Resilience in Your Supplier Relationships with Suppeco
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In this episode of Everything is Logistics, Blythe speaks with Sheldon Mydat, CEO and Founder at Suppeco. They discuss the importance of relationship-driven resilience in procurement, and how Suppeco’s platform facilitates collaboration and transparency between suppliers and customers.

Mydat explains how the platform incorporates live data, automation, and AI to provide actionable insights and streamline processes. He also shares his journey of launching Suppeco during the COVID-19 pandemic and the challenges he faced.


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Show Transcript

See full episode transcriptTranscript is autogenerated by AI

Sheldon Mydat: 0:05

Typical challenges sourcing products sustainably, making sure you've got visibility of your produce, making sure it's farmed properly. If it's, you know, if you're talking about farming coca typically in different regions of the world Africa for example then you need to be. You need to ensure that you are sourcing sustainably and ethically. To make sure that we talked about that legislation, didn't we? That ESG legislation that's applied across the US, the EU, all over the world. It's being pushed out, pushed out. And where does it go? When this new legislation hits, it hits the customer. When this new legislation hits, it hits the customer, and so the customer. Obviously, with 80% of a company's revenue being generated outside its borders by its supply chain, statistically speaking, that legislation only has one place to go it has to be pushed out into the supply chain.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:04

All right, welcome into another episode of Everything is Logistics, a podcast for the thinkers in freight. We are proudly presented by SPI Logistics and I am your host, B blythe Brumleve. Today, I am happy to welcome in Sheldon Mydat. He is the founder and CEO of Suppeco and we're going to be talking about the relationship-driven resilience, especially in the world of procurement. I heard, S sheldon, I heard you say that phrase, relationship-driven resilience and I thought to myself that is going to be the focus of today's show, especially in an area of procurement, which I am very, admittedly, very weak. And we've also got the conversation started off before we start recording, so I just wanted to sort of jump right in and keep the momentum going. So, sheldon, welcome to the show.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:47

It's an absolute pleasure to be here. We obviously know each other pretty well anyway, right From Ballast. We'll touch on that later, but we've already been going for 20 minutes right, talking about cinema. It's a shame we weren't recording, but anyway.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:59

I'm a little mad that we weren't recording.

Sheldon Mydat: 2:01

It's a pleasure to be here.

Blythe Brumleve: 2:03

Well, thank you so much for having me, and I hope that you can entertain my dummy questions because, like I said, I come from the asset-based trucking world as far as my logistics career. That's where I really got started, and so using this podcast really is helping to explore other aspects of each supply chain silo and how they all kind of work together. And one of the weakest parts of my journey in here is procurement, and since you've spent, I think, close to 20 years in this space, I would love for you to sort of give us the high level view of the role of procurement, how it relates to supply chain and what are the important parts of that role.

Sheldon Mydat: 2:47

So, first of all, let me say the only dumb questions are the ones we didn't ask, right, so anything goes. So, yeah, 20 years working in procurement For me. I used to work for in the enterprise space for a lot of companies that were going through different types of service transition, whether they were going through outsource or divestment, merger, acquisition etc. Um, so big contracts moving from place to place, whether they're being, you know, novated or or exited or you know, consolidated, whatever, all that different type of transitional activity that happens in the event of one of those structural changes.

Sheldon Mydat: 3:31

And I was always kind of obsessed with driving relationship-driven value out of these engagements. Because, you know, the fact is even more so now. The contract, as I see it, is there to just keep the lights on the growth and sustainability of these engagements comes from the stuff that happens outside of the contract. It comes from the relationship and that's where true resilience and I'm going to get into that but obviously behind, you know, there's an absolutely intrinsic link between procurement and supply chain. They're one in the same really. You've got the procurement functions that let contracts that are supposed to manage, contracts that have an approach to driving value or savings from those contracts, managing risk, et cetera, et cetera. You could say that the procurement mandate is growing with the exponential increase in legislation that's coming through supply chain. Now, as we know, what is that?

Blythe Brumleve: 4:34

Really quick. The procurement mandate is that what you said?

Sheldon Mydat: 4:37

So the procurement mandate is growing, isn't it? The role of procurement, I say, is growing, the role of procurement I'd say is growing. I mean, whether we call it procurement or not, the people that are responsible for letting those contracts and managing them and making sure that we're sourcing responsibly and negotiating properly, negotiating best terms, et cetera for all, not just for the customer. But you know, the last thing you want to do and this has used to happen a lot is where suppliers were negotiated with in a very, very adversarial way because the, the objective was always to drive costs down as far as possible. Right, and you kind of understand that. Why, why? Why? Anybody would want to reduce cost, of course, but at the expense of what? Um? So when you look at supply chain and the way it's always operated, uh, for since forever, it, it really was kind of seen as an overhead, wasn't it? Uh, and as is the case with most overheads, the emphasis is always going to be on driving cost down, um, and so, as we said, you you've got that's one big barrier to entry for doing anything other than driving savings, um, and the other big barrier is is that procurement of old who would have let? Those contracts were very well kind of of purist procurement and they would have been very that their mission in life would be to drive cost down. So you've got these two big barriers to entry for relationship-driven value and that worked because the supply chain, as I said, was invariably seen as an overhead, very kind of binary. You know, just-in-time purchasing, lowest-cost, country sourcing, these kinds of kinds of arrangements, as we know, buying a lot from china, etc. Etc. Um, the problem with that is it doesn't have any, it doesn't allow for for any resilience, it doesn't allow for versatility. It's it's a straight line and we saw how well that worked out during the pandemic, obviously with, with uh, and use that kind of glib example of not being able to buy our toilet rolls because the shelves were empty and all that kind of stuff. But it's all true because of the way things were purchased. So this is where so there's obviously a natural relationship, a symbiotic relationship between procurement and supply chain. It's one in the same in a way, because they're very interrelated in the way they do business and the word I'm looking for for the disciplines that they do and take during their days. But the thing is, you talk about relationship-driven resilience. It's a really interesting subject.

Sheldon Mydat: 7:31

We don't live inside of any of those contracts that we've just been talking about that are there to underpin our supply chain relationships, whether it be, you know, it doesn't matter where those contracts are, what part of the life cycle they live in. We don't live inside one of those contracts. We live in the real world, we live in the operational ether, just like what we're doing now. We're having a discussion and we're recording this session and that's being transcribed into data, which would really happen if we were running subtitles along the screen. That'd be happening in real time. So so, and all of that is unstructured data. Um, you can't drive true relationship driven resilience. In fact, let's put it this way, 90 of company data is unstructured data, whether it be email or the kind of stuff we're doing now on calls or documentation, et cetera, et cetera. There's many, many different formats of unstructured data, but it's a lot of what we do, but it tends to be, or it's tended all these years to be, overlooked in favor of more kind of direct, binary approaches to managing services and driving savings, as we've been saying, and that's really really, really changing, and the biggest change in that area has come since, during the pandemic. So we launched this platform, sopeka, which is obviously a relationship platform for supply chain. We launched it. We actually launched a production 2020, april 2020, and it's a culmination of everything I've done over the years to drive, you know, to practice relationship management.

Sheldon Mydat: 9:14

But it was when we started like pushing rocks uphill. I've got to say it really was, because there was still very much this attitude of well, you know, driving, because relationship software, srm software, was very much. It was pushed to the curb in favor of more addressable wins. You know, contract savings are addressable, relationship driving, sustainable or strategic relationships. It even sounds long-winded and it was very subjective, et cetera, et cetera. And CPOs you know chief procurement officers with ceos or cfos breathing down their neck showing show me the money. Um, they would default to spend savings rather than and there's still a it's very, very important, don't get me wrong, but there's a lot more to this. You know driving contract savings, but they were the addressable things. So SRM was pushed to the curb.

Sheldon Mydat: 10:08

Long story short, the pandemic happened and so when you look at the markets, the markets are driven by the gaps between disruption, disruptive events. So you might be having an earthquake over there, or a global, a regional, a regional war over there or whatever, but whilst over here it's peaceful, you know. So you've still got these gaps between the markets, um. But when the pandemic happened, the, the gaps between the markets completely disappeared because everything was flatlined, everything shut down. The whole world went into furlough.

Sheldon Mydat: 10:45

So the markets had to do something. They had to reinvent themselves, because they have to go forward, things have to move forward, and it was that point that we started to see a real change. First of all, we started to hear all of the analysts out there, from McKinsey to Gartner and Forrester, idc, you name it all saying the same thing Procure, procurement and supply chain professionals now need to invest heavily in relationship driven resilience, um, rather than just being. You know more about just in case business models rather than just in time business models, um, and that was a real shift. We started to see a real change in attitude at that point. Meaningful attitude, meaningful change. And SRM has really become a very, very topical area for supply chain and procurement. Now for the business ecosystem. I'm going to stop talking for a minute and let you come in, because I could just go and go.

Blythe Brumleve: 11:46

I have a million questions and I'm going to, I'm going to. I want to zoom in a little bit because I want to understand what you know, a CPO, a chief procurement officer. I want to understand what they're going through in their day to day, what they struggle with and, as you know, to use your, your toilet paper example. So if I'm a, if I'm a CPO, I assume that you probably have some people under you or maybe you're handling all of the tasks. So I'm assuming, for the, the toilet paper example, you have to find suppliers for paper. You have to find suppliers for the cardboard that goes inside of the you know, the toilet paper. You have to find suppliers maybe for the packaging that the, the entire bundle of toilet paper is, is shipped in. And ideally, you want to have various suppliers located all across the globe in various different friendly environments. Hopefully, you know not non-friendly environments.

Sheldon Mydat: 12:42

Is that accurate? Yeah, you absolutely right. So that's just one product. So I mean, if you think about any of these big brands, like a Unilever or any of these big grocery stores, whatever, they've got thousands of products. So if you're a CPO, you'll probably have large teams of you know sourcing teams, category management, bid management, et cetera, et cetera, that are split down across your different uh categories, that that manage uh, that that manage um, you know, optimize their category strategies for each of those products. So, yes, there will be products that are sourced in various locations, historically, invariably the cheaper locations, as we've been saying, and we all know.

Sheldon Mydat: 13:31

You know the challenges with trying to become a more kind of resilient supply chain by moving away from, you know, buying everything out of China, for example. So, yeah, typical challenges sourcing products sustainably, making sure you've got visibility of your produce, making sure it's farmed properly If you're talking about farming coca, typically in different regions of the world, africa, for example then you need to ensure that you are sourcing sustainably and ethically. To make sure that we talked about that legislation, didn't we? That ESG legislation that's applied across in the US, the EU, all over the world. It's being pushed out, pushed out and where does it go?

Sheldon Mydat: 14:17

When this new legislation hits, it hits the customer, okay, and so the customer, obviously, with 80% of a company's revenue being generated outside its borders by its supply chain, statistically speaking, that legislation only has one place to go it has to be pushed out into the supply chain, where all of those different standards and compliances need to be met by the suppliers that are sourcing, that are producing, manufacturing, pulling stuff up, farming out of the ground, you know, and that includes, so that's, the suppliers that are, you know, growing, producing, distributing, that are growing, producing, distributing. That includes your 3PL components as well, absolutely, you know. Look at some of the different freight organisations, shippers, et cetera, et cetera. I mean, my God, the shippers are some of the biggest eco offenders out there with the amount of emissions that they create, you know. I mean it's massive, massive, massive. So yeah, they are very, very much a part of the equation, you know, a big part of the equation and come under the CPO's remit.

Blythe Brumleve: 15:45

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Blythe Brumleve: 16:25

Hit the Freight Agent link in our show notes to listen to these conversations or, if you're ready to make the jump, visit spi3plcom. And so, as you were, you know, sort of kicked the show off when we were talking about relationships. You're handling all of these different people, and all of those people need to be managed, and so I I'm assuming that that creates just such a daunting task of of trying to build quality relationships, not just from a business perspective, but also just from you know that all of the drivers of a relationship that are outside of a business. So it you know that personal, you know keeping up to date with, you know how their life is going and you know as much as you can. But also you know to keep your own sanity as well 100%, 100%.

Sheldon Mydat: 17:13

So it's interesting because you've got so many moving parts. So, if you, if you're the CPO chief of officer for a big organization with a very big department, that is often global as well, so you'll have teams operating regionally around the world. This is not always, you know, obviously countries have different. An organization is represented in many, many countries by different teams, so you might have CPOs in different areas of the world global CPO, regional CPOs, you know, and so you've got that kind of hierarchical approach to managing the supply chain.

Sheldon Mydat: 17:56

And yes, it is about a lot of the relationship is a personal thing, simply because you can't approach it by saying, well, these are the contracts and we're going to just focus on the contracts. You need to actually focus on the fact that you engage operationally and not only that. You've got to do it in a scalable way. So, if you think of the modern operation, the CPOs got his or her operation and they're looking at it, their supply chain operation, all the way from farm to fork, if you like. If you're thinking groceries, but whatever manufacturing, you've got potentially one country waking up, another country going to sleep, different languages, different time zones, different, multiple service lines, operational, you name it.

Sheldon Mydat: 18:59

Language, culture barriers too, and that's just the customer Now overlay all of the supply chain entities across all of those different interactions globally. Suddenly it's a hugely complex environment, hugely complex. Now, try doing that without technology, because previously, as I said at the start, spreadsheets and PowerPoints to manage this stuff. No way, not anymore. You can't do that. It's just not scalable, it's just not practical. Where you've got because remember, there's some meaning behind saying one country wakes up, another goes to sleep. That basically says 24-7 globally. So you might be going to sleep, but they're not, they're still awake. Their part of the supply chain is still rocking, it's still going now, it's still churning away um and so, um, it's very, very dynamic, it's real time, it's dynamic and and and that's where the, that's kind of where the tech comes in as a way of driving scalable engagement for the relationship layer, and more and more and more that's recognized now you know.

Sheldon Mydat: 20:14

You've only got to look at AI, for example, and I would jump in around a little bit. But if you think of ai, um, it's playground, it's kind of training material. Is it's large language model, is, is um, or it's training material? Shall we say, um, this training data? Is the internet, um, uh, and, and it scrapes data from the internet. That that's kind of how it works, and what that is is unstructured data. That's what it's doing is using unstructured data. Largely that's exactly what we do as Apico, except we create a private version of that unstructured data. It's not the internet, it's a customer and it's ecosystem. Structured data. It's not the internet, it's a customer and it's it's ecosystem. It's a private version of training data for our ai interpreter module. Anyway, um, get into that another time, but um, so yeah, it's, it's um, it's a. It's a growing area. I'll let you come in again, again. Just I'm waffling on about stuff.

Blythe Brumleve: 21:25

No, listen, I'll interrupt you if I think you need to stop, but you were on a roll there. So that's my job is to let you sort of flesh these ideas out and your thought process behind them, because, as I was listening to a lot of your previous interviews, you had talked about this technology that you've built to manage all of these intricacies, and so now that we kind of understand, just from a global perspective, what procurement officers are dealing with, that, I'm wondering how did you? Because you launched this company, Suppeco, in April of 2020, which is obviously everything is shut down. The global supply chain is probably flatlined at that time, or maybe it wasn't, maybe things were still sort of moving, maybe some essential items.

Sheldon Mydat: 22:11

Yeah, it was.

Blythe Brumleve: 22:13

Yeah, yeah, but what was that thought process? What made you say how did you develop technology to solve such a complex problem and then launch in April of 2020, when that's arguably one of the, or maybe the toughest time to ever launch?

Sheldon Mydat: 22:31

a company. It was a very let's just say, it was extremely unconventional. Well, we formed the company in 2017, august 17, 2017. And it was a lot of kind of fag packet data as we say in the UK, cigarette packet data and it was a case of pulling it all together. Obviously, I'm paraphrasing. There was a hell of a lot more involved in it than that, obviously, but we ultimately trialed with our first customer. Our first customer was BAE Systems in the UK and the US. We trialed, ran four product fit pilots across the organization and we launched to production in 2020, april.

Sheldon Mydat: 23:20

Just as you say, the pandemic hit and it was a very, very unconventional and worrying time because, with this little startup, we've invested so much money into the product. It's the sum of a combination of a lot of experience and sweat and tears and all the rest of it, as you'd imagine. And then that happened. Then the first thing we thought was okay, it's not worth trying to sell anything. No one's going to buy a thing from us because we're completely unknown, et cetera, et cetera, and no one's around. We had already been going through, obviously, trialing with BAE, so we had a fantastic relationship with BAE Systems and we carried on and we did it. We signed our first license with BAE Systems in January 2021.

Sheldon Mydat: 24:12

It's been a bit of a rocket rollercoaster ride, to be honest with you, but it was very much a case of leading up to that. What are we going to do? We've launched, we've got to move forward. Let's raise the brand, let's raise brand awareness. So we, we started sponsoring shows, doing virtual talks because at the time it was still early in the pandemic, whatever, um and um, and it kind of went from there. We started to build the brand and build inbound traffic rather than going out and selling it, uh, and so it worked really well.

Sheldon Mydat: 24:49

Uh, it was very it was. It was a great learning curve what worrying, scary and all the rest of it, but but it worked. Um. And then in 2021 uh, halfway through 2021 we did our first. We published our first case study with bau systems and then we had a PR firm at the time we retained a PR firm to run a case study, to run a press release and wrap it around that case study and then push that out to the market. And that was, again, very helpful, very influential, very, you know, impactful for us. But yeah, very, very unconventional way to run a business, but I don't know what is conventional nowadays, because everything's changing. Very true, everything is changing, so so much.

Blythe Brumleve: 25:41

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Sheldon Mydat: 26:55

They were already recognizing.

Sheldon Mydat: 26:58

They already had a requirement, I think it says in the case study they wanted to go from arm's length relationships to drive better, more collaborative relationships in order to drive more resilience and, in a way, they wanted to be customer of choice. That was their kind of modus operandi. They wanted to become the supplier's customer of choice. They could only do that by bringing their suppliers in closer, by fostering better relationships, and some of the insights that came out of doing that were pretty amazing bringing their suppliers in closer by fostering better relationships and some of the insights that came out of doing that were pretty amazing. Actually, by giving their suppliers a voice and an equitable kind of position on the platform, welcoming in critique, welcoming in shared R&D and all the different things that they did to bring their suppliers in and to cement their positions and the longevity relationships based on longevity. And they licensed for the first time in because they were trialing to start with, remember across the organization for product fit pilots. So there was a lot of testing going on with the ultimate launch in 2021.

Blythe Brumleve: 28:11

They've renewed four times.

Sheldon Mydat: 28:12

Now that's that's amazing to hear.

Blythe Brumleve: 28:14

Well, it's also, I think you know from your earlier point where you said it was. You know relationships between procurement and suppliers was very adversarial and and now it sounds like baa systems was using supica to reverse that and make more of a friendship with their suppliers or less adversarial than maybe previous suppliers experience working with different companies where they're treated as a cost driver and just to bring the cost down, whereas BIA systems is saying no, we want to enhance this relationship in hopes that it's mutually beneficial. Is that accurate?

Sheldon Mydat: 28:53

That's completely accurate, completely accurate. And they're not the only ones. Obviously we can talk about others as well. But yeah, absolutely I mean the historic position. I'm not talking about BAE, but just generally the historic position in terms of supplier relationship management. The relationship was needn't have even been there in the title because there wasn't any relationship. It was very much supplier performance management and that in itself would become very adversarial. It was very much about driving cost out. Driving cost out, you know, getting to the lowest common denominator and that at one point. Yeah, it's been like that for a number of years.

Sheldon Mydat: 29:35

But you know people talk about the power shift and you know, especially when you do have supply chain issues and certain products become scarce and you only got to look at semiconductors and not too distant, well, it's still going on now, the kind of challenges there. It's just not necessarily in the news as much now but it's very much still an issue. But where you've got a small number of suppliers providing critical products, you want to be at the front of that queue. Because if you're not and you're driving, you know point savings all the time, percentage point savings, chip in margin all the time, margins, excuse me, all the time those suppliers have other customers that are willing to engage with them more collaboratively and look at a longer-term strategy rather than just chipping away margin. Now I know where I'd go if I was that supplier. And that's what's happening in reality.

Sheldon Mydat: 30:44

There's discussions whether it's power shift. The supplier's got the power. It's not power, it's just an attitude adjustment because things are changing. The world is changing, you know, with everything going on around the world now, obviously we know all about the stuff that's happening everywhere. It's driving a really impactful relationship. You know, change, attitude change. It's not about power, it's just the things are just changing. You know, they just are. We talk about new norm and God knows what else. I don't know what the new norm is because there's so much change going on. All the time the pieces aren't settling. Every time they go to settle, they get pushed up in the air. They get thrown on. All the time the pieces aren't settling. Every time they go to settle, they get pushed up in the air. They get thrown up in the air again, don't they?

Blythe Brumleve: 31:33

and so how do you, how do you, create technology to solve that like let's, let's dive into a little bit of the sepica platform itself. What does the user experience look like? Who is logging into the system? Are they using it every day? Is it kind of like a CRM? You know, for layman's terms, but like super powered? Give us the brief of, you know, a typical user that is logging into Sopeka and the data that they're seeing that they find valuable.

Sheldon Mydat: 32:05

Well, first of all, that's a good example. You've used CRM. You know CRM customer has a CRM and they kind of look downstream into their different. You know the owner or the licensee of the CRM looks downstream into their customers, right, and that's how they. So an SRM works quite similarly, in that they're looking upstream into their suppliers instead. Okay, but it's a little bit more obviously involved than that. But the links between the two are number one CRM and SRM are converging. They're going like this. The reason they're doing that is because customers that would normally be found on a CRM are buying product from those customers way upstream, based on what they perceive to be something that's responsibly sourced. So, straight away you're seeing a link now into the SRM, because that's the bit that covers, that manages whether those suppliers are sourcing responsibly. So you can see how those walls are breaking down between CRM and SRM. It's just that the CRM sees as far it goes, customer downstream and the SRM goes customer upstream. You're bridging the gap because customers are making decisions based on stuff that happens way, way, way out into the supply chain now, whereas they didn't really have that concern just a few years ago. So that's one point. It's very important. So there's a big change there as well.

Sheldon Mydat: 33:33

But, yes, there are many different types of suppliers that sit on the platform. So we talked about BAE Systems. You've got electronics, manufacturing, the whole range. They've even got some of their recruitment RPOs on the platform. Then we've got a merchandise supply chain, fmcg, retail, financial services, construction.

Sheldon Mydat: 34:08

So you've got and every time a supplier within those different industry sectors or different, different kind of environments is added to the platform, there is a, an environment set up for them that's already kind of there. They just have to pick it, um, but the that is appropriate to there. So you'd expect to see certain things in a construction-type environment or a retail. So you can have all these suppliers on there. You can have lots of heavy use, you can have lots of daily activity on the platform.

Sheldon Mydat: 34:40

Or sometimes you'd have suppliers on there where you're touching base with them once every three or four months. So there's very light touch activity, touching base with them once every three or four months. So there's very light touch activity, um, but equally, uh, there's a lot of heavy, heavy traffic in there as well. So if you, typically companies will have their, their, their top spend on the platform rather than their tail spend. Uh, so they're bigger, bigger, more enterprise, or strategic suppliers, if you want to call them that. Um, segmentation is a is a separate conversation, but typically strategic, critical whatever. Or strategic suppliers, if you want to call them that. Segmentation is a separate conversation, but typically strategic, critical whatever. Those are the kind of suppliers that you would have on there where there is an absolute need for driving relationship-driven value, and we talked about it.

Blythe Brumleve: 35:26

I was going to say so. It's almost like templates for each different industry that are built into the Sopeka platform, so you're not being necessarily overloaded with information that you don't want to see.

Blythe Brumleve: 35:38

And then within the platform itself. Are you, are you emailing other people? I heard you say you're bringing in unstructured data from you know the within the company that's private to the company, and so are you emailing through this system? Are you, you know, marking off? You know this person? Is you know in this buyer stage, like what are they actually doing, I guess, inside of the platform itself?

Sheldon Mydat: 36:00

So they are. So, first of all, within the platform, there's something called four pillars, which is a relationship infrastructure. Within the platform, there's something called four pillars, which is a relationship infrastructure. Every supplier, uh, that you add on to the platform, that the customers add on to the platform, they automatically have a, have a standard infrastructure. So there's no setting up, it's done for you straight away. But you can then bespoke it if you want, but it's done out of the box you don't have to mess about. So it's plug and play, almost um. So um. They are um, running operations, service lines, deliverables, they're all sorts of activities that run on the platform, whether it be um using its strategic.

Sheldon Mydat: 36:38

So for the relationship infrastructure that every supplier has is split into four main areas relationship, commercial, projects and services, called pillars. And within each of those four pillars there are a number of subcategories. So think of any supplier that you can think of. It doesn't matter what it is, it doesn't matter what you're buying, what you're selling. You can split down a supplier relationship or engagement into those four pillars. You'll always have a relationship pillar where the softer type activity goes. You'll always have a commercial pillar where your invoicing, your financial, your procurement activity sits A project pillar where you're running projects, potentially, and a service pillar where you're running your BAU service, and that's a universal paradigm. If you think about it, it doesn't matter what you're selling, how much of it, et cetera. They'll always fall into those four main pillars. So that's a given, and every supplier that you add to the platform automatically adopts has its own infrastructure that looks something like that. That can then be customized to suit a specific use case, whether it be a construction project or whatever so you can you typically expect to see the kind of projects in relationship maybe strategic qbrs or objective setting for a period of time, or different innovation projects. So, within the relationship pillar, you'd expect to see innovation, collaboration, flexibility, commitment, these different things. Each one of these things is a frictionless workspace for an unlimited number of people to come together to work. So there are people logging in, they're uploading documentation, 're running kpis, they're running service lines, product lines, they're running compliance um. We have organizations that are running their, their corporate social responsibility or esgs compliance on the platform um. So, for example, produce we talked about farming um or manufacturing um. So, for example, produce we talked about farming or manufacturing. So, for example, garments being produced in the Philippines with compliance. We talked about legislation, obviously, ethical trading, modern slavery, et cetera, et cetera. So there might be a requirement to or there will be a requirement. This is a real instance actually. Um, there's a need to to ensure ethical working practices in in a garment factory, and so there was a need to uh and and that exists in some of the compliance audit material as well that also has been uploaded onto the platform. Um, the supplier has to upload imagery, first of all, showing the working conditions in the factory, but the customer also has third-party auditors that are able to log in, that are able to validate statements. There's a lot of traceability and validation made on the platform for working, for example, eyewash facilities in a chemical factory, for working, for example, eyewash facilities in a chemical factory. So there would need to be evidence shown of these eyewash facilities, and it's not just a case of the suppliers taking pictures and uploading them. They need to be validated as well. So it's providing this NON traceability on the platform as well, providing this NON traceability on the platform as well. We also use a product called Ditch Carbon, which is there to provide third-party scope 3 data for all of the suppliers that are on the platform. So there's a number of different ways of providing that ESG, data and compliance or journey. I should say that a number of suppliers are on. That gives customers the comfort that they need or the assurances that they need. So, yeah, compliance, performance management. Running KPIs is a very comprehensive KPI creation suite and engine on the platform. The platform doubles down on automated workflows as well. So all of this stuff with KPIs being run and projects being run and people logging in and discussing stuff that's happening well, stuff that's not happening well, all of that stuff that's happening well, stuff that's not happening well, all of that stuff that happens in our day-to-day is all happening on the platform. But rather than having to have people log in to look for their data all the time, the platform does all of that itself. So we call it automate. The process is called automate, so every single bit of data on the platform is live. We don't do static data at all. We use a set of algorithms to quality, stamp and date stamp every single data point and we regularly push out. So the data ages over the course of a rolling month. It's a very you know valuable commodity data, but it ages very fast, um and and if you want to drive actionable data, actionable insights, which is the big thing now obviously, especially with digital technology, it's all about actionable, live, dynamic data, and why wouldn't it be? It's digital tech, it needs to be, and that's a bit of a gift. Actually, with digital tech, the ability to create actionable insights, something that we do. So there are a number of. Automate is one where we actually take all of that data and we use the algorithms to trigger all of the automated workflows to push information out, rather than having people log in when KPIs are deployed or they lapse, or they're deployed and they're never scored, or things go overdue, compliance is expired, audits are due, deliverables are late, etc. All these things, things, all these things that happen in a supply chain, in an engagement. The platform controls all of the workflows around that and it pushes the, the the data drop, the data drop, mini reports and calls to action out to the supply chain, not just to the customers, but to your suppliers, because they're busy on the being on the hook to provide a lot of. So it's interesting. I sat on one of these other talks. You maybe even saw it. I think it's on the website, but I was on this call with BP and MTN and there was someone at BP that said it was a procurement e-forum meeting at a supply chain show in London and he said we got too much data, we're swimming in it. He actually said we're drowning in it. We're drowning in data, multiple screens and dashboards and scorecards, and you name it. There's so much data and, yes, we need it, but we don't need it all at once. We just want to know what's keeping us up at night now, and that's exactly what we do, because everything is live on the platform. All of this different stuff that's happening across an operation, across the operational relate, digital relationship and that's really important the operational relationship layer, which is where we all spend our day-to-day. Um, we take all of that data and we use the tech to manage to keep those plates spinning not just keep them spinning, but to make sure the service is optimized. So we look for everything that's aging over the course of a rolling month. We look for all the projects, subcategories, service lines, kpis, you name it, all the stuff that's going through that process. And on every single Monday morning, the system does a trawl across all of its suppliers and projects and subcategories and it looks for all that aforementioned stuff and it creates a very neat looking table and it sends it all out on a monday morning to the relevant relationship managers on the customer and on the supplier side. If you so wish to include them, you can obviously control the accessibility to the supply chain as well. Um, and so people don't have to go looking for the data, they don't have to be looking for a needle in a haystack. The system does all of that and it just pushes it out to you. So it's there at your fingertips. It doesn't have to be email, it can be whatsapp well, not many people use whatsapp, but anyway you can um or sms or sap fury tiles or whatever. Um, the data is distributed out Because we're not all sitting at our desks now anyway, are we? Let's face it, we're out and about, so yeah, so automate is a big one. Omni is another big one, so it's an omni-channel environment for the entire ecosystem and it's a really important area as well. Just to mention, every one of those suppliers that a customer has is very likely to have a bilateral contract with them. You know, customer-supplier bilateral contract, whilst at the same time and that contract, should add, has probably got all sorts of sensitivities in it that aren't to be shared, that the customer or supplier don't want to share with other suppliers, right. But here's the thing the services that that supplier is providing that customer are probably provided anything but bilaterally. Customer are probably provided anything but bilaterally. They probably involve the whole number of different players in the space, right, in order to whether it be distribution, whatever. Um, so, from a collaborative point of view, it's really important to make that collaborative space and that contract space work together in harmony whilst not clashing with each other. And that's a very, very important and quite overlooked area in these kind of settings where you've got these contracts but you've got these hugely complex environments Remember that kind of web of that environment I explained before very, very complex, and that's a big area Omni it's called Omni on the platform, which talks about the Omni channel environment for an unlimited number of stakeholders. We don't limit on users on the platform. I kind of thought it would be counterintuitive to limit on the number of users whilst pushing this highly collaborative platform. Yeah, it's highly collaborative, but guess what? You can only have 10 people. It doesn't work. It doesn't work at all, does, does it? So we don't limit on the number of users at all, um, so yeah, and the other one is actionables um, that's the other. These are called cornerstones. We call them cornerstones number one is the relationship infrastructure that. This is the real game-changing thing for us, because we're the only ones that have created this digital relationship layer, which is this highly differentiating environment which works very well with AI. I'm not going to get into the AI stuff now. It's a whole other conversation. Now it's a whole another conversation. But, uh, you've got, you've got four pillars, which is the one cornerstone. And then you've got actionables, which is where we take all of that live data, um, and we create the ability to see and the ability to do so. This is where we take all of that data. We use the fact that it's live, we use the, we, we use the, the, the, the insights, which is all the live data stuff. That's another cornerstone. Insights live data only Automate, where we take all of that and we push it out. So all of these cornerstones on our platform, they are all helping to keep the whole thing up. They're really important cornerstones. Actionables is basically taking all of that data and instead of saying, hey, well, this is all events-based activity, which is how we've always done things. We've always had this kind of traditional approach to running governance. You know, you've got your meetings, they happen every month and da-da-da every quarter, all that stuff. That is all going out the window because it's digital tech, it's live, it's now, it's all the time. And if you're not doing it live and now all the time, then why aren't you? It's a gift, it's digital tech. It's like comparing digital with analog. You know we don't do analog anymore. Right, same thing. Same thing. So this is a case of Actionables is like taking events-based activities, chucking them out the window and saying, hey, we can do this continuously now. So if you think of two KPIs, just think of time to action and another one time on task Both those KPIs Now. If you think of time to action and another one time on task, though, both those kpis now. If you think of time to action, time on task, and then you think, okay, we don't need events-based governance anymore, we're doing continuous improvement. So straight away you can see those two kpis shrinking right down in terms of cost associated with them. Because it's live all the time, the data is live, the teams can mobilize. Will they mobilize in real time is another thing, but the opportunity there to save is huge, and it's been picked up by McKinsey in a study called Shifting the Dial in Procurement, where they said that digital platforms like ours can affect an additional 3% to 10% incrementally on an annual basis because they can do everything in real-time. Actionable data, but meaningful actionable data. So yeah, so there's five cornerstones on our platform that make it very, very different.

Blythe Brumleve: 50:30

So yeah, Well, first of all, I really want to apologize for comparing it to a CRM, because it feels almost like a life management system instead of just a customer relationship system. So all of these different intricacies that you have planned for and programmed for. I'm curious as to what the onboarding experience looks like, because it seems like it's too different. It's at the technical level, but also at the mindset level, of having a lot of these companies switch their mindset into thinking bigger, but also being able to look at the minutia of those bigger things that affect their company. So what does that onboarding experience look like? Is it a lot of the persuasion in addition to the tech?

Sheldon Mydat: 51:18

No, not really. It's almost plug and play. I mean, that's the beauty of it. It's true SaaS, for a start, and there's no need to create complexity where there needn't be any, because it's true SaaS. Uh, it's very easy to implement. For a start, you know, um, the onboarding part is it depends on how, how complex or big your organization is. Um, but you, you know, you can. The the implementation process is two days.

Blythe Brumleve: 51:54

Oh, wow, holy crap, but that's the thing I would have figured two years, no, but that's the thing about the implementation itself.

Sheldon Mydat: 52:02

Now, clearly, there's standalone, so it can run standalone, okay. So it doesn't matter how big your company is, whether you're ExxonMobil or whatever, it makes no difference, you can still stand it up standalone. It takes two days to do the administration, due diligence and it's an Azure native cloud platform. We're also a Microsoft partner on Azure Marketplace, so it's transactable through Marketplace as well. So, again, seamless, because, because most company, a lot of companies, have have their commitments in place with microsoft already, they burn down their licenses or you through through through light, through microsoft, azure, um and so and we are also on this so that's another seamless way to purchase the platform and and when they do, they also receive certain incentives back as a reduction against their commitment with Microsoft, based on the license they spend with us. There's some great incentives there to come on board through the marketplace. But the point being, it's seamless and it can run standalone. So as big as the company may be, they don't need to go and customize and plug it into that. They may want to and they can.

Sheldon Mydat: 53:23

We've built a great orchestration layer for the likes of, you know, different ERPs. We've also got what I call an orbit of partnerships with a number of different players in the ecosystem. We don't want to try and be everything, because we're not everything. We do what we do. Well, we're not a sourcing platform, we're an incumbent relationship platform. I don't want to get involved in bids and stuff, but we have a great partner that we do that. With that you can actually have a seamless integration through API or you can do referrals. So there's different ways of doing it. But, yeah, implementation quick onboarding can be really really quick as quickly as you want to go. How many teams you want to get involved through onboarding whether it's your super users, your global admins, your relationship managers you can onboard them in tranches.

Sheldon Mydat: 54:21

We run a series of. We make it as painless as possible. To be honest with you. We run webinars for our customers and for their suppliers. We run blind webinars for customers and their suppliers when the customer wants us to run webinars for their ecosystem, but they don't want the suppliers to all kind of speak to each other, whatever. So sometimes it's more efficient to do it that way. You know, you just keep it blind, keep it in so everybody can see me or one of my team, but they can't see each other.

Sheldon Mydat: 54:59

We also run weekly teach-ins as well. Um, there's a lot of access for suppliers, a lot of value derived access. That's one of the attractions of it. They get to see so much, they get to take ownership of a lot of activity. Um, it's all about driving trust, driving that, those behaviors, uh. So we've made it very, very accessible for suppliers at a value derived level and so, as a result, obviously, as you know, in in sync with that, we run a lot of training for suppliers as well to bring them on, uh, whether at teachings, uhasing. There's also a lot of kind of material to help increase the tracks and drive that process as well.

Blythe Brumleve: 55:41

So you know, it's simple.

Sheldon Mydat: 55:44

Simplistic is the best way forward as far as I'm concerned.

Blythe Brumleve: 55:48

Are you tapping into their emails, their, you know, management systems, things like that? Are you bringing all of that data in and how are you, I guess, accomplishing that?

Sheldon Mydat: 55:59

so it can't. That's an optional. There is a uh, there's an add-on uh for for outlook actually, uh, but, but, but you don't have to do that. Um, it depends. Some, some organizations, uh, are okay with that. Some obviously want to keep that separate but unstructured data. See, within the platform.

Sheldon Mydat: 56:19

It does everything internally as well secure chat, collaborative chat, dming, discussion forums all within the platform. So, if you go into the platform and you look at an environment, a supplier's environment, um, made up of those four pillars. As I said, within each of those four pillars you've got all the different subcategories. When you go into one of those subcategories, you're actually going into a workspace where a potentially completely different community of people lives, because they might be related to that service, not another. So different people, um, you might see some people from a different service line and they can obviously um have access. The access is very controllable as well, because you've got a lot, of, a lot of people involved and you want to be able to control the flow of data rather than just letting everybody see everything. That's obviously not going to happen. Uh, especially, we've got multiple suppliers and a whole ecosystem involved. So, yeah, um, they're, they're creating commentary, they're creating kpis, they're uploading documentation, they're chatting to each other. Uh, you can plug an email bring. All of this is unstructured data, all of it. It's incredible the potential there.

Sheldon Mydat: 57:31

So if you let me give you a quick example about interpreter um, so obviously you know, uh, how, how gpt works. You know, um, it uses information available out there, uh, to gain knowledge. So when you ask it something, and it uses large language models to to interpret a natural inquiry, as in talking to it, and it responds in a natural way as well. And that's what the large language model is all about. And there are small language models as well. So it's using its large language model to engage humanistically and it's using all of that internet and materials, training data. That's how that works. Interpreter uses large language model, so I also can interpret and and speak how we are now, if you were, if we were, kind of using the voice model, the voice mode, but it's you but, but it's training data. It's the data that it uses, is all of that data that lives within four pillars, all that relationship data and commercial and projects and service from across the ecosystem, all of it.

Sheldon Mydat: 58:40

And you can ask it. You can ask it to to look at a specific project. You can ask it to look into stakeholder mapping. I want to find out what's going on with this service. Why is it running slow? What's it? Why is it doing this?

Sheldon Mydat: 58:52

Let's look at the stakeholder, because in stakeholder mapping, where all everybody that lives on the platform can be found in stakeholder mapping, there are no unknowns. Everybody's visible, um, and where you add a stakeholder, you can add narrative. So what makes them tick? What's the best way of managing them? What's, what are they looking for? These different points? An interpreter can dip into that and it will use their narrative as context if you ask it to.

Sheldon Mydat: 59:21

So now it's going to take what it knows about these people that are working on these projects or deliverables, and it's going to look in four pillars, this subcategory or you can zone out and you can ask it to look across the whole pillar, or you can ask it to look across the whole pillar plus something over there in projects or in service, and and you can ask it to look for different nuances in, maybe, a negotiation or if you're looking for a propensity to a risk, to risk these different things. That's gonna, but it's all. And obviously we've it's trained as well and knows all about sepico, knows all it's got the god, etc. Etc. So it's um, um, it's it, it's very funky kit, it's really, it's, it's amazing. It's truly changing srm in in a huge way, huge way. Um, because it's sorry, go on.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:00:16

Oh, I was just going to say it just sounds like that it can be so intricate. You're you're hitting on so many different aspects of procurement that I, I, you know light bulb moments are going off for me. And then you talk about the onboarding experience because I'm thinking like, oh, it's so intricate, it's going to take years to get you know a big company to integrate something like that. But it sounds like you really drill it down and make it as easy as possible for different industries to join and get started quickly, different roles within that industry to log in and get started quickly. They can learn as they go and continue to build on all of this information that they're being, you know, sort of shoved in their face every single day of every single week and then slowly but surely or maybe not slowly but surely they can start expanding how they use Topeka and then be able to to further, you know, dive into these different relationships and, you know, have these different KPIs and think about things a little bit differently. So it sounds like it's really intricate, but it's also very, very thoughtful from the user role perspective and not to overwhelm them when they're experiencing the onboarding and adopting new technology and all of the struggles, that sort of go along with that.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:01:34

It sounds incredibly impressive. I was going through some of the documentation that you had sent over, but as you're talking through this, it's so much more intricate than I would have even imagined, and thank you for sharing all of that. And, I guess, my next question how the hell did you come up with this? How did you decide that this was what you wanted to build? Because you've been in this industry for close to two decades and you started building the company in 2017, officially launched in April of 2020. So it sounds like that time gap between those two times is really where you were really thoughtful in building each of these different pillars and each of these different cornerstones.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:02:19

So the first thing, just picking up what you just said, so in the BAE systems case study that's out there I think it's on the website One of the things they said about the ease of implementation and ease of use they specifically addressed it and we didn't write it. By the way, the case study with them, we had a third party organization it was done properly but went in there, interviewed them and and, and that was that, and it was pulled together. So, um, and one of the things that they said was, uh, in terms of ease of use, was, if they just to quote, we just got on and used it, it was, it was really easy, um, they just got on it and used it. Um, so, uh, so that's that very, very, very easy to use, and I think the best way to start with anything is to start at the beginning, uh, with the basics. And the basics is a bit of a confusing term, because basics doesn't really mean basics. It means fundamentals, and if you think of what's fundamental, something that's important is fundamental, but it also means the start, the basic, right. So get the fundamentals right, always start with the basic, with the cornerstone. It's like we've built these cornerstones to the platform and they act as the foundation for everything more complex that sits on them, for example, interpreter. We wouldn't have been able to do that and it's still going through refining.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:03:46

Ai is a very early stage for everybody. There's a lot of smoke and mirrors involved where AI is concerned at the moment Not where we're concerned at the moment. Um, not where we're concerned because it's real ai, um, but it's based on. We wouldn't be able to do what we're doing with it if it weren't for those cornerstones the basics, um as a foundation, and the other thing, um is that I was a practitioner for a number of years, and that's the difference.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:04:15

I, I've been a buyer, I know what it's, and I've been a seller, you know it's in sales, etc. Etc. I, I, I'm, I've looked at it through a practitioner's lens, so I know what, I know what's what, because I've worn the t-shirt for a number of years. Um, and and so when I started creating the tech and pulling together the, the partners to help me, you know, in the team to help do this thing. It's that's why I say it's a culmination of um, my frustration of the old, current, normal, um, but I don't know what the new normal is. I don't think anyone knows yet, right, yeah, so yeah, it's, it's. It's it's my experiences. It's me in a can, as someone said. It's me in a can um all my experiences, and it has. It is full-on iteration. It never stops well it.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:05:13

it sounds incredible. I I feel like I I there was a Supika for my life to manage all of the different aspects of my life and bring in all of those different cornerstones, so I could get an email on Monday morning to tell me what is the most important thing to focus on for the day Now. I did want to segue a little bit into Ballast, which is a logistics founder community. That's where we met. Shout out to Nate Schutz for leading that up and heading that up. Also, his podcast with you was very helpful in helping to prepare for this episode and I was just curious what value do you find? I'm sure you find I think all of us find tremendous value within the Ballast community, but I'm curious as to what you were looking for and what you think you found within the community of logistics founders.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:06:07

That's a really good question. So when did I meet Nate? I think before he had just started doing the podcasts, um, bootstrappers, um, and we started talking and we could never kind of line up a uh, a date to talk, kept on bouncing and anyway, eventually I became friends, um, and and I it to be. The thing about Ballast is that it's a group of all shapes and sizes. You've got micro businesses and you've got $100 million businesses. They're all in there. It's complete. It's a level playing field. Being in there is a complete leveler. There's no doubt about it.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:07:00

Um, and, and it can be, you know, it could be a lonely place running a company. You know, and it's good to to to have sounding board, um, and you know, I've got a few different kind of forums that I'm a part of Ballast. I've been in since it started, I think, and yeah, it's been. There's some. I use it as a sounding board, I use it to. I mean, recently, for example, we've been talking about lots of channel engagement, haven't we within Ballast? And it's really interesting to hear different scenarios that are happening within the channel, driving business through the channel. We had a separate session on that recently. I think there's another session coming up on something else.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:07:54


Sheldon Mydat: 1:07:55

I believe too Is it on linkedin yeah, okay, yes, um, so yeah, there's, there's uh and there's a lot of there's a lot of kind of sidebar discussions that get that get kind of uh spun up off the back of it. Uh, that is absolutely encouraged by Nate, so that I think I've got a call coming up with Cara. I think we've spoken before as well. I've got a call coming up with Cara. In a few weeks Cara is one of the other guys in Ballast.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:08:28

Cara Brown, CEO over at Lead. Coverage for folks who may not be aware.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:08:34

She's a Hub, hub, spot, whiz, um. So, yeah, um, there's, there's a lot of value across the entire kind of a to z of what we do. I think I find, um, and, and, yeah, I've had various sidebar conversations with different guys and different guys in there, so so, yeah, yeah, that I don't know what else to say about that Really it, really it feels like a group therapy session. Yes, it is. It is a group therapy session, you're right.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:09:10

It really it, because it you're as you to your point. You're dealing with companies at various sizes and I have an admittedly small company, especially relative to a lot of the founders within that group. But it is very encouraging or I guess, I don't know, encouraging is the right word for it, but to know that the same problems exist at the small level as they do at the high level, and it's almost comforting to to maybe know that those problems never really get away from you that you always are going to.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:09:46

I don't know if that's encouraging or not, but it is. It's comforting to know that that is going to be a, I guess, an issue that you're going to have to deal with, just at different scales. It's the same problem. You still have to solve that problem and that's, I think, probably the nature of why we all work in supply chain is we're obsessed with tinkering and solving problems and it's just rinse and repeat year after year in this industry.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:10:14

It's true and it's interesting. It's great that you can get together. We regularly get together between 10 and 20 of us each time on the sessions and there is always resolution to something going on in that forum. Always, there is always value, there are always things being unstuck or I'm not there's always stuff happening and all you've got to do actually is sit back and listen to it all and you just take away value with you, or you can be as vocal as you want in there as well. So, yeah, it's a great forum. It's been invaluable to me actually.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:10:55

Yeah, same for me as well, and it's definitely a must-attend event. So for folks who may not know, it's really geared towards logistics founders. The group is called Ballast. I'll put a link to it in the show notes in case any of this resonates with you, because it very much is a must a meeting for me each month, and I don't say that lightly because I hate unnecessary meetings, but this one is absolutely necessary and it I come away learning something or, you know, being able to, you know, share perspective, you know, any kind of insight. You know you feel like you're, you can be helped and you can also be helpful in a variety of the sessions. So I'm thankful for that group because it was a chance to meet somebody like you and to be able to have this conversation and become, you know, better educated, better aware and you know. Just last few questions here, you know, is there anything important that you feel should be mentioned about Suppeco or Suppeco, I'm sorry or, with you know, any other aspect of running a company that you think is important to mention?

Sheldon Mydat: 1:12:07

Just get out there and do it. If you've got a good idea, do it. It's interesting to there was a comment that Jeff Bezos made. He said if you've got a good idea, give it away, which I always thought that's a really strange thing to say. But it makes total sense. But he's not literally saying give it away, but he's saying you know, sometimes you've got to find partners and you've got to find ways to do things, and that's especially true as a founder of a startup. You know, uh, different stages, whatever, um, but if you're getting going, uh, often so many great ideas don't see the light of day simply because people can't give them away or can't find ways to impart knowledge, whatever and share, and you know, so, yeah, absolutely, um, and and it and it was.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:12:58

I think starting Topeka was a great example of that, to be honest with you, because I was a non-tech founder with a great idea and if I didn't have the ability to, if I didn't have the opportunity to share some of what I had with others, then we wouldn't have got it off the ground, let alone where it is now. We wouldn't have got it off the ground at let alone where it is now. We wouldn't have got it off the ground at all. It would have been a great idea on a cigarette pack, you know. So, yeah, I'd absolutely do that.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:13:25

I'm always around if people want to talk, if people want to bounce ideas, want to get a DM going on LinkedIn? I'm very approachable, I'm always on LinkedIn, I'm like you. A DM going on LinkedIn? I'm very approachable, I'm always on LinkedIn, I'm like you, we're always on LinkedIn, right? So yeah, that's what I would say.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:13:42

It's a really exciting time for Suppeco, especially as we've now partnered and co-selling with Microsoft on Azure Marketplace. That was announced this week Was it in the last week? Lots and lots of new stuff happening there, and it's not just for big companies, it's for medium-sized organizations too, who obviously have, interestingly, medium-sized companies. They often have a lot of the same challenges. They face a lot of the same challenges that the big companies do, but they feel squeezed out by price and the kind of playbook. They kind of have to fit into the enterprise playbook, but they don't want the enterprise playbook, they want their own playbook, even though they have some of the same challenges. So that's a big play for us as well, absolutely. So, really exciting times. Go and check us out and reach out if you want to chat on a demo, etc. Etc. And if you want to talk about startups, also reach out and I'm sure my details will be there somewhere oh, yeah, I'm sure I will.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:14:47

I'm gonna add all you know links to um, you, your linkedin, and, and and in the show notes. Um, I guess, sort of um, yeah, I think that's a good place to end it because you, you dropped a lot of knowledge and I feel like there was a lot of strings there that I could pull on especially from the AI discussions, but this show is already, you know.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:15:11

You know, an hour and about 15 minutes. Looks like, um. So I think this is a good place to run over Me. You should an hour and about 15 minutes looks like.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:15:16

So I think this is a good place to turn people off. You ran over Me. You should. I can talk.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:15:21

But this was fantastic, a great learning experience, and we'll have to have you on again in the future to get into some of the intricacies behind. You know big data, live data versus AI data, which I think is another fascinating discussion. So as that, I guess industry starts to maybe level out. If it ever does, it's probably just going to keep growing, we'll have to have you back on and sort of get into the nitty gritty of that.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:15:47

Show your demo. Get a live demo going. Start showing your interpreter how that whole thing works. It's very cool.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:15:53

Then I'll be asking like, hey, can you start building this for my life so I can incorporate all of those things into my life and have those different cornerstones? So, sheldon, thank you so much for coming on the show. This is fantastic.

Sheldon Mydat: 1:16:06

Absolute pleasure, Listen. We'll catch up next week as well on Ballast.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:16:11

Very true, very true the beauty of community. I hope you enjoyed this episode of Everything is Logistics, a podcast for the thinkers in freight, telling the stories behind how your favorite stuff and people get from point A to B. Subscribe to the show, sign up for our newsletter and follow our socials over at everythingislogisticscom. And in addition to the podcast, I also wanted to let y'all know about another company I operate and that's Digital Dispatch, where we help you build a better website. Now, a lot of the times, we hand this task of building a new website or refreshing a current one off to a coworker's child, a neighbor down the street or a stranger around the world, where you probably spend more time explaining the freight industry than it takes to actually build the dang website.

Blythe Brumleve: 1:16:57

Well, that doesn't happen at Digital Dispatch. We've been building online since 2009, but we're also early adopters of AI, automation and other website tactics that help your company to be a central place to pull in all of your social media posts, recruit new employees and give potential customers a glimpse into how you operate your business. Our new website builds start as low as $1,500, along with ongoing website management, maintenance and updates starting at $90 a month, plus some bonus freight marketing and sales content similar to what you hear on the podcast. You can watch a quick explainer video over on digitaldispatchio. Just check out the pricing page once you arrive and you can see how we can build your digital ecosystem on a strong foundation. Until then, I hope you enjoyed this episode. I'll see you all real soon and go Jags you.

About the Author

Blythe Brumleve
Blythe Brumleve
Creative entrepreneur in freight. Founder of Digital Dispatch and host of Everything is Logistics. Co-Founder at Jax Podcasters Unite. Board member of Transportation Marketing and Sales Association. Freightwaves on-air personality. Annoying Jaguars fan. test

To read more about Blythe, check out her full bio here.