BLOCKCHAIN could have a transformative impact across supply chains in the coming years. Are you ready? In this episode of TEKTOK on Supply Chain Now, listen in as Karin covers BLOCKCHAIN BASICS with guest, Kevin L. Jackson. They’ll cover the 10 Things You Need to Know Now as you prepare to harness blockchain technology to accelerate your digital transformation. You’ll gain clarity on four key aspects – governance, process improvements, trusted transactions, and technology – as you boost supply chain performance.
Welcome to TEKTOK Digital Supply Chain Podcast, where we will help you eliminate the noise and focus on the information and inspiration that you need to transform your business, impact, supply chain success, and enable you to replace risky inventory with valuable insights. Join your TEKTOK host, Karin Bursa, the 2020 Supply Chain Pro To Know of the Year. With more than 25 years of supply chain and technology expertise and the scars to prove it, Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Join the conversation, share your insights, and learn how to harness technology innovations to drive tangible business results. Buckle up, it’s time for TEKTOK. Powered by Supply Chain Now.
Karin Bursa (01:13):
Well, welcome back supply chain movers and shakers. Karin Bursa here. And I’m so glad that you are with us today for TEKTOK, the Digital Supply Chain Podcast. You know, I am always looking to cover the latest topics that are impacting business professionals and digital supply chain operations. And my goal is to help you replace risky inventory with valuable information.
Karin Bursa (01:36):
Now, a few weeks ago, a dear friend approached me and said, “Hey, can you net it out? Can you give me the basics on blockchain? Because I’m getting questions from my peers, other executives in the business, as well as people who work for me, and I need a baseline. Help me understand what blockchain is and how it’s going to impact supply chain performance.” So, there you have it, that’s my inspiration for today, is to give some blockchain basics for those of you who are just getting started in this area, and you want to start the conversations within your business or with your trading partners.
Karin Bursa (02:17):
So, we are going to cover blockchain basics, and we’re going to go through ten questions, ten things you need to know. Because blockchain could have a transformative impact on your supply chain, and it’s coming. It’s coming quickly. And lucky for you, I have recruited an expert to help us dive into this topic today. And with me today is Mr. Kevin L. Jackson. And I got to tell you, I am a little bit star struck by today’s guest. If I listed all of Kevin’s accomplishments, we would never even get to the topic of blockchain. So, let me give you just a few highlights for him.
Karin Bursa (02:58):
So, Kevin L. Jackson is globally recognized as a thought leader on topics of digital transformation. And he’s authored a couple of books. His most recent book, Click To Transform, was published just last year in 2020; Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions, 2018; and Practical Cloud Security: A Cross-Industry View was in 2016. So, think about that, he was at the forefront of cloud computing in 2016 and talking about important topics like security. So, Kevin is also a retired U.S. Navy. Kevin, thank you for your service. We do appreciate it.
Kevin L. Jackson (03:38):
Thank you. A different life as they say.
Karin Bursa (03:40):
It was, but we appreciate the contributions you and your family made for our country. Now, Kevin is also the host of Digital Transformers, which is a podcast here on Supply Chain Now as well, and where I got to meet Kevin for the first time. So, Kevin, thanks for joining us today.
Kevin L. Jackson (04:00):
No. Thank you for the opportunity to be on TEKTOK. I love that name.
Karin Bursa (04:05):
Yeah. I love it.
Kevin L. Jackson (04:05):
I love that name.
Karin Bursa (04:08):
It’s exciting. So, Kevin and I launched our podcasts at the same time, so we’re just about a year into this relationship with Supply Chain Now. And it has been just a lot of fun to look at his perspective of the industry, and then my perspective of the industry, and where we overlap, and where we bring new ideas and new contributions to the conversation. And I think today we’ve got a ringer. So, all of you supply chain movers and shakers, you know, grab a pad. You may want to write a few things down as we go through some of these blockchain basics.
Karin Bursa (04:45):
So, I’m going to start, Kevin, with just a really basic description of blockchain. And then, I’m going to ask you to kind of net it out for me, if you will. So, blockchain, really, you will hear frequently, peer-to-peer distributed ledger technology to securely record transactions between two parties. And those transactions are stored in blocks. So, the goal is to provide kind of a trusted, accountable, transparent environment that really removes some intermediaries that have facilitated transactions in the past. So, there’s an opportunity to reduce friction or to accelerate the flow of information between trading partners. So, it’s faster. It should be clearer. And we should have a really good auditable process about, you know, what that transaction and business relationship is. Is that accurate?
Kevin L. Jackson (05:45):
Correct. You know, that is very accurate and very boring.
Karin Bursa (05:53):
That is a different show. Supply Chain is Boring is a different show. So, you’re going to have to make this interesting for me.
Kevin L. Jackson (06:00):
Okay. When you were talking about the definition, you used the word intermediary. You said, where intermediaries who were historically necessary, right? When you hear and intermediaries, you should really hear costs. Money. The more intermediaries you have, the more money it costs. So, if you can eliminate the intermediaries, you can save money. So, while the definition seems bland, organizations really bear a tremendous cost to verify data and verify transactions.
Kevin L. Jackson (06:49):
Think about the people you hire for data entry, and then the additional people you hire to verify that the data entry is correct. What about licensing? If you have staff that you have to license, and the license may expire, you need another piece of your staff to verify that that license is still valid. Memberships, they expire as well. How about requirements? Who had that requirement? Who set that requirement? Why are you doing these things? You typically hire somebody to verify that you’ve met their requirement. Transactions, what about the history of a transaction? How much did it cost before? Who sold it before? All of these things are about hiring intermediaries to verify information and data. Blockchain can reduce that requirement and save you money, also enhance the ability to verify. So, all these, and a myriad of other mission and business requirements, can be addressed with blockchain. And I’m just talking between maybe two parties. As you have more parties involved in a transaction, the cost and the number of intermediaries that you need increase exponentially. But a single blockchain could support an unlimited number of parties. Does that make sense?
Karin Bursa (08:33):
That makes sense. So, you got me with costs. You got my attention. So, I know our audience is leaning in and listening on how they can reduce cost. I’m also going to reinforce that they can accelerate their business as well. So, one of the big promises of digital transformation is that we’re reducing that friction, or that delay, or those review cycles, and we’re able to really accelerate the transaction or accelerate the business relationship around those activities. So, cost and time, and time is money. So, it all comes together.
Kevin L. Jackson (09:09):
Yeah. Because every intermediary takes time to execute whatever they’re doing. So, it reduces time also by eliminating intermediaries.
Karin Bursa (09:21):
Perfect. So, when we’re hearing blockchain, frequently, supply chain has been center stage for these last almost two years now, as we think through COVID and how companies, you know, grappled with decisions in their businesses. Blockchain is starting to be mentioned more and more in the daily news or in financial investment sectors. So, when we think about blockchain, it does come up in conversations around financial, Bitcoin, traceability, country of origin, food safety, even around brand equity and counterfeit goods, and then efficiency as well. So, for today’s conversation, we’re going to focus in on the supply chain implications of blockchain and the opportunities around blockchain. Fair enough?
Kevin L. Jackson (10:16):
Karin Bursa (10:18):
Okay. Great. And I love that you said anything that requires data verification. It’s going to be a great way to get started.
Kevin L. Jackson (10:27):
But it’s also not just verifying data. But if you need any type of insight into a transaction history, it can benefit from blockchain. In simple terms, the blockchain will maintain ground truth and a history of that truth. So, if an unrefutable record of past transactions who are helping your business in any way, blockchain could be a real valuable tool. But you also need to remember that it’s only a tool, so it must be used properly.
Karin Bursa (11:04):
So, talking really basics here. So, stick with me. So, when we say blockchain is a shared ledger, what the heck does that mean? Does that mean I join a ledger or I join a block? What exactly does that mean for my business?
Kevin L. Jackson (11:24):
If you’re in business, you know what an Excel Spreadsheet is, right?
Karin Bursa (11:28):
Oh, yes. Don’t we all?
Kevin L. Jackson (11:30):
So, blockchain is like a big digital Excel Spreadsheet that records transactions between various parties. Now, if you have an Excel Spreadsheet, you could put the transactions and let everyone see it. And you can say, “If you want to give me something or buy something from me, we can record it on this spreadsheet, and everybody knows.” And that’s what Bitcoin is, right? Everyone or anyone can exchange this digital currency. You can buy from anyone and sell to anyone. This is an open blockchain, an open digital spreadsheet. And it doesn’t require anyone’s permission to join. That’s referred to as a permission-less blockchain.
Kevin L. Jackson (12:32):
But you could go the other way as well. So, you can go to a permission blockchain, where only authorized people can see this digital Excel Spreadsheet, where the data owner needs to give explicit approval to anyone that requests access to this digital spreadsheet or to the blockchain. Now, the participants in a blockchain ecosystem can negotiate any variation that they want based upon the business needs and requirements. So, essentially that’s what it is.
Karin Bursa (13:16):
Okay. So, you actually covered a lot of topics in there that I will peel back probably with some of my other questions. But my next question was going to be, are all blockchains the same? And you just said no. You just said, they’re not all the same. So, is it possible, can I use a blockchain to find new trading partners or to work with companies or people who I have not worked with in the past?
Kevin L. Jackson (13:49):
Yes. Absolutely. And there is, like, trust your supplier, for instance, is a supplier information blockchain where potential suppliers put their financial information, the products that they have, the services they provide, who they’ve worked with in the past as data on a blockchain. And then, an independent third party would verify that that data is true and correct. So, if you were looking for a new supplier, you could go to the TYS blockchain, do a search on the product or service that you’re looking for, and you would see a list of companies that provide that product or service. Now, with their permission – so this is a permissioned blockchain – you would be able to see the history of who they have sold what to. Now, blockchains can be built on different technologies like Hyperledger or Ethereum, but the approach is still the same.
Kevin L. Jackson (15:01):
Similarly, you have different companies that offer blockchains to do different things. Like, you can have a Microsoft technology being used in a blockchain, or Oracle, or the IBM Cloud could have its own and it does has its own blockchain. But like you have a Microsoft Cloud, and an Oracle Cloud, and an IBM Cloud, where each cloud has its own purpose and business model, each blockchain has its own purpose and business models. So, companies will consume services from multiple clouds, so they will consume multiple blockchains as well.
Karin Bursa (15:45):
Okay. So, my company may need to be a member of multiple blockchains, right? So, when we think of supply chain roles, who is a typical participant in those blockchains? Is this a supply chain planner, somebody in a sourcing role, or am I thinking that it’s more something that the accounting department is going to do as far as verifying transactions?
Kevin L. Jackson (16:16):
Well, I would say all of the above. Because they may be separate business processes, but the data that supports the process is the same. And like I said before, a blockchain provides ground troops. So, you want all of those processes using the same ground proof. Or you would have internal inconsistencies, and that’s never good.
Karin Bursa (16:46):
No. No. And we know that never happens in small companies, medium companies, or large companies. It never happens.
Kevin L. Jackson (16:55):
Yeah. But businesses never ever operated alone. But more and more businesses have integrated processes that go across multiple organizations or across your own business ecosystem. So, you may be a supplier in one case, but every supplier also buys from someone else. So, you’re a consumer or customer and a supplier as well. And you operate in different business ecosystems in different positions of the value chain. And the data that you need to have access to has different value depending upon your position in that value chain.
Karin Bursa (17:48):
Okay. Okay. I think I’m with you. So, I was going to ask, does every supply chain need a blockchain? And it sounds like the answer is yes. But there’s opportunity there for many roles to participate or many business functions to participate in blockchain areas, or transactions, or verification. Is that accurate?
Karin Bursa (18:14):
Yeah. So, when I say the definition of blockchain is kind of bland and boring –
Karin Bursa (18:19):
Why do you call it boring? Why do you call it boring?
Kevin L. Jackson (18:22):
It just records transactions. That’s all it does. But it’s digital, it’s cryptographically protected, and it can’t be raised without anyone’s knowledge. But it’s simply record-keeping. And in supply chain, you need a record. You need to record exchange of goods. You need a record of transaction among the group of traders. So, every supply chain needs to keep records. The question is, do you want to keep your record using pencil and paper? Or do you want to use a cryptographically protected digital and immutable process? It’s your choice.
Karin Bursa (19:12):
Wow. The way you put that, it seems like the choice is clear. But let me ask the next question. So, if blockchain can bring disparate parties together, new trading partners together, for a better collaboration, better confidence that they’re working with a trusted partner, a trusted business, is blockchain a database? Because the database may limit my ability to see maybe the lifecycle of that relationship over time.
Kevin L. Jackson (19:46):
You got it. You’re starting to learn what blockchain is. Because a database records a current state. Once that current state is locked in, all previous states are erased. A blockchain records the current state, but it also keeps a record of all previous states, that history. That’s the key difference.
Karin Bursa (20:16):
Yeah. That’s really important there. I think, when I can see the full life cycle, if you will, of a relationship or a transaction for my business, and be able to chain that together, chain a little bit. So, another area I get a lot of questions in is, does blockchain allow me to gain visibility or to reach back further into my supply chain network? Let me clarify. A lot of companies from a planning perspective have reasonable visibility of their tier one suppliers. Some can go into tier two supplier, so businesses that supply their suppliers. Does blockchain help me with that? You know, for example, one use case that I know there’s been some good, tangible benefit around has been in the apparel industry. And with the ability to track or trace the country of origin for cotton, for example. The normal apparel producer might not see who actually produced the cotton in the past or maybe it was done in a semi-manual way through intermediaries. But does it open up my visibility? Does that help me to have better control over my supply chain?
Kevin L. Jackson (21:47):
So, blockchain is a tool, right? You have to decide if you want to use the tool or not. So, it’s really a question of organizational governance. So, you say the normal organization where only look maybe to their tier one partner. Now, why do they make that decision? Well, because they need to hire intermediaries to verify what their tier one partner is doing, and that’s cost. They may want to look at tier two, but then they have to hire more intermediaries, more costs, more time to do that. So, from a governance point of view, they say, “What is the value of spending additional money to gain that visibility? So, a cost benefit analysis. Now, if the cost of verifying what’s happening with your tier two provider goes down, well, maybe that changes the cost benefit analysis. And that may change your organizational governance decision.
Kevin L. Jackson (23:09):
IBM food trust, for example, has established end-to-end visibility to the complete food supply chain for its members. A similar blockchain has been created for the pharmaceutical industry. Now, individual companies and organizations, however, need to establish a requirement to join these types of ecosystems. They have to make their own cost benefit analysis that the value of having visibility into that data and information beyond tier one, two, and three, and so forth is valuable. Then, they create that as part of their own organizational governance. It definitely can be done, but senior executives need to make it happen and it’s a business decision.
Karin Bursa (24:04):
Okay. But I think that that’s important, right? Because we established that blockchain can help reduce cost. It can accelerate visibility or decision-making or transactions in your business. So, it can eliminate waste as far as that wait time or that review time that might be in your traditional business process as well. But tell me this, Kevin, so is blockchain proven or are we still pursuing a proof of concept format? You’ve given us just a couple of examples, let’s kind of visit some of those because I think pharma is a great example, the food sector, again, traceability becomes really important there as well. Walk us through if this is still stuff that is, you know, being proven in the marketplace or if there are real value assignments that have been made around the capabilities.
Kevin L. Jackson (25:05):
So, in the finance industry, they’re ahead than many other industries. And just to give you an example of what’s being done today, Boston-based, Circle, oversees more than $2 billion a month in cryptocurrency investment and exchanges between friends.
Karin Bursa (25:31):
Between friends. Between friends with deep pocket books. Yes. Okay.
Kevin L. Jackson (25:33):
Yeah. I wish I had those friends, right? I mean, I would say that that’s a lot of risk. But these people within this ecosystem trust the blockchain to the amount of $2 billion a month burst IQ. It leverages big data blockchain contracts to help patients and doctors transfer sensitive medical information. All of these are not proof of concepts. These are real businesses making money every day. Media chain uses smart contracts to get musicians the money that they deserve because there’s a decentralized transparent contract between the artists and the distributors to actually monitor the royalties associated with the sales.
Karin Bursa (26:37):
So, now, that’s interesting, Kevin, because that is more than just the buyer-seller. It is the contractual terms around the delivery of that service or the rights of ownership to that intellectual property. So, that’s really interesting as we think about blockchain in a more comprehensive manner.
Kevin L. Jackson (26:59):
Yeah. Propy, it’s a global real estate marketplace that decentralized title registry. There’s a company called Filament that create software and microchip devices, and it helps connect devices that operate on the blockchain. So, I mean, there’s huge value in multiple industry verticals and it’s been proven by multiple companies.
Karin Bursa (27:32):
Yep. Yeah. So, those are some great examples. I think that gives us several different industries. I would agree that the financial sector is one of the first that come to mind, especially around Bitcoin, or even transactions, or accelerating letters of credit, or any of those aspects. But the other area that I’m hearing blockchain mentioned in more and more frequently is around environmental and social governance, so our ESG initiatives. This is mostly, Kevin, around things like country of origin, conflict minerals, things along those lines. Is there value from a blockchain ledger from a registry process in this area of environmental, and social, and business governance? Or are companies just kind of green washing and looking for another way to say, “Look, we’re investing in being more responsible from a global basis.”
Kevin L. Jackson (28:36):
So, earlier, we talked about the value of blockchain and that it establishes ground truth. And when you’re thinking about any ESG initiative, that’s what they’re doing. They’re trying to verify, identify ground truth and prove it to their constituents and their stakeholders. So, blockchain absolutely can provide that ground truth, that’s what it’s designed to do. It keeps records. So, tracking blood diamonds, you can look at the transactions to see who bought what from whom. That’s the value. But on the other hand, there’s a huge amount of controversy around the amount of energy that’s used to operate these blockchains. Because some of the current consensus mechanisms in order to prove ground truths, there are different processes and algorithms that have to be run. And these are run on computers. And in order for the answer to be timely, it could take a lot of computers, and these computers running data centers that use electricity that contribute to pollution.
Kevin L. Jackson (30:11):
So, in some cases, the carbon footprint of the data centers needed to support the consensus mechanisms is exorbitant. So, what you pay in climate change drastically or dramatically outweighs what you lose in blood diamonds, for instance. But there are greener options for consensus in place, and research is being done on many other methods that is bearing fruit to reduce the amount of energy that’s used. So, the bottom line is, don’t avoid using blockchain. It’s very valuable. It can provide that ground truth. Just pick the greener options, the greener technologies of executing the blockchain in your business.
Karin Bursa (31:11):
Okay. That’s some really valuable insight there, I think, as companies look at weaving in some of these methods, if you will, the blockchain methods in order to support initiatives. Let’s make sure that they’re not counterproductive in the process. So, if we are – well, let me rephrase that. Are we still in an early adopter arena here, Kevin? Or can I go out and subscribe to a commercial blockchain platform to do X, Y, Z, so you mentioned initiatives in specific industries, for example? Or do I have to grow my own? Do I have to grow it myself or develop a blockchain myself?
Kevin L. Jackson (32:02):
The answer to that is both. Are we an early adopter? Definitely, yes. Because minority of industries actually leverage blockchain for its value, but the value is there and the value is proven. Do you have to create it and grow your own? No. There are many, many big companies that provide blockchain technology options and services, IBM, Microsoft, Accenture, and such. But it requires you to understand your business case, how you want to use it and the value of truth in your business.
Karin Bursa (32:50):
Okay. So, I recommend truth in my business at all times. So, highly valued, highly valued. But speaking of truth, let’s talk about some electronic notification, if you will. So, is there a connection in blockchain with technologies like RFID where I can identify where my assets are or how they’re moving? Or with the broader Internet of Things, when I think of IoT signals that might indicate a need for repair or replacement or replenishment in my business or in the customers that I serve?
Kevin L. Jackson (33:33):
Absolutely. So, once again, blockchain keeps records, right? It keeps the history of those records. Those records could be a beta from sensors like RFID or from IoT devices. Or, like, your car isn’t part of the Internet of Things, where your car is every minute of the day could be recorded on a blockchain. So, any sensor can provide data to a blockchain. I may not want that to happen, but it is possible.
Karin Bursa (34:04):
So, a little scary. But I can see where collecting that information, where we’re constantly being asked if we want to opt in, if we want to share our data, if we want to share user data on your internet browser, and to help make it better in the long run. Or on your fitness monitor, or your bed, your sleep number, you’re [inaudible] sleep. I mean, there are no boundaries to the data.
Kevin L. Jackson (34:28):
Yeah. With your sleep number. Looking at that history, yes.
Karin Bursa (34:33):
Yes. That is being collected.
Kevin L. Jackson (34:35):
But you may not be able to lie about your weight now.
Karin Bursa (34:42):
Oh, man. I don’t like that. You hit a girl right where it counts. Come on. All right. So, if blockchain is not just hype, if it is reality and there are some good business use cases around blockchain, does it belong in my digital transformation priority list? Coming to you, you know, you are Mr. Digital Transformation, Digital Transformers podcast, does blockchain belong in that list of activities and priorities? And if so, is this a top 5 item or is it a top 20 item?
Kevin L. Jackson (35:22):
Unequivocally, yes. And I would put it in your top five. It is a hype. It can be used to digitize your business process. It can improve data exchange. It can accelerate your business ecosystem. It can reduce the cost of delivering a product or service. It can accelerate your ability to deliver a product or service. It can expand your business. So, yes, yes, yes.
Karin Bursa (35:57):
Yeah. I mean, it’s like music to my ears. I heard reduced cost, accelerate, and grow or expand my business. So, there are great use cases around all three of those levers for your business and within your supply chain operations. So, all of you supply chain movers and shakers out there, I want you to start thinking about this. And Kevin L. Jackson, host of Digital Transformers, just said that blockchain belongs in your top five on your digital transformation list. So, let’s start working it in there. If it’s something that’s just been kind of off to the side or a skunkworks initiative, let’s get that moved into your priorities for your business as you think about those first few ways to apply blockchain technology to do all of those good finger licking things, like reduce costs, accelerate information, and give me an opportunity to grow my business more efficiently. So, Kevin, bonus question for you, from a supply chain perspective, what industries are leading the way with blockchain?
Kevin L. Jackson (37:05):
So, I would say logistics. Absolutely logistics in the supply chain. Because they are using RFID to collect data and they’re collecting that data across multi-mode transportation. So, you can know what is where when. So, you can actually keep the history of your toilet paper.
Karin Bursa (37:32):
I may not want the full history of my toilet paper, but I get where you’re going with that. So, let me ask this question, you did give a couple of good examples, too, that I think are very pertinent in pharmaceutical and life sciences. So, just some of the examples that you shared, especially where regulatory concerns come into play for those goods or services as products being brought to market.
Kevin L. Jackson (38:00):
The ground truth, right?
Karin Bursa (38:02):
Yeah. Yeah. You mentioned, you know, visibility and traceability in the food supply chain as well. So, do you think that that’s one industry that we are seeing lean in to blockchain a little more than some others?
Kevin L. Jackson (38:18):
Yeah. And, once again, it’s around logistics. Where did that food come from? Who created that food? Was it kept in the proper temperature and humidity while it was transported from its origin to my table?
Karin Bursa (38:35):
Again, right there, temperature control. That’s another great example of how IoT can come into play to enrich that data as well, because I can keep and track that information in the progression of that food coming to market to verify that it’s been kept in the appropriate conditions all the way through to consumption, if you will.
Karin Bursa (38:56):
So, Kevin, this has been really great for me. Thank you for kind of boiling it down.
Kevin L. Jackson (39:00):
No. Thank you for having me on the show. And it’s been a pleasure to cover blockchain for your audience.
Karin Bursa (39:08):
Yeah. Yeah. Blockchain basics, Kevin can go a lot deeper. So, all of you supply to your movers and shakers out there, I want to recommend that you check out Digital Transformers, because Kevin really is a very influential authority in this area, and he can help you just layer on more thoughts, dig a little deeper beyond these blockchain basics that we’ve been able to cover today. So, Kevin, let me ask you, final piece of advice. What one thing do you want our audience to walk away with from today’s discussion of blockchain basics?
Kevin L. Jackson (39:46):
So, I would say keep an open mind. The possibilities are endless. We live in a world where, if you can think of it, you can achieve it. And that’s the truth with business. So, learn about blockchain, you already know about your business so apply the value of blockchain to your business, and everyone benefits.
Karin Bursa (40:14):
Excellent. Well, Kevin L. Jackson, thank you for bringing such clarity to our topic of blockchain basics today, especially in how it applies to supply chain. It’s been a big help. It’s helped me. And we’ve covered lots of different things, governance, process improvements, cultural boundaries, and the application of technology to help facilitate all of these items in a digital transformation. And you heard it here, supply chain movers and shakers, this belongs on your digital transformation list. Let’s work it into your strategy. Let’s expand your education and dive into many of the great resources that are available on the topic.
Karin Bursa (40:58):
And check out Kevin L. Jackson, our guest today, who is, in fact, host of Digital Transformers. And if you go to Supply Chain Now, you can subscribe there. And while you’re there, do me a favor, subscribe to TEKTOK as well, that’s T-E-K-T-O-K. I don’t want you to miss a single episode. And our goal here is to help you eliminate the noise and focus in on the information and inspiration you need to transform your business and replace that risky inventory with valuable insights. We’ll see you next time here on TEKTOK, powered by Supply Chain Now.
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), a “Top 1000 Tech Blogger” (Rise Social Media 2019) and provides integrated social media services to AT&T, Broadcom, Ericsson, and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and Engility Corporation 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 Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix, and IBM. Books include “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross-Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016), and “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, Germanna Community College, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier 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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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Host, Logistics with Purpose
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.
Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now and TECHquila Sunrise
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.
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.
Host of TEKTOK
If there’s one Supply Chain ‘Pro to Know,’ it’s Karin. She’s earned the title for three years and counting – culminating in her designation as the “2020 Supply Chain Pro to Know of the Year.” Karin is also an award-winning digital supply chain, business strategy and technology marketing executive. A sought-after speaker at industry conferences, you will find her quoted in a variety of supply chain publications – and active in forums like ASCM/APICS and CSCMP.
With more than 25 years of supply chain experience, Karin spearheaded strategy and marketing for Gartner Magic Quadrant Leader and IDC MarketScape Leader, Logility. Karin has the heart of a teacher and has helped nearly 1,000 customers transform their businesses and tell their success stories. Today, she is a sought-after advisor helping high-growth B2B technology companies with everything from defining their unique value propositions to introducing new products and capturing customer success. No matter their goals, she makes sure her clients have actionable marketing strategies that help grow global revenue, market share and profitability.
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 Cisco, Microsoft, 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 University, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier 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.
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.
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’.
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.
Jeff Miller is the host of Supply Chain Now’s Supply Chain is the Business. Jeff is a digital business transformation and supply chain advisor with deep expertise in Industry 4.0, ERP, PLM, SCM, IoT, AR and related technologies. Through more than 25 years of industry and consulting experience, he has worked with many of the world’s leading product and service companies to achieve their strategic business and supply chain goals, creating durable business value for organizations at the forefront of technology and business practices. Jeff is the managing director for North America at Transition Technologies PSC, a global solution integrator, and the founder and managing principal of BTV Advisors, a firm that helps companies secure business transformation value from digital supply chain technologies and their breakthrough capabilities.
Chief Marketing Officer
Amanda is a marketing veteran and entrepreneur with over 15 years of experience across a variety of industries and organizations including Von Maur, Anthropologie, AmericasMart Atlanta, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. In 2016, Amanda founded and grew the Magnolia Marketing Group into a successful digital media firm, and now she develops modern marketing strategies, social campaigns, innovative operational processes, and implements creative content initiatives for Supply Chain Now. But that’s just the beginning of her supply chain impact. Amanda also served as the VP of Information Systems and Webmaster on the Board of Directors for APICS Savannah for several years, and is the face behind the scenes welcoming you to every Supply Chain Now livestream! She was also recently selected as one of the Top 100 Women in Supply Chain by Supply Chain Digest and IBM. When she’s not leading the Supply Chain Now marketing team, you can find Amanda with her and her husband Scott’s three kids, in the kitchen cooking, or reading.
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.
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.
Host of Dial P for Procurement
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.
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.
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.
Sales and Marketing Coordinator
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.
Ben Harris is the Director of Supply Chain Ecosystem Expansion for the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Ben comes to the Metro Atlanta Chamber after serving as Senior Manager, Market Development for Manhattan Associates. There, Ben was responsible for developing Manhattan’s sales pipeline and overall Americas supply chain marketing strategy. Ben oversaw market positioning, messaging and campaign execution to build awareness and drive new pipeline growth. Prior to joining Manhattan, Ben spent four years with the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s Center of Innovation for Logistics where he played a key role in establishing the Center as a go-to industry resource for information, support, partnership building, and investment development. Additionally, he became a key SME for all logistics and supply chain-focused projects. Ben began his career at Page International, Inc. where he drove continuous improvement in complex global supply chain operations for a wide variety of businesses and Fortune 500 companies. An APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP), Ben holds an Executive Master’s degree in Business Administration (EMBA) and bachelor’s degree in International Business (BBA) from the Terry College at the University of Georgia.
Host, The Freight Insider
Prior to joining TeamOne Logistics, Page Siplon served as the Executive Director of the Georgia Center of Innovation for Logistics, the State’s leading consulting resource for fueling logistics industry growth and global competitiveness. For over a decade, he directly assisted hundreds of companies to overcome challenges and capitalize on opportunities related to the movement of freight. During this time, Siplon was also appointed to concurrently serve the State of Georgia as Director of the larger Centers of Innovation Program, in which he provided executive leadership and vision for all six strategic industry-focused Centers. As a frequently requested keynote speaker, Siplon is called upon to address a range of audiences on unique aspects of technology, workforce, and logistics. This often includes topics of global and domestic logistics trends, supply chain visibility, collaboration, and strategic planning. He has also been quoted as an industry expert in publications such as Forbes, Journal of Commerce, Fortune, NPR, Wall Street Journal, Reuters, American Express, DC Velocity, Area Development Magazine, Site Selection Magazine, Inbound Logistics, Modern Material Handling, and is frequently a live special guest on SiriusXM’s Road Dog Radio Show. Siplon is an active industry participant, recognized by DC Velocity Magazine as a “2012 Logistics Rainmaker” which annually identifies the top-ten logistics professionals in the Nation; and named a “Pro to Know” by Supply & Demand Executive Magazine in 2014. Siplon was also selected by Georgia Trend Magazine as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential Georgians” for 2013, 2014, and 2015. He also serves various industry leadership roles at both the State and Federal level. Governor Nathan Deal nominated Siplon to represent Georgia on a National Supply Chain Competitiveness Advisory Committee, where he was appointed to a two-year term by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce and was then appointed to serve as its vice-chairman. At the State level, he was selected by then-Governor Sonny Perdue to serve as lead consultant on the Commission for New Georgia’s Freight and Logistics Task Force. In this effort, Siplon led a Private Sector Advisory Committee with invited executives from a range of private sector stakeholders including UPS, Coca-Cola, The Home Depot, Delta Airlines, Georgia Pacific, CSX, and Norfolk Southern. Siplon honorably served a combined 12 years in the United States Marine Corps and the United States Air Force. During this time, he led the integration of encryption techniques and deployed cryptographic devices for tactically secure voice and data platforms in critical ground-to-air communication systems. This service included support for all branches of the Department of Defense, multiple federal security agencies, and aiding NASA with multiple Space Shuttle launches. Originally from New York, Siplon received both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering with a focus on digital signal processing from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned an associate’s degree in advanced electronic systems from the Air Force College and completed multiple military leadership academies in both the Marines and Air Force. Siplon currently lives in Cumming, Georgia (north of Atlanta), with his wife Jan, and two children Thomas (19) and Lily (15).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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.
Sales Support Intern
Alex is pursuing a Marketing degree and a Certificate in Legal Studies at the University of Georgia. As a dual citizen of both the US and UK; Alex has studied abroad at University College London and is passionate about travel and international business. Through her coursework at the Terry College of Business, Alex has gained valuable skills in digital marketing, analytics, and professional selling. She joined Supply Chain Now as a Sales Support Intern where she assists the team by prospecting and qualifying new business partners.