Supply Chain Now
Episode 327

“I’ve seen way too many people give up too early. If you believe in your idea, you just cannot give up. Believe in yourself. Believe in the idea. There’ll be a lot of people will tell you it’s not worth it, that it’s too late. It is too early.”

– Amit Mahajan, Founder and CEO of Phoenix Innovations

Episode Summary

Although companies understand the importance of reverse logistics to retaining maximum product value and keeping product out of waste streams, it can be very complex to know how much should be invested in a product for resale and where it will fetch the highest price. From smartphones to sunglasses and every product in between, analytics can be deployed to maximize the return of reverse logistics.

Amit Mahajan is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer at Phoenix Innovations, a company that offers several types of software and inspection robotics for assessing value and placing products for resale.

In this interview, recorded live at MODEX 2020, Amit Mahajan talks to Supply Chain Now Co-hosts Greg White and Scott Luton about:

  • Why he thinks it is past time for the world to look beyond China for their product sourcing needs
  • The widespread promise of robotics as the largest generation in history exits the workforce
  • How the highest costs in an operation or a supply chain (whether labor, inefficiency or something else) will always create the best opportunity for innovation

Episode Transcript

[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 afternoon, Scott Luton. Back with you here. Liveline Supply chain. Now welcome back to the show. We’re broadcasting live today from Moto X, the largest supply chain trade show in the Western Hemisphere, a spin. It’s being held right here in Atlanta, G-8’s de Supply chain City. And we’ve got a really interesting episode here as we’re gonna be interviewing an innovative business leader and entrepreneur. And stay tuned as we look to increase your your supply chain entrepreneurial IQ on this episode. Say that Lindauer 17 times that for 22. On Monday afternoon. On a quick programing note, though, you can find our podcast wherever you get your podcast from. We invite you to subscribe so you don’t miss a single thing. Let’s welcome in my fearless co-host here on today’s show Greg White Serial Supply chain tech entrepreneur, trusted advisor, Supply chain adjutant and a recently crowned Atlanta City Tennis champion. Greg, how you doing? Good. He didn’t read is quite the intro as if that isn’t enough. And gosh, don’t you think it all? You didn’t bring your your your golden plate.

 

[00:01:35] I did not. No, I didn’t think you’d be hanging. Follow me on Twitter. You can see it. OK. One of my less adult moments.

 

[00:01:43] All right. Well, Grae, we’ve got a great conversation teed up here today. I’m so glad we’re able to kind of fit this one in. And a Phenix Innovations team stays really busy. They’ve had a lot of interest here at Moto X and we’ve got their founder and CEO. Meet my Zhaan with us. Yeah. How you doing? Hey, good. How are you, Scott? Doing fantastic. I’m so glad we could fit in, as I saw as you were visiting our section of this Supply chain world. A lot of folks want to get a bit of your time look like.

 

[00:02:12] Yeah. Good to be here. And there’s a lot of activity going on over here. Not as much as we wanted to be. Yeah. You know, hopefully tomorrow is going to be better.

 

[00:02:20] That’s right. Yeah, it’s it’s a tough. Like we’ve talked about and. Yeah. A lot of conversations while episodes already, including the lead up to it is a tough time for many, including those in the trade show and then certainly in Supply chain. But I like your optimism.

 

[00:02:35] Well, put a new news every day and every day is a chance for good news. That’s right. As an entrepreneur, you have to be optimist. Sure. Yeah. There’s anything else you have to help him. Yeah, you know. Yeah, that’s true.

 

[00:02:46] So I think that that’s kind of that’s gonna set the tone for this interview kind of. Yes. My sense.

 

[00:02:53] So he must be really, really optimistic. Cause wait till you hear how many entrepreneurial ventures.

 

[00:03:01] All right. So on that note, let’s get you know me a little bit better. So we start talking shop and we talk about phoenicks innovations and what that team does. Let’s get a little better. So tell us, where were you born? Arrays. And give us an anecdote or two about your your upbringing. Sure.

 

[00:03:17] So if you have not guessed by my accent at this point, I was born in India. I was born in a city close to Mumbai called Puny. And I grew up in Mumbai, did my engineering or there, went to UK for a bit, did some research over there, and then came to United States. So part of the U.K., I was in London and I was in Ipswich. Okay. The work for Beatie Labs. Yeah. Yeah. So. Okay. So I’m a telco. All all my years of experience worked or there came to us work with. And then it didn’t work out.

 

[00:03:57] So for whatever reason and a lot of work by the wayside. No, I was thankful for that. So I was in Atlanta. Okay. And a part of the mass markets group and then worked for telco called Alltel Communications. Yeah. Cause and don’t come from there on. I went to Cingular Wireless. It was one of the early members. Those were the days. Yeah I know. Right. Yeah. We we were conquering the world. Yeah. Yeah. We actually I mean believe it or not, we actually went in and bought AT&T Wireless.

 

[00:04:32] I remember that. Because it went AT&T. Yeah. Cingular and then back.

 

[00:04:36] Back. Yeah. Yeah. So we thought we’d won the World Cup. You won the Golden Plate if you won the Golden Plate. Yeah. In the day I worked for Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems.

 

[00:04:47] When really they split the cell companies away from the telcos Jenny, we go through this cycle in Daryl of divestitures and consolidation. Yeah. So I think we’re getting close. You are devastated your cycle very soon as well. Goes with the consolidation of T-Mobile and Sprint. Yep.

 

[00:05:08] No, there’s only three big ones left. And so I think at some point in time it will start getting split up again. Plus, I think, you know, it would have been a tough time. People in these large companies feel stifled and they want to go old and they want to innovate. They don’t want to be bound by the rules and regulations and sounds like somebody speaking their life.

 

[00:05:30] So, yes, before we talk, a Phenix innovation. So before we ask you, what inspired you to become an entrepreneur? I have a feeling you just told us. I think so. Right.

 

[00:05:39] Well, we’re gonna I’m a backup before we go forward. OK. Because you shared a little tidbit, right? forwent love about your passion for motorcycles. Yeah. Yeah. So share a little bit about because that that’s a as we look into the humor human eyes who weren’t. We’re interviewing. Tell us more about that.

 

[00:05:57] So I love motorcycles. I’ve been writing since I was a kid in India. And I came to United States. The speech scared me a bit.

 

[00:06:06] But then I got used to it, you know? You know, after a while, you you’re like, OK, you’re gonna do it. That’s it. You know, so I had to work really hard to convince my wife. So in a moment of weakness, you actually agreed to let me buy a motorcycle, you know, so, you know, it works in our household or every household. States. Right. So but then. Yeah. I bought a couch like a ninja back in 2001. Mm hmm. And I wrote it for many number of years and then didn’t for a while. And then 2016, I sold my last winter and I was toying on an idea of buying something nice. Hmm. The horsey guy, you know. Yeah. So. Yeah, yeah. So where it was too expensive. Mm hmm. So we said let’s donate some money to charity and buy some wheelchairs. Exactly. Yeah. Two instead of the four. Yes. More fun. Yeah. The Ferrari of motorcycle is a Ferrari of motorcycles. Exactly. So what’s the fastest you ever been on a motorcycle on a track of course. Yeah. Exactly. I think we should talk about Kisha. Yeah. Yeah. Thank you. I don’t wanna get in trouble. Right. So the fastest I’ve been is 145 miles an hour. Okay. All right. Yeah. You can make too many mistakes at that.

 

[00:07:30] Yeah. Corners, no. Corners, nothing. We go there straight. You go and that’s it. Yeah. And you know, you start downshifting very quickly. All right. So you can’t break it. Yeah, right. Right. I think we could have the motorcycling hour easily here. Oh yeah. But you and me and Greg, I think we got a number of years on the bike. Yeah. Yeah, it’s great.

 

[00:07:55] But let’s just say I want to talk about Phenix Innovations. Yeah. Yeah, we did. You know, of course. Pre-Show homework. Uh, yeah. Really? UPS intriguing things. What does a company do first?

 

[00:08:05] So Phenix Innovations works in the area of reverse Logistics. The common problem that companies face in reverse Logistics is when they bring the product back in into their channels, into the reverse channels. They really don’t know how to value it and how to dispose of it. So there is a significant intrinsic value that’s left in product. So take for instance, these sunglasses. These are made by Oakley realize.. high value item, right?

 

[00:08:35] Probably 250, 300 all item. If you were to buy this thing on Oakley dot com and then return it back again, what would Oakley do with this? So the process would be would go back into the channels that probably take off these rubber inserts, you know, clean up the glasses, put new inserts in because you don’t want to be having the same ones, sanitize the glasses and then more than likely repackage it and sell it as a used item. Right. In some cases, for a number of years, people didn’t do that. They would just take that, put it all into a box and just auction it off for no pennies on the dollar. So literally, I mean, these glasses, you probably 15 years ago, you’d have bought it for five bucks in an auction, you know, or they would go into a landfill because they don’t want to be creating a Greene market. All right. Around you there. top-line brand product. Right. So they would crush it or go into the landfill. So over the years, the industry has matured. The supply chain industry has matured. And they realize there’s a lot of value in this and it’s environmentally friendly to put these back into circulation. Maybe not in the same markets, maybe the rest of the world. So take, for instance, smartphones. Smartphone has second thought, maybe even a fourth life. Right. You know. And we don’t realize. But a smartphone, iPhone 6 today in the United. Nobody wants it. But if you go to Southeast Asia somewhere, Philippines, Thailand, Africa, Africa. Yeah, people would love to go. Yeah. You know, I mean, that it still sells. So so looking at that problem and having been in the telco world for these many years, we saw this as a niche problem and we started to solve the Soviet build a product. Our product is called Midas. Like I. Yeah, exactly. The Midas touch it touches into the gold. Right.

 

[00:10:30] So we extract maximum value from the return product and we define and identify the amount of investment you need to make into that product to revive it and to bring it to a value. And then imagine this. Imagine if you’re getting 50 thousand returns every month on phones.

 

[00:10:53] How would you know which ones to invest money in and which ones not to invest in? Right. It becomes a people issue. It becomes a process issue. Well, we said rather than that, let’s make your system issue and we solved it in the system. So it’s we’ve got an AI machine learning system which keeps on learning. It gathers information from all around the world, values the product figures out for that specific phone. What should be the investment made or should there even be an investment.

 

[00:11:24] Right. Based on its condition and its model. Exactly. You can say, hey, it’s worth $230 in Morocco. Yes. It there. Yeah. Exactly. And you know what? It’s OK to spend $50 into refurbishing it or doing whatever or, you know, changing the glass or fate or whatever the case may. You know, there’s demand. Yes. Yeah. Exactly.

 

[00:11:43] When you’re making that call and, you know, most people, most businessmen are willing to put in an investment if there is a value to be gained at the out of the cycle. Right. So this is this is the best way to do it. So this is a system that enables you to make these decisions without a human having to make those drastic decisions. So. So that’s that’s one of our products. The second product that we have is. So we are we have a very data savvy company. We have data science companies. So we we have built what is called UPS Supply chain Insight product. It’s a it’s a deep learning, A.I. based data analytics product that allows you to do forecasting Real-Time Auction Value, monitoring your basic bread and butter data analytics, you know. So it’s all cloud based. It’s easy to deploy. It’s all on tap. Which SAS product? Both of these are SAS products. So literally so one is a service to the other.

 

[00:12:41] Is that or one is? Yes. That’s still part of Phenix. Yes. Computer. Yeah, but our part of Phenix would typically lead with the supply chain inside products of you go in and we would deploy the data analytics product and we would. That makes it easy to show value in business case. Right. To go in and deploy Midas. Right. And that’s what people care about. They don’t care about the how exactly. It’s the what. Yeah, exactly right.

 

[00:13:09] And the beauty of it is both are so software as a service. Both our browser based there’s there’s no significant hardware that is required. Easy to deploy, easy to manage, centrally located. You could have 20 warehouses and you could deploy Midas in all 20 of them all centrally manage full rules-based engine. So you you know, you can have thousands of SKUs and it would still be able to do proper disposition based on that as well. So, I mean, we we found with the iPhone significant customers who like it. Mm hmm. Significant size. So good Fortune 50 is nice.

 

[00:13:54] There were no winners. Phenix Innovations is based where, in Atlanta, Georgia or in Africa. Where else would you rather have a company named Phenix? And so but you’re doing business globally clearly with VR. Fifty. Yes. Yes. Outstanding. So modest was the name of the first product. What was the name of the second product? Supply chain in Sciarrotta. Supply chain inside. OK. Well, I hate to ask what else. Because there’s so much we could dove deeper in those two.

 

[00:14:20] Yeah. So we have AWS. So last year we a few years ago we realized that the world is moving towards automation and automated systems. Labor is getting more and more expensive around the world. And and, you know, to compete with China, we really need to have a different answer. We cannot have labor as an answer. So automation is one area that we started focusing on. We started a company called Griffin Robotic. Now Griffin Robotic is based out of India.

 

[00:14:53] Okay. What about, say, Griffin, Georgia? But someday some someday. Yeah, exactly.

 

[00:15:00] But Griffin is based out of India. Griffin focuses on inspection robotics. So there’s a lot of pick and place robotics. There’s a lot of robotics, which is SRS is automated storage and retrieval systems and, you know, bots that can move your racks around and do picking for you and things like that. Right. Refocussed on inspection as a technology reform, the mission that we are inspecting, high value items such as smartphones and grading them. Got it. So in today’s world, you would have a line of 40, 50 people sitting down looking at phones and in 10 seconds, the greater phone. Yeah. But guess what? If I grade A phone as B, I I can be about 70 percent sure you’re not going to it as B because your eyes look at it different. Mine, right? The angle of the light plays it all laughing splatter, all right. And if you think about it, the difference between a grade E and a grade B of A phone in a reseller market is probably about $70 on an average.

 

[00:16:06] You’re leaving? Yes. Out of money. Yes. You know, that’s what they get graded more often. Absolutely. Yeah. Get it up as well. Yeah. And so what happens is that the market has realized that in the market economy, basically self-corrected said so. So you actually have now grade BS going off as gray days and then the person who’s buying at the other end probably makes a mistake of buying it as a grade a plus few times and then realizes oh I’m actually getting B’s. Yeah. So then he drops the price and it’s all options. Yeah. Kind of connected sulfates and we’re talking, you know, over the course of hundreds of thousands of devices. That’s one $70 mistake in terms of valuation.

 

[00:16:48] A big board. Higbee us. Yeah. It adds up very quickly. You know what I also didn’t realize is going back to something shared. I think it’s really relevant for this segment. The conversation is that demand of previous generation iPhones. Yeah. You know that Affan 60 is example use. I just I just moved from Athens 6. A shame.

 

[00:17:11] A shame to say a couple months ago. Yeah, but you took a big leap into a low level. Oh he I mean you mess around.

 

[00:17:18] I went for like a 57 Chevy. You know, I don’t know how but it I or something but ussler. Yeah. Tesla. Tesla.

 

[00:17:25] But I think a lot of folks may not understand that side of the smartphone devices. That side of the reverse. Just just the market. Yeah. All right. So Griffin. Robo tech all about the inspection. Yes. Of these devices that get really good, accurate valuations, which evidently can save business or make business millions of the lot.

 

[00:17:50] Yeah, exactly. So we like the process. Right. Exactly.

 

[00:17:55] So we have a package pending technology that different produced. It’s and it’s an A.I. 3D imaging using a Tuti camera. So we can actually we can tell you the depth of the scratch based on the tuta image that we. Wow. It’s it’s pretty interesting tech. But it seems like that would you’re taking measures or adding measures take to get as objective as you can impact evaluation. Yeah. And now we we did that. And then I was traveling back and forth from India alone. So I sat next to this guy who works at McLaren and we got talking. He’s the CFO, were there and he said, hey, would you talk to our engineers? Because they’re trying to figure out how to understand and do QE on the scratches on pistons. Where McLennon. Mm hmm.

 

[00:18:53] Interesting. Wow. DePillis. Gates. Yeah, exactly right. Whatever gets you closer to a very fast car. Exactly right. And then I tried to convince me to buy one. Of course, I know. Resisted up to this point. Yeah. Up to this point being the wait wait for the 720 s. Yeah. Exactly. Then buy one. Yeah. Yeara I’m already lost. I’m already lost. All right. So beautiful. There’s one other business and venture. Yeah. May want to touch on.

 

[00:19:22] Yeah. So we have a third company as part of the group. It’s called Excalibur Infotech. It’s it’s our in-house product development company. It’s a software company. So rather than outsourcing this to other people, the outsourced your own company and then the guilty company. Exactly. So so Griffin and Phenix designed the products and then Excalibur built it for both the companies and then delivers it. Where’s that located? Oh, so Excalibur is located here in Atlanta. OK. Also in Pune, India. Okay. Yeah.

 

[00:19:57] So I have a company. We have. We have our own internal. Yeah. Yeah. Offshore development. Yeah. And pwning as well. Oh really nice. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah we should. Great town. Yeah.

 

[00:20:06] We’ll have to go visit together. Exactly. We’ll say to your parents I’m actually going on Wednesday if you want to tag along. I can’t make it that way. Right.

 

[00:20:16] All right. So thank you for walking us through kind of those three complementary business models. And I can only imagine how you’re you’re kind of leveraging the family of companies to work together to talk to you.

 

[00:20:29] But I’m not dying. Okay. Please. Sorry. So I have one more small companies. This is a young startup. It’s a worth my homework on this one. They’re great. Well, I mean, he probably started it while we were doing the show. Please. So it’s got ricochet motorcycle. So blending in the passion to do to ride motorcycles and.

 

[00:20:52] And, you know, working on them in my own garage and stuff like that, so eventually I got round to starting it was with a guy who’s a young builder in India. He built one of the bikes for me and I loved it so much. He came out, he asked me if I want to start a company, and I said, why not? You know, when you had some spare space at Griffin factory.

 

[00:21:17] Really? Yeah, exactly. You put it all together and. Yeah.

 

[00:21:20] And so we’re now building custom bikes. Wow. And so it’s it’s a new movement in India. The market is not very well developed on a bike. So we typically take a three a 350 to 500 bullet and field bullet and then we customize it. OK, you make it into choppers and they get do it is awesome. Yeah, it’s it’s it’s fun.

 

[00:21:46] Tiny little crotch rockets. Are you doing. We haven’t done those yet. I don’t think the chassis lends itself well. It does. Yeah. Yeah. Yes. I’m hesitant to move on because you might say, hey, wait, there’s more. Now let’s just ask. So what’s what company did you just start five minutes ago. I have not yet. OK. I think it’s safe. Yeah. Yeah. All right. So you were right.

 

[00:22:08] Yeah. Throw a curveball at you little bit. You think you can you can answer this in your sleep as being as entrepreneurial as you are. Lots of different ventures and passions and following up on your passions. And I love I love kind of like the strategic approach. You’ve taken the motorcycle venture, maybe not as much, but as first three companies. I can almost see how they can they work together. Yeah. What? Whether where the four audience members that are curious about being entrepreneurs, maybe they’re in school or maybe they’re early in industry or maybe they’re in early stage companies. Right. And they’re in the trenches fighting blood, sweat and tears. What’s one piece of advice I meet that you would share to get folks to break through? Just don’t give up.

 

[00:22:55] I just you know, I’ve seen way too many people give up too early. Mm hmm. And I think anything that has helped us be where we are is tenacity. We just will fight it. If you believe in your idea, you just cannot give up. Mm hmm. So believe in yourself. Believe in the idea. There’ll be a lot of people will tell you it’s not worth it. It’s too late. It’s too early.

 

[00:23:22] I can’t listen to them. Yeah, it can be done. I can’t tell you how many times people told me. So when I started the robotic somebody in my biggest customer, they pulled me aside and he was like, are you serious? You want to do this? And I said, why do you ask? I mean, he said, well, you’re a software guy. You’ve been doing software for 25 years. What do you know about electronics and robots? And I say, well, I went to trikes and engineer. That should help. But yeah, it was. But that was a long time ago. But I think I think if you’ve got an idea and and you go after it pretty hard, you can make it happen. The best thing about it is building good, solid teams, empowering them, funding them. And then, you know, and then just. Doing good. I mean, people. People work hard. When you when you give them respect, when you work closely with them and you know, when they see you not giving up as well, I mean, I we me and so all my leadership, we we work shoulder to shoulder with all the engineers. We are all engineers. Top to bottom. The entire company is full of engineers. Yeah. Even our even our V.P. of intellectual property. She’s an engineer as well.

 

[00:24:42] The original I mean, she is sixty five years old and just getting started. Well, you have no idea. Yeah, I know. Five years ago she called me up and she says, hey, would you write me a recommendation letter?

 

[00:24:59] As for what? And she says, well, I want to do masters. OK. Electromechanical. Are you mad? You already have a masters. Yeah. But I want to do another masters in electromechanical engineering. I said, why? Because it’s free. I’m over 60 and it’s free.

 

[00:25:16] Georgia State. But you know Minnesota. Okay. Yeah. So. So lots of schools are doing that. Yeah. And so it’s it’s amazing. And so I did Ryder it go and she got in.

 

[00:25:28] And, you know, the most amazing thing is she gets to learn from all these kids and dig it. To have a free IP lawyer in their classroom. Yeah. As they are coming up with these new ideas. Yeah. They got free and she’s helping them protect her. Yeah, exactly. I mean it’s it’s it’s a match made in heaven. You know, it’s brilliant and it’s just great. People gotta love that kind of ambition. Exactly. I love it.

 

[00:25:55] Yeah. All right. So we’re gonna kind of broad back out. We’ve kind of walk through the different elements of the enterprise Sheer. I want to get you to weigh in on the global business environment. The global in an supply chain world. When you think about all the the ever evolving world environment we live in. Right. What’s a trend or issue or topic or two that you’re really tracking more than others right now?

 

[00:26:22] I think the world is starting to look at risk from China a lot more seriously than they have been in the past. I think President Trump’s been talking about it for a while. I may not agree with all his policies, but I think I do agree with this one that we are too slanted towards China for building all our things. And we need to take a step back and ask ourselves the question here. What if China were not to produce it? What would happen to us? I mean, so we look at chrono wires right now. Yeah, most Chinese factories are down. It’s hitting us hard. Yeah.

 

[00:26:59] And and if you think about it, a lot of medical supplies.

 

[00:27:07] Non-farming supplies are coming out of China like cotton swabs, bandages and stuff like that, it’s all over the charts. Yeah. Girls mask everything, right. So all of that was being produced over there in that supply chain is like, no Silom. It’s dark, right? And so. There’s a massive impact, so I think people are starting to take a step back and say, wait a minute. What has happened here and how do I protect myself from this? So we really need to start looking at this and and figure out what sort of opportunities it creates. And I feel that the tremendous opportunities will be in manufacturing around the world. I think there will be secondary and tertiary manufacturing zones that would be created. People are looking at India quite a bit at the moment. It’s it’s a more stable economy, more stable democracy than China is. China is not really a democracy, but yeah, you know what I mean?

 

[00:28:06] And I like you’re a straight shooter. I like that. I meet. Sorry about that. Is there something I learned works late.

 

[00:28:12] So. But there is a I think European Union with Brexit is a big challenge as well. I think Poland offers tremendous opportunities for manufacturing in EU. I think manufacturing will come back two years as well. I feel there are a lot of secondary areas in the US which are hurting quite a bit because because they’re being neglected.

 

[00:28:40] I think we’ve got a lot of. Lot of wealth concentrated in metros.

 

[00:28:46] But if you go in to secondary and deal three cities in the US, yeah, there’s a lot less wealth and there’s a lot of pain. Yes. And I think generally and there’s a lot of opportunity. I mean, I think and good people I mean, there’s a lot of good workers out here. Right. So there’s no reason why we if we build companies in those areas, we can’t, you know, so.

 

[00:29:09] So think about it. This. What kind of opportunities does this present to us? Right. I supply chain people. It presents shipping opportunities because goods have to go back and forth to these areas. It affords us warehousing opportunities, handling opportunities, and it offers us robotic opportunities. People will be there doing things, so we will hire workers to actually assemble and put things together.

 

[00:29:35] So there will be manufacturing components that will be required. So. So now you are getting the whole gamut. And and hopefully I I I really hope that the investment community, the private equity markets support this going forward, because I feel we really need to bring that back into the country when the Western Hemisphere, there is no way around it.

 

[00:29:58] Yeah. The largest the largest generation in the history of the planet is exiting the workforce. Ten thousand. Exactly right. And the only way to compete with masses of very cheap labor that China has is with robotics. Yeah. So between robotics and and between that cost structure in China and the reduction of population of your workforce in the U.S. and in in the Western Hemisphere, then we really have to expect that robotics is the way that we can compete. And it’s a great lever. That’s a great not not only to to diversify to secondary and tertiary markets, for production to Southeast Asia and South America. And in the states for for secondary and tertiary production of goods as a second source, maybe there’s an opportunity to be a first source. Exactly. And robotics deflation is hard enough.

 

[00:30:54] Yeah. Reduce risk tremendously. Also, you know, it can act as a amazing procurement tool because you know, you can negotiate better. Yeah. You’re not held hostage. That’s right. You know, so.

 

[00:31:05] Yeah. Think about. And you’ve got a plan B if a disruption occurs in any one particular area. Companies have. Some companies have actively managed that against that kind of risk for decades, some for just a few years. And now I think many, many more will. Yes.

 

[00:31:23] All right, so let’s make sure as we started kind of want things down here, how can it it what’s the best place, I guess Phenix Innovations, your alma was the best place to learn more about ever, all the incredible things you and your team are up to these days. So I’ll give you a couple of UPS I please.

 

[00:31:42] The Phenix Innovations website is p.I. Popeye India 1 0 8 dot com. Yeah, and the Gryphon robotic web site is Griffon jerai f f y n dot i/o. And so we’ve got all our products and stood out there. We didn’t mention one of the products that Griffin’s working on is in Industrial Io T. So if you’ve got an edge box which is Industrial I.A.E.A. Artificial intelligence capable, we can run inferencing engines on that, deep learning engines on that. And so that and we have a cloud which monitors operational excellence dashboards because out of the box Trish Boehm. So we would love to talk to people over here at the show who have machines does this can easily and seamlessly integrate into their machines and give them immediate access to those machines from online and give them visibility. So so we’re slowly I mean, we are we had a three and a half year old group at this point in time, we’re slowly stitching these things together. Our intent is, is is that we we should be able to give an end to end supply chain solution to a company to our customers in the next five to seven years. Wow. Yeah.

 

[00:33:05] So that’s an impressive and ambitious optimistic. Yeah, that’s good. I mean, you’ve got to believe, right? Well, look, the technology exists. Yes. What we need is people like you who can who can adapt it. Yeah. And then people who will adopt it put it together to the use case.

 

[00:33:23] Yeah, exactly. I think though the interesting thing is. There’s a lot of appetite to bring in new technology. I see a lot of enthusiasm. There’s a there’s a lot. And that the challenge sometimes is. Does the markets do not necessarily always reward people who take those challenges, especially first movers? Yes, especially the first mover. So you just have to hang on. Yeah.

 

[00:33:53] And you know, that’s a lot of debate. Yeah. Yeah. Even if today’s job market isn’t well, you got forty five of my motorcycle or if you’re a first mover one these spaces in a freefall in a doll, right. Yeah, that’s right. Oh my gosh.

 

[00:34:09] So do you. So you strike me as someone that folks would love to put an audience in front of you. And do you do many keynotes or panels? I have not, actually. You got to I don’t know if you know. So we tell all kinds of folks. We publish our 300 episode about town. This this thing hits a month or so ago. And you keep it real. Not to be cliche or cheesy, but really. Thank you. You call it like you see it. And I think, you know, we’ve seen a variety of CEOs come on the show. We’ve had we’ve had a great to bat back when you want to wear you down, earth, very genuine, very in this discernment leadership thing was very component, very inherent in his style. And then to see another business leader that really make no bones about it, this is this is what’s taking place. I mean, we need more that I think.

 

[00:35:02] Well, I think to be to be the kind of leader that that you are, you have to be that matter of fact, you don’t have time to mince words. You have. Yeah. You have to recognize, even if you’re wrong, you have to recognize what you believe and you have to go with what you believe, right? Yeah. That’s how you. That’s only what you can do.

 

[00:35:20] There’s nothing wrong in accepting you’re wrong. Yeah. Right. I mean not everybody can be right all the day, you know. Why not be a little bit humble abode.

 

[00:35:29] Gives you go and yes. You learn all you want at 1:45 an hour. Yeah. You would learn a whole lot at that speed. Yeah. You learn a lot more where you’re wrong than you do when you’re right. Absolutely.

 

[00:35:40] And so I want to I want to. But I want to be right. More times to dance. Yes. It’s OK to be wrong, but it shouldn’t be the goal.

 

[00:35:49] So we’ve already established where folks can learn more about phoenicks innovations and Griffin rubert tech, right? Yes. One last question. Sure. Because especially when you think of the the organizations, plural, that you’re building out, speak to our audience. What’s what’s one thing. And you put this lot of times I think last time I heard you ask this question, Greg, you said, I’m walking down the hallway in my business. Yeah. And in my brain, I’m thinking about the problems I’m having. Other than the curse words. What what triggers them? The need in me to reach out to meet. What is that? What’s a. Give us a scenario where you’re like, hey, we can help if you’re experiencing ABC.

 

[00:36:36] Reach out. We can help. So if you’re experiencing data issues in your in your business, if you’re experiencing visibility issues in your business or if you’re if you’re just plain ordered, want to sit down and solution, solution, your problems reach out to us.

 

[00:36:59] I know that sounds vague and cheesy, but wouldn’t go with cheesy, but we. But we do mean just bluntly speaking. Sorry about that.

 

[00:37:10] But it would you know, in we we do a lot of innovation as part of what we do. And I don’t say that lightly. We got few patterns in them in the working at the moment. We do a lot of new products. This is my I I didn’t mention this, but I built and I sold my last company in 2016. So I was one of the early guys that built diagnostic software for smartphones when nobody was doing that. And in 2016, AP acquired it and I exited that and started this group. So it’s I think innovation is what you guys if the customers want, then, yeah, they can give us a call.

 

[00:37:55] Pr I want to wait dot com. Yeah. I think if you’re leaving, if you feel like you’re leaving money on the table with returned goods. Yeah. Give me a call. Perfect. I went to Wacom and Griffin Dot. And again I want to say Agnos SuperPower’s. Yes, that’s my super ego. Yeah. Meet my Zhaan coming to a keynote near you as. We should make sure that that happens. You know, we can make that app. Yes.

 

[00:38:19] If it needs that, then you really have enjoyed our conversation. Skype for just a second. We’ve been talking with Amit, my John founder and CEO of Phenix Innovations. Griffin Robo Tech, Excalibur Infotech and Ricochet Motors, motorcycles, motorcycles. And what a collection. Good stuff. Really enjoyed it. Greg, that wraps up and a very solid, exceptional day one.

 

[00:38:44] Yeah, I’m Codex. Yeah, I mean, it just I think it’s just a great example of the kind of skills and gifts, innovation and ambition that we’re seeing. Yeah, right. You know what I’m most thankful about? These were early conversations. What’s that?

 

[00:38:57] That the huge device over your right shoulder never came through the back of our still active one. I keep on thinking the same thing’s going to happen.

 

[00:39:04] It feels like a circus ride is going on every once in a while when they start that thing winding around the house. It for wrapping the Saran Wrap. Yes, that’s. We were in Junior. That’s right. Feels like it, does it. But it’s fast. It’s super fabulous, right?

 

[00:39:19] We’ve got the good guy. The bond folks from Wolf. Wolf Tech. Yeah, they’re Yanick. Who is working over there? He said, look, if it bothers, you will shut it down. I’m thinking we’re good.

 

[00:39:28] There were a couple of times when I thought I felt brushed my shoulder, but really enjoyed our conversation, not to our audience.

 

[00:39:36] Be sure to check out our events webinar tab at supply chain. Now radio dot com, a variety of things. If you like what you heard here with Amit, you’re going to love checking out our library of interviews, some of our upcoming events, you name it. Got some great bands teed up with E.M.T. reuters’ events, the Automotive Industry Action Group, the George Logistics Summit and much, much more. Point. A point. Well, were we out ahead of our skis? Are we can say we have an event with we love or we love collaborating with the fine folks at point A the innovation, the Supply chain Innovation Center right here, I’m Supply chain City. You can learn all about all of that stuff at Supply Chain Now Radio dot com. If there’s something that you do not see that we’ve talked about. Shootist Note to Amanda at Supply Chain Now Radio dot com. Big thanks to our guest here today on this latest episode coming to you live from Moto X here in Supply chain City, Amit Mahajan, founder and CEO of Phenix Innovations, Griffin Robo Tech, Excalibur Infotech Ricochet Motorcycle Motorcycles. Be sure to check out other upcoming events. Past interviews, other resources at Supply Chain Now Radio dot com. Find us and subscribe wherever you get your podcast from, including YouTube. And on behalf of the entire team here. Scott Luton. Wishing you a wonderif week ahead. We will see you next time. Owen Supply Chain Now, thanks everyone.

Would you rather watch the show in action?

Watch Scott and Greg as they welcome Amit Mahajan to the Supply Chain Now booth at MODEX 2020.

Featured Guests

Amit Mahajan serves as Founder & Chief Executive Officer of Phoenix Innovations LLC. He has been active in IT industry for last 21 years and has been the driving force behind various large size designs, deliveries & implementations in USA and across the globe. Amit was the Founder & Chief Executive Officer of Xcaliber Technologies LLC based out of Atlanta, Georgia in the United states for 7 years which was a venture funded corporation. Xcaliber Technologies had offices in United State and India. He is the inventor and the brain behind the SmartChk Diagnostics solution. SmartChk has been globally implemented in the United States, Europe, China & India. Blancco Technology Group acquired Xcaliber Technologies LLC and SmartChk product portfolio in March 2016 for an undisclosed amount. Before founding Xcaliber Group which includes Xcaliber Infotech, he held senior leadership roles within multiple Fortune 500 companies, wherein he played responsible role of Chief Architect and Director to name a few. His varied experience, understanding of the solution journey from discovery of problem or need to improvise to reality of having a working solution has been a tremendous asset for Xcaliber in all our initiatives and offerings to customers. His understanding of the complex user experiences of mobile-first consumers and his problem-solving approach has been a driving force. Touted as an “engineer of the future” Amit constantly raises the bar on what it takes to meet society’s growing and demanding mobile needs. Amit is a motorcycle enthusiast. When he is not dreaming up innovative products he is either spending time with his son on Lego Robotics or riding his Ducati XDiavel S in mountains of Georgia.

Hosts

Greg White

Principal & Host

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

You May Also Like

Click to view other episodes in this program

Additional Links & Resources

Subscribe to Supply Chain Now

Connect with Scott on LinkedIn

Connect with Amit on LinkedIn

SCN Ranked #1 Supply Chain Podcast via FeedSpot

SCNR to Broadcast Live at AME Atlanta 2020 Lean Summit

SCNR on YouTube

The Latest Issue of the Supply Chain Pulse

2020 AIAG Corporate Responsibility Summit

2020 AIAG Supply Chain Summit

Supply Chain USA 2020

Supply Chain Now Listener Survey

Check Out Our Sponsors

Adrian Purtill

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

Connect on :

Joshua Miranda

Marketing Specialist

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

Patch Reilly

Data Analytics and Metrics Intern

Patch is a fourth-year Management Information Systems and Marketing major at the University of Georgia. He is working with Supply Chain Now in data analysis, finding insights and best practices to increase company efficiency. Patch previously worked as an intern at AnswerRocket, a data analytics company where he gained invaluable knowledge about analytics, webpage SEO and B2B marketing best practices. In his free time, he enjoys playing tennis, going to concerts, and watching movies.

Connect on :

Vicki White

Controller

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

Connect on :

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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

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

Connect on :

Greg White

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.

Connect on :

Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

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

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

Connect on :

Karin Bursa

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.

Connect on :

Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

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

Connect on :

Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

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

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

Connect on :

Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

Connect on :

Jamin Alvidrez

Founder & CEO, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain Now, Veteran Voices, This Week in Business History

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.

Connect on :

Jeff Miller

Host

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.

Connect on :

Amanda Luton

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 singing second soprano in the Grayson United Methodist Church choir.

Connect on :

Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

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

Connect on :

Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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

Connect on :

Allie Krasinski

Marketing Coordinator

Allie is currently completing a degree in marketing with a certificate in entrepreneurship at the University of Georgia. She got her social media start through an internship with Shred, a personal training app, and she’s been hooked ever since. She works to optimize our following base while assisting the team with content creation, influencer outreach and other marketing endeavors. Allie can’t wait to keep growing alongside Supply Chain Now.

Connect on :

Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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

Connect on :

Jada Carson

Marketing Coordinator

Jada is a recent graduate of Old Dominion University, having earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Communications with a media studies concentration and marketing minor. Jada got her start producing content at 16 years old, while attending a radio and broadcasting journalism program in high school, and hasn't looked back!  She is an asset to the Supply Chain Now team as a media specialist, podcast and media producer, and production coordinator.  Outside of Supply Chain Now, Jada is a big Lakers fan, and also a music journalist and enthusiast.

Connect on :

Ben Harris

Host

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.

Connect on :

Page Siplon

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).

Connect on :

Kristi Porter

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

Connect on :

Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

Connect on :

Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

Connect on :

Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

Connect on :

Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

Connect on :

Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

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

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

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

Connect on :

Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

Connect on :

Alex Bramley

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.

Connect on :