Supply Chain Now
Episode 528

Episode Summary

“Everyone is building a blockchain today, so, if I’m a business and I want to leverage the power of blockchain, do I have to lock into someone’s specific blockchain and I can’t connect to any others?”

– Sandro Natale, Director of Product Wi-Fi, Digital Signage & Ads for Access at AT&T

 

Blockchain offers dramatic improvement in terms of efficiency and economics: logistics monitoring, enhanced licensing of services, products and software, the digitization of physical assets, and more secure transaction records.

– Thomas Carter, Founder and Chairman of Dealbox and CEO of Total Network Services Corp.

 

With everyone suddenly working and living from home, digital advertising and engagement have not only expanded, they have become far more critical to corporate top lines across industries. And the data networks that support this new approach to connecting with customers not only have to be complex and sophisticated, they also have to respect and protect consumer data privacy.

Sandro Natale is the Director of Product Wi-Fi, Digital Signage & Ads for Access at AT&T and Thomas Carter is the founder and chairman of Dealbox as well as the founder and CEO of Total Network Services Corp, two organizations that are focused on bringing blockchain to bear on today’s business challenges.

In this conversation, Sandro and Thomas share their points of view on the following with Supply Chain Now Hosts Kevin L. Jackson, Greg White, and Scott Luton:

· How networks of computers and interconnected devices are changing the way companies approach innovation

· Some of the key usability concerns that will increase adoption of even the most complex technologies

· New opportunities to create digital trust and security that have been brought to light by the pandemic and how blockchain may hold the answer

Episode Transcript

Intro/Outro (00:00:05):

It’s time for supply chain. Now broadcasting live from the supply chain capital of the country. Atlanta, Georgia heard around the world. Supply chain. Now spotlights the best in all things. Supply chain, the people, the technologies, the best practices and the critical issues of the day. And now here are your hosts.

Scott Luton (00:00:42):

Good. Thursday morning, everybody. Scott, Lou, Greg white, and Kevin L. Jackson with us here on supply chain. Now really excited about today’s live stream. Kevin, Greg, how are y’all doing? Hey, thank you. I’m doing great. This is awesome. Agreed. Agreed. Great. I’m doing fantastic. It’s been busy already. I feel like it’s been a full Workday already. It, yeah, it feels like this is like Thursday, January 24th when you’re starting your Christmas shopping yet. That’s the question. Yes. My wife started my Christmas shopping yet. It was good to have one. Sure. I’ll be getting a note anytime, but you know, one of my, in the comments I bet Greg. Yeah. Right. Well, Hey to our audience, today is the latest installment of our newest series. Digital transformers with the one led by the one only Kevin L. Jackson powered by the team here at supply chain. Now, Greg, we’ve been excited about this series for quite some time, right?

Greg White (00:01:53):

Yeah. I mean, I’m glad we’re doing it. You know, we’ve, Kevin has been, it feels like you’ve been part of the team for a year, but, um, and maybe it has been a year, at least that we’ve known him, but yeah, I’m glad that we got this, this going. This is a great, um, extension of our, of our reach and, and a great extension of, I think the value that we can bring to the community. So I agree. I agree really. Um, first of all, thank you very much for letting me join the family. I think, um, it’s, it’s, it’s really a great time to highlight all of the changes across, across all of the industries. That’s why sort of named it digital transformers, because that’s what everyone is doing, that they’re transforming their business models, transforming, uh, their processes. And they’ve been forced to infuse technology into everything they’re doing. So I think this is, this is going to be exciting. Agreed. And, and plus digital go bots just didn’t sound

Scott Luton (00:03:00):

Right. That it Kevin. All right. Well, Hey to our audience, thanks so much for tuning in. We’ve got a great conversation, uh, teed up and we want to hear from you. So throughout the conversation, we’re going to be peppering your comments and insights along with our two featured guests here momentarily. And, uh, we know Greg that our community will bring it as always, uh, along those lines. Let me go ahead and say hello to, uh, Michael Avra is with us. Of course. Great to have you back with us. Teak is here with us via LinkedIn. Of course, Amanda’s behind the scenes. Thanks so much, Amanda, for driving things. Nick rumor is with us. Uh, Nick hope this finds you well, looking forward to reconnecting with you soon. He already, he’s already answered this first question. Christmas shopping online or in store. Definitely. Definitely online. I mean, what we’ve been doing for the last four years, frankly.

Kevin Jackson (00:03:56):

Good question for, uh, uh, for Sandra.

Scott Luton (00:04:00):

Yes. Yeah. And we’re gonna, we’re gonna, uh, tune in and get his perspective here just in a minute. Gary Smith says hello from Roslyn, Gary. I hope this finds you well, minnows is ready to get down to business. Minnows will try to pose this question here to our panel here momentarily. And I want to say hello to one other person. Uh, where did that? Well, we got it. We got a full slate lined up. So thanks to our audience for joining us here. Excited about this conversation. One quick programming note, before we get started, if you enjoy today’s live stream, be sure to find us and subscribe wherever you get your podcasts from search for supply chain now and subscribe for free. So you don’t miss great conversations, just like this one. All right. So Greg and Kevin, we’ve got to get to work. You already. Yeah, let’s get, want to welcome in our featured guests here today. Sondra and Itali director of digital signage, wifi and ads for access products at and T business and Thomas Carter CEO, total network services and founder and chairman at deal box. Perfect. How’s everybody doing?

Thomas Carter (00:05:08):

Good. Good, good, good morning.

Scott Luton (00:05:12):

Pleasure to have you both with us. We enjoyed, uh, Sandra, you were sharing some of the, uh, your work, your digital works of art and the pre-show really enjoyed that. We’ll see if we can weave that in at some point in the conversation, but Sandra and Thomas, welcome, and really excited to share your perspective with our audience here today, right? Kevin.

Kevin Jackson (00:05:29):

Oh yeah, absolutely. I’ll tell you this. This is really what digital transformers is all about. Highlighting industry leaders and how to really leverage digitalization to improve their business. Um, digital engagement is key to every business, but the challenge is where are your customers? What are they doing about your employees?

Kevin Jackson (00:05:58):

Don’t forget the me to reach out to those. And even more importantly, in today’s world, a virtual world, your business partners, your own ecosystem. So know companies really need to know who do you need to target, how to target it? Is it, is it through, it’s not through the television anymore, right? It’s that device that we’re all tethered to every day, every minute. You know, what about signs as we’re walking around? Uh, what other digital, um, uh, contacts do we need to focus on? So, uh, I’m really looking forward and we’re going to kick this off with, I think probably the guru of digitizing, the customer experience, uh, Sandra Natallee, Sandra, Kara, you thank you very much for, for joining us here, but first, could you kind of explain your portfolio with at and T and, and how it can be used to support digital transformation?

Sandro Natale (00:07:08):

Yeah. Thanks Kevin. Good morning, everybody. And thanks for the opportunity for sharing what at and T is doing and transforming the user and the customer, the guest experience from a digital perspective. So my role in the organization is, um, I want to, as a product owner, we’re responsible for going out and understanding what the market needs are, where they’re coming, where they’re going, what are some of the challenges and then understanding what their requirements are is, you know, what products are that are unfortunately are solutions that we have at, at and T that allows us to deliver the end result that our customers want. Right? So the products that I, uh, Donald, uh, if you’ve been, you know, we’re also guarding Starbucks and a whole bunch of other locations where we deliver a public wifi from that we, we stand into digital signage, right? So through digital signage, digital communication, and then we have the ads for access product, where in the public Wi-Fi hotspots, how do we subsidize and how do we help our customers covering their cost of ownership when it comes to deploying wifi and digital signage, right?

Sandro Natale (00:08:29):

Because it’s all about the money, right? If I spend a dollar, how do I get $7 back? Right. Right. And what we’re seeing more and more, and this world of COVID-19 is, you know, digital communication is key with a lot of their customers. Right. We’re getting questions like, Hey, did you guys put scanners that tell us, what’s the temperature of the person walking into the store one Oh one, right. Uh, how do we tell people that we’ve hit capacity in our retail locations? And you know, your next thing too. And you know, you’ll be in, in about five minutes, like how do we convey these kinds of messages? How do we deliver this type of information to our, for our customers and our customer’s customers? So these are the kinds of things that we look at and conveying and getting the messaging now from a wifi perspective, from a connectivity perspective, when you look at, you talked about earlier, we’re tethered to these devices, right?

Sandro Natale (00:09:28):

Kids don’t know what it means not to have one of these, you know, um, connectivity is key. So one thing that we really, really do well at ATT is we connect things, right, right. What we’re seeing more and more on our wide fly. And even on our 5g networks is we’re seeing more than just phones, more than just tablets. We’re starting to see, you know, IOT things. We’re starting to see know thermometers. We’re starting to see screens. We’re starting to see cars. We’re starting to see anything technically that has power eventually is going to want to be connected some issues before,

Scott Luton (00:10:07):

Hey, if I can chime in really quick, uh, by the way, hello, Luke small. He, he is a perfect conversation for Luke. Great to have you in the live stream, talk about digital transformation. Um, but you know, Sandra, going back to what you’re sharing here is it’s really neat. This technology landscape we live in because of the messaging, uh, we’re no longer tethered to just the TV. As Kevin mentioned, it can follow the customers wherever they are, and really wherever they want to engage in and wherever the, the, uh, companies and the customers want to engage the consumers. Right.

Sandro Natale (00:10:41):

Yeah. So, yeah. So that’s a good, that’s a good point. Right? So there are tracks those products, as an example, is out of digital advertising, right? So how do I, as a manufacturer or a consumer product, let’s look at a photo manufacturer, you’ve got a company that sells soda and they have their sodas in convenience stores. Right? Well, I could be sitting at home in front of my TV and seeing a commercial on a scroll down. Well, maybe I might get up a little bit of soda in the fridge and drink it because it gave me the urge of drinking that soda, but it doesn’t create that impulsive bias situation. Right? So if we put digital signage in convenience stores and guess what they sell stores and convenience stores and pharmacies are on grocery. So we put these digital signs in these stores where we’re going to run these ads on these digital signs and impulsive buys situation where, Hey, you know what, I could reach out on the shelf and pick up that soda.

Sandro Natale (00:11:40):

Cause I just saw an ad and it reminds me I need to get some soda now sort of one example, but think about it, every single product and a grocer, a pharmacy, big box retail, they all want to get 20 seconds no longer. And even 10 seconds attention from that consumer. And how do you do it? How do you get them to lift their head from this? Or when they’re in a location and you see it a lot is what I use very often. When I talk to my leadership, if you look a lot of the movies like blade runner at the entire building is a digital signage. Right? Absolutely. But one thing, you know, you were talking about how your, um, your customers want to know if your temperature is 101 or 102, or you know, what you are truly doing. That that seems like a lot of data and a lot of intelligence.

Sandro Natale (00:12:42):

How you, how are you doing that? I imagine you’re using things like machine learning, artificial intelligence over these networks. How does that work? Good. So the amount of data that traverses our network is in the Pentagon, right? So one thing that we really, really do well at, at and T is we respect everybody’s privacy. You know, we don’t profile specific individuals. A lot of the data that we’re able to collect is I would get an anonymous for, we can tell our customers, you know, what is the foot traffic that’s going on in their store? So when people walk into their store, more often than another, we can tell them where people for a longer period. Okay. And if we deployed Bluetooth, beacons, we can tell them if they’re facing the North they’re facing South and the Island, right? So this is the kind of information that we can collect for our customers of which once we get that intelligence, once we get that data, there’s artificial intelligence, there’s business intelligence tools that help our customers think decision on what do I do with this data? And that’s one of the problems with data. There’s so much of it. People don’t know what to do, right? So just shooting them, just those customers. I love it.

Scott Luton (00:14:08):

Couple of comments from the audience here real quick. So Nick rumor says technology is perfectly used when it brings people and vision closer together. Nick loved that. Uh, Greg Nick’s always like, uh, a technology poet, isn’t it? I love it. He has the advantage of having been awake for five hours.

Greg White (00:14:26):

It’s more than the rest of us.

Scott Luton (00:14:31):

Um, Jacob says, Hey, isn’t this topic, a delicate dance, because there is so much marketing going on. So many ads, the normal tendency is to ignore mass advertising. Do you believe there’s such thing as taking this too far, even as a privacy aspect and Sandra, any comment, sir,

Sandro Natale (00:14:49):

I completely agree with Jacob. There’s so much advertising. I’ve done all the top 10 revenue generating companies are based on advertising. You’re trying to get as much information on you to make the ads relevant. So if you’re going to advertise something to me, advertise something that’s relevant. If you want 20 minute, 20 seconds of my time, which not 20 seconds today is long. The average attention span is seven and a half seconds. Right? So if you,

Greg White (00:15:22):

I’m sorry, Sandra, what did you say? I wasn’t listening

Sandro Natale (00:15:28):

Very, very important. It’s a very good point. You know, mass advertising avoid the machine gun approach, do it programmatic, do it, do it intuitive and make it worthwhile for the viewer or the consumer to absorb that app.

Greg White (00:15:46):

I think the way that we’re seeing it done and the way that Sandra was talking about it is they’re monitors up in the stores. Um, and it can determine what to show based on who you are now as to the privacy aspect, you’ve selected how much you want to share on your phone. Correct. Um, though, even more is being shared Is based on what you’ve selected to share or not share. So you’re, you’re in significant control of that.

Sandro Natale (00:16:18):

Yeah. They get an opt in opt out option, right? So again, to the point where people choose what they want to give us information and, you know, cautious, everybody, a lot of people are giving up a lot, too much information. Yep. Kevin go here and weigh in. Um, this year has seen a lot of investment in technology because no one’s going in the office anymore. All the companies need to figure out how to do contactless, uh, service to their customers. Everybody’s working from home and there’s, there’s a huge investment in technology in this digital interactivity. Um, but you know, to be honest, it’s only been a few months, three, four or five months is where are we going to see in 2021, as these companies really sort of dive into this technology, they were planning to do four or five years from now, reality is we had some customers reach out to us and say, Hey, we have a big box rolling off a rack.

Sandro Natale (00:17:35):

We have these change rooms that now we’ve closed because no more people to try on clothes in the change rooms for once and the new normal as well. How do we get our customers to know some garment is going to fit them well, right? There’s products out there that we wrote that, that create this virtual reality world that could be standing in front of a mirror and it’s going to put a suit on me. And that’s exactly what I need from my neck to my boss. And it allows me without the ability to write down on the screen, hit the order button, how fat I am honored

Scott Luton (00:18:29):

Kevin, but it’s going to keep it between you and the technology

Sandro Natale (00:18:32):

And the

Scott Luton (00:18:34):

Person doing the alteration. So to,

Sandro Natale (00:18:39):

So I’m going to love that Greg,

Scott Luton (00:18:43):

A few comments here along these lines from the audience. And then, uh, Kevin, I think we’re going to, uh, Thomas get ready to we’re coming to you next, but I’m gonna share a couple of things here. So Daniel says, uh, long Greg, what Greg just shared to make sure we don’t paint ourselves into a corner. We need to make sure we factor in that more connections could be more cyber text-based too. No one wants a hacked toaster

Sandro Natale (00:19:08):

In the changing room, you got these big 48, 65, 78, 75 inch screens on the walls. How do I protect those screens from somebody coming in and putting content on those screens? We don’t want to put in the public card, right, right. Or a telco. Right? So we’re, you know, we’re really into monitoring and managing and creating a very secure environment for all of that digital information, which is a good segue into the next point of this call is we have all this data. We, as a, as a telco and as a carrier, we serve and deliver reliable networks. We comfort our customers by providing a high level of security. Well guess what guys, there’s an even higher level of security. Let me encrypt the information that’s already on top of an existing shared VPN teleco grade type of connectivity to now paint that ease of sharing information. Yep.

Scott Luton (00:20:15):

Sandra loved that. Hey, Murphy’s law is alive and well here in 2020. And we’re getting a little bit of feedback that we may have a speaker on, uh, uh, turned up in one of our BAS one of our Mike or background. So if we could just, double-check our speakers, we’re getting a little bit of a loop feedback. So if y’all check that really quick while I share a few comments, and then we are going to circle back with Thomas,

Sandro Natale (00:20:40):

Okay,

Scott Luton (00:20:44):

Sandra, your point. Michael says, I think of minority minority report when Tom cruise walks by a scanner and automatically knew the buying habits and welcomed him by name, it’s a great point. Uh, Tom Raftery joined us and he asked what he missed. And Daniel Hartman said, Hey, we’ve solved all supply chain issues.

Scott Luton (00:21:04):

That’s it.

Scott Luton (00:21:07):

Hello, Dave, and great to have you in here with us. He says, Hey, that’s coming Mike Abrams. Uh, it’s only a matter of time. Your phone already listens that shows ads based on conversations you’ve had or searches you make. It will happen when a scan or some type of input will tailor a marketing campaign directly to individual users.

Greg White (00:21:25):

It already does happen in Amazon, go stores by the way. Um, and some other stores various in very small samples

Scott Luton (00:21:33):

And social feeds as well. I’m sure we can all relate to that. Uh, Luke small says I predict a rude awakening mid next year when companies realize their heavy investment in digital while enabling things like work from home have not been transformative. Digital strategy will be a big focus next year, where companies look for ROI from their big digital

Scott Luton (00:21:55):

Excellent question. Yeah. That’s probably something that we’re going to have to talk about later is what the C-suite executives need to do, because this is moving fast.

Greg White (00:22:04):

I agree. And what we’re seeing now may not be sustainable trends. Right? I was talking to a company that they provide, uh, Grubbly farms. They provide grubs to the home grown chicken industry, which has exploded this year. And my first question was, yeah, that’s what, it’s better for them to eat that than seafood in my immediate question was what happens when everybody realizes that it’s filthy to raise a chicken and, and there is no shortage of eggs now, right? So I think we’re going to see a lot of those trends coming back around, going to be very delicate dance in that regard as well.

Scott Luton (00:22:50):

Agreed. Hey, Kim, winter. Great to have you here with us. Thanks so much for tuning in from Dubai. One more comment. And then Kevin let’s, uh, let’s move along to Thomas and get some insights around Jane hot topic, but Don says, Hey, granted, augmented reality can determine fit, but it will. It will not be able to replace our feel until you actually wear an article of clothing, drive that vehicle or hold that newborn child in your arms. The human experience can never be totally replaced it, Don. That’s a great point. However, quick counterpoint is the Bach cards from home movement. Uh, you know, you’ve got company companies that are, you know, create the marketplace, the company presses a button, make the transaction. And all of a sudden you’ve got a, uh, uh, a Greg white automobile in your driveway. He’s a, he’s the automotive buff here.

Scott Luton (00:23:44):

It’s a great point is making,

Scott Luton (00:23:46):

But it’s amazing. Just how, how more powerful every day the digital experience becomes.

Scott Luton (00:24:03):

I’m sorry. Distributor of products. I think they’re very solid, robust, reliable RMA process process where I tried on the suit looks great, but what I’ve put it on. I don’t like the velvet. Well, make it easy for that for me to bring it, send it back. Yes,

Scott Luton (00:24:33):

That’s right. Uh, Sandra, that’s going to be, it’s already been critical for years and it’s only gonna be even more critical as e-commerce continues to, to, uh, dominate the scene. In fact, Greg, we were just talking on the buzz last week. I think cyber Monday was 15% in terms of sales. One day 15% of it was last year and it is now the single biggest day of e-commerce in us history, which is, is something that

Scott Luton (00:25:03):

That’s, that’s really, that’s really important. And when you talk about e-commerce, I think this is perfect for Thomas Carter because these, these sites are now going to digital money. And just a few weeks ago, paint Powell announced that they’re going to get big into cryptocurrency. Um, and when we were talking about, uh, security, you know, uh, I know that the cryptocurrency is big, but the underlying technology, which is blockchain people really don’t understand the difference and, and this is really going to get big. So I think Thomas is the godfather here. So, so Tom, can you please clarify the, what is crypto cryptocurrency crypto assets versus blockchain? Because there are two, I mean, on a different, the same, what’s it?

Thomas Carter (00:26:06):

Yeah. Well, uh, I’ll do my best. And, uh, again, thank you everybody. I appreciate the opportunity to, uh, share, uh, on the subject and, uh, yeah, really, you know, defining blockchain and crypto as the name implies, blockchain is essentially blocks of encrypted information stored in a leg or much like a spreadsheet, but on steroids, one block of data is linked to the previous and that’s how it forms a train. And what makes the technology unique? The fact that it’s on a network of interconnected computers that don’t rely on, uh, one entity to facilitate the interaction. So it’s just a network of a lot of computers and the connected machines make up the network itself and they are based on a peer to peer system. Um, you know, that, that, uh, that uses a consensus. So the blockchain is really the key driver. Uh, you know, Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency and blockchain is really the underlying technology that makes, uh, Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies, uh, work.

Scott Luton (00:27:15):

So does that, um, so it’s this encryption I know Sandra was talking about trying to protect information, protect data. What, what are the key benefits of a blockchain, I guess it must be beneficial if they don’t get corn on top of it.

Thomas Carter (00:27:35):

Yeah, no, well, I mean, for a digital experience, you know, um, you know, blockchain continues to be tested, adopted throughout the economy and for the supply chain really you’ve got, uh, you know, uh, some real key benefits, it more transparent and accurate tracking, uh, end to end. You’ve got, uh, logistics monitoring, enhanced licensing of services and products and software, the digital, the digitization of physical assets, uh, more secure transaction records. Um, you know, there’s just a lot of promise, you know, the promise of dramatic improvement in terms of efficiency and economics is, is, uh, you know, there’s just a lot of great applications for the technology

Greg White (00:28:20):

Because it’s an immutable record and in alterable, it’s, it’s the ultimate, uh, foundation for transactions. And, um, because there are a lot of transactions in supply chain. It’s so incredibly powerful. It’s also great for verifying things like provenance, right? I mean, is it really a Gucci bag or golf, right. And because counterfeiting is very proximately, a significant concern as we start to roll these, these vaccines out, I can see that it’s that kind of vehicle that could, could help to verify the provenance, the authenticity of those, of those types of products. Yeah.

Scott Luton (00:29:07):

Um, like, uh, Sandra was talking about if he’s the, uh, engagement with the end customer. So if you’re at the counter and you see this Gucci bag and you want to buy it, you’re kind of, you’re telling me that now the blockchain will be able to tell me, yeah, that didn’t come from around the corner or down the block. It actually came from a real Gucci factory. And it was, it was created at this time on this date and this location. That’s huge,

Thomas Carter (00:29:40):

Absolutely what we’re doing

Greg White (00:29:42):

It today. I mean, we can tell you, I mean, an Indonesian solo fishermen in a 12 foot, in a 12 foot boat, we can verify that this fish was caught by that guy in this boat and transferred all through the entire supply chain. So, um, you know, I, I love seafood, but there are some things that I would rather have verified, um, than seafood, but certainly really exist to do it.

Thomas Carter (00:30:09):

Okay.

Scott Luton (00:30:12):

I want to go around the panel really quick. Uh, but really quick, you know, Greg, we’ve talked about how there are a goat herders in Mongolia, Mongolia very much that are leveraging, uh, an, uh, a phone app Sandro, a smart app that, that is driven by blockchain, which helps them guide and ensure that their herds are not, uh, their goat herds are not grazing on overgraze lands, which have, has climate change, uh, repercussions, right? And because they can guarantee it with this blockchain driven app, they can make more money for their cashmere. I love those beautiful practical examples, but to that end. So, and so a big thanks to our friend or the, the goat herders for setting standards for embracing a practical application of blockchain. But to that point, we’ll go around the panel when we’ll be, you know, you have a couple of schools of thought, so Greg’s point blockchain and practical examples. It’s already here. So as you’ve been using for years, you’ve got other folks that say, Hey, there’s still not enough widespread skill adoption. What, what shawls going around in the panel here? We’ll start with Thomas. When, when does that take place? You think,

Thomas Carter (00:31:25):

You know what? You brought up a really good point. Adoption is complete and making crypto easy is key. Instead of that long alphanumeric tactic decimal, a public key that people look at and go, gosh, I don’t even want to, like, what is that? So, you know, one of the, uh, we solved that with, uh, total network services with our digital names. So now you could have dollar sign and Kevin, and that name sits on top of that long alphanumeric key. And that’s really, what’s going to help the adoption is to make it easy and to have that human readable name, it’s the same instance that happened, you know, with the internet, the internet didn’t really get a lot of adoption with IP addresses, you know, who wants to play two Oh one.one.one 87 dot three, eight and five. I’d rather stay@apple.com. You know,

Greg White (00:32:15):

I hated that one anyway, Thomas.

Thomas Carter (00:32:20):

And so having a simple human readable name, you know, Kevin and them having a, um, you know, having that also be an owner operable salute I could work across right now that digital names, uh, work across a 250 plus blockchain. So I think making it easy and, and, and, um,

Sandro Natale (00:32:40):

You know, is really going to help the adoption. And that’s one of the key drivers that, uh, total network services that we’ve launched that product names. And it’s really starting to take off outstanding. Thomas adoption is just around the corner. Kevin cabby. Next, one of the things you mentioned was interoperability. I mean, everyone is building a blockchain today, are these just thousands of different silos? So if I’m a business and I want to leverage and use the power of block chain, do I have to lock in to someone’s specific blockchain and I can’t connect to any others? Well, you know, it’s just depending on the application that, you know, the use case that you’re wanting to achieve with the blockchain. So, and again, that’s what we’re looking at with solving the interoperable solution. If you can, a lot of these are siloed solutions and really having something that’s interoperable is going to help connect them all. And those are some of the things that we’re working on right now with, uh, leveraging the MCID technology with telco devices, uh, and, and putting that, uh, Emmy ID on the blockchain to help deliver, uh, you know, easier, uh, uh, blockchain solutions over, uh, mobile devices. Hey, I got a question for you. Can you solve for my seven passwords that I have? Yeah.

Sandro Natale (00:34:05):

Get a digital,

Greg White (00:34:09):

Well, Mike AME, along these lines, my gave says, being able to tell exactly where your source material comes from more ethical and socially responsible decisions. Excellent point, Michael, that’s going to be able to verify that something’s free of conflict minerals or wasn’t slaves built, or I just think that is so, and Kevin you’re doing it, you know, with source connect, you’re doing it to verify diverse supplier networks. Right. So

Sandro Natale (00:34:38):

Absolutely that information provenance right there voting is going to grow. You got to

Greg White (00:34:46):

Sound off on this. So go for

Sandro Natale (00:34:48):

Voting big issue. We gotta, we gotta verify ballots.

Greg White (00:34:53):

Yeah. I’m actually working with somebody on that. Yeah.

Sandro Natale (00:34:58):

My chain of command, you know, works for surgical masks during this period, right? You think there’s a little bit of an influx for this, right? Um, through multiple intermediaries, they ended up losing a couple of million dollars because the company that took the money for the masks, they needed 50% upfront. Guess what disappeared? Well, now they’re showing the middleman and the middleman and saying, Hey, I just connected you guys, right. Replaces middleman.

Scott Luton (00:35:38):

Well, Sandra, even a further, uh, take your point. One step further is we saw a ton of, of, um, uh, counterfeit, PPE materials and products and, and goodness gracious. That’s the last thing we need as we fight through the pandemic and hopefully break fruit breakthrough really soon. So great point, Sandra. Um, all right.

Greg White (00:36:00):

Solution and salt pills vaccines as well.

Scott Luton (00:36:04):

Well, between from vaccines, PPE voting, uh, the issues Greg, you mentioned, you know, slave labor and conflict minerals, you know, supply chains. We’ve seen so many stories here lately. Supply chains are really in supply chain leadership, uh, with a lot of global companies are really getting a lot more serious to bring these topics, uh, surface level. So if something can be done about it, there’s a ton more work to be done, but, you know, leveraging some of the technology, we’re all speaking to are going to be critical in that, in that quest

Greg White (00:36:36):

Concerning pharmaceutical. Let me address vaccines. Uh, you know, I think, I think Scott, you make a great point when will adoption increase in adoption will increase when, when professionals and, and managers and C-suite executives start asking for a complex problem to be solved rather than asking people to use blockchain, to do something. And that’s when adoption will increase, we need to let the businesses folk on focus on the business problems and let and let blockchain professionals and SA and crypto professionals focus on if that’s the right. So if that application is the right solution for that problem, part of the, part of what we hear in industry over and over, and Scott, you know, this part of what we hear over and over is people they go and go, we’ve got a blockchain initiative. We have no idea what to do, but we’ve got a block. It’s a, it’s a hammer.

Scott Luton (00:37:42):

Well, we hear that a ton. And I think that’s part of the challenge, going back to what each of y’all really have, have, have pointed to or touched on is, you know, we don’t need to embrace technology just for the sake, because it’s the latest and greatest. It needs a, it needs to move the needle and these, and these adds to the bottom line. It needs to enhance the customer experience that each of y’all have touched on. And he’s, that brings security and, and, um, you know, uh, a sense of security to different supply chains or processes like voting. Um, so excellent points here at Sandro. You, um, you pointed out, we had a comment here and, you know, sometimes LinkedIn doesn’t allow us to know exactly who this may be, Rhonda, but regardless, Amanda, if you could make sure we know who mentioned this, but not to mention blockchain for tracking pharma, supply chain fraud, and now verifying and tracking vaccines tests, et cetera. This is, you know, uh, pharma supply chain fraud existed long before this, this noble mission that we’re, that supply chains are, are, are, uh, uh, endeavoring on now, which is the vaccine to COVID-19. So, uh, we’re going to get gains across a variety of different pharmaceutical supply chains. And that was, uh, Jennifer, Jennifer, thanks so much for making that comment. I really appreciate that.

Sandro Natale (00:38:57):

And I think the COVID-19 vaccine is probably be one of the, I think in history, a vaccine, that’s going to be used by billions of people as fast as they can that flood Gates of fraud and chase the result. They’re trying to make a quick buck and hurting people while doing it. That’s putting up their websites and say, get your vaccine here. So blockchain could really, I guess, make their supply chain and distribution much more efficient and, and cut costs from the supply chain infrastructure. I know, um, that’s one areas that, that Thomas was looking at. Yeah. There’s, you know, I mean, blockchain has the potential to drive cost savings. I mean, it’s just, there’s so many benefits. Uh, you know, we’re really, uh, you know, chase stability, transparency, all of it. It’s going to solve a lot of our problems. I think we’re going to see most, in my opinion, that this is going to be one of the biggest shifts of, you know, technology shift that we’re going to witness,

Scott Luton (00:40:13):

Uh, great point. I want to bring in Tom, Tom brought a, an aspect of this that we haven’t touched on yet, which I love. So we have a blockchain based track and trace solution for pharma, for counterfeit avoidance, but also to aid with recalls. That’s, you know, that’s one thing we haven’t touched on yet. Any, any commentary from our panel there about how blockchain can aid with recalls,

Greg White (00:40:36):

Anything that, that identifies the product and its flow through the supply chain, if it acts substantially as the lot number, which is what organizations use to, to usually conduct a recall,

Sandro Natale (00:40:50):

Right? It can allow it to make the loss smaller, right? Sometimes you’re going to do a recall on a law. Maybe 50% of it is good, right? You make those lots smaller and using blockchain to make that happen. You know how to get a return on your investment, save the company money.

Scott Luton (00:41:17):

Great, great point. A T-score squared who always holds down YouTube, uh, here. Great to have you in the conversation. Blockchain is a clutter eliminator and a game changer, but you know, it’s, it’s back to this. Um, it’s like blockchain seemingly has been on the slow burn for years now. I mean, uh, I’m really hoping. And Greg, we’ve talked about this a lot, kind of bringing it full circle is, um, you know, 20, 21 may be that, that tipping point for when, even the folks that are the, that are doubting Thomases, that just don’t think it’s, you know, the flavor of the month when you know, it’s going to transform the business global business. We’ll see what 20, 20, 2021 brings to bear in terms of adoption. Um, I’m pretty optimistic. I don’t know about y’all no, none of that doubting matters because the die is already cast on blockchain. We know what to do with it. It’s got incredible value of people who are doubting or they’re only hindering themselves.

Thomas Carter (00:42:18):

I’m not doubting over here

Scott Luton (00:42:24):

Doubting no one should.

Thomas Carter (00:42:27):

Yeah. Uh, we’re you know, um, deal box, we’re tokenizing a lot of, uh, companies and digital issuance, uh, for, you know, having the ability to take all that friction around, uh, the removal of like a transfer agent and, uh, you know, uh, DTC, eligibility, all the things that are needed to that kind of, uh, are heavy around capital markets is all relived because we could program all this into these smart securities for the applications for capital markets is, is big. And, you know, just the whole industry, there’s a lot of application for blockchain and it’s definitely going to change the future and make things a lot easier and more authentic.

Scott Luton (00:43:13):

Scott, Thomas, Tom, what he’s talking about, does your favorite word democratization in investing? So it is it’s, it is an incredibly freeing technology when, you know, when applied to the right problems and that’s, that is one of our favorite movements, especially the democratization of technology, you know, when you’re in, when you’re providing access for all, and that is such a powerful movement. Um, one I admire and, uh, I I’ve definitely appreciate that, Greg. And we’ll see how that continues to fuel the democratization of, of access and technology. And you name it to the small, know the smallest players, which is a really important, so Sandro to kind of, um, you know, as we, as we start to wind down the conversation, this conversation is flown past. I want to make sure that our listeners know how to connect with both of y’all, but before we do that, you know, um, folks, sometimes, sometimes folks love to break out their crystal ball and talk about what’s around the corner.

Scott Luton (00:44:16):

I love hearing, I mean, just in the, pre-show what you’ve shared here today, some of the really neat ways that companies are engaging their customers in, in really new and exciting ways. Pre-show you touched on, uh, the Dallas Cowboys, the legendary Dallas Cowboys, sorry, Greg, uh, how the Cowboys and this era where, you know, there’s not, you can’t max out stadiums, but how they’re using technology to, to, to, uh, give fans a heightened experience. What, what else in that vein, what else might you see around the corner that, that we may see a lot more of as, as consumers and, and sports and the easiest you name it.

Sandro Natale (00:44:57):

Yeah. And that, that’s a good point. So, you know, we had this product that was catered for the sports and entertainment industry, and it was primarily, it goes into the sporting arena where the fans would engage in a virtual reality AR experience with our digital displays and to ultimately be able to take a picture with, in this case here, you know, some, uh, professional players from the Dallas combo, right. Well, how do I have a fan engage in the new fan experience when there are no fans in the stadium and saying, well, how do we make healthy version of that? So now we put something that was concrete bolted down to the floor in a brick and mortar location, and brought a virtual to the cloud where now I can take a picture of the doc Prescott, my kids right before I could have only done it in the stadium. So this is one example of what we have to look at in 21 is how do we reach to, we reach out to the consumers that are in their house. They may or may not be going to the local retail shops, but we do go to the local retail shop. How do I make that experience for them worthwhile for them? Now, do I make a dot wonder in my shop? We don’t leave empty handed.

Scott Luton (00:46:18):

Mm love that, you know, and along those lines, Sandra, you know, especially in, uh, you know, you’re like 20, 21 when you welcome those three and a half hours of football, just so you can kind of take a, uh, a mental departure from everything else. And, and I love those examples of technology where you’re enhancing those experiences, right? Customer experience and tip of the hat to our dear friend, Stephanie tomb, and many others customer experience is, is, is permeating every aspect of business, uh, you know, supply chain they’re putting in their head a lot more that the, the specific discipline, right? There’s been elements behind customer experience the phrase and, and the methodology for, for forever, but the specific discipline of, of really fine tuning that, and really, um, enhancing those interactions with the consumer. I love it. It’s another great movement that we’re big fans of here at supply chain. Now, Greg, we talk a lot about here lately in particular about customer experience, right? Gotcha. Um, I’ve got you on mute. Sorry. That was me.

Sandro Natale (00:47:24):

Welcome to zoom people in supply chain. That is the goal. Isn’t it?

Scott Luton (00:47:30):

I mean, is, is the customer experience, right? Nothing else, but delivering the goods.

Sandro Natale (00:47:36):

That’s right. You have to manage the digital interaction with your employees there at home. Remember, and, uh, also your business partners, they’re at home also. So yes, customer experience is important, but don’t forget the employee experience. Don’t forget your business partner experience. All of these technologies are needed to enhance your digital interaction across all of your networks. Great point, Kevin, you look at one of the products that we brought to market as for, you know, the quick serve and the casual serve restaurant business, or everybody’s experienced that you go into a restaurant and you take your phone and you scan your card on the table and you get the menu, right. You’re getting it the menu. How do I order? Right. You still need a human to come there and take your order. You just make it instead of door dash I table dash, where it did all being waved down, or you’re not running back and forth. So that’s a way that we are transforming even the consumers experience when they’re sitting in a restaurant ordering a beer, because I see it as a lot of beer discussions going on in the chat here,

Scott Luton (00:49:04):

You know? Um, and, and I think we just got to, yeah, it’s got notification table dashing has been filed for patents. So some of,

Sandro Natale (00:49:15):

Yeah,

Scott Luton (00:49:15):

There’s a tip of the hat in the, at T and T of course, because Jerry’s world that the home of the Cowboys, uh, Michael ever says that that stadium was the first place ever used my phone to enter the stadium with no paper ticket. His dad got really upset because he’s got a ticket collection for events he’s attended over the years. But, you know, beyond that, I mean, think of the, you know, for me at least pre pre pandemic, um, you know, some of the events we went to and, and bind, for example, buying parking tickets for the Braves in the longer, if you bought it right before the game, you don’t have to get it FedEx to you and, you know, same day or two days out, whatever it gets delivered right there to your phone. And, and just that easy convenience of, of scanning that barcode kind of Sandra, what you were sharing and the transaction’s done, and you can park your car, no tickets, no boots, nothing.

Sandro Natale (00:50:07):

What’s that the scalpers more like it. Yeah. Good point.

Scott Luton (00:50:13):

So Kevin, we have really, uh, we we’ve gone around the world and then some here we’re about 10 till the top of the hour. Um, let’s make sure Kevin, that our audience knows how to connect with Sandra and Thomas. Right,

Sandro Natale (00:50:24):

Right, right. So I know we a lot

Scott Luton (00:50:28):

About blockchain, but I know Thomas has a site make crypto easy.io where you can click on and learn about what crypto is and versus what blockchain is. And it’s actually a nice tutorial, uh, about everything that we’ve talked about. And, uh, with respect to that, that customer experience and that digital outreach, if you go to a, at T and T business, uh, under the enterprise, uh, link, you can find content and entertainment, and that’s all a sign droves offerings and capabilities that, uh, any business needs to really look at and infuse into their new business models so they can reach out to their customers, their employees, and their, um, business partners. And if anyone wants more information to, with respect to what we’re talking about, just follow me on Twitter, Kevin underscore Jackson on LinkedIn, and I’ll, I’ll get you in contact and get the information to you. I wanted to share real quick. Uh, I’ve got a real comprehensive resource, uh, for blockchain and crypto and my Thomas carter.io under the resource tab. It’s a pretty comprehensive, everybody can find, you know, anything about at any level of blockchain and crypto. Uh, there it’s, uh, it’s a great resource for folks. Outstanding. Thank you, Thomas. Where’s the best place to get, uh, get to you online? Uh, well, Thomas carter.io, um, you know, my LinkedIn. Okay.

Scott Luton (00:52:18):

And the good news is we’ve got, uh, Sandro’s and Thomas’s LinkedIn profiles in the show notes. So one click to connect with these incredible resources and thought leaders in their respective, uh, divisions. Hey, Sandra. Um, what, what, what’s the best side again? Is it 80 and t.business?

Scott Luton (00:52:39):

W w what’s the Skype business.com.

Scott Luton (00:52:46):

Great. Amanda, if we can drop that in business.att.com, let’s drop that in the comments as well. Uh, thank you so much to you, both. We hope to have you back. Uh, we gotta keep our finger on the pulse of these, um, innovative technologies and applications that, that both of y’all the whole panel has been speaking to, um, Sandra Bright before we, uh, we swoosh it out. Any final comment on your end?

Scott Luton (00:53:10):

The only comment I have to get to a lot of folks before we should have these conversations is planning for the future and the future needs. These are good, robust action, and make sure it’s secured.

Scott Luton (00:53:21):

Great point, Sandra and Thomas.

Scott Luton (00:53:24):

Yeah, well, I, again want to make

Thomas Carter (00:53:26):

It easy for everyone. So, you know, uh, having a digital name, uh, is going to, I think, really help people, um, with the adoption of crypto and, and you just kind of make it simple and usable and, and we’re really trying to solve those problems that, uh, total network services. And again, appreciate the time and everybody here. So thank you.

Greg White (00:53:47):

Excellent. Well, really huge. Thanks to Sandra and Itali director, digital signage, wifi and ads for access products at and T business and Thomas Carter CEO, total network services and founder and chairman at deal box. Thank you to you both.

Thomas Carter (00:54:03):

Thank you.

Greg White (00:54:09):

Excellent. Oh, we almost had a final word there. I think that we’ve had a little bit of lag on the network here. Uh, home-base at supply chain now headquarters, but Hey, Murphy’s law. There’s one thing that’s 2020 T wifi. Yeah, we’re gonna have to switch. I know I’ve gotten in Sandra maybe right on top. Kevin. I love that. It’s really tough, uh, to work through. Uh, there’s so much more there between Sandro and Thomas that we didn’t get to, but we’ve gotten some good feedback from the comments we’ve made a lot of ground in the short amount of time we have, but you know, Greg starting with you, I want to get each of your key takeaway or two from, from what, uh, Sandra and Thomas shared. Greg, what would that be from where you sit? Well, I think we’ve heard a ton of different applications of those technologies.

Greg White (00:55:05):

And, uh, I, you know, I would echo Sandro’s, uh, kind of final point, which is make it as safe as possible and recognize that you, as consumers, as carriers of the, of the ultimate destination device, you control that you can control it with how you share, uh, with EV with every site. Nowadays, when you go to a site, there’s an accept cookies, a big, beautiful button that says, accept cookies, a tiny little, uh, hardly hard to see link where you can configure that. So you don’t get ads. If you don’t want them, or you don’t send analytical data. I would encourage everyone to find that tiny little link, um, obsessive about it. Uh, and we can think, believe it or not the European union for that, for the GDPR initiative, which allows us to share as much or ceased to share as much as we desire. So that’s one thing. And then the other is, um, you know, don’t be afraid of this advertising if you’re controlling that, Hey, you know, I thought it was nice that, that, uh, Sandra was talking about soda when he went into a convenience store. But what I would love to see is when I walk in the store is them to know they should just have an arrow that points to the beer, and that’s all I need beer and what Greg was.

Scott Luton (00:56:26):

Well, you know, I like caffeine free diet Coke. Point me there to the caffeine, free diet Coke section cherry Coke would be great too. All right. So Kevin, you know, again, so much there, I know we couldn’t get to everything that Sondra and Thomas can speak to. On top of that, they’re leading so many exciting initiatives. We, you know, getting 50 minutes, we barely scratched the surface, but what are a couple important things you think folks should really pay attention to?

Scott Luton (00:56:53):

Well, the first thing is that as a society, we really need to take more responsibility for our own information like Greg was talking about, you know, take the time to configure what type of data goes to, uh, these organizations that are collecting information and data and understand that every device that you interact with from your smartphone to your toaster, to your vehicle, they’re going to be collecting data. So every one of them will have that little hard to find button somewhere. But, um, more importantly is that we also, as a society, me to stop being afraid of technology. Now, there was a time where you can learn something and you’d be great for the rest of your life because it wouldn’t change right. Day things change every day, every hour. I know my wife complains about the fact that, you know, she wakes up and they’ve done a new update to her smart phone. And the button is now over. There was a different color or, you know, um, we, we need to be prepared for constant change and accept constant change. You know, that the name of the show digital transformers is apropos because we all need to digitally transform our life. So, so that’s what I got away from that.

Scott Luton (00:58:33):

I love that. It’s such a great, great comment to kind of wrap up on, but I’m going to ask you one more dish. One more quick, final question, Kevin, because in the tweet chat you were on yesterday, uh, you coined the word and it seemed to get a bunch of tension from your Twitter. What was that word? It was like a combination of,

Scott Luton (00:58:53):

Yeah, digital. Yeah. I’m not gonna claim it Mo uh, Caterpillar actually, um, uh, senior vice president at a T and T um, he coined it when I was working with him when they were actually developing the, uh, pose with the pro uh, product with, uh, at and T at the, uh, at the at and T stadium. And it’s that, that combination of what a merging of the physical and your digital life. And we all have to be physical from now on.

Scott Luton (00:59:30):

I love that. I love that. All right. Well, I hate to wind this thing down, but really have enjoyed this conversation, uh, wide ranging conversation, but really, you know, um, example, application, example, application, you know, really enjoyed kind of our approach here. And, and, and, uh, Tom, I think dropped in, uh, everyone’s mentioned beer, Tom rapper dropped in application and the comments, I think it’s called tapped where folks can, um, can identify, tastes and rate the beer right there in the moment as you’re enjoying it. So Tom is a few hours ahead of us. He might be enjoying one already. Hey, Kevin, Greg, looking forward to the next, uh, installment of digital transformers. Let’s make sure folks can connect with you. Kevin, what was the beyond click, the transform your, your bestselling book? I think we’ve got a link for that in the show notes. How can they talk in folks?

Scott Luton (01:00:30):

Yeah. On Twitter at, uh, eight at Kevin underscore Jackson on LinkedIn, you can find me Kevin L. Jackson, all on Facebook, Kevin L. Jackson. So I look forward to, uh, digital transformers on, uh, on supply chain now. And, uh, well, this was great. So, so thank you.

Scott Luton (01:00:54):

Agree. Thank you so much, Kevin, the pleasure to continue to partner with you. All right. So Greg, before I sign off, man, that there’s so much going on. This has been a jam packed week, uh, and, and we’re still not done. We’ve got two more shows here today with

Scott Luton (01:01:10):

You guys are busy.

Scott Luton (01:01:13):

We’re trying, we’re trying, but Greg what’s, what’s been, you know, uh, I know we had a special interview yesterday morning, but what’s what, uh, leave us with something that uplifts and inspires us and channel.

Greg White (01:01:26):

Yeah, sure. Um, well let me, let me start with, uh, uh, I spoke lectured, I guess, to an MBA cohort last night at Kennesaw state university, unbelievably insightful questions, hyper intelligent individuals, and, um, really engaged in a class where we did it like this. We did the class like this, so it was a pretty amazing experience. The future of supply chain is bright. Um, and, and, you know, as for the presence of supply chain, I’m glad he’s right here to me.

Scott Luton (01:02:01):

I’m glad Kevin’s

Greg White (01:02:02):

On this side of the microphone with us because he’s been on several shows with us. I’m glad to have you on this side of the microphone, Kevin, you probably don’t even recognize it, but you slipped in and brilliant segue in, uh, in the show today. So, um, you know, you’re

Scott Luton (01:02:20):

Talking about a relevant topic, there’s a ton of information interest, and most importantly confusion around that topic. So there’s a great opportunity for clarification there. So I’m really happy that digital transformers as part of the roster, I couldn’t, I couldn’t have said it better, Kevin. That’s why I’ll let Greg sign off. It, it, he makes it seem a lot more eloquent, but on that note, hopefully to our audience, thanks for all the comments and, and insights and, and, and humor. It’s important to maintain that sense of humor in, in, in, uh, these, these, uh, these times. So thanks for tuning in, thanks for everything you brought to our audience. Hey, um, again, if you enjoy these conversations, you can see a lot more@supplychainnow.com. Uh, we’re going to challenge. Y’all just like with challenge our own team every single day, do good. Give forward, be the change that’s needed. And on that note, we’ll see you next time here.

Would you rather watch the show in action?

Watch as Scott, Greg, and Kevin welcome Sandro and Thomas to Supply Chain Now through our YouTube channel.

Featured Guests

Sandro Natale was handpicked to oversee the deployment of Wi-Fi, Digital Signage product offerings with AT&T to large-scale businesses, ensuring suitable price points and functionality. He was selected to manage cross-functional teams to ensure the proper delivery of all features to clients and developing go-to-market strategies for company product offerings, ensuring offers are well communicated to drive customer demand and seller awareness. He leads product development efforts to ensure design, scope, and delivery of all contractual features.

Thomas Carter is an entrepreneur innovation futurist with over 25 years capital markets fintech experience. He has taken two companies public and has helped over 400 with capital markets advisory. Thomas is the founder and chairman of Dealbox,  a digital issuance capital markets advisory company focused on emerging blockchain ventures. He is the founder and CEO of Total Network Services Corp, a blockchain infrastructure company focused on technologies that make blockchain crypto easier.

Kevin L. Jackson is a globally recognized Thought Leader, Industry Influencer and Founder/Author of the award-winning “Cloud Musings” blog. He has also been recognized as a “Top 5G Influencer” (Onalytica 2019), a “Top 1000 Tech Blogger” (Rise Social Media 2019) and provides integrated social media services to AT&T, Broadcom, Ericsson, and other leading companies. Mr. Jackson’s commercial experience includes Vice President J.P. Morgan Chase, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and Engility Corporation Director Cloud Solutions. He has served on teams that have supported digital transformation projects for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the US Intelligence Community. Kevin’s formal education includes a MS Computer Engineering from Naval Postgraduate School; MA National Security & Strategic Studies from Naval War College; and a BS Aerospace Engineering from the United States Naval Academy. Internationally recognizable firms that have sponsored articles authored by him include Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix, and IBM. Books include “Practical Cloud Security: A Cross-Industry View” (Taylor & Francis, 2016), and “Architecting Cloud Computing Solutions” (Packt, 2018). He also delivers online training through Tulane University, Germanna Community College, O’Reilly Media, LinkedIn Learning, and Pluralsight. Mr. Jackson retired from the U.S. Navy in 1994, earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Carrier Onboard Delivery Logistics and carrier-based Airborne Early Warning and Control. While active, he also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide.

Hosts

Greg White

Principal & Host

Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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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.

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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.

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Vicki White

Controller

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

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Scott W. Luton

Founder, CEO, & Host

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

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

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Greg White

Principal, 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.

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Chris Barnes

Principal, Supply Chain Now
Host of Supply Chain is Boring

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

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

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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.

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Kevin L. Jackson

Host of Digital Transformers

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

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Enrique Alvarez

Host of Logistics with Purpose and Supply Chain Now en Español

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

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

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Kelly Barner

Host of Dial P for Procurement

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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Clay Phillips

Business Development Manager

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

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Trisha Cordes

Administrative Assistant

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

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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.

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Lori Sofian

Marketing Coordinator

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

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Natalie Dutton

Marketing Coordinator

Natalie is currently pursuing a degree in marketing with an emphasis in digital marketing and a certificate in new media at the University of Georgia. If there’s one thing she’s learned at the Terry College of Business, it’s that the supply chain is a dynamic, unifying force that’s essential to any business. Natalie helps to amplify the voices of the supply chain here at Supply Chain Now by assisting with media management, content creation and communications.

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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.

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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).

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Page Siplon

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Kevin Brown

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Sofia Rivas Herrera

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Jose Miguel Irarrazaval

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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Demo Perez

Host, Supply Chain Now en Espanol

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

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Kim Winter

Host, Supply Chain Now

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

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

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

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Nick Roemer

Host, Logistics with Purpose

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

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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.

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