a hindrance, right? It should, it should always be a helping hand to expedite the experience of the user and to expedite their job. Because in the end, I mean, I’ve learned this fortunately from — on the front foot the last time, but I’ve learned this the hard way in the past, and that is, you know, people — they don’t give a tinkers’ damn about technology. They just want to get their job done. And they just want to do it in the most effective, satisfying, and easy way possible. And there’s no shame in it being easy, because with technology it can be easy or much, much less complex in any case.

Padhu Raman (00:47:40):

If I can add to that.

Greg White (00:47:42):

Say that?

Padhu Raman (00:47:43):

If I can add to what Greg said.

Greg White (00:47:45):

Please.

Scott Luton (00:47:46):

Yes.

Padhu Raman (00:47:46):

Technology, it also has to be customer centric, right? End of the day, how you focus on the customer and how you solve a customer, simplifying for a customer and having all the complexity behind it, right, and then that is also the key aspect of what you’re looking from a technology adoption perspective. Providing the best experience and engagement of the customer.

Greg White (00:48:05):

And that’s a good point, Padhu. When we — I think we said this yesterday, or we’ve said it recently. Anyway, for technology to be simple and easy and give a good experience to be so easy, it takes a — operating a lot of complexity behind the scenes to produce a screen that where you can only make one decision or one button click or whatever to make the problem go away. That requires an incredible amount of complexity, but that’s what technology is for, isn’t it?

Scott Luton (00:48:39):

I’m with you. And I liked that rhetorical question that you finished with there, Greg.

Scott Luton (00:48:44):

All right. So, Padhu, great conversation. And by the way, thanks for all the comments here. Memory, appreciate it. Great to see you, by the way. One of our longtime faves. Great conversation. Practical conversations, which is my favorite. Enjoy this one. Hey, good night to you as well.

Greg White (00:48:57):

She can listen to the rest of it on her run in the morning.

Scott Luton (00:48:59):

That’s right.

Greg White (00:49:00):

Good night, Memory.

Scott Luton (00:49:02):

All right. So, Padhu, really, I’ve enjoyed your perspective and expertise here today. And congrats on the journey that Osa Commerce is on. But for perfect clarity for our global audience here, we love making sure they understand what our guests do in a nutshell. So, tell us, what does OSA commerce do directly in a nutshell?

Padhu Raman (00:49:23):

We are a technology provider, right? We provide a collaborative visibility platform which primarily enables to connect across the supply chain. Connecting all the dots, which is basically connect, communicate, collaborate, and co-thrive — I mean, to coexist (INAUDIBLE) systems. And —

Greg White (00:49:39):

Look at him. Look at him adapt his marketing.

Padhu Raman (00:49:41):

— and drive a better, smarter decisions as well, right? And we call the Osa mode, which is basically the platform that pays for itself, right? The broader aspect is, one, it removes the data silos, right? It connects to all the ecosystems removing the data silos. Provides an insight driven toward A.I., you know, engine, which is both artificial as well as actual because that’s where the human interaction also comes in.

Padhu Raman (00:50:08):

The entire platform is primarily based on a cybersecurity framework. Most of our developers comes from — and in fact, our CTO and everybody comes from the 8,200 unit of IDF, where the primary focus is cybersecurity and data privacy, which is very important in this supply chain, connected ecosystems, right? Focus on that. And the time to utility, and utility to scalability, and scalability to profitability in more in weeks and months compared to traditional months and years, and sometimes in decades, right?

Padhu Raman (00:50:42):

And that is where we will offer a complete technology solution, which enables us to connect across ecosystems, establish a good communication across the partners, enables collaboration and co-thrive and coexist in the future of supply chain, and platform built for the next decades to come.

Scott Luton (00:51:00):

I love that. And of course, in our pre-show discussions, going back for quite some time, Padhu, we saw you up in Chicago at a Reuters event, that was really cool. But some of those outcomes that, I understand, Osa Commerce are driving increasing revenue, reducing logistics costs, and increasing optimizing customer experience. So, you all check that out.

Scott Luton (00:51:22):

And in particular, we’ve got, a neat resource from Padhu and the Osa Commerce team. You know, they’re working extensively out in global supply chain. Check out this link and our team will drop it there in the chat where you can learn more about how they’re working, as they’re saying, Greg called this out earlier, to be one working with their customers so they can be one step ahead of their competition. Really important. So, you all check out that link and you’re one click away from doing that.

Scott Luton (00:51:49):

Greg, when it comes to this last couple of segments from Padhu and what he and the Osa Commerce team is doing, what’s one thing you think is one of the coolest aspects of that, I’ll call it?

Greg White (00:52:03):

Yes. Yes, I think the coolest aspect of it is he’s done it before, right? He has founded technology companies before. He’s worked in big technology companies before. He has the experience of what their capabilities and their inabilities were at the same time. And this experience, if not only having a lot of supply chain experience and knowledge, but also having started a technology company and run and built and sold and doing it again. You are so much better the second time than the first and the third, then the second and all of that.

Greg White (00:52:39):

So, the — you know, I’m really excited, one, Padhu, for you about that.

Padhu Raman (00:52:43):

Thank you.

Greg White (00:52:43):

And I’m excited for what could come from this because the insights that you gain, not only as a solution provider, but also as a business manager, make you executed a much, much higher level in your second or third, you know, company.

Greg White (00:53:02):

And it’s — you know, it’s an exciting time and it is a necessary solution, right? Somebody asked an example of an actionable visibility or actionable insight from visibility, right? One is just knowing that your — let’s just say, I’ll just pick one. Vendor X doesn’t have the capability to fulfill your next order, which you’ve notified them about months and months in advance, well outside of the lead time.

Scott Luton (00:53:30):

Right.

Greg White (00:53:30):

So, you have time now to respond preemptively and move to another vendor or help them resolve their problem or whatever. But nonetheless, you can — you knowing that there’s going to be a problem down the road can resolve it now without disruption to your own chain.

Padhu Raman (00:53:47):

Exceptions manage the key to the — is very key apart from all the aspects. Another thing is there are a lot of optimizations done on the outbound side, but very little on the inbound, right?

Greg White (00:53:57):

Yes.

Scott Luton (00:53:57):

Yes.

Padhu Raman (00:53:57):

So, that is where connecting everything in the supply chain, upstream, downstream.

Greg White (00:54:01):

Yes.

Scott Luton (00:54:01):

Well said. And that was — Ratnesh, great to have you here with us today via LinkedIn. That was — who had asked that question. So, I appreciate that. Thanks for being here. And Greg, thanks for catching that eagle eye. Greg White, Padhu, Greg White does not miss anything as I’ve said time and time again.

Scott Luton (00:54:16):

Padhu, congrats. This is — and thanks, by the way, for all the folks weighing in. It was a great conversation. I agree. I’ll — it’s exciting and very practical and innovative with what Padhu and his team are doing. And Padhu, great — always great to reconnect with a dear old friend —

Padhu Raman (00:54:33):

Same here.

Scott Luton (00:54:34):

— that’s been with us for quite some time. So, Padhu, how can folks, let’s make sure folks know how to connect with you and your Osa Commerce team on the move. How can folks connect with you?

Padhu Raman (00:54:44):

They can connect me on their LinkedIn, Padhu Raman or e-mail me at padhu@osacommerce.com.

Scott Luton (00:54:49):

OK. Greg, you see that? He is not scurred to put his e-mail out there.

Greg White (00:54:55):

He knows it like that. This is how you reach me, right?

Scott Luton (00:54:58):

Well, we will have you back very soon. Really enjoy the conversation. Congrats again on the successes and the recognition and the difference you’re making for your customers out in the industry in a very, very complex time. So, Padhu Raman, co-founder and chief product officer at Osa Commerce. Thanks again.

Greg White (00:55:17):

Yes. Thanks, Padhu.

Padhu Raman (00:55:18):

Thank you. Thank you. Great conversation.

Scott Luton (00:55:22):

Hey, hey. The swoosh weights on nobody.

Greg White (00:55:25):

He had to run.

Scott Luton (00:55:26):

That’s right. Padhu, great to connect. I was going to ask him, Greg, to give us a bold prediction. So, he had mentioned a — and maybe he’ll put it in the chat. He’s got the — that Publix Marathon coming up, I think in February, he said. I’d love for him to project where he’s going to finish. What place number he’s going to finish.

Greg White (00:55:46):

Oh, wow. That’s — I mean, there will be thousands of people there. I’m sure. That’d be hard. I think, you know, when — it’s his first marathon, right? So, I think you have to kind of scale your goals.

Scott Luton (00:55:59):

Yes.

Greg White (00:55:59):

First finish. I’m not even sure — although, you know what, we might let you know because we will definitely ask him this off air in the green room. If he’s even got a time goal, right? I mean, when you’re running a distance that you’ve never competed at before, just finishing a 26.2 miles is —

Scott Luton (00:56:19):

Is a win.

Greg White (00:56:20):

— is a win, yes. But I wonder if he also — he seems like the kind of person, doesn’t he, Scott, who also has a time goal, don’t you think?

Scott Luton (00:56:28):

Undoubtedly. And that’s where — he’s the type of person, I think, he can give us a range of where he’s going to finish, is my thought. But we’ll see. Greg, I want to ask you a different question. And by the way, Benita says you dropped — you and Padhu, between you dropped the mic three times over the last hour. Man. But Greg, we knew Padhu was going to bring it here today.

Greg White (00:56:49):

Yes, of course.

Scott Luton (00:56:49):

You know, we — we’ve rubbed elbows and have featured him before. So, he delivered, as we knew. But what is — out of all that he shared, what’s one thing that is your favorite part that folks really got to write down and leave this conversation with?

Greg White (00:57:07):

Golly. I mean, aside from everything he shared, which I think we touched on very effectively.

Scott Luton (00:57:12):

Yes.

Greg White (00:57:13):

The power of a repeat entrepreneur cannot be denied. It absolutely cannot be denied. You’re — like I said earlier, you’re so much better your second time. I — so I invest in a fund that only invest in previous founders.

Scott Luton (00:57:29):

Really?

Greg White (00:57:29):

And those companies are so much more powerful than any of the other funds that I’m invested in. And it’s — you know, and it’s natural. I mean, I — I’ve experienced it. You’re experiencing it, right?

Scott Luton (00:57:44):

Oh, yes.

Greg White (00:57:45):

How much better you are when you do that. I’m — I don’t mean to, you know, just kind of beat that drum forever, but that’s what is exciting about this to me because he will come out with something special and he will do it. He and his team will do it better than they’ve ever done it before, and they did pretty good last time.

Greg White (00:58:04):

So — right? So, I think, there — you know, that is what’s really exciting. We need more repeat supply chain entrepreneurs —

Scott Luton (00:58:18):

Yes.

Greg White (00:58:18):

— here because that will accelerate the growth of technology, the growth of solutions. The pace at which we advance our practice is by having these repeat founders come into the industry. Even if they weren’t the supply chain founder before, even if they’re just better and now focusing on supply chain. I think that will accelerate the solution nearing that we get for a lot of the challenges we have in this practice.

Scott Luton (00:58:44):

I’m with you. So, folks, take that and the last hour. And if you’re not going to do business with Padhu, who’s always a great conversation regardless if you’re working with him or not, at least make sure Osa Commerce is on your radar because they are going to be moving, or you are —

Greg White (00:59:01):

Yes, seriously. At least watch them. It’s going to be fun to watch.

Scott Luton (00:59:03):

That’s right. All right. Folks, we covered a lot of ground here. Thanks for all the great feedback and comments and even some of the questions. We’ll try to drive some post-livestream conversations. But hey, the four ways, connect, communicate, collaborate, coexist, co-thrive, there you go, Padhu. And remember all the context that Padhu and Greg and many of you added to those four ways. Really important. We can’t get enough context in today’s world.

Scott Luton (00:59:28):

But the important thing to do, Greg, as we all know, is you got to take that, you got to take these actual insights over the last hour, put it in a headlock, deeds, not words. Make something happen. Take action, right? So, on that note, Greg, on behalf of you and the rest of our team, Scott Luton, challenging all of you out there to do good, to give forward, and to be the change. And with that said, we’ll see you next time right back here at Supply Chain Now. Thanks everybody.

Intro/Outro (00:59:57):

Thanks for being a part of our Supply Chain Now community. Check out all of our programming at supplychainnow.com and make sure you subscribe to Supply Chain Now anywhere you listen to podcasts. And follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram. See you next time on Supply Chain Now.

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Featured Guests

Padhu Raman, With over two decades of experience, Padhu is a seasoned executive specializing in digital supply chain and product development. He has a strong track record of creating and implementing innovative solutions for end-to-end commerce, including eCommerce & Supply Chain technology, fulfillment automation, back-end management, warehouse robotics adoption, sustainability, finance, and 3PL/4PL operations strategy. With a passion for entrepreneurship and a commitment to fostering a collaborative and supportive culture, Padhu has successfully built and scaled a company of 300 employees, achieving an impressive annual revenue of $24 million. He firmly believes in the “One Team, One Dream” principle and has instilled this ethos in his organization. Connect with Padhu on LinkedIn.

Hosts

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

Greg White

Principal & Host

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Nick Roemer has had a very diverse and extensive career within design and sales over the last 15 years stretching from China, Dubai, Germany, Holland, UK, and the USA. In the last 5 years, Nick has developed a hawk's eye for sustainable tech and the human-centric marketing and sales procedures that come with it. With his far-reaching and strong network within the logistics industry, Nick has been able to open new avenues and routes to market within major industries in the USA and the UAE. Nick lives by the ethos, “Give more than you take." His professional mission is to make the logistics industry leaner, cleaner and greener.

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Katherine Hintz

Creative Director, Producer, Host

Katherine Hintz, MBA is a marketing professional who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.

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Kim Reuter

Host

From humble beginnings working the import docks, representing Fortune 500 giants, Ford, Michelin Tire, and Black & Decker; to Amazon technology patent holder and Nordstrom Change Leader, Kimberly Reuter has designed, implemented, and optimized best-in-class, highly scalable global logistics and retail operations all over the world. Kimberly’s ability to set strategic vision supported by bomb-proof processes, built on decades of hands-on experience, has elevated her to legendary status. Sought after by her peers and executives for her intellectual capital and keen insights, Kimberly is a thought leader in the retail logistics industry.

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Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Kristi Porter is VP of Sales and Marketing at Vector Global Logistics, a company that is changing the world through supply chain. In her role, she oversees all marketing efforts and supports the sales team in doing what they do best. In addition to this role, she is the Chief Do-Gooder at Signify, which assists nonprofits and social impact companies through copywriting and marketing strategy consulting. She has almost 20 years of professional experience, and loves every opportunity to help people do more good.

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

Sofia Rivas Herrera is a Mexican Industrial Engineer from Tecnologico de Monterrey class 2019. Upon graduation, she earned a scholarship to study MIT’s Graduate Certificate in Logistics and Supply Chain Management and graduated as one of the Top 3 performers of her class in 2020. She also has a multicultural background due to her international academic experiences at Singapore Management University and Kühne Logistics University in Hamburg. Sofia self-identifies as a Supply Chain enthusiast & ambassador sharing her passion for the field in her daily life.

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

Demo Perez started his career in 1997 in the industry by chance when a relative asked him for help for two just weeks putting together an operation for FedEx Express at the Colon Free Zone, an area where he was never been but accepted the challenge. Worked in all roles possible from a truck driver to currier to a sales representative, helped the brand introduction, market share growth and recognition in the Colon Free Zone, at the end of 1999 had the chance to meet and have a chat with Fred Smith ( FedEx CEO), joined another company in 2018 who took over the FedEx operations as Operations and sales manager, in 2004 accepted the challenge from his company to leave the FedEx operations and business to take over the operation and business of DHL Express, his major competitor and rival so couldn’t say no, by changing completely its operation model in the Free Zone. In 2005 started his first entrepreneurial journey by quitting his job and joining two friends to start a Freight Forwarding company. After 8 months was recruited back by his company LSP with the General Manager role with the challenge of growing the company and make it fully capable warehousing 3PL. By 2009 joined CSCMP and WERC and started his journey of learning and growing his international network and high-level learning. In 2012 for the first time joined a local association ( the Panama Maritime Chamber) and worked in the country’s first Logistics Strategy plan, joined and lead other associations ending as president of the Panama Logistics Council in 2017. By finishing his professional mission at LSP with a company that was 8 times the size it was when accepted the role as GM with so many jobs generated and several young professionals coached, having great financial results, took the decision to move forward and start his own business from scratch by the end of 2019. with a friend and colleague co-founded IPL Group a company that started as a boutique 3PL and now is gearing up for the post-Covid era by moving to the big leagues.

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

The founder of Logistics Executive Group, Kim Winter delivers 40 years of executive leadership experience spanning Executive Search & Recruitment, Leadership Development, Executive Coaching, Corporate Advisory, Motivational Speaking, Trade Facilitation and across the Supply Chain, Logistics, 3PL, E-commerce, Life Science, Cold Chain, FMCG, Retail, Maritime, Defence, Aviation, Resources, and Industrial sectors. Operating from the company’s global offices, he is a regular contributor of thought leadership to industry and media, is a professional Master of Ceremonies, and is frequently invited to chair international events.

He is a Board member of over a dozen companies throughout APAC, India, and the Middle East, a New Zealand citizen, he holds formal resident status in Australia and the UAE, and is the Australia & New Zealand representative for the UAE Government-owned Jebel Ali Free Zone (JAFZA), the Middle East’s largest Economic Free Zone.

A triathlete and ex-professional rugby player, Kim is a qualified (IECL Sydney) executive coach and the Founder / Chairman of the successful not for profit humanitarian organization, Oasis Africa (www. oasisafrica.org.au), which has provided freedom from poverty through education to over 8000 mainly orphaned children in East Africa’s slums. Kim holds an MBA and BA from Massey & Victoria Universities (NZ).

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Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Adrian Purtill serves as Business Development Manager at Vector Global Logistics, where he consults with importers and exporters in various industries to match their specific shipping requirements with the most effective supply chain solutions. Vector Global Logistics is an asset-free, multi-modal logistics company that provides exceptional sea freight, air freight, truck, rail, general logistic services and consulting for our clients. Our highly trained and professional team is committed to providing creative and effective solutions, always exceeding our customer’s expectations and fostering long-term relationships. With more than 20+ years of experience in both strategy consulting and logistics, Vector Global Logistics is your best choice to proactively minimize costs while having an exceptional service level.

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Kevin Brown is the Director of Business Development for Vector Global Logistics.  He has a dedicated interest in Major Account Management, Enterprise Sales, and Corporate Leadership. He offers 25 years of exceptional experience and superior performance in the sales of Logistics, Supply Chain, and Transportation Management. Kevin is a dynamic, high-impact, sales executive and corporate leader who has consistently exceeded corporate goals. He effectively coordinates multiple resources to solution sell large complex opportunities while focusing on corporate level contacts across the enterprise. His specialties include targeting and securing key accounts by analyzing customer’s current business processes and developing solutions to meet their corporate goals. Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn.

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Jose Manuel Irarrazaval es parte del equipo de Vector Global Logistics Chile. José Manuel es un gerente experimentado con experiencia en finanzas corporativas, fusiones y adquisiciones, financiamiento y reestructuración, inversión directa y financiera, tanto en Chile como en el exterior. José Manuel tiene su MBA de la Universidad de Pennsylvania- The Wharton School. Conéctese con Jose Manuel en LinkedIn.

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Vicki White

Controller

Vicki has a long history of rising to challenges and keeping things up and running. First, she supported her family’s multi-million dollar business as controller for 12 years, beginning at the age of 17. Then, she worked as an office manager and controller for a wholesale food broker. But her biggest feat? Serving as the chief executive officer of her household, while her entrepreneur husband travelled the world extensively. She fed, nurtured, chaperoned, and chauffeured three daughters all while running a newsletter publishing business and remaining active in her community as a Stephen’s Minister, Sunday school teacher, school volunteer, licensed realtor and POA Board president (a title she holds to this day). A force to be reckoned with in the office, you might think twice before you meet Vicki on the tennis court! When she’s not keeping the books balanced at Supply Chain Now or playing tennis matches, you can find Vicki spending time with her husband Greg, her 4 fur babies, gardening, cleaning (yes, she loves to clean!) and learning new things.

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Allison Giddens

Host

Allison Krache Giddens has been with Win-Tech, a veteran-owned small business and aerospace precision machine shop, for 15 years, recently buying the company from her mentor and Win-Tech’s Founder, Dennis Winslow. She and her business partner, John Hudson now serve as Co-Presidents, leading the 33-year old company through the pandemic.

She holds undergraduate degrees in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Georgia, a Masters in Conflict Management from Kennesaw State University, a Masters in Manufacturing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Certificate of Finance from the University of Georgia. She also holds certificates in Google Analytics, event planning, and Cybersecurity Risk Management from Harvard online. Allison founded the Georgia Chapter of Women in Manufacturing and currently serves as Treasurer. She serves on the Chattahoochee Technical College Foundation Board as its Secretary, the liveSAFE Resources Board of Directors as Resource Development Co-Chair, and on the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association Board as Membership Chair and is also a member of Cobb Executive Women. She is on the Board for the Cobb Chamber of Commerce’s Northwest Area Councils. Allison runs The Dave Krache Foundation, a non-profit that helps pay sports fees for local kids in need.

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Billy Taylor

Host

Billy Taylor is a Proven Business Excellence Practitioner and Leadership Guru with over 25 years leading operations for a Fortune 500 company, Goodyear. He is also the CEO of LinkedXL (Excellence), a Business Operating Systems Architecting Firm dedicated to implementing sustainable operating systems that drive sustainable results. Taylor’s achievements in the industry have made him a Next Generational Lean pacesetter with significant contributions.

An American business executive, Taylor has made a name for himself as an innovative and energetic industry professional with an indispensable passion for his craft of operational excellence. His journey started many years ago and has worked with renowned corporations such as The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (GT) leading multi-site operations. With over 3 decades of service leading North America operations, he is experienced in a deeply rooted process driven approach in customer service, process integrity for sustainability.

A disciple of continuous improvement, Taylor’s love for people inspires commitment to helping others achieve their full potential. He is a dynamic speaker and hosts "The Winning Link," a popular podcast centered on business and leadership excellence with the #1 rated Supply Chain Now Network. As a leadership guru, Taylor has earned several invitations to universities, international conferences, global publications, and the U.S. Army to demonstrate how to achieve and sustain effective results through cultural acceptance and employee ownership. Leveraging the wisdom of his business acumen, strong influence as a speaker and podcaster Taylor is set to release "The Winning Link" book under McGraw Hill publishing in 2022. The book is a how-to manual to help readers understand the management of business interactions while teaching them how to Deine, Align, and Execute Winning in Business.

A servant leader, Taylor, was named by The National Diversity Council as one of the Top 100 Diversity Officers in the country in 2021. He features among Oklahoma's Most Admired CEOs and maintains key leadership roles with the Executive Advisory Board for The Shingo Institute "The Nobel Prize of Operations" and The Association of Manufacturing Excellence (AME); two world-leading organizations for operational excellence, business development, and cultural learning.  He is also an Independent Director for the M-D Building Products Board, a proud American manufacturer of quality products since 1920.

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Tandreia Bellamy

Host

Tandreia Bellamy retired as the Vice President of Industrial Engineering for UPS Supply Chain Solutions which included the Global Logistics, Global Freight Forwarding and UPS Freight business units. She was responsible for operations strategy and planning, asset management, forecasting, and technology tool development to optimize sustainable efficiency while driving world class service.

Tandreia held similar positions at the business unit level for Global Logistics and Global Freight forwarding. As the leader of the Global Logistics engineering function, she directed all industrial engineering activies related to distribution, service parts logistics (post-sales support), and mail innovations (low cost, light weight shipping partnership with the USPS). Between these roles Tandreia helped to establish the Advanced Technology Group which was formed to research and develop cutting edge solutions focused on reducing reliance on manual labor.

Tandreia began her career in 1986 as a part-time hourly manual package handling employee. She spent the great majority of her career in the small package business unit which is responsible for the pick-up, sort, transport and delivery of packages domestically. She held various positions in Industrial Engineering, Marketing, Inside and On-road operations in Central Florida before transferring to Atlanta for a position in Corporate Product Development and Corporate Industrial Engineering. Tandreia later held IE leadership roles in Nebraska, Minnesota and Chicago. In her final role in small package she was an IE VP responsible for all aspects of IE, technology support and quality for the 25 states on the western half of the country.
Tandreia is currently a Director for the University of Central Florida (UCF) Foundation Board and also serves on their Dean’s Advisory Board for the College of Engineering and Computer Science. Previously Tandreia served on the Executive Advisory Board for Virginia Tech’s IE Department and the Association for Supply Chain Management. She served on the Board of Trustees for ChildServ (a Chicago child and family services non-profit) and also served on the Texas A&M and Tuskegee Engineering Advisory Boards. In 2006 she was named Business Advisor of the Year by INROADS, in 2009 she was recognized as a Technology All-Star at the Women of Color in STEM conference and in 2019 she honored as a UCF Distinguished Aluma by the Department of Industrial Engineering and Management Systems.

Tandreia holds a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from Stanford University and a master’s degree in Industrial Engineering and Management Systems from UCF. Her greatest accomplishment, however, is being the proud mother of two college students, Ruby (24) and Anthony (22).

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Marty Parker

Host

Marty Parker serves as both the CEO & Founder of Adæpt Advising and an award-winning Senior Lecturer (Teaching Professor) in Supply Chain and Operations Management at the University of Georgia. He has 30 years of experience as a COO, CMO, CSO (Chief Strategy Officer), VP of Operations, VP of Marketing and Process Engineer. He founded and leads UGA’s Supply Chain Advisory Board, serves as the Academic Director of UGA’s Leaders Academy, and serves on multiple company advisory boards including the Trucking Profitability Strategies Conference, Zion Solutions Group and Carlton Creative Company.

Marty enjoys helping people and companies be successful. Through UGA, Marty is passionate about his students, helping them network and find internships and jobs. He does this through several hundred one-on-one zoom meetings each year with his students and former students. Through Adæpt Advising, Marty has organized an excellent team of affiliates that he works with to help companies grow and succeed. He does this by helping c-suite executives improve their skills, develop better leaders, engage their workforce, improve processes, and develop strategic plans with detailed action steps and financial targets. Marty believes that excellence in supply chain management comes from the understanding the intersection of leadership, culture, and technology, working across all parts of the organization to meet customer needs, maximize profit and minimize costs.

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Laura Lopez

Marketing Coordinator

Laura Lopez serves as our Supply Chain Now Marketing Coordinator. She graduated from Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Occidente in Mexico with a degree in marketing. Laura loves everything digital because she sees the potential it holds for companies in the marketing industry. Her passion for creativity and thinking outside the box led her to pursue a career in marketing. With experience in fields like accounting, digital marketing, and restaurants, she clearly enjoys taking on challenges. Laura lives the best of both worlds - you'll either catch her hanging out with her friends soaking up the sun in Mexico or flying out to visit her family in California!

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Jake Barr

Host

An acknowledged industry leader, Jake Barr now serves as CEO for BlueWorld Supply Chain Consulting, providing support to a cross section of Fortune 500 companies such as Cargill, Caterpillar, Colgate, Dow/Dupont, Firmenich, 3M, Merck, Bayer/Monsanto, Newell Brands, Kimberly Clark, Nestle, PepsiCo, Pfizer, Sanofi, Estee Lauder and Coty among others. He's also devoted time to engagements in public health sector work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. At P&G, he managed the breakthrough delivery of an E2E (End to End) Planning Transformation effort, creating control towers which now manage the daily business globally. He is recognized as the architect for P&G’s demand driven supply chain strategy – referenced as a “Consumer Driven Supply Chain” transformation. Jake began his career with P&G in Finance in Risk Analysis and then moved into Operations. He has experience in building supply network capability globally through leadership assignments in Asia, Latin America, North America and the Middle East. He currently serves as a Research Associate for MIT; a member of Supply Chain Industry Advisory Council; Member of Gartner’s Supply Chain Think Tank; Consumer Goods “League of Leaders“; and a recipient of the 2015 - 2021 Supply Chain “Pro’s to Know” Award. He has been recognized as a University of Kentucky Fellow.

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Marcia Williams

Host

Marcia Williams, Managing Partner of USM Supply Chain, has 18 years of experience in Supply Chain, with expertise in optimizing Supply Chain-Finance Planning (S&OP/ IBP) at Large Fast-Growing CPGs for greater profitability and improved cash flows. Marcia has helped mid-sized and large companies including Lindt Chocolates, Hershey, and Coty. She holds an MBA from Michigan State University and a degree in Accounting from Universidad de la Republica, Uruguay (South America). Marcia is also a Forbes Council Contributor based out of New York, and author of the book series Supply Chains with Maria in storytelling style. A recent speaker’s engagement is Marcia TEDx Talk: TEDxMSU - How Supply Chain Impacts You: A Transformational Journey.

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Luisa Garcia

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Luisa Garcia is a passionate Marketer from Lagos de Moreno based in Aguascalientes. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from Universidad Autonoma de Aguascalientes, Mexico. She specializes in brand development at any stage, believing that a brand is more than just a name or image—it’s an unforgettable experience. Her expertise helps brands achieve their dreams and aspirations, making a lasting impact. Currently working at Vector Global Logistics in the Marketing team and as podcast coordinator of Logistics With Purpose®. Luisa believes that purpose-driven decisions will impact results that make a difference in the world.

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Astrid Aubert

Host, Logistics with Purpose

Astrid Aubert was born in Guadalajara, she is 39 years old and has had the opportunity to live in many places. She studied communication and her professional career has been in Trade Marketing for global companies such as Pepsico and Mars. She currently works as Marketing Director Mexico for Vector Global Logistics. She is responsible for internal communications and marketing strategy development for the logistics industry. She is a mother of two girls, married and lives in Monterrey. She defines herself as a creative and innovative person, and enjoys traveling and cooking a lot.

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Constantine Limberakis

Host

Constantine Limberakis is a thought leader in the area of procurement and supply management. He has over 20 years of international experience, playing strategic roles in a wide spectrum of organizations related to analyst advisory, consulting, product marketing, product development, and market research.Throughout his career, he's been passionate about engaging global business leaders and the broader analyst and technology community with strategic content, speaking engagements, podcasts, research, webinars, and industry articles.Constantine holds a BA in History from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and an MBA in Finance & Marketing / Masters in Public & International Affairs from the University of Pittsburgh.

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

As the founder and CEO of Supply Chain Now, you might say Scott is the voice of supply chain – but he’s too much of a team player to ever claim such a title. One thing’s for sure: he’s a tried and true supply chain expert. With over 15 years of experience in the end-to-end supply chain, Scott’s insights have appeared in major publications including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and CNN. He has also been named a top industry influencer by Thinkers360, ISCEA and more.

From 2009-2011, Scott was president of APICS Atlanta, and he continues to lead initiatives that support both the local business community and global industry. A United States Air Force Veteran, Scott has also regularly led efforts to give back to his fellow veteran community since his departure from active duty in 2002.

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Greg White

Principal & Host

When rapid-growth technology companies, venture capital and private equity firms are looking for advisory, they call Greg – a founder, board director, advisor and catalyst of disruptive B2B technology and supply chain. An insightful visionary, Greg guides founders, investors and leadership teams in creating breakthroughs to gain market exposure and momentum – increasing overall company esteem and valuation.

Greg is a founder himself, creating Blue Ridge Solutions, a Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader in cloud-native supply chain applications, and bringing to market Curo, a field service management solution. He has also held leadership roles with Servigistics (PTC) and E3 Corporation (JDA/Blue Yonder). As a principal and host at Supply Chain Now, Greg helps guide the company’s strategic direction, hosts industry leader discussions, community livestreams, and all in addition to executive producing and hosting his original YouTube channel and podcast, TEChquila Sunrise.

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

Talk about world-class: Chris is one of the few professionals in the world to hold CPIM-F, CLTD-F and CSCP-F designations from ASCM/APICS. He’s also the APICS coach – and our resident Supply Chain Doctor. When he’s not hosting programs with Supply Chain Now, he’s sharing supply chain knowledge on the APICS Coach Youtube channel or serving as a professional education instructor for the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistic Institute’s Supply Chain Management (SCM) program and University of Tennessee-Chattanooga Center for Professional Education courses.

Chris earned a BS in Industrial Engineering from Bradley University, an MBA with emphasis in Industrial Psychology from the University of West Florida, and is a Doctoral in Supply Chain Management candidate.

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Tyler Ward

Director of Sales

Tyler Ward serves as Supply Chain Now's Director of Sales. Born and raised in Mid-Atlantic, Tyler is a proud graduate of Shippensburg University where he earned his degree in Communications. After college, he made his way to the beautiful state of Oregon, where he now lives with his wife and daughter.

With over a decade of experience in sales, Tyler has a proven track record of exceeding targets and leading high-performing teams. He credits his success to his ability to communicate effectively with customers and team members alike, as well as his strategic thinking and problem-solving skills.

When he's not closing deals, you can find Tyler on the links or cheering on his favorite football and basketball teams. He also enjoys spending time with his family, playing pick-up basketball, and traveling back to Ocean City, Maryland, his favorite place!

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award winning “Cloud Musings” blog.  He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019, Radar 2020), a “Top 50 Global Digital Transformation Thought Leader” (Thinkers 360 2019) and provides strategic consulting and integrated social media services to AT&T, Intel, Broadcom, Ericsson and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and SAIC (Engility) Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community.  Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include CiscoMicrosoft, Citrix and IBM.  Books include “Click to Transform” (Leaders Press, 2020), “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018), and “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016). He also delivers online training through Tulane UniversityO’Reilly MediaLinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight.  Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems EngineeringCarrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

Enrique serves as Managing Director at Vector Global Logistics and believes we all have a personal responsibility to change the world. He is hard working, relationship minded and pro-active. Enrique trusts that the key to logistics is having a good and responsible team that truly partners with the clients and does whatever is necessary to see them succeed. He is a proud sponsor of Vector’s unique results-based work environment and before venturing into logistics he worked for the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). During his time at BCG, he worked in different industries such as Telecommunications, Energy, Industrial Goods, Building Materials, and Private Banking. His main focus was always on the operations, sales, and supply chain processes, with case focus on, logistics, growth strategy, and cost reduction. Prior to joining BCG, Enrique worked for Grupo Vitro, a Mexican glass manufacturer, for five years holding different positions from sales and logistics manager to supply chain project leader in charge of five warehouses in Colombia.

He has an MBA from The Wharton School of Business and a BS, in Mechanical Engineer from the Technologico de Monterrey in Mexico. Enrique’s passions are soccer and the ocean, and he also enjoys traveling, getting to know new people, and spending time with his wife and two kids, Emma and Enrique.

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

Kelly is the Owner and Managing Director of Buyers Meeting Point and MyPurchasingCenter. She has been in procurement since 2003, starting as a practitioner and then as the Associate Director of Consulting at Emptoris. She has covered procurement news, events, publications, solutions, trends, and relevant economics at Buyers Meeting Point since 2009. Kelly is also the General Manager at Art of Procurement and Business Survey Chair for the ISM-New York Report on Business. Kelly has her MBA from Babson College as well as an MS in Library and Information Science from Simmons College and she has co-authored three books: ‘Supply Market Intelligence for Procurement Professionals’, ‘Procurement at a Crossroads’, and ‘Finance Unleashed’.

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Mary Kate Soliva

Host, Veteran Voices

Mary Kate Soliva is a veteran of the US Army and cofounder of the Guam Human Rights Initiative. She is currently in the Doctor of Criminal Justice program at Saint Leo University. She is passionate about combating human trafficking and has spent the last decade conducting training for military personnel and the local community.

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Amanda Luton

Vice President, Production

Amanda is a production and marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. Amanda currently manages, produces, and develops modern digital content for Supply Chain Now and their clients. Amanda has previously served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah, and founded and managed her own successful digital marketing firm, Magnolia Marketing Group. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now production team, you can find Amanda in the kitchen, reading, listening to podcasts, or enjoying time with family.

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

Clay is passionate about two things: supply chain and the marketing that goes into it. Recently graduated with a degree in marketing at the University of Georgia, Clay got his start as a journalism major and inaugural member of the Owl’s football team at Kennesaw State University – but quickly saw tremendous opportunity in the Terry College of Business. He’s already putting his education to great use at Supply Chain Now, assisting with everything from sales and brand strategy to media production. Clay has contributed to initiatives such as our leap into video production, the guest blog series, and boosting social media presence, and after nearly two years in Supply Chain Now’s Marketing Department, Clay now heads up partnership and sales initiatives with the help of the rest of the Supply Chain Now sales team.

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

Trisha is new to the supply chain industry – but not to podcasting. She’s an experienced podcast manager and virtual assistant who also happens to have 20 years of experience as an elementary school teacher. It’s safe to say, she’s passionate about helping people, and she lives out that passion every day with the Supply Chain Now team, contributing to scheduling and podcast production.

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Chantel King

Social Media Manager

My name is Chantel King and I am the Social Media Specialist at Supply Chain Now. My job is to make sure our audience is engaged and educated on the abundant amount of information the supply chain industry has to offer.

Social Media and Communications has been my niche ever since I graduated from college at The Academy of Art University in San Francisco. No, I am not a West Coast girl. I was born and raised in New Jersey, but my travel experience goes way beyond the garden state. My true passion is in creating editorial and graphic content that influences others to be great in whatever industry they are in. I’ve done this by working with lifestyle, financial, and editorial companies by providing resources to enhance their businesses.

Another passion of mine is trying new things. Whether it’s food, an activity, or a sport. I would like to say that I am an adventurous Taurus that never shies away from a new quest or challenge.

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

Lori is currently completing a degree in marketing with an emphasis in digital marketing at the University of Georgia. When she’s not supporting the marketing efforts at Supply Chain Now, you can find her at music festivals – or working toward her dream goal of a fashion career. Lori is involved in many extracurricular activities and appreciates all the learning experiences UGA has brought her.

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Katherine Hintz

Director, Customer Experience

Katherine is a marketing professional and MBA candidate who strives to unite her love of people with a passion for positive experiences. Having a diverse background, which includes nonprofit work with digital marketing and start-ups, she serves as a leader who helps people live their most creative lives by cultivating community, order, collaboration, and respect. With equal parts creativity and analytics, she brings a unique skill set which fosters refining, problem solving, and connecting organizations with their true vision. In her free time, you can usually find her looking for her cup of coffee, playing with her puppy Charlie, and dreaming of her next road trip.

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Mary Kate Love

Chief of Staff & Host

Mary Kate Love is currently the VP of marketing at Supply Chain Now focused on brand strategy and audience + revenue growth. Mary Kate’s career is a testament to her versatility and innovative spirit: she has experience in start-ups, venture capital, and building innovation initiatives from the ground up: she previously helped lead the build-out of the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific and before that, MxD (Manufacturing times Digital): the Department of Defense’s digital manufacturing innovation center. Mary Kate has a passion for taking complicated ideas and turning them into reality: she was one of the first team members at MxD and the first team member at the Supply Chain Innovation Center at Georgia-Pacific.

Mary Kate dedicates her extra time to education and mentorship: she was one of the founding Board Members for Women Influence Chicago and led an initiative for a city-wide job shadow day for young women across Chicago tech companies and was previously on the Board of Directors at St. Laurence High School in Chicago, Young Irish Fellowship Board and the UN Committee for Women. Mary Kate is the founder of National Supply Chain Day and enjoys co-hosting podcasts at Supply Chain Now. Mary Kate is from the south side of Chicago, a mom of two baby boys, and an avid 16-inch softball player. She holds a BS in Political Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

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Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

Joshua is a student from Institute of Technology and Higher Education of Monterrey Campus Guadalajara in Communication and Digital Media. His experience ranges from Plug and Play México, DearDoc, and Nissan México creating unique social media marketing campaigns and graphics design. Joshua helps to amplify the voice of supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting in graphic design, content creation, asset logistics, and more.  In his free time he likes to read and write short stories as well as watch movies and television series.

Donna Krache

Director of Communications and Executive Producer

Donna Krache is a former CNN executive producer who has won several awards in journalism and communication, including three Peabodys.  She has 30 years’ experience in broadcast and digital journalism. She led the first production team at CNN to convert its show to a digital platform. She has authored many articles for CNN and other media outlets. She taught digital journalism at Georgia State University and Arizona State University. Krache holds a bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from the University of New Orleans. She is a serious sports fan who loves the Braves. She is president of the Dave Krache Foundation. Named in honor of her late husband, this non-profit pays fees for kids who want to play sports but whose parents are facing economic challenges.

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