In this episode, Greg and Scott welcome Ben Harris and Will Haraway back to the Supply Chain Now studio for a new episode of the #SupplyChainCity series.
[00:00:05] It’s time for Supply Chain Now Radio. Broadcasting live from Supply chain capital of the country, Atlanta, Georgia. Supply Chain Now Radio spotlights the best in all things supply chain the people, the technology, the best practices and the critical issues of the day. And now here are your hosts.
[00:00:29] Good morning, Scott Luton here with you, Liveline Supply chain. Now welcome back to the show. Today Show we’re continuing our Supply chain City series where we dove into a variety supply chain stories. The Roots, of course, right here in Atlanta. But regardless where you live, work or play, we’re really offering news like good news, ideas, best practices, some of the neatest stories taking place in the global world up into in Supply chain. So excited about the series. Quick programing note like all of our series on Supply chain. Now you can find our replays on a wide variety of channels. Apple Podcast, SoundCloud, YouTube, Spotify Stole Your Thunder wherever you get your podcasts from. As always, we’d love to have you subscribe so you’ll miss a thing. Let’s think a few of our sponsors that allow us to bring these best practices and innovative ideas to you. Our global audience. The Effective syndicate Verusen Vector Global Logistics. U.S. Bank Cap Gemini. Many more. You can check out each of our sponsors on the show notes of today’s episode. Okay, let’s welcome in.
[00:01:27] We’ve got a fearless co-host overload overload today. We’ve got the oh geez in studio. This, too, this episode. So for starters to my left here, Mr. Greg White 0 Supply chain Take entrepeneur, chronic disruptor and trusted advisor.
[00:01:42] Greg, how you doing? Good morning.
[00:01:43] I’m doing fantastic. I like having been and Will in studio with you too. It’s like old home week. I love it like we do. Yeah, it’s like sitting around drinking beer with your buddies. Scott Luton. Let us have beer.
[00:01:54] That’s barely two earlier. Yeah. Just he doesn’t know what I’ve gotten my coffee. Yeah. He’s got no idea. It could be as Irish as Irish. It could be right now. All right.
[00:02:05] So Greg to my left will hear away. Founder and chief of Vandalise for backbeat marketing across the way. Will, how you doing? I’m doing great. Thanks for having me today. Great to have you back. It’s the first episode since the else? awesome concert. Yeah, we enjoyed. Yeah. Thanks for coming, Sembler. And let’s put a link to that in the show now. We need to need to see that they can last. Yeah. Yeah. Because it’s just dragging my heart around.
[00:02:29] So to our audience members, if you like Tom Petty, you’ll love what the Sun Dogs did here in Atlanta. Yeah. No. So we will it will include a link. Yeah. Nice video. You’vegot. Yeah. Yeah. Thanks. Well, great to have you back. And then, of course, the star of today’s show, Ben Harris. Director, Supply chain Ecosystem Expansion with the one and only Metro Atlanta Chamber being hey, doing.
[00:02:49] I’m doing very well, Scott. Thanks for asking.
[00:02:50] I’ll give anyone $10 for it. May look different about Big Ben today.
[00:02:56] Anyone who gotten taller. That would be interesting. This late in life says he’s not wearing a blue blazer. Is it that mood UPS downstairs? I did it.
[00:03:10] I did bring it up and lead us not new to the market, but we’ve got like your beard. Yeah, man. It’s already grown in overnight and it looks great.
[00:03:20] Hey, look now luckly.
[00:03:21] So we were off. We actually were close to the chamber for the entire week, which is rare that you have a week off like. Down. Of course. Had our honeymoon that second. Yes. We took off for a bit of time. So it gave me a good two week head start to actually do this. So.
[00:03:35] So you grew a beard while you were on your honeymoon?
[00:03:37] Yeah. Let’s not talk about that, because Kristen, my wife. Lovely wife. Did she.
[00:03:43] She. She said there was definitely some transitional stages there that were not they were not gorgeous. But it was you know, I just told her, you know, there’s some of the beautiful works of the world.
[00:03:54] One. Well, the thing is, it’s solid. Move on your point on your part to wait until it was an official, you know, official marriage. Good point. To go ahead and start growing the batsman and extra points now. I like it out now. She’s yeah. She’s like a warts and all. I get it now.
[00:04:09] Yeah. Yeah. For better or for worse, I got it. You’re like I’m proving this right now.
[00:04:13] If we’re testing it, this is a style and quaff. Man, you look good in a beard. Yeah. Hey, look, if you’re if you’re not list watching us on YouTube, I’m telling you, switch over. This is a teamone dematic. Yeah. Deportes.
[00:04:27] Little did I know one little script adjustment would get a 7.
[00:04:30] You know how you got here. Great stuff. Here you go. And also drive video interaction. Yeah. Yeah, right. It’s very strategic to our listening audience.
[00:04:38] Stay tuned. We promise we’ve got some big stuff here, but it is great to have the Supply chain city crew back in the office and today we’re loose a little bit different. So many of our longtime listeners know Ben hears he’s been the earliest proponent of what we’re doing here to spread the Supply chain gospel and of course, with Wil and Ben. That was one of the first series you create here, Supply chain sitting at the Sheer with the market, what goes on here in Atlanta. So but today we are going to shift the turntables around that, right.
[00:05:11] To get turning the tables on Ben. We’re turning the tables in front of the mike.
[00:05:16] Between the ferns between 2 and 3, between Will and Scott Ausland. Yeah, but we’re gonna get it.
[00:05:23] It feels interesting to be a good analogy. Haddad’s.
[00:05:26] Well, you know, it it dawned on me as we were putting together that today’s plan that we have never done this with you. And of course, you are an integral part to help him make business expand here, but also relocate here and grow here. So looking forward to that. I think our audience will enjoy your backstory and then the second half. So you guys stay tuned, because we are going to offer through Ben’s insights the state of the Supply chain City address.
[00:05:54] So this isn’t quite Congress now and not quite. And you’re not quite the president now. But but he’s John Bolton. Yeah, we are much friendlier than Congress. Yes.
[00:06:05] But, you know, it’s gonna be really neat, that kind of here. We all kind of have our fingers on the pulse, so to speak. But from your perspective and some, our audience may not know some of the cool developments that not only is being driven here in Atlanta, but also how it ties into the global global industry. You know, the world is is very close together these days. So so before we do that, before we learn more about being a historian, that journey and get a stay the Supply chain City report, let’s first offer our listeners a chance to hear what’s Malcolm’s working on from the news desk. So Greg Will and Ben Watts.
[00:06:42] Well, me, let me drop this and then you guys chime in. Right. So last week, last Wednesday, the 22nd, we are partnering with U.S. Bank to release quarterly their freight freight payment index. So U.S. Pink does 20 almost. Almost twenty eight point eight billion dollars worth of freight transactions every year. They’ve got a tremendous amount of data, so it helps us to understand what has happened and what could happen in in the freight freight industry. So so we dropped that last week. If you didn’t catch it, we did it on LinkedIn live. It’s now on our show or on our it would be a partner. LinkedIn page, supply chain. Now LinkedIn page, if you want to go hit that. There’s some great insights. Bobby Holland, V.P. of corporate sorry, corporate payment systems and from U.S. Bank and Michelle Livingstone Vise, president of Transportation, gave us a great practical perspective right with her Home Depot. All right. With a Home Depot. Yes, sorry. There is there is what the data tells you and then there is what the real world tells you. And Michelle did a great job of bringing us that real world viewpoint. So anyway, so the data that what it tells us is that no surprise shipments were down quarter over quarter and year over year. Okay. From a number of shipments standpoint and from a spin standpoint. But strangely, certain regions of the world, including the supply chain city, were actually up. So. So it’s a very regional the impact of, you know, the turbulence in the in the freight, freight and transportation industry. So there’s some interesting findings there. Daniel Stanton, Mr. Supply chain also did a post about our our release on Linked In. And it’s very insightful and I appreciate him sharing that. Thank you. Daniel. And, you know, there’s just a lot going on. What I think was really interesting was depending on how you looked at the data, there was a situation. There’s actual situation with the data. Where even though shipments were down, spend was up.
[00:08:50] So, you know, there’s some there like many indicators in the economy. There is a little bit of of crosstalk, whatever you want to call it. Right. Some dichotomy in the numbers there.
[00:09:01] So and to illustrate your point here and SE, if you look at year over year twenty nineteen. Over twenty eighteen here in the southeast. Shipments were up 2.3 percent as opposed to the southwest where they were down over 11 percent and more in the northeast.
[00:09:17] That’s right. You know, and I think look I think that that goes to some things that are happening. Yeah. In the southeast port of Charles I was going to say Savannah, Savannah, Port Charles. They’re capturing a lot of the freight that was going into the ports in New Jersey. Yeah. And L.A. and Long Beach, you know, because there’s you know, they have newer systems. They have deeper ports. Recent investment. I mean. Yeah, exactly. And there’s just a lot of they’ve released a lot of tension and a lot of delay in the transport with the in with the inland port here in Georgia. Yeah. And that has made it more efficient. And look, getting goods to the consumer faster. That’s the number one issue right now. Right. So so people I mean, instead of landing in Long Beach, they’re actually going through the Panama Canal and around to the East Coast and still getting the goods to the consumer faster. That that tells you about how much efficiency has been instilled in these southeast ports. And I think that’s a big part of the success we’re seeing.
[00:10:20] I just think that’s interesting. A lot of the things we’ve reported on really throughout twenty nineteen. I mean it could be that the Southwest is affected by what’s going on on the southern border and continues to go on in the southern border, Texas. You know, and people are scared of this text and then say it’s southwest.
[00:10:35] I thought that was I thought that was Midwest. OK.
[00:10:38] Most definitely. Used to be Southwest conference. So I guess that’s that’s what I’m going to lower south of Kansas, which is Midwest. So when I’m down, I go with Daryl Royal. But yeah. So I just.
[00:10:49] It’s interesting, all of the little trends. And I mean, that’s certainly not a little trend, but all of the trends that we continue to follow, you can see them at the end of the year, everything from the investment and the inland ports with with Savannah and Charleston going over to that, you know, to the to the southern border and the tariffs and all the issues that that continue to be in the forefront. Yep.
[00:11:10] Yep. Yeah. So any commentary been.
[00:11:13] Yeah. No. I was going to ask you just talk about you talk about inland ports and so forth, but also just the inland connections to other areas like Chicago, the overnight service you see in Chicago now that you can get really in in the Midwest, you know, the rail for cargo right now and, you know, less than 48 hours. Yeah. So to that, you know, from the port inland and then back in 48 hours, it’s really cut down that transit time and made the emergence of the southeast ports a lot more viable. Got his point. So, yes, for sure. Absolutely. Of course, the inland ports and so forth. But that’s all that basically these inland terminals are, aren’t they? See, wise is they’re truly inland port. Yeah. I think that the relationships that they forge between the southeast ports and whether it’s Houston or also in Virginia, also, you have the ports there. There’s a lot of connections between there two and there’s just much better service.
[00:12:03] Well, look, we’re going to you know, everybody is saying we’re gonna see a lot of instability in the first half of the year. Many people are saying that they expect it to level off towards the second half of the year. I think we’ve had a few people who say, I don’t think so. I don’t think it levels off in the second half of the year. But anyway, this is one of this is one of those indicators, like so many other economic indicators that is fluctuating. Right. It’s really hard to get a read on the economy right now. I can tell you that a lot of the big investment houses they see, they see good things for the economy. I know that J.P. Morgan just upped their their prediction for the fourth quarter to 2.3 percent. OK. From I think 2.1 previously. And, you know, the revisions seem to be upward a week or two ago. I think we’ll see. Right. There’s a lot going on around the world. You know, Corona virus, that sort of thing could have a big effect.
[00:13:00] So she’s speaking a new. And you never know what’s going to trigger a move, a significant move right now.
[00:13:05] So on that little shit, the vehicles will not put you on the spot. We’re talking about that as we went live. And there’s some groups out there that, you know. Like with most of these viruses in recent years, some of them are overblown in terms of how they can spread and the impact, but it seems like the news on this coronavirus day after day keeps validating all the concerns. And how does that so get your take on that. Also, get your take on how that impacts global supply chain.
[00:13:36] Medical reporter will hear a way. Well, yeah.
[00:13:39] You know, just today you see that they’re already starting to be they’re increasing their travel restrictions between just from the United States into China. It’s I believe that the government said only completely necessary trips can now be taken. They’re they’re inspecting people in and out of the country. And we’re gonna start to see some reports and some forecasts that just how that’s going to affect transportation. And supply chain, I believe our friends of the show, Resilience 360, we’ll have a report on that in the next couple of days that we’ll be able to share. As far as the you know, they they cover every supply chain disruption around the globe. And that will show just exactly how it’s affecting decisions about the ports decision by the airports, decisions by companies that do business in both countries and and really just in China, certainly, and in how they’re going to be shifting their sourcing, Giuliani manufacturing and shifting their distribution.
[00:14:35] It’s that ripple effect, anything, whether it is health related or if it’s geopolitical or what. What have you. There’s a huge ripple effect across these these global supply chains. And and we hope that there is some containment at some point. It seems like we’re still is still in expansion mode of this virus, but we’ll see how that plays out. But, you know, we will. But Sandeep publishes podcast. Maybe that report will be out and we can include that. And I know we look forward to. That’s a great such a great resource. Yeah, because you can’t keep a thousand things on your radar, especially if you’ve got that that truly, you know, factories here, distribution points here, you know. So that be having a tracking system, for lack of a better phrase, keep that front and center, especially the priority items, incredibly valuable these days.
[00:15:22] And there’s no doubt.
[00:15:22] I mean, if you’re if you’re on that level of global commerce, it behooves you not to have something like that in place. Yep.
[00:15:30] All right. And I want to go back to your well, how we started this and U.S. Bank get a freight payment index will include a link to that report. Yes, I think that’s a free on the short. I may have to submit your information, which is what, white?
[00:15:41] You can subscribe to it and we’ll be releasing it every quarter. Yeah. So here, Leive, not just look at the data, but the benefit of that is you get to hear live what what the data is telling us and telling us bank and then what people in the real practical supply chain world are are seeing and feeling in regard to what the data sharing.
[00:16:00] Yeah. And I’ll give you some other good news. If you’re tuning in to us from global venues abroad, US, the IMF International Monetary Fund recently announced at Davos. They’re predicting global expansion of 3.3 percent in 2020 is up from 2019. And particularly if you’re in Brazil, India, Mexico or Russia, they expect to see your growth one full percentage, more than one full percentage point over last year, just a growth. The pace of growth, which is outstanding, wouldn’t as much good news for the U.S. economy. According to the IMF there, they’re projecting the U.S. economy grew at 2 percent. So I like that. I like your 2.3 percent better. And they’re projecting the Chinese economy to grow at 6 percent, which is a limit of 6.1 last year. So mixed, you know, mixed bag. Good news. That’s a good news.
[00:16:51] You know, being an economist is a lot like being a sportscaster. Right. No, nobody ever calls you out when you’re wrong. And every game you’ve ever seen is the best game ever play.
[00:17:03] So. All right, let’s do this.
[00:17:06] All right. So before we move on, any from a news standpoint here. Recent news, Trident did ourselves too bad. And he was scathing.
[00:17:15] Yeah. Well, just today, friends of the show Blue Ridge Global, they released. Well, they haven’t actually released it yet, but they announced that the next week, their wholesale distribution industry report. Oh, yeah. We’ll be coming out to 2020, Ed. It’s the third year in a row that they’ve done this report. It’s a survey of the National Association of Wholesalers to better understand the SUPPLY CHAIN plans for continued business expansion and digitization. And it just it shows the issues that these guys are consistently dealing with regards to economic trends, cost pressure, new competition, and certainly how that affects the way that they manage and forecast their inventory. Obviously, when you’re dealing with distribution and on a wholesale, you know, on a on a wholesale scale, it’s very difficult to to decide exactly what your inventory spend and your inventory level is going to be. So they are uniquely affected by all of the things that we actually have just spoken about as far as economic pressures and global trends. So that report is coming out next week. It’ll be in a webinar that you can register for. It’s on the webinar is on February 5th, I believe, at 2:00 Eastern Time. And you can register for it at Debbie, Debbie, Debbie Dot, Blue Ridge Global dot com.
[00:18:32] Give us the link. We’ll and we’ll put it in the show notes. Hey. Yeah. Distribution, the forgotten segment of the chain. I mean, we have to we we talk a lot about warehousing, but we don’t talk about the fact that we have to determine what’s the right up right product, where and when in in that segment of the supply chain and full disclosure founder.
[00:18:55] Yeah. Former CEO, remember, and and huge fan.
[00:18:58] But but that’s a real that’s one of the that’s one of the best things that I think we offer to the market is, is that it’s it is a great assessment of a very important segment of the market. And I think it’s a it’s a portion of the mark market that deserves more awareness than it gets. Yeah, love distribution was supposed to disappear in the year 2000. I go everywhere. It ain’t got no place. Right.
[00:19:24] Ok. Well, one more quick announcement. Just. We just recently published our most recent Today manufacturing episode where we featured Aaron Meredith with Porny. We talked about trends in the innovation world and in the water manufacturing. Yeah. And as part of that, we have a new sponsor. So we gotta give a little shout out to h.l B GROSS Connely out the leading CPG firms in Atlanta. They do a lot of business here. Georgia, they also do business really globally, but really appreciate their support of our manufacture, our efforts to to spread manufacturing best practices and in new ideas.
[00:20:00] I think we just released lower amount of jetskis episode. Yes. Was it today? Yeah, yesterday it was today. Right. Laura Medeski. Yeah. So sorry.
[00:20:11] She leads the manufacturing distribution practice at HP.
[00:20:14] Gross Yeah. So here what she’s got to say, right? Because they they’ve got their finger on the pulse.
[00:20:20] That’s right. All right. So now we’re going to give you an opportunity to put your finger on the pulse of what’s going on here in Atlanta after we get to know one of the subject matter experts in. In all things Supply chain City. So let’s welcome Ben Hare’s formally back in the show. Don’t go anywhere. But we’re really pleased to have him and really learn more about his background. And so, Ben, good morning again. Glad to be back, Scott. So, you know, we’ve been collaborating for quite some time and you are always a great hostess. All the all of always all about the guests and our featured guests and as business leaders that we’ve managed to have on the show and and everything else you’re involved in. But as we mentioned on the front end, we do want to turn the tables on you. There is a strong sense of humility with you, but you’ve got a great story. And now we’re gonna we’re gonna find out more about that and kind of dove into your brain. Are you ready, Ben?
[00:21:14] Let’s do it. OK. Lightning might be a scary place, but let’s do. I love it.
[00:21:19] All right. So first question out of the box. You know, no secret part of our Froome formula is, you know, where you from that that one question I think most folks really want to share where they’re from is like this is one of those questions that helps people, you know, form a bond. Right. And some camaraderie. So tell us where you’re from and where you grew up.
[00:21:39] Yeah, so grew up right here in Atlanta. Indicator, Georgia. Yeah. Nate made indicator as to where it’s greater. Yeah. One one of the few. You don’t there’s not many of us out there that are. And raised in Atlanta, much less to cater for that matter. So I had a great upbringing there, spent some time actually in Chattanooga in high school for a few years. What what what took you to Jenny? Actually, I I went to boarding school. Oh. So I was boring. It was a boarding and day school. Baylor school up there.
[00:22:09] So, yeah, my junior and senior year I spent time up there and graduated from there, made a lot of friends. LEXI was at Summize wedding this weekend in Tuscaloosa, actually, of all places. But he one of my best friends from up there, actually from Chattanooga. We’re going to open a bunch it out bunch of time with them there this weekend. So spend some time in Chattanooga, then went to school at UJA undergrad. So right up the road, dogs. There you go. Dogs in Athens. And I actually went to grad school here in Atlanta while working for Manhattan Associates actually time, which was my previous stop before being here at the other metro Atlanta chamber. So yeah, one racer and only had and I was at Manhattan between. It’s funny cause some might ask me the other day and it’s getting to that point where you’re like I’m not sure when that was, but it was probably 2012/2013. OK. Up until I guess it was about five years. Up till about 2017 and into 2016.
[00:23:04] He started when I left. Is that rangeland? I know we missed each other passing shit like I think within the same couple of months. Sejong know each other at the. No, no, we didn’t actually. But I mean, I heard of you from ambra who worked, who worked for both of us.
[00:23:17] There was a lot of lore around. Will hair away. Yes. Oh, it always is. Hollywood anyway. That’s legendary. What did you do there?
[00:23:25] So I to start my career there at Manhattan, I was in the marketing group. Right. All of their supply chain markings. So core business w mass TMX some on the inventory optimization side, really their core product when it came to marketing and really field marketing in particular there. Then moved into my last three years there was actually the head of all new business development there, Manhattan. So my job was to go out and get new business that was not, you know, any that was not a current customer at the time. So it was it was a tough job. You know, you learn a lot about yourself and biz dev. You know, when you’re out there and people say, no a lot to you, you know, you’ve got to have thick skin and just kind of brush it off and keep moving and keep talking. The folks actually do want to talk to you.
[00:24:08] So we’ve got our own or we got out ahead of ourselves. We got kicked our covers a little bit here because. Go back. Sorry. Gone for Wheaten. That’s OK. We’re about to talk about your current role at the chamber. Before we do that, give us the goods on an early hobby or an early role model or what’s really sticks out from your upbringing. What really you look back fondly.
[00:24:27] I guess sports talking about sports a lot. Played a lot of basketball growing up. OK. What position? You name it. A little bit. Everything you know, when you when you’ve been around for a long time and you know, you grow up too fast and thereby thinks you’re gonna be tall, then you just kind of stop. Yeah, I did that. That was a I was one of those because. So you were the center in junior high? Yes. Yeah, I was. I was a big in eighth grade. Yeah. I was a big man then. And then after that you just kind of stop and you know, all the sudden you’re a shooting guard.
[00:24:56] You know, it depends on where you went to school to if you went to, you know, a big, you know, school, big public school a lot of the time. You know, six to is is a point guard. Yeah. But other smaller schools, that’s maybe a small forward sometimes it just depends. Yeah. You know. So did a lot of that. A lot of my upbringing I would say. One of my mentors was actually Georgia Tech Savannah when I was working for the state actually before I came on board. So to talk about, you know, upbringing, actually I. After finishing at UJA undergrad, I went down to Savannah, had a job down there with a company called Page International. So small third party logistics company, it’s moved into other areas, but most of what they did was freight forwarding and customs house brokerage down there. So really cut my teeth on supply chain. You really Logistics more so than Supply chain when I was down there.
[00:25:44] Learn International Trade Business worked with a lot of commodities, a lot of paper. It was one of our core products down there, as you might imagine. Right? Going out. Puerto Savannah. Ford. Charleston. You mentioned also a lot of a lot of commodity. Been there, done that. Oh, yeah. This is not theoretical for you. No, no. You know of what you speak. Yes. So we talked about transportation analysis.
[00:26:04] Was the. Yeah. The group that I led down there. And my job was to price freight all over the world when it came to whether it was commodities or finished goods, whatever that may be. And then it was air, freight rail, ocean trucking all the above head and figure all those nodes out together. So it was it was a lot of fun. It was a great way to learn. Truthfully, you know, Logistics is one piece of that and all those things that happened between nodes, then the whole supply chain, too, was it was a big fun thing to to understand and to explore a little bit there before I worked for the state in Savannah. So I stayed in Savannah after working at Page International for about four or five years, then went into a work for the Center of Innovation for Logistics. Now, yeah, you know, we’ve got a lot of friends there. Riseley Matt Markham, Panama. Very handy like Sandeep legs is phenomenal. He was there when I was there. So we overlapped a good bit there and page siplon at the time, of course, but Team one now was leader of the innovation center at that point, so we were physically housed down in Savannah at Georgia Tech. Savannah. Anybody mentor you in your career to kind of get you where you are today? I mean, did it who took you under their wing? It’s like you you do that on cue.
[00:27:10] Like I was gonna say, I’m a curious person.
[00:27:14] That was perfect. Note Page was definitely a mentor mine for sure. I learned a lot from him both, you know, politically and how to handle certain things, certain situations. He was really good at that. And also just from a leadership standpoint. He was phenomenal. And it continues to be an area and tour to our audience.
[00:27:31] So Page Siplon, former executive director of the Georgia Center of Information for Logistics, current CEO of Team one Logistics, who not only is sponsoring Art Linas Supply chain Awards, but we’re gonna be kicking off a new series with Paige, who is you know, he’s like a rock and roll star, especially in Supply chain in general, but especially at End to end Logistics standpoint. Yeah, you know, so our listeners will be able to connect the dots on what been sharing and hear a lot more about Paige. But I’m sorry. Go ahead.
[00:27:57] Thank you, Scott. I appreciate that. And then additionally down there, Dr. Frost, who was one of another early mentor, actually, he opened up the Georgia Tech Savanah office down there so that that piece of the business was a big deal for Savannah having Georgia Tech there on the coast. We’re also an offering from an academic standpoint, some programing there to which they continued to do today. He he really got me that job, first of all, and also just kind of believed in me and was very good at understanding, you know, the things that it took to go to certain places in your life and and said, you know, what do you really want to do? At some point. And he was the first person really ask me not, you know, what I really wanted and helped me chart a course for the future. So I’m I’m forever indebted to those to those two folks school.
[00:28:44] So let’s get it. We got to dove into this state of Supply chain City in a minute. But before we do, give us something that folks may not know about the metro Atlanta Chamber, what it does, and then let’s talk about where you spend your time with the chamber.
[00:28:59] Sure. So the metro Atlanta chamber has been in business and we’ve talked best teased it a little bit before, but over 150 years might not know that it’s one of the oldest. If not, we always say the oldest chambers in North America, for that matter. So that’s a long time to be in, you know, in business, for one thing. But we’ve been advocating on behalf of the business community here in Atlanta for that long, basically. So it was the Atlanta chamber at that point. It’s now the metro Atlanta chamber. And we are geographic footprint is the entire twenty nine county metro area of Atlanta. So you’re talking over 6 million people that we have to advocate and work on behalf. Yeah, I see. So a lot of our funding or I should say all of our funding comes from the largest leaders in the business community in Atlanta. And those companies basically. So the Home Depots, the West Rocks, the u._p._s is off of the world. A lot of those leaders in Supply chain or some of our our biggest leaders, also Coca-Cola being a huge partner as well. Starbucks just recently, of course, with their investment here in Atlanta. So it’s just been a lot of fun working with those companies to advance supply chain here. But also understand some of the smaller companies. You know, a lot of folks don’t know that we work with smaller companies still. You know, it’s not your your granddad’s chamber you think of, you know. Right. A bunch of guys sitting around or smoking cigar. Exactly. It’s not not exactly that kind of chamber. So I invite, you know, our listeners, if you have not been to the chamber before, it does not look anything like that.
[00:30:27] It looks like a truly next gen organization that is truly trying to look like that. And because we are and we really want to look like that and really represent the business community in Atlanta. So a large part of what we do is the advocation piece. We we have a very large kind of lobby group, for lack of a better word. They’re the advocates on behalf of the business community to make sure that we’re, from a policy standpoint, doing our part to advocate on things that will grow business, that will not inhibit business here in metro Atlanta. And really the state for that matter, too. That’s one piece. And then, of course, the economic development piece is really where I sit. And a large part of that is really growing two things, jobs, investment here in Atlanta. And how do we go about doing that? Is really marketing the city for for what it is and really the entire metro region that it is truly a global supply chain hub here, not only from a physical standpoint we talk about Supply chain said that’s what we mean by Supply chain City is that movement from the physical distribution hub that is Atlanta to this next gen digital supply chain hub here with all the supply chain I.T. companies. And really the digital disruption that’s going on here is really where I spend most of my time and of course, where we talk about most on here. Previously on the show.
[00:31:41] Also, I think a lot of folks don’t realize may not that those that are outside of Atlanta, there’s two very important Kog. Doesn’t do it justice, but cogs in the engine of global supply chain, one is supply chain finance. Right. Where you get your money from and fintech is his. You know, this is a fintech capital. Absolutely. And number two, of course, supply chain these days is technology. Yeah. And the technology hub that is Atlanta. If you look at the people, you look at that companies. Manhattan Social. Right. Exactly. That’s right. You look at the schools that are churning out the talent that make supply chain technology happens. It is it it really. Two huge factors that that really make doing business, especially sports team business here in this metro Atlanta area. Very, very private. Absolutely.
[00:32:31] Well, I was just going to say, you know, speaking of y’all’s office there always I remember the first time I went in there and we went into the. You know, it’s obviously it’s the white marble and the Phenix. And it’s just it’s really great branding. It’s actually I think it’s the coolest office that I’ve that I’ve been to. And when we go into the the big conference room where we we have meetings for, you know, your Supply chain series or for, you know, some of the stuff we’ve we’ve done around, you know, supply chain one to one or any of that stuff.
[00:33:00] And you’re in the conference room and it and it’s still the white marble and it’s still pretty. And then you’re overlooking Mercedes Benz Stadium.
[00:33:06] It’s like, you know, it’s the greatest home field advantage that you can think of when you bring a business in there to say, this is the Supply chain, this is the Supply chain city.
[00:33:16] Yeah, right. You want to be it. We want you to be a part of this.
[00:33:18] Yeah. Biggest thing the world is before your boy. So it’s a very impressive building.
[00:33:23] It always makes me happy to be in that office and to go. So keep inviting me.
[00:33:27] Every time I walk in there, I want to get my picture taken in front of the big 8. Yeah. Yeah, exactly. It’s beautiful. Yeah.
[00:33:33] The lighting is lighting is very, to your point, very unique.
[00:33:38] It’s like it’s like a glow. It’s vibrant. It is. It is. It is like a vibrate, robust white. We’ll have to get some pictures that give folks a sense. But nevertheless, our show notes. That’s right. Yeah. Do our show notes is like a wagoneer word where things are gruff, far and over the side.
[00:33:54] My marketing and comms group. I’m sure this is music to their ear.
[00:33:57] Ok. Yeah.
[00:33:58] Should be OK. So now we’re gonna shift gears. Hopefully, you know, our audience enjoyed learning more about how the man behind the microphone been here is here and what the chamber is doing, because, you know, they were the one the earliest proponents of all of Supply Chain Now Radio, which, of course, is now Supply chain. Now, we’ll talk about that later on. But, you know, helping the to preach the supply chain, God help other organizations and supply chain practitioners get better at what they do. Right. It’s not all about bragging about Atlanta and talking about our supply chain chops here, but it’s about sharing ideas, sharing problems for sharing benchmarking opportunities in the chamber was one of our first big proponents here. So let’s shift gears over to the state of the Supply chain City address. So tell us and we’ll. And Greg. I’m I’m sure you all might have some some things weighing in, too, based on what will being says, but I doubt it will.
[00:34:52] Now, I don’t have a speech for it. Never. So this at this address?
[00:34:55] Yeah. It’s not going to be more of a roundtable where we are. Yeah. We’re I’m trying to still shamelessly from the State of the Union. Yeah.
[00:35:05] But tell us, what do folks really need to know here as we finished up a successful year in twenty nineteen and we’re moving into Fast and Furious, we’re almost already in February by the time this publishes Gary. Right. Yeah. What do folks need to know?
[00:35:18] We had a good year last year. I would say when we talk about the two metrics, jobs and investment, we had a lot you know, when you when we talk about supply chain focused jobs, an investment to a lot of big announcements last year. Amazon alone had 2 2 large distribution projects that they had here in metro Atlanta. One just announce down and county to county, which was 5 Newnan. There you go, baby. Five hundred jobs, over a million square feet there. And then you’ve got another million plus square foot. Right. Was actually over in DeKalb County, which was around a thousand jobs. So these are these are big economic development projects. And also, Stitch Fix had a nine hundred job project here that they announced earlier this year. I guess that was probably beginning Q1, beginning Q2, Q2, which was another time then also newel brands.
[00:36:06] Well before go to Newell, I’m I am unfamiliar with Stitch Fix.
[00:36:10] What? Oh my. Yeah. I think you are looking at your wardrobe. You’re right. It sounds like you got some women to Doha in the family, too. Oh, they’ve got it.
[00:36:20] They’ve got a guys thing now. So. So what they’ll do? The way Stitch Fix works is it started out literally fixing your clothes. You could send it to cinnamon and they would put new buttons on your. OK. And in in. Well, whatever the case, yeah, in anyway. Yeah, they would put new buttons on, whatever, so then what they did was they will send you a box. They let you kind of select your sizes and select your style. And and then they’ll send you a box of an outfit that should fit your OK. Your vibe. Right. So you can either keep it all set. Some of its isation or take it back. And it started out obviously for four ladies. But now they’ve expanded and there’s there’s actually guys kits. Yeah, pretty cool.
[00:37:06] Well, I kind of like to dress like a right to Indiana Jones. Yeah, they can. They can do that for Stitz Fix.
[00:37:13] Welcome to Atlanta. Nine hundred job strong. That’s clearly a big win.
[00:37:17] Well, you know, on the Amazon front, also, that’s just expanding their footprint. Right. They already have massive facility.
[00:37:23] Absolutely. Here. They were heavily invested. Right, in Georgia in general. Right. As well. So they think they were over thirty five hundred jobs already. Yeah. In Georgia, they’ve got a large transportation group office, of course, here in midtown also. So, yeah, it’s been those were a couple you the announcements. So I think. Just recently in Newton County actually leetle you know that for a long time they had been looking at the Atlanta area for their first kind of distribution project here. That was that was a very nice investment, 270 jobs there in Newton County who’s who’s done a phenomenal job. Our friend Dave burned in Sheer Martin over there, have done a phenomenal job in attracting investment there. So that was another big one on Chick-Fil-A up in Bartow County. Yeah. Hundred jobs up there that was there. Of course, their first endeavor into insourcing.
[00:38:10] Yes. Yeah. So let’s let’s let’s just talk about that a little bit more, because that’s had a dramatic shift for a business that’s been growing, as everyone knows, for years and years and years. And my understanding you’ll correct me if I’m wrong here. My understanding is after using third parties to drive supplies across to wherever they need to go and all the different Chick-Fil-A stores, mainly here in the states, it is the program of Bartow County is a pilot program to begin internalizing and insourcing. A lot of that distribution. Is that right?
[00:38:43] That’s true. It’s gonna be a gradual process, but it’s one of the things where you have to kind of start somewhere. And if you don’t have more control over that supply chain, it’s much tougher to be nimble and to make changes yourself if you’re reliant on completely reliant on, you know, three P.l. Or really a four P.l. Arrangement with some of their partners. So I think this is a start in that direction. They’ll have to start building out the team more so. And of course, personnel will change a lot. But again, it’s gradual. This is just again, just a start to what that would look like. Greg, did you want to add.
[00:39:12] Yeah. Like everything at Chick-Fil-A, it’s well-thought out. So they they’ve been on this for years. So actually, one of our customers at Blue Ridge, MBM, Meadowbrook Meat from Food Service, Mount North Carolina. Yeah, they they were their primary distributor. Well, they actually were their second primary distributor because some years ago, I think 2014 or so, they had some issues with supply. So then they then they first determined they would never depend on a single distributor. And I think what they’ve determined over the years, because we’ve done we’ve had some conversations with them. What they’ve determined over the years that it’s better to have their own distribution. And and I think they will use some of these other carriers, other other distribution organizations as backup or overflow. So. So they’ve got full control and full accountability for their own supply chain. And and then have some flexibility when when demand requires it. And really smart move. And and also very fortuitous for the people who are involved in that project, because most of them live in Marietta up or up north of the city. So it’s good that they’re putting an office up there because they were driving all the way down to hate-filled. For a. And so they’re saving hours of commuting and reducing their carbon footprint by having those folks work up in that area. Yeah, that’ll be great for them. Yeah. Yeah.
[00:40:31] So that was another exciting project for sure. Was getting Chick-Fil-A not only to stay here and and continue to invest here, but to for doing that trial and having that courage to go out and do that, especially here in metro Atlanta, still was a big win for us. Yeah. Yeah. So we were really happy about that in Kroger. If we’ll stay with the food theme here.
[00:40:48] New logo. Yes, new logo. They they dramatically changed that logo to that.
[00:40:54] I mean, it’s a little sarcastic, but still.
[00:40:58] So they. Yeah, they they have a partnership with it. You know, I don’t know how to pronounce the company name. Is it Ocado Southwire Ocado in a fulfillment center in south Atlanta. I believe it’s at Fort Guilherme there. So four hundred and ten jobs for highly automated facility there. It’s gonna be a nice expansion of what they already had kind of onsite there. So that was a big project for state to keep home here. And that’s grocery delivery Ryder, which is a huge and growing trend.
[00:41:26] Walmart still surprising to many. Maybe Wal-Mart is a leader in that space. How about that? Yeah. After all of the e-commerce shots has taken. Wal-Mart’s turned things around slowly but surely love it.
[00:41:37] Yeah. And then newel brands, we talked we start talk about it just recently, but then moving their headquarters back here to Atlanta officially. That was when we lost. We got it right.
[00:41:47] Just two years, right? Yes. Was gone for two years. Yes. Like Tom Glavin, you know, losing it. That’s right. And get ready. Yes. I just want the same one better.
[00:41:59] But no, it said that that was an exciting, very exciting. Now, so says when we talk about, you know, from a marketing standpoint, the amount of Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000. Right. Well, that more than anything. That’s what matters is what what’s that statistic? So Atlanta. That still helps us remain the number three metro in North America for Fortune Five and Fortune 1000 headquarters.
[00:42:22] Why do you happen to not Patel spot if you don’t know? Maybe Malkin, get us to the two cities above us if we’re Vetlanta 30 York. Right. New York is number one. Yeah. Guess number 2, Houston. Yes. Yeah. Why? Well, oil. We were. We were. Well, oil and gas, but also health care and academia rituals. A lot of a lot of companies there. We were looking at Houston few years ago for an event I was associated with. And I learned that for the first time I can surprise, surprise me at the time. I’m not sure as much now. Houston’s were known for some other things here lately. Yeah. Well, it. But of course, I’m trash can. That’s right. New York, number one. He’s number two land number three in the land has been top five or at least number three. I mean for quite some time.
[00:43:05] Yeah. Yeah. No, I don’t see us. Let’s knock on wood. Relinquishing that position at the point. So, you know, headquarters stuff is so interesting because I mean that those are big hush hush type projects if you don’t thing is whether it’s an investor who takes them certain places or they’re looking for, you know, where are we going to grow our business? You know, for the next 20 to 50, if not 100 years. So those those projects don’t come up often. You know, when you’re talking Fortune 500, Fortune 1000 headquarters. But when they do, we’ve been on the short list more times and not so as long as you get the advance. Some of those are gonna keep coming. So those are that, again, don’t happen much when they come up. You got it. You got to win those.
[00:43:46] So I’ve already gotten a note from Malcolm about Houston not being on them too hard here.
[00:43:50] And no, no, go for it. You mean bang like an office? It’s just kind of like a lock on it, right? On a trash can.
[00:43:57] Yeah. So just. We’re not bitter, right.
[00:44:00] Or anything. Let me super audience that may not know. You know, we’re talking about a separate the Houston Astros baseball team team dilemma or skiing and handling a scandal. It’s a scandal. That’s great. That from Houston, the market that is I mean, we were in Austin, passed through Houston just a few months back. I family in Houston. I’m a big fan. Yeah. It’s it’s underrated, vibrant city in the business. Clearly, that is is growing, expanding. There’s a considerable technology edge there.
[00:44:33] So big fans, it’s just the Astros here. In recent news for some of our audience members who may not make that connection, they were caught cheating.
[00:44:42] But I’m just going to say, yeah, they were caught cheating. You know, there’s no other way to say it, but let’s not put that in the show notes. OK. Fair enough.
[00:44:48] And Will, you’re saying being the tray in this small of a nutshell for get back to Ben. You can put it. What were the Astros doing?
[00:44:55] They were watching video of the game. And then when they could decipher whether or not an off St. Peter’s pitch was coming, they would bang a trash can so that the guy at the plate would know that an off speed pitch was coming.
[00:45:08] They had their only camera in center field. Right. Right. And a monitor, you know, monitor it in the dugout. Yeah.
[00:45:14] And so it was it appears to be it’s not a pause. That is cheating. Yeah. But I’m saying that appears to be an orchestrated effort between the team and the players. It’s not just the players. There’s nobody. Yeah. And it was also interesting is former brave pitcher for medal, not Chris, the one I’m thinking the free agent that just Dallas Kayak.com. Yeah. Dallas KACL. Yeah.
[00:45:36] Had some interesting comments around if y’all saw that, that he apologized. I guess the first thing he said, he’s like, I’m sorry. Froome. You said they didn’t do it every game and a way to rationalize that a bit.
[00:45:48] Anyway, we’re taking a big departure. Let’s let’s move back to business. We love you. Houston. We don’t love what the Astros have been or the Astros doing says of organization. That’s right. All right. So back to being back Supply chain City, back to kind of state of all the cool, exciting news to our audience. Stay with us. You know, we take we take small departure from time to time. It can’t be all work all the time.
[00:46:07] This is like like we said earlier, this is the Ðoge.
[00:46:10] That’s what you get. Right.
[00:46:13] All right. So, Ben, what else? I mean, you’ve already. I was trying to keep count. I’m a little cheat pad here. How many jobs in the investment? In the jobs at 20, 19 delivered. I lost count. Thousands and thousands. What else could you. What are the possible good news could you have?
[00:46:28] Well, there’s we talk about Supply chain I.T.. You know, we started teasing out a little bit, talking about Manhattan associates and a lot of the other. Companies that are based here and we had some pretty good, exciting announcements when it came to that this year, also Cloud Logistics acquired by Ito Mix. Yeah, yeah, exactly. So they. David Landow formerly not anymore.
[00:46:51] I’m aware of that.
[00:46:53] So they had decided that Atlanta will be their biggest growth hub. You know, moving forward with that cloud Logistics piece. All right. So, Mark, move in here. Me of the office here. Mark’s been here. They so they they had they have another lot open, of course. Has another office. Yeah. Austin is where they have that cloud Logistics. They’ve decided to stay here in Atlanta and grow that piece of it. So that’s probably going to be around 100 hundred hundred twenty job nine. What they’re looking to invest here, which is exciting. We’re talking to you to open in the next few weeks so we’ll put their feet to the fire. Good cloud Logistics. We’ll find out what’s going on. You should dematic moving their headquarters to Atlanta. So, yeah. Very exciting move there. Tim Brown and his group course, the Supply chain Logistics Institute. George Tech. That was one that we worked on a little bit together there, of course. Greg Simon Froome from our staff here, who works a lot of headquarters type type projects here for the chamber. All right. That was very exciting news. Of course, they’re in. They will be in the kohta building right now. I think their grand opening. You talk about a cool build, very cool building. Yes. So their announcement officially has already happened, but their grand opening will be in March. And I’m very excited to celebrate that once again. Additionally, we had a couple other interesting announcements as well. Convoy is kind of doubling down on their their group here in Atlanta continue to grow job. So we’re really excited to be there. Southeast Hub, if you will, along with Gray launch, who continues to grow there.
[00:48:28] They’re really old Manhattanites there, right? Yeah. Jeff Cashman, Jerai O’Hanlan. Morning. Yeah. Terrio you know, their marketing is gonna be top notch with Terry. Yeah.
[00:48:37] Yeah, absolutely. So very exciting that you’re going to not only, you know, talk about, you know, the growth in their workforce here, but also one of the biggest pieces is the manufacturing piece also of the actual robots you have they’re producing. So very exciting project there. And then Flex Port. This is their southeast headquarters now, right in Atlanta. And then demand-driven Technologies, another company that’s working on the inventory management. He says that is such a a rich, you know, sub industry forces, inventory management seems like here in Atlanta around cognition. We’ve got Longridge. Yeah. What courses is such a big piece of that? So them continuing to expand their footprint here. That is their global headquarters here. Atlanta’s very exciting also. Yeah.
[00:49:20] So, you know, Flik sports only show a couple times we’ve been we’ve done a couple shows at their headquarters there in the Bank of America Plaza, Part Whippy. I feel like I’m an octave down below the seasons caught up to me here. I think I can I could sing baritone somewhere. But, you know, we had a chance to have lunch, not saying with not saying thank you. Keith keep me in between my guidepost. Greg, thank you. But speaking of flex port, they continue to hire and grow. We had the chance, had lunch with Matt Marshall. There they are. GM for this region over there. Cash. You got the chamber offices. You got flex port offices. You can learn so much. Gorgeous Taj Mahal. But also what was cool, which we talked about, is it’s kind of how they’re laid out. You can just kind of see their culture. It just Pitman’s is what, thereafter that flex port. Right.
[00:50:12] First thing you walk into when you walk in, there is a gathering place. You go around the corner, another gathering place. Right. You go around the corner, the next corner. And Sara. There are people working there. There are people working there that can can speak to each other and at anytime that they want. Yeah. It’s a great open. Well, that they’ve done a good job with an open environment.
[00:50:31] That and also the there are tech boards everywhere. Right. Running metrics, world, world, new shares site. You can you can almost see like supply chain the buzz kind of float through that space. Yeah. So really cool story. Great that they’ve chosen Atlanta to be the hub of their southeast operations. Two floors. Yeah. I think they’re going to be over two hundred strong by the time they kind of fill out their first iteration of the team. Yeah. And and you know there’s a variety of from what we’ve learned. There’s a variety of takes on Fleck’s port. Right. But they’re, they’re changing the industry. You know, their absolute changed industry, whether you like it or you, you dislike it. This is really neat to see that story emerge here. Okay. So, Ben, I appreciate you sharing so much there.
[00:51:22] We could dove into now, but that’s just the jobs investment piece, too, you know? I mean, that’s what we’ll talk about. Other things. Okay.
[00:51:28] I was up, but we’ll lightless palls there. One quicksort and make this very succinct because I want to get to. The rest of what Ben has to say, but but will get you and Greg’s take pick one announcement that Ben shared. I mean, ranging from, you know, Amazon Stitch Fix, litttle Chick-Fil-A cro-. I mean, he mentioned about 15 different developments. Pick one. And what excites you about her? What why should why should maybe folks that don’t live in Atlanta curer to go first?
[00:51:57] Go ahead. I think to me, I can’t pin it down to one of those things, but I think it’s the technology thing. Look, I’ve been an advocate for a supply chain tech as as a prominent industry in in Atlanta for a lot of years. And I have to give a shout out to Sig Moseley and John Imlay, who with Management Science Associates and then Dun and Bradstreet Software, basically launched the careers of virtually everyone who is in tech in Atlanta. So Sig is still with us. So thanks to Sig. He continues to invest and give a platform to companies in this area. But that’s what’s so exciting is, is us to be the you know, the Silicon S, if you want to call it that, of supply chain and. And, you know, to really, really have a bunch of great minds and great technologists. Georgia Tech is a great launching point for so many of these companies. It’s a. It’s been a long time coming and frankly, I feel really good to have the chamber acknowledge, you know, the strength and the positioning that we have in this in the Supply chain tech industry, it’s very satisfying.
[00:53:04] What’s the slogans? Sid said yes or 6-6-6 said, yes. You have to like that about a tech investment. Yeah. And I think the Atlanta Business Chronicle always has has talked about his legend quite a bit, along with what you’re saying. I mean, you can see the infrastructure that’s bubbled up because of these investments and because of these companies, you know, even down to from the media. The great I mean, Atlanta know, which is a terrific if you if you don’t subscribe to the beat that comes out every day at 2:30 with Madison Hogan, you know, leading to the daily drumbeat of tech news and specifically Supply chain Tech is always in there every single day at 2:30. You know, the fact that she can fill that column every day with something is impressive. Yeah. Yeah. And high polymaths, you know, it just, you know, high potami says it is a great technology blog focusing on all the companies that you just mentioned. But, you know, talking about it, just the one that continues to strike me is that as somebody that’s been following the warehouse and the, you know, winches, if you go back, I mean, it’s gone. It’s gone from being blue collar jobs. These the warehouse jobs Sandeep the. The trucking jobs that for years where the blue collar jobs, they’ve been at the forefront of technology. And you’re seeing that with convoy being in it. You know, being in Atlanta, you’re seeing that with flex port being in Atlanta. And you sort of alluded, Scott, to the fact to the fact that there’s some negative connotation around flex port. And it’s simply a lot of it is just simply jealousy about the fact that what they are doing was behind the scenes. A lot of these four peoples, 15:00 Supply chain companies were doing the same sort of visibility, technology and analytics in A.I. and machine learning. It’s just that they’re leading with it right now and they’re marketing around it.
[00:54:55] They were using it for internal purposes, whereas Flex Port has dematic leading made it available?
[00:55:00] That’s right. That’s right. And and that is what that is what people are responding to like. Well, of course. Well, but it’s not obvious if you didn’t know about it. Yeah. Yeah.
[00:55:08] Zellick, someone sharing all the magician’s tricks.
[00:55:11] That’s right. I think that’s actually a pretty good analogy. And that’s gonna happen more and more. Yeah. That industry and it should rap. I mean it. Yeah. There’s a lot of efficiency in that marketplace.
[00:55:20] That’s right. And we’re not pointing fingers, it’s just the state of how things are evolving. All right. So Ben, what was up as a throw pins at you? What else do you have up your sleeve? Beyond jobs and investment, what else? Other observations from the year that was. I mean, from a leadership standpoint, from what’s coming next standpoint? I mean, not maybe to get too specific, but, you know, this is quite a Rod room.
[00:55:44] Yeah. So I’d say from a from a marketing from that leg of the stool, you know, we we travel a lot. Obviously, this this show, this podcast has done more for marketing of supply chain see this series than any other marketing we’ve ever had. So thank you for for that. It’s been just phenomenal to to work with you guys in that piece and just being able to showcase the amount of great stories that are coming asked Budget City and the great companies that are doing cool stuff right in our backyard. Right. Your ward is another good example. Yes. Oh, yeah. Yes. No. In that that’s another piece of it was just the startup ecosystem you talked about. Yeah. My favorite shirt that Sig’s ever worn he wore to venture Atlanta this year was at Atlanta. Affects everything.
[00:56:26] Yeah. Yeah. This is true.
[00:56:28] Yeah, I get it. Not just a supply chain thing, but just because we are such a hub for all things. Yeah. Business. You know we’ve been for a long time. We haven’t been really good at telling that story as much. So this, you know, Supply chain City series here on Supply Chain Now Radio has been a godsend for us. And getting those stories out there.
[00:56:47] So so you. We capture that and we capture that. We did record the will snippet that came out of that. I’m glad work worked. It’s true.
[00:56:55] We’re happy to be of service, frankly. I mean, look, we’re homeless. We’re not afraid. Right. Right. But but, you know, because this is kind of the pivot point of supply chain, particularly in technology and physical Logistics. It makes sense. It makes sense to shout from the rooftops because we can affect everything here. And and as you said, often overlooked. So, you know, in this day and age, it’s great to get the message out. So nothing is overlooked. We all gain. Correct. When when things are not overlooked.
[00:57:26] Very choices. Yes. Well, I was just going to say that it’s it’s not just the you know, we certainly love to talk about the sexy startups and the ones that are getting the venture capital. But we also love to talk about, which I think is key to this discussion. The key to what we’re trying to do is to spotlight those companies that have stuck around past being a startup. Feel edge. Right.
[00:57:47] Completely transform their right to completely transform their identity.
[00:57:51] Yeah. Yeah. And they’re still here. They’re still doing good. Where they might not be growing at this explosive level, but they’re doing steady incremental growth every single year. Oh, yeah. And there’s and that should be celebrated.
[00:58:02] Agreed. It wouldn’t. And other folks in other places can learn from their successes and from their challenges. You know, just like we all are. I mean, we’re certainly still in startup mode. You’re finding those partners that that get what you’re trying to do and collaborate with you. And in a. You know, set to be set for easy collaboration to supper, appreciate what you shared being born. You have been easy collaborator and I think that’s what makes you so good at what you do is you get that how tough it already is for business leaders of all sizes to get stuff done these days. And in trying to find those easy ways of just keeping things simple, you keep the simple things simple and let let the the headaches be the headaches. I appreciate what you do and and how you’re helping the ecosystem, as you put it, continue, grow and thrive really thrives. A better word, I think, than grow, because we’re the CECO system is growing successfully, right?
[00:58:56] Well, there’s so many other metrics on what what is growth. You know, we we’re talking revenue and we talk and people. But it’s all above those things. So we talk about, you know, grow in the ecosystem. How do you market the ecosystem? We had a couple of big announcements Sheer we talked about and we had thereport on here not too long ago. Bad hearts, fields, a cargo community system being the first of its kind changing in North America, of course, which has been done for a long time in Europe, in Asia, in some other parts, that cargo cargo community systems are table stakes. You know, when it comes to that in North America, we just were not a big air cargo hub. Yeah, we are. But we we haven’t put a strategic focus on that. So very exciting to see the airport put a strategic focus on air cargo and do something that nobody else is doing. I think that just that took a lot of courage when it comes to Lyndon, Lyndon Elliott and their teams and the Air Service Development Department to go out on a limb and do that. So that was a big deal making that announcement. I think that’ll pay dividends down the road and put it really Atlanta on the map, the amount of press that we got coming out of that. And when they made the announcement in Munich there at the air cargo show was a an extremely exciting time for us. Of course, the chamber, we were happy to help, you know, kind of get that word out, you know, for the airport, because that’s that’s a large part what we do well. It’s not us implementing that carbon community system, but we have to use that is one of our assets here to showcase how Atlanta’s doing things differently and you doing things that are very unique.
[01:00:27] So that was a big announcement this year. In addition to that, I worked on a tag with the Technology Association of Georgia. We haven’t mentioned yet. We talked about Supply chain, I.T. and so forth. But they do a phenomenal job of advocating across the state. You know, the technology industry supply chain I.T. being no different. But one of the things that they put out this year was a supply chain in Logistics report on a truly statewide basis. What does that industry look like? And I think that was so needed. They’d done that before for cybersecurity. And somewhat, of course, we talked about fintech earlier on the show and how important that is. But those two things report in directly effect we talk about with payments and so forth with supply chain also and just being able to take an inventory of what all we have in the companies that are here, the growth that we’ve experienced and also just establish a baseline of what that looks like was huge. So we’re really excited to have that report and use that report to actually market to companies that are thinking about coming here. I talked to a company the other day that was, you know, that they or are an I.T. company within the Supply chain Logistics sector, that actually foreign owned company thinking about moving. This will be their first North America presence here. So this would be their North America headquarters. And I’ve had that discussion three times since reports come out. And I’ve used that as a as a talking point. So huge. From a marketing perspective, having having that as a resource.
[01:01:53] So going back to fintech, just to throw a fact what out there, just to give folks some context. 70 percent of all U.S. transactions are handled by payment processing firms located in Georgia. That’s correct. That is we’re not talking about even the plurality. We’re talking about a a majority of all of those transactions and that no one does that speak to the technology, because obviously all that’s going to be super encrypted, whatever the technologies call it these days. But the talent, the talent that allows that to happen and talent that’s here and the talent that not only that that folks hire and bring into the market, which is important, but also that the talent that’s homegrown here out of the university into the college system. So fintech, they call it fin out fintech. Large transaction, Ali, transactionally. That’s right. Yeah, that’s right. Okay. Before we is as we kind of move towards wrap up, Ben, I thought we were just going to make it a two hour episode.
[01:02:49] Why? Good man. You talked about the Super Bowl. Yeah. We could undoubtedly.
[01:02:53] So. All right. Well, then the first of what could be a two part series. Let’s. How do we start to we talk about what’s next?
[01:03:02] Yeah. Also, we talked about this year, you know, some exciting, you know, advancements within the ecosystem. Vetlanta. But also some things that are on the horizon. You know, there’s a lot things we can’t talk about chamber that we’re working behind the scenes and so forth with our economic development partners. But one thing that we should we should talk about, we talked about Modoc. Of course, coming up, Model 2020 in conjunction with our Atlanta Supply chain Awards, which again, I’m sure we’ll talk about here before we leave the episode, but that is that’s a big deal for Atlanta to host that. I don’t care if it’s every other year. But I want to make sure Moto X and MHR by the organization puts Moto X on. We want Moto X coming here forever. Yeah. You know, course it’s every other year. This year it will be March the 9th through 12th. Correct. Course the Vetlanta Supply chain Awards or that Tuesday, March 10th, which we’re very excited about having it co-located of course with our friends at Moto X. But you’re talking about thirty five thousand supply chain professionals going out the moldings. Yes. That come to Moto X, that that’s that’s a big deal for that to be in Atlanta. And again, it’s a big show. Big show. Big show, for sure. Really big. So that that’s on the horizon. So definitely. Of course. Mark your calendars for that.
[01:04:10] We can work March 9th here in Atlanta. By the way, 9X showed icon MDX show dot com.
[01:04:16] We are also in the midst are in the process, I should say, of releasing a supply chain education report for the state of Georgia. So working with the Center of Innovation for Logistics on what when we talk about Supply chain Logistics education all the way down from grade school, all the way up to the graduate level and also continuing education, we’ll talk about that, whether it’s a picks or ACM or whoever else you can get, you know, certifications from. What does that look like for the state and how how are we actively advocating for change if need be? You know, within the industry to get ready for what’s next, you know, 10, 20, generally, generationally, 50 years down the road to make sure that we’ve got the right talent and the right resources that are training that talent for years to come. So that’s that’s an exciting advancement that will that will come out.
[01:05:05] It’s so important because, you know, you think about what we need now. Well, that’s only the shelf life of what you need now is fleeting. And so I love that you’re looking 50 years out in terms of skill sets and capabilities of the workforce, because this can be different next week, much less now.
[01:05:23] That’s where that’s the hardest thing is it’s a moving target to your point, Scott. You know, all the sudden with education, you make one change and then it changes again. So you’ve got to actively have a almost like what we’ve we’ve done with the FinTech Academy here in Georgia. You’ve got to have a nimble group of folks who you can change quickly around that that education, because as you know, it’s and sometimes it’s an act of Congress. You know, at the state level or federal level to get things changed there. So we’re we’re at this report will be at least a stepping stone in making that change from a policy standpoint with education here in the state.
[01:05:57] You know, a ton of stuff. Wow. We didn’t see the second hour of this episode. But what the bring bring the Supply chain crew back to me, as you put it. OK, so let’s make sure that that just scratches the surface. Sherkin, you get that? How can folks connect with you in the metro Atlanta chamber for not just follow up on what you’ve shared, but to join or to get involved?
[01:06:23] Well, I’ll offer my email address. I’ll just be Harris at MASC C dot com is in metro Atlanta. Chamber of Commerce dot com and also w w w dot metro Atlanta Chamber dot com. You can find us there, obviously. And also, of course, I’m on LinkedIn, Twitter, all the above. All the fun. Yeah. Yeah. I’ll hit on spots to find these. And the poultry show today. Yes. If you are walking the poultry show today, give me a shout. Yeah. That’s that takes place at the World Congress Center. It’s a three day show. I think this is this is day one.
[01:06:56] Big deal. I love folks. Don’t rely on it. And, you know, spiritual about poultry or diets or whatever you do. But here in Georgia, that is like I think is number one, airspace and poultry.
[01:07:07] It’s one of the it’s if it’s not the top industries here, it’s Georgia. And I I’s the IP P E, so. Yeah. International Poultry Processing Expo. Yes. What’s taking place?
[01:07:17] Poultry. Clay. Airspace. Huge exports here in state of Georgia. So we’re we’re talking chicken. It is a big deal. Come see. Come see Ben Harris in action. Drives a manufacturing issue, too.
[01:07:29] Yeah. And then tomorrow I’ll be at a point a actually for their innovators. Okay.
[01:07:33] So I’m really I look at the facility in its current state and have Mary Kate Love or or Duryea. Yeah. Or gym. Have them walk you through that on livable facility. Yeah. Unbelievable.
[01:07:47] So real quick before we sign off, Will, how can folks, you know, check in with you and connect with you everything you got going on?
[01:07:54] Oh, man. You know, I’m all over the linked ends. You can find me there. Interweb and the Twitters and the Twitters. William Hathaway. Yeah. You haven’t another venture now, too. So tell us just real briefly. Yeah, absolutely. Some agency partnered with with Smith Brown with of Brown over there.
[01:08:12] My good friend. And and we created a business called lead coverage which basically taking her. Lead generation expertise or their lead generation expertise in combining it with our PR expertise and helping to drive, I mean, combined both for to get as many leads as possible for for our combined clients.
[01:08:33] You know what I love about it beyond the fact that I love Will. I love that they jumped on and they’ve already sponser they let Linda Supply chain awards with Trident coverage. You know, Babby. Of course, Will’s involved last year on the board with us and has been involved this year helping to get the word out. So love to see growth and more growth. Yeah, look for to have lived with Joan.
[01:08:54] You know, just doubling down on the fact that we’re all about supply chain. I mean, every client we’ve got between between the two of us, it just made too much sense. It’s all we can. It’s weird. Logistics and Supply chain. And I joked about this on Linked-In the other day, but my daughter was in the spelling bee. I think Thomas more winning word. Well, and the winning word, she did not win. She she actually got put out. I think she did really well. She got put on the fourth, fourth round on a word that I could not have spelled. Those was like Kannan Neck Cannonade or something. I’d never even heard it before. She got, you know, a little, little, little unlucky there, which, you know, of course, dad was gonna say that, but. Yeah, but that’s how spelling bees work. Right. But the winning word was Logistics. And I was like pumping my fist like Supply chain City winning.
[01:09:36] She got it to the kid.
[01:09:38] I also don’t recall her name, but she did great.
[01:09:41] Hey, I think consumers and and folks not involved industry, they’re they’re the dots. They’re sharp. They’re they’re understanding what powers and what enables them to get. We all enjoy that next day. Soon to be next day everywhere. But certainly within two days these days. So. All right. So, Greg, rashly, let’s just finish that off.
[01:09:59] That’s like lead coverage dot com to leave. Now, that’s where you were headed. Live coverage. That comment is also backbeat marketing, dot com and perfect.
[01:10:06] All the Linked-In stuff. Perf.. Appreciate the ongoing support, of course. And congrats on the new venture league coverage dot com. Greg, I never asked you this, but how can folks you had so. So I love what you do on social media. You came out with the first rule supply chain. It might get this. Hurley supply chain. Yes.
[01:10:24] You are not forecasting items yet. That is the first supply chain. All right. Or forecasting.
[01:10:30] And there they are. I don’t want to give it away, but there’s lots more rules behind a lot of rules. So rule guy. But how can folks connect what’s best way to get folks connected with you?
[01:10:40] Well, look, I’d say Greg Supply chain Supply Chain Now Radio dot com. That’s a great way to get in touch with me. I also do some advising with some companies. Do you care if I give a shout out? So just recently, I’m going to be on the advisory board for our friends, Paul Knobel at VeriSign. Another good, good company. And and I’m I’m sort of trekking into cybersecurity with a company called Cypher, Coolest Device and Technology to protect everything on your in your house, not just your computer, but now phones and TV.
[01:11:18] Everything is coyote. Everything is connected.
[01:11:21] So they help protect all of that. And they’re going to start working with ISP and wireless carriers to do that. That’s a really cool company, arrives at a need. It is the CEO there and they’re doing some cool stuff. And. I can’t announce the name, but I may be going back to my hometown to go on to be on the board of directors of a technology company there in in the, um. Social marketing.
[01:11:47] What can you share your hometown?
[01:11:48] Oh, yeah, the the the a-I. It’s an it’s an a-I content curation company in Wichita, Kansas. There we go. Wako Shock’s shockers. That’s right. And go, chiefs. We don’t want chiefs. Yeah. So this may not air before I. Right. Right now I have a very good feeling for Sunday. Good. And I think Will has convinced me that I shouldn’t I should try to experience it in Percy. Songs don’t come around often. Not everybody’s the Patriots. Miami is knocking for sure. You gotta go, man. Gotta go. Do it, do it. Do it. Ten pressure mandate. I would only accept this pressure from you cats. Sheer.
[01:12:26] All right. So as much as we hate to want things down because I love the interact just so much. Good stuff to dove into this past hour and some change, but y’all know how to reach out to our audience. Come check us out in person. Not we are gonna try to provide as much of what we captured here today in the show notes. But come check us out in person or if there’s something you can’t track now based on what’s been shared. Yeah, you can hit our chief mark marketing officer up at Amanda at Supply chain now radio AKAM and let us know your thoughts less. So what you looking for? Come check it out in person. We’re gonna be in Vegas with the reverse Logistics Association Conference and Expo the February 4th to the 6th. ekeler. More about that rock and roll organization and Tony Sciarrotta. Yeah at RLA. Dot org of course would touch on Moad X. We’re excited to be broadcasting live throughout the four day show, including, as Ben mentioned, the Vetlanta Supply chain Awards, which mutex is hosting on Tuesday, March 10th. Christian Fisher, Presense CEO Georgia-Pacific will be our keynote. You can learn more right at Atlanta. Supply chain Awards WSJ.com nominations open until February 15th. Get those in. All you have to have is a presence in the twenty nine county metro Atlanta area. You can be based in Hong Kong. You can be based in Minnesota. You can be based in Wichita. But as long as you have a presence in metro Atlanta. Nominations are open and it’s free to nominate. We found this thing to celebrate what a lot of what’s been shared, a lot of the community that is in in Supply chain in this city. So please nominate a way and not self nominate and you can nominate for multiple categories. I think we’ve got about 40 or so nominations, maybe 45. But February 15th is that deadline. Atlanta Supply chain Award WSJ.com nominate sponser register. It’s all there at your fingertips. And then one last event was coming up in from the folks over to Amy.
[01:14:21] Right? So they’ve got there. They’ve got a show May 4th to the 7th.
[01:14:27] And it is what is the name of the show is the thing going on there? 20:20. That’s really Lean’s summit. That’s it. Amy is all about.
[01:14:35] You caught me off guard. You like to do that every episode some way.
[01:14:41] Well, we did. EFT said not too long ago. I knew I wasn’t kids, Greg Suzanne. And he just he was right. He was waitdon’t me almost at that thought. Over to you. It was like a robot got it out loud and made it happen.
[01:14:53] But yeah, that’s the Atlanta 20-20. Lean’s Summit A.M.E. is all about the world of manufacturing, especially from it contains some hermit’s standpoint. They’re bringing about 250 or so operations, the MPB Ops, plant managers, folks involved in operations and contains some pertinent right here to Atlanta. And we’re gonna be streaming lab that first day, May 4th, but you can learn more at A.M.E. Dorgan or course the link is in the Sheer notes a shout out to Tony Serota for U.S. fitness tickets to the Beatles Love Show in Vegas.
[01:15:22] It’s a great show. Is it? That’s a great show. Has to be. But that is an awesome show. You’re going to love. I’m excited about that. Cool. Not all work. Someplace else? Well, you know, Tony is on my list of people I want to have a drink with. And I think we’re going to make that happen after the show.
[01:15:38] That’s right. OK. So chock-full, we can’t win everywhere in today’s episode with with with Roots being Supply chain City here in Atlanta G-A. So big thanks to our guests here today. Greg White serial supply chain tech entrepeneur. You can find him here all the time or advising plenty. Companies will hair way. Preacher will be founder and chief evangelist for BET Beat Marketing. Also lead coverage. A new venture there, love. Yeah. Yes, indeed. Well, great to have you back. And then, of course, the star of today’s show, a longtime supporter and collaborate tour and be headwear. Yes. Yes. Ben Harris, director, Supply chain Ecosystem Expansion. All the cool things going on here in Atlanta. The Metro Atlanta chamber is is in the thick of it all. So appreciate you and your team support and facilitation better.
[01:16:24] It’s been a pleasure. Thanks, guys. Great learning about you. I didn’t know there was anything we didn’t know.
[01:16:28] Is a very deep dude. Yes, it is.
[01:16:32] All right. To our audience, be sure to check out other upcoming events, replays of our interviews, other resources at Supply Chain Now Radio dot com. You can check us out at Apple podcast, SoundCloud, YouTube, Spotify, wherever you get your podcast from. Be sure to subscribe. So missing thing.
[01:16:49] Half the entire team, including Greg White Scott Luton is mykes if you want to. In this episode. See you. A wonderful week ahead and we’ll see you next time. Supply chain. Team one.
Ben Harris is 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. Learn more about the Metro Atlanta Chamber here: www.metroatlantachamber.com
Will Haraway is the Chief Content Officer for Lead Coverage and the Founder & Lead Evangelist at Backbeat Marketing. Will has 20 years of executive experience in B2B Technology Marketing. Will is a certified analyst relations practitioner by the Knowledge Capital Group and has helped companies including Manhattan Associates, Aptos, Atlantix Global Systems, American Software and Rubicon Global improve their brand reputations with marketing results that help increase sales. Will also serves as a member of the APICS Atlanta Executive Advisory Board.
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 transitioning from active duty in the US Army. 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.