Business Chief USA July 2019




JULY 2019


tradition with


Your Safety...Our Commitment

Putting safety

and sustainability


The next generation

of data center

CEO Chris Downie on the importance

of flexibility and customer centricity

City Focus

Zooming in on

thriving startups

TOP 10


in the USA



elcome to the July issue of

Business Chief USA.

This month’s cover story features

Flexential, the data center services

company driving the digital transformation

of its clients’ data infrastructure.

CEO Chris Downie discusses the key

differentiators putting Flexential

ahead of the

competition as a flexible

and essential data center

partner with a focus on

customer success.

Downie, a passionate

lover of rugby and business

solutions alike, carries the

cooperative, strategic and spiritual

ethos of the sport through his role –

with great success thus far. “Rugby

is a sport where strategy and teamwork

are key to how you execute plays.

At Flexential we also focus on strategy

and teamwork.”

Chris Downie,

CEO, Flexential

Also featured in this month’s issue is

Bartell Drugs, the oldest family-owned

drug store chain in the US. We sit down

with Kari Escobedo, SVP of IT, to find

out how the 130 year old company

walks the line between the traditional

and the futuristic, always delivering the

highest quality of service to its customers.

This month’s City Focus explores

Dallas, investigating the thirdlargest

city in the Lone Star

State and examining

three startups working

to change the lives of

its citizens for the better.

Our Top 10 ranks the

country’s largest


Make sure to check out our

exclusive features on Cashco Financial,

Geodis, Heath Consultants and

Canadian Western Bank.

Enjoy the issue!

Harry Menear



in practice

Sprint and Amdocs have been key partners for over two

decades, delivering together innovative solutions to make

Sprint the success it is today.

Our joint accomplishments include modernizing billing

support systems, introducing a groundbreaking

customer care system, providing cost-effective

payments processing and the optimization of

current and future network capabilities.

This strong Sprint-Amdocs partnership has

won widespread industry recognition, including

the 2017 Global Telecoms Business Award for

Consumer Service Innovation.

Visit to learn more about

how you can partner with Amdocs to

innovate successfully.

© 2019 Amdocs. All rights reserved.



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investment in data

center infrastructure


Using collaboration

to unlock the power

of the ecosystem

How is digital



the supply

chain sector?




in the digital room:





City Focus



Social impact:

balancing profit

and purpose

TOP 10


in the US



Bartell Drugs








Western Bank






Ingram Micro


University of Toronto



Service New



Town of







investment in

data center






JULY 2019



CEO Chris Downie discusses

the key differentiators putting

Flexential ahead of the

competition as a flexible and

essential data center partner

with a company-wide focus

on customer success.



aving combined in August 2017, Peak10

and ViaWest rebranded as Flexential in

January 2018 to highlight the organization’s

commitment to being both flexible and essential

to its IT customers. Since then, the data center

and hybrid IT operator has continued its forbears’

strong expansion methodology and commitment to

the customer experience. “We spend a ton of time

making sure that we’ve got a customer success

culture – an organization-wide strategy that puts

customers at the top,” says CEO Chris Downie.

A seasoned data center industry veteran, Downie

is also a passionate rugby fan with both college and

postgraduate playing experience. He carries the

cooperative, strategic and spiritual ethos of the

sport through his role as chief executive – with

great success thus far. “Rugby is a sport where

strategy and teamwork are key to how you execute

plays – you have to pass backwards to advance

your team and there are no breaks between plays.

At Flexential we also focus on strategy and teamwork.

JULY 2019

Flexential expanded its data

center to 142,000 sq. ft. in

Atlanta’s technology corridor



Data centers


Approximate number

of employees


Domestic and

international markets



“We spend a ton

of time making

sure that we’ve

got a customer

success culture

– an organizationwide

strategy that

puts customers

at the top.”

Chris Downie,

CEO, Flexential

Our brand is anchored in the concept,

‘The Power of People in a Technical

World ® , which for us is all about making

our customers successful. Their

success is infused in everything we do.”

Having been at the heart of the data

center industry for more than ten years,

Downie has seen firsthand how it has

become a vital component of modern

business. In light of today’s demands

for capacity, security, redundancy,

reliability and recovery, flexibility and

network expansiveness, Flexential has

invested heavily in establishing itself as the

best option for companies undergoing

digital transformation and expansion

across the US. The sheer volume of

data being created and being

digitized is set to necessitate continuous

upgrades to capacity as more

data-heavy technologies take root.

“There are massive amounts of data

being generated for technology, such

as artificial intelligence (AI) and a whole

host of other applications requiring a

data center to function effectively,” says

Downie. “Having the capacity for this

accelerating growth, and the exponential

amount of information that needs

to be stored, contained and kept safe

for the rest of time, is massive for our

JULY 2019



strategy going forward.” With 40 data

centers across 21 US markets, Flexential

has not only the capacity but also the

geographical reach to set it apart from

a significant chunk of the competition.

“Having the ability to offer our products

across a broad geographical reach

allows us to get in front of demand

across the country,” adds Downie.

The company recently announced

expansions to its facilities in Portland,

Nashville, Charlotte and Atlanta.

Highlighting customer demand for

solution providers with broad capabilities,

Downie is enthusiastic about

Flexential’s ability to go beyond the

traditional expectations of a data

center operator. Enterprises increasingly

operate in a hybrid world where their

infrastructure is located in many

physical locations and in a variety

of forms, making Flexential an ideal

choice as the home base for a customer’s

hybrid IT operations. “We can provide

our customers a variety of colocation

and cloud infrastructure choices,

helping them manage and protect the

data that fuels their business, and most

importantly interconnect that infrastructure

in a highly scalable, secure,

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and reliable fashion,” he says. “Our ability

to also offer professional services that can

solve the challenges that our customers

face serves to make their engagement

with Flexential even more meaningful.”

Flexential’s broad utility set is further

enhanced by its stellar network

capabilities, and its aggressive investment

strategy in this area is reaping

dividends. As more and more enterprises

are considering architecture for edge

and distributed computing, as well as

machine learning and artificial intelligence

toolkits to analyze how data is

being consumed and where, Flexential

is working to help them “future proof”

their infrastructures. “One of our critical

differentiators is the network; the

investments we’ve made in resources

across our portfolio enables our

customers to federate their data and

resources anywhere and everywhere

they need to.”

A significant facet of Flexential’s

network platform is its access to the

Asia Pacific market via subsea cables.

Hosting direct access to three

trans-Pacific subsea cables, supplying

JULY 2019

connectivity between Asia and the

West coast of the US offers a huge

opportunity to Flexential’s customers

and makes Flexential more competitive

abroad. “The New Cross Pacific

(NCP) cable has some of the largest

cloud and communications providers

in Asia as consortium members, and it

extends to China, Taiwan, Korea and

a whole host of other countries,” says

Downie. “We also host the Hawaiki

subsea cable which extends to

Australia and New Zealand. In hosting

those cables we have an entry point

to massive data sets, and this puts us

in a position to assist consortium

members, and other customers that

want to be near those cables, to

complete the solutions they’re looking

to build in the US.”

Flexential has also been actively

investing in capitalizing on the

opportunities afforded by its size and

geographic reach, namely the ability

to communicate with larger customers

that make decisions across multiple


Chris Downie, CEO

Chris leads Flexential as a proven Chief Executive Officer

with deep expertise in the economics, delivery and

operations of the data center and hybrid cloud businesses.

He is responsible for setting and managing the strategic

priorities that drive profitable growth. Chris joined the

company in 2016. Prior to Flexential, Chris was the Chief

Executive Officer of Telx Holdings, a leading

interconnection and data center solutions provider based

in New York City, New York. He has more than 25 years

of combined executive leadership experience in finance

and operations, working for Daniels & Associates,

BroadStreet Communications and Motient Corporation.

Chris holds a B.A. degree in History from Dartmouth

College as well as a M.B.A. degree in International

Business from New York University.





geographies and themselves have

demanding requirements. “You can call

it wholesale, you can call it multi-megawatt

transactions, but it’s really serving

large enterprises and large technology

companies with greater deployments

than your average company.” Flexential

has been investing in its internal capabilities

to facilitate such deals with growing

success. “We recently completed a

3MW deal in one of our western markets,

with a large SaaS provider that’s

focused on data storage; a hyper-scaler

in terms of their global growth. We have

also secured a 1.5MW contract with a

financial institution at one of our

southeastern facilities, and that’s

going to become one of the largest

processing centers for financial

trading transactions in the world.”

The attractiveness of Flexential’s

offering is further compounded by its

leading security and recovery capabilities,

aiming to maximize peace of mind

for customers. “Security starts with

the physical security of the data center

itself,” says Downie. “We’ve been very

focused on meeting and maintaining

compliance standards across a

number of verticals in our domain.



111,000+ square-foot data

center with unprecedented

PUE of 1.3 at full capacity

JULY 2019

“Our ability to offer Professional

Services that can solve the

challenges our customers

face, serves to make their

engagement with Flexential

even more meaningful.”

Chris Downie,

CEO, Flexential 27

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We also have a host of security functions

built into our network to ensure data

running through it is safeguarded,

encrypted and so forth. The network

is also a foundational element of our

Disaster Recovery as a Service

(DRaaS) and recovery cloud functions.”

In April 2019, Flexential was recognized

by Forrester Research as one of

eight leading contenders in the DRaaS

space, receiving the highest possible

rating for Forrester’s core DRaaS

offerings criteria. In June, Flexential

was honored by Gartner and included

in the 2019 Gartner Magic Quadrant for

DRaaS. At the time of writing, seven of

Flexential’s facilities are equipped with

its disaster recovery capabilities, with

more on the horizon.

Looking forward, Flexential continues

to seek innovation and opportunities

to enhance its customer offering.

Downie offers Edge computing as

an example of a customer trend that

Flexential is keen to accommodate.

“Data is being generated everywhere,”

he says, citing autonomous vehicles

and connected vending machines as

examples of data generators at the

edge of the network. “Those data sets 29




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are coming from very far afield, so

having the ability to capture, process

and store them close to the given use

case is becoming increasingly important.

When it comes to the information

generated by a self-driving car, the data

needs to be processed by the car itself

but it’s also sending huge amounts to

local processing centers that need to

be proximate to wherever the car is.”

Flexential consistently evaluates

areas for improvement in its environments,

particularly as the needs and

expectations of the customer continuously

evolve. “We actively monitor how

our customers are consuming power,

the scale at which they’re consuming

network resources, and whether there

is customer interest in different

network technologies.”

Downie adds that Flexential is

equipped with the expertise to make

the right call when it comes to such

investments and in the personalization

of its service offering. “We’re firm

believers that the cloud is not the right

home for all workloads, and helping our

customers appreciate where workloads

should reside is really important. As IT

environments become more complex,

our customers need help making the

right choices. The challenge for

operators is being prepared to have

that conversation with customers.”

Flexential is certainly prepared,

empowered by Downie’s team-oriented

and strategic leadership, and it is clear

that such preparation in each facet of

its operations will continue to grow.




Using collaboration

to unlock the power

of the ecosystem

Sean Thompson, SVP Business Network

and Ecosystem at SAP Ariba and SAP

Fieldglass, shares his insights into the

power of collaboration and SAP Ariba’s

new partnership with American Express


JULY 2019




Progress is a cyclical journey. Creation leads

to hype, which leads to a bubble, followed by

a return to earth and, finally, true adoption and

advancement of the market. With the perspective

of over 20 years in the business intelligence

leadership space, Sean Thompson, Senior Vice

President of Business Network and Ecosystem at

SAP Ariba and SAP Fieldglass, is familiar with the

process. Having witnessed and been deeply

involved in major technological cycles like natural

language processing, ecommerce and now the

Big Data boom, Thompson is well aware of the key

strategies that help push the envelope and work

towards lasting growth. “As the gray haired guy in

the room, looking around and having seen different

cycles unfold, it’s an amazing time to be alive and

in the software business,” he reflects. “My career

has been a journey that has, in many ways, come

full circle.” We sat down with Thompson to discuss

a career spent at the forefront of business

intelligence, and how SAP Ariba’s new partnership

with American Express highlights one of his core

teachings: embracing collaboration to unlock the

power of the ecosystem.

Thompson’s own entry into the software

ecosystem began in the early 1990s at professional

services giant Deloitte. “Back then, process

re-engineering was all the rage,” he recalls. “We were

consultants helping companies figure out their

business processes and how to make them more

JULY 2019


efficient.” Thompson took to this

prototypical form of digital

transformation with even greater

enthusiasm in 1995, when he moved

to Seattle and was assigned to the

installation of a then lesser-known

business intelligence (BI) platform at

Microsoft. “My boss and I later laughed

about the fact that we had no idea

what SAP was,” recalls Thompson.

He quickly recognized the power of

SAP to build connections and facilitate

an interconnected business. “It was a

pleasure to help companies leverage



“It was a pleasure

to help companies

leverage software

and technology to

change the way they

did things, to drive

true collaboration”

Sean Thompson,

SVP, Business Network and Ecosystem

SAP Ariba and SAP Fieldglass

software and technology to change

the way they did things in order to

drive true collaboration,” remembers

Thompson, who wasted no time in

telling his boss that he wanted to fully

commit to working with SAP’s

products, later going on to run

Deloitte’s Northwest SAP practice.

The years that followed saw

Thompson work with multinational

market leaders like Microsoft, as

well as serving on the boards and

executive teams of groundbreaking

startup firms. Always passionate about

the potential applications of new

technology, in 2012 he co-founded

a natural user interface company called

Nuiku with Barry Padgett, a longserving

executive at Concur (bought

by SAP in 2014 for $8.3bn). Thompson

and Padgett quickly became friends

and collaborated over the next few

years on natural language interfaces

for sales ERPs. “Think of it as Siri for

Salesforce,” explains Thompson. The

mass adoption of the smartphone and

the introduction of automated natural

language assistants into products like

the iPhone signalled to Thompson a

new cycle of technological adoption.

“We started a company that was based

JULY 2019




on the concept of taking that paradigm

to the enterprise. My experience

installing SAP systems and being

at Microsoft was always that in the

enterprise, when we go to work,

the experience we have with the

applications we use at work is not

nearly the delight that we have as

a consumer,” he says. Padgett and

Thompson built up Nuiku for five years

before selling the company, but their

collaboration was fated to continue.

“In the spring of 2016 I, after the sale

of Nuiku, I was thinking about what

the next project was going to be when

I got a call from my buddy Barry, who

had just been appointed as president

of the SME business unit at SAP,”

recalls Thompson. “He said ‘there’s

nobody that I would want to go on this

adventure with more than you’.

Thompson joined as CRO, and just over

18 months later, the pair moved over to

SAP Ariba. “That’s where the job came

full circle. Procurement is near and

dear to my heart, because it’s where

I originally fell in love, in terms of the

concept of saving money to fund core

systems implementation.”

The move couldn’t have come at



a better time for Thompson, who sees

SAP Ariba as at the forefront of two

major trends in the business

intelligence space: data and

collaboration. “At Ariba, we think a lot

about it. We have a treasure trove of

data – $3trn in annual commerce that

flows through us. The technology

is available, the computing power is

available, we have the data and now,

all of a sudden, I think we are poised

to provide businesses with insight into

enterprise performance that is similar

to the way Google provides insight into

search,” he enthuses. “It’s just a matter

of good old-fashioned execution.”

The power of the information

revolution, Thompson believes, lies

in its ability to further facilitate

collaboration between enterprises

and customers, enterprises and

one another, buyers and suppliers –

the entire ecosystem. “In the past,

collaboration was point-to-point.

Now, at Ariba, we’re approaching this

as a network to achieve true business

collaboration. We’re breaking down

the silos and fostering more

collaborative relationships, in terms of

being able to have companies interact

with each other, as if they were within

JULY 2019

the same four walls – within the same

firewall, if you will,” he explains.

Thompson and Padgett have, over

the past 18 months, changed the

course of SAP Ariba, redirecting the

business towards the promotion of the

business ecosystem. “The Ariba you

knew a year ago is very different to

the Ariba of today,” he says. “We’ve

changed our strategy and culture,

helping everybody within the company

understand that if we are open and

embrace the third party ecosystem

and the creative genius that can come

from that, amazing things can happen.”

One of the first steps that Ariba is

pursuing in its campaign to unlock the

power of the ecosystem is rebalancing

the buyer-supplier relationship. “The

buyer has become the hero, to a point

where we’ve spent so much time

building value for them that we’ve left

the supplier on the side of the road

with their suitcase wondering what

their value is to the network,” admits

Thompson. As such, improving value

proposition for the supplier is a key

element of Ariba’s strategy.

Announced in April 2019, SAP

Ariba’s new partnership with American

Express will, among other things, work




to rebalance the buyer-supplier

relationship throughout the

procurement process. “In the corporate

space, the single use account virtual

card is a very compelling offering, which

allows a buyer, through integration of

Ariba and American Express’ systems

to generate a single use account

authentication or authorization key

from the virtual card provider,” explains

Thompson. “The buyer is able to

leverage virtual card protection and

efficiency. At the time of purchase order

(PO), the buyer creates a PO, attaches

their virtual card, and the supplier pays

using that.” Value is created for the

supplier as they are paid at the time

of order, rather than having to invoice

“We’re breaking

down the silos

and fostering

more collaborative


Sean Thompson,

SVP, Business Network and Ecosystem

SAP Ariba and SAP Fieldglass

the buyer, which saves time and

reduces error. Thompson views the

American Express partnership as a

collaborative win that is enabled by,

and will enable, further data based

digital projects. “About half of our

buyers are also American Express

corporate card users,” he says.

“On the supplier side, there’s also

an opportunity for us to offer loans

and financing to suppliers through our

Amex partnership. The more we know

JULY 2019


SAP Ariba is how companies

connect to get business done.

On the Ariba Network, buyers

and suppliers from more

than 3.8mn companies and

190 countries discover new


American Express is a global

services company, providing

customers with access to

products, insights and

experiences that enrich lives and

build business success. Learn

more at


about suppliers, the more the financial

institutions like American Express

knows, we will be working with them

to offer financing opportunities for

suppliers outside of the normal

payment process.”

Going forward, Thompson is

confident that SAP Ariba’s early

embrace of the open ecosystem will

see it in good stead. “We will have

an open approach and the different

relationships that we have will each

play a unique role, if you will, in that

open ecosystem. Ultimately, it’s about

choice. Buyers will be able to choose

the financial institution that they want to

work with and, if we do it right at Ariba,

we’ll be able to shape the ecosystem

around us for years to come.”

Covering every angle

in the digital age

The Business Chief platforms offer

insight on the trends influencing

C and V-level executives, telling the

stories that matter









Vivek Wikhe, Domain Expert of Retail and Supply

Chain at LatentView Analytics, discusses the

future of supply chain management and the

impact of digital transformation


JULY 2019



All over the world, supply chains are disrupted

by the advance of technology and

leaders must rethink their strategies.

Business Chief caught up with LatentView’s

Vivek Wikhe to find out how organisations can

make the most of digital disruption to best serve

the end consumer.


Why must companies rethink their supply

chain strategies in the age of digital


There are major cascading factors contributing

to companies rethinking their supply chain strategies

in the age of digital transformation. First,

the demand side has changed rapidly. Today,

there are more channels and touchpoints than

ever before, which all serve different needs

along the customer journey. This has resulted in

a migration away from the way that demand has

traditionally been generated. Invariably, it is the

ability to service and optimise these new

channels that allows companies to differentiate

and gain a competitive edge. Organisations are

no longer sure of the costs and margins in each

channel that touches consumers, and are still

figuring out which channels they need to

service and promote in the digital era. Ensuring

profitable margins across channels requires

a well thought out supply chain strategy according

to a company’s customer base and an

JULY 2019

“Ultimately, all organisations

across industries must

rethink their supply chain

strategies as the digital

era continues moving

towards the diversification

of channels”

Vivek Wikhe,

Domain Expert of Retail and Supply Chain,

LatentView Analytics




optimised channel mix. Ultimately, all

organisations across industries must

rethink their supply chain strategies as

the digital era continues moving towards

the diversification of channels.

What are some immediate steps

that need to be taken in order for

companies to maximise profitability

in their supply chains?

Buying behavior is moving towards more

nebulous attribute-based purchases.

Instead of consumers focusing on

a specific brand, which is easier to

predict based on demographics, (for

example, purchasing Nike sneakers),

they will typically begin their shopping

journey by searching online for certain

attributes and features that they want

(“stylish white sneakers”).

Organisations need to tune their

supply chains to reflect this shift. Instead

of serving a target market based on

demographics, supply chains must take

into account a larger market brought

about by the digital era. Supply chains

JULY 2019

should evolve to fulfillment chains, which

can serve multiple channels profitably.

The first step to maximising profitability

is to get a clear picture of order costs

incurred in every channel. This is a complex

problem with multiple, co-dependent

factors. It gets complex because

the costs need to be predicted to ensure

an enterprise has a profitable order

fulfillment scenario. The analysis of the

cost structure and visibility to them is

the first step to maximise profitability

for supply chains.

What are the challenges that enterprises

face as they move to digitise

their supply chain, and what are

a few best practices to overcome

these challenges?

The main challenge is that due to the

changing nature of modern consumer

supply and demand, supply chains need

to get increasingly more agile and more

in tune with short-term planning. Even

traditional industries need to stay abreast

of quickly developing consumer trends

and desires. For example, food and

groceries are a traditional and staple

category. However, today, there are

trends in food that pop up quickly, giving

traditional consumer buying behavior

a very short-term strength. Many categories

overall are moving towards the

shorter-term life cycles, and enterprises

need to move to reflect that as well,

and become leaner and more agile.

How does having better data strategy

create greater supply chain efficiency?

So much of demand is influenced by

what consumers are seeing online - you

essentially can predict what consumers




are going to buy by having strong

insights into data on what influences

customer behavior. For example, a few

years back, Amazon became famous

for predicting demand. In fact, they

were so good at it, that they were

shipping goods before the customer

even purchased them.

All companies need to have a view of

the latest technology for predicting

customers purchasing behavior. As

buying cycles continue to grow shorter,

there is no longer time to procure and

supply a product without advance

preparation. Ultimately, in order to not

miss out on profitable opportunities,

and to have a more focused organisation

of the supply chain, a modernised

data strategy that involves predictive

analytics for both the supply and

demand sides is necessary. A ‘better’

data strategy is one where enterprises

have a single view of all data points and

these are integrated to respond in sync

with unit changes. An integrated data

strategy helps move the fulfillment

chain in three phases - increasing

visibility thereby reducing variability

and finally increasing velocity. All these

three phases require a different yet

integrated data strategy.

JULY 2019

As enterprises continue through

their digital transformation journeys,

how are innovations in AI and

predictive technologies specifically

playing a role?

Most enterprises on digital transformation

journeys go through several

stages, as they learn to apply machine

learning and artificial intelligence.

These stages are: descriptive,

prescriptive, and predictive. In the

first, you can only see what the data

does, and it can help inform decisionmaking

processes. In the second

stage, you can employ an AI technology

to gain prescriptive intelligence to

solve specific problems or gain

insight into definitive opportunities

- for example, AI can identify demand

per channel, or identify which models

are the most profitable. In the third

and final stage, you reach an exalted

state of sorts wherein the ability to

predict trends in the data becomes so

accurate that it’s possible to preempt

action around the insights. This final

stage will lead to a much more

focused and streamlined supply chain,

and allow for comprehensive preemptive

planning for all relevant supply

and demand factors.




Are there any particular industries

which have the best opportunity to

gain a competitive advantage by

adopting this technology before the

rest of their peers?

I can’t think of any industry that should

not be investing in emerging technology

solutions. In fact, it is no longer really

a question of competitive edge, but

rather of survival. If you’re not investing

in emerging technology and at least

exploring opportunities with AI, you’re

making yourself vulnerable to other

companies in the field that may have

higher efficiency and greater analytical

abilities (and thus a greater competitive

advantage) in their supply chain.

What do you see as the biggest

trends going forward related to

emerging technology in AI and the

supply chain?

Going forward, I see a number of ways

that emerging technology will continue

to influence the supply chain. The next

step in using data in the supply chain

will be merging all sources of customer

data, including social media data. Down

the line, we’ll be looking at more IoT

data. In coming years, we expect to see

the rise of the intelligent home assistant

as the first point of understanding

consumers and the supply side. Information

on demand signals will no longer

be coming directly from consumer

JULY 2019

“The main challenge is that

due to the changing nature

of modern consumer supply

and demand, supply chains

need to get increasingly

more agile and more in tune

with short-term planning”

Vivek Wikhe,

Domain Expert of Retail and Supply Chain,

LatentView Analytics



“I can’t think of any industry that

should not be investing in

emerging technology solutions.

In fact, it is no longer really

a question of competitive edge,

but rather of survival”

Vivek Wikhe,

Domain Expert of Retail and Supply Chain,

LatentView Analytics


data, but rather personal assistants

inside the home.

On the logistical side, I expect we’ll

also be seeing a greater ability to deal

with smaller markets. Once analytics

helps optimise supply chains to a greater

degree, things such as home delivery

models will become profitable, even for

smaller markets and chains. The overwhelming

trend will be intelligent assistants

embedded in various enterprise

chains interacting with each other to

ensure regular chores are carried out

without constant human intervention

JULY 2019

Are there any recent projects

LatentView Analytics has worked on

related to supply chain analytics that

you can discuss?

Currently we’re working on several

interesting projects. We’re helping

some big name retailers understand

how in an omni-channel environment

they can understand their net cost for

every consumer channel. There are

certain aspects where it becomes not

just a supply chain solution. Once you

understand the optimal channel mix,

you also have to take into account

downstream promotion, and make the

data actionable and profitable.

We’re also doing some work in supply

chain and predictive analytics. In the

US market, over the past two years,

there have been more occurrences of

incorrect delivery windows, due to

shortages of supply. This creates both

a greater cost to the company, as well

as operational inefficiency. We’re now

looking at a predictive model that

compiles and analyses data to help

more accurately predict arrival times

of packages for consumers.





the digital room:



Mark Homer, VP Global Customer Transformation,

ServiceMax , discusses how businesses must

improve asset management and servicing to

reduce unplanned downtime pressure due to a

growing reliance on automation and digital



JULY 2019




As industrial automation continues to

digitize, one area in particular is

becoming a critical area of concern–

unplanned downtime. The shift to outcomebased

business models, equipment assets

becoming more sophisticated and connected,

and of course, the pervasive and increasing

reliance on machines, are all adding to the

pressure to avoid outages. Mitigating downtime

is now a strategic priority in the digital age.

Take power as an example. In the US, generating

units are unavailable on average for 15% of

the time due to outages and maintenance. In

fact, 6% of the time they are unable to meet

demand at all. And the Energy Information

Administration highlights that a further 6% of

electricity is lost in transmission and distribution

due to both technical factors and outages.

The growing reliance on automation is

already widening performance gaps. Businesses

are losing sight of assets, especially in terms

of efficiency, leading to a fractured insight of

manufacturing or service delivery. The upshot is

that unplanned downtime becomes a real

problem and even worse, the lack of visibility

leads to an unnecessary lengthening of recovery

time. Closing this downtime gap is a fundamental

step in an organization’s digital maturity, and

a core part of their transformation journey.

JULY 2019

“The growing

reliance on


is already





Mark Homer,

VP Global Customer Transformation,




According to a recent Vanson Bourne

global study After The Fall: Cost, Causes

and Consequences of Unplanned

Downtime, 82% companies have

experienced at least one unplanned

downtime outage over the past three

years, and two on average. These

outages have lasted four hours. Depending

on the company and type of equipment,

this can cost organizations

anywhere from $50k-$150k per hour

for say, a medical device company, and

up to $2m for a major outage on an

industrial critical asset. (Aberdeen

estimates the cost across all businesses

to be $260,000 an hour). The research

also revealed high levels of asset estate

ignorance across organizations, with

70% of companies lacking full awareness

of when equipment is due for maintenance,

upgrade or replacement.

In addition to financial losses,

the research found that almost

a third of respondents said

they were unable to service or

support specific equipment

assets, while 65% of respondents

from the energy and utilities

sector, and 62% from the medical

sector cited losing the trust

of their customers as

JULY 2019



a possible impact of suffering a highprofile

incident or disaster. Across all

sectors, around one in ten admitted

their company would never recover

from such critical incidents and would

ultimately cease to exist. Nobody wants

to be blindsided with those sorts of

numbers. But what are companies

doing about it?

The research hints at a tipping point

in recognition of the problem and

planned investment to address it. Over

time, zero tolerance and zero unplanned

downtime will become the norm as

companies develop and invest in their

industrial digital strategies. Key to this,

is an understanding of and investment

in field service management and asset

performance management capabilities.

According to Vanson Bourne, eight

in ten companies have already

recognized this, at least that digital

tools can improve visibility of assets

and help eliminate unplanned downtime.

Around 50% of companies

confirmed they plan to invest in field

service and asset management

technologies in the next three years,

while 72% of firms claim that zero

unplanned downtime is now a number



one priority. So, the message is

sinking in at least.

The challenge for most businesses is

to digitally transform without losing

oversight of key products, services and

of course assets. Digital transformations

do not automatically improve

control and visibility. Companies need

to pursue a service-led approach to

business, to ensure that their ability

to manage the actual assets that make

products or ensure services run

smoothly are always up and running.

A clear asset management and predictive

maintenance strategy should

ensure that businesses take the right

path towards reducing, if not completely

eliminating downtime.

Understanding problems before they

happen and having knowledgeable

and digitally-empowered service technicians

to ensure the smooth running

of assets will go a long way to making

this happen. A digital twin of physical

assets will help considerably here, and

the research has revealed that around

54% of companies are planning

to invest in a digital twin by 2020.

Throw-in the fact that field service

is expected to become a primary

revenue driver for most businesses

within the next two years and you have

a recipe for transformation.

We often hear the phrase, ‘you cannot

account for human error’ but that seems

illogical in today’s connected world. We

have the technology to not just account

for human error but to eradicate it. The

internet of things with the proliferation

of affordable and reliable sensors is

changing the way in which we can view,

manage, service and support technology,

processes and any physical object.

By mirroring a process, product or

service into a virtual world, we can

JULY 2019

“Digital transformations

do not automatically

improve control and


Mark Homer,

VP Global Customer Transformation,



create environments in which machines

can automatically analyse performance,

warn of impending issues, identify

existing or potential errors and even

suggest part upgrades or changes to

procedures to make them more efficient.

This is the digital twin idea. As a concept,

it’s been around for a while (NASA

used it on early space missions) but the

emergence of IoT has made it a commercial

reality. Digital twin eliminates

guesswork from determining the best

course of action to service critical

physical assets, from engines to power

turbines. Easy access to this combination

of deep knowledge and intelligence

about your assets paves the road to

wider optimization and business


Digital twin technology spans across

all industries where the value is in assets

and more generally complex systems.

Its ability to deliver early warnings,

predictions, and optimization is fairly

universal. In time, I think we’ll see the

concept of a digital twin to be applied

to human beings as well, playing a significant

role in healthcare.


“Digital twin technology spans

across all industries where the

value is in assets and more

generally complex systems”

Mark Homer,

VP Global Customer Transformation,



However, just mirroring is not enough.

If the aim is to achieve zero downtime

or at the very least, overall insight into

on-going product and process performance,

the digital twin has to be analysed

and that analysis has to feed other

functions. What the digital twin produces,

when bundling data with intelligence, is

a view of each asset’s history and its

potential future performance.

The digital twin can use historical

data and current data to provide a complete

picture of a particular asset, its

past performance, what it should be

JULY 2019

achieving now and its likely end of life

date, when it would be predicted to be

less efficient. This sort of knowledge is

gold dust for product designers and

manufacturers as it can feed back accurately,

which parts work well and

where machines would need improving

or upgrading.

Combined with the knowledge of field

service professionals this makes for

a powerful tool for upselling products

and services to customers. Any new

ideas or enhancements can be fully

supported with data analysis and

perhaps even simulations to illustrate

how new parts and functions would

improve performance. It offers justification

and also accountability and should

cut through irrelevant or unsuitable

product or service ideas. It’s transforming

service at the edge by bringing

together all the facets that make

businesses and machines tick - and

goes a long way to creating a world

of zero unplanned downtime.




Social impact:

balancing profit

and purpose

Natasha Mudhar, Global CEO of Sterling

Group and The World We Want, discusses

why CSR should be a company-wide

initiative rather than just ticking a box


JULY 2019




While most corporates and

businesses have implemented

a social impact

strategy, many are typically incongruent

with the company’s profitability

and growth objectives, and are often

rendered obsolete. Effective social

impact strategies need to be ingrained

in the very fabric of a company’s

corporate DNA, and not just a tick in

the box. Companies are still failing to

grasp how having an effective social

impact strategy is key to long term

growth and viability.

CSR is a means for companies to

bring benefit to themselves and employees

whilst also benefiting society. While

businesses are becoming increasingly

aware of the benefits of having such

a strategy, they are still lacking in awareness

as to how deep a social impact

strategy needs to be embedded in

a company and why it needs to be

embraced in this way.

A global study by the SEFORIS project

(the world’s largest study of social

enterprises to date) has revealed how

companies delivering inclusive growth

JULY 2019


by implementing a social impact strategy

are also seeing rapid growth in revenue.

Effective social impact strategies are

designed to improve a company’s overall

mission, not just its brand identity. Not

to be confused with marketing or

corporate philanthropy, social impact

strategies provide a concrete plan that

has quantifiable business outcomes

combined with a measurable and definitive

societal impact.

It is no longer enough to be just profit

driven. What makes companies stand

out is their ability to place profit and

purpose alongside each other. In order

for a company to truly thrive, it needs to

be both profitable and purposeful

simultaneously. An organization that is

both profit and purpose driven provides

mobility to its employees and resources

in a way that is incomparable. For

a business to grow, purpose needs to

be embedded in its core. Companies

need to do well by doing good.

In order to address this, companies

must fully understand how their employees

can be one of their biggest assets

to expand their social impact footprint.



“CSR is a means

for companies to

bring benefit to

themselves and

employees whilst

also benefiting


Natasha Mudhar,

CEO, Stirling Group and The World We Want

Exhibiting a strong social impact

strategy not only enhances trust

among the public and makes the

company attractive to prospective

employees but also results in

a more engaged workforce, geared

to generate not only revenue, but

valuable channels for marketing and

public relationships. The people of

a business provide the most genuine

representation of a company’s brand

and value, organizations need to

remember this when considering

social impact.

JULY 2019

Employees are much more engaged

and satisfied when given the opportunity

to perform impactful work. This will

result in a stronger feeling of fulfilment

and purpose amongst employees and

essentially enhance a positive impact

in the workplace. Studies have shown

how corporate social responsibility has

been highlighted as one of the key most

important drivers of employee engagement,

and engaged employees are

effective workers and drive results.

Weak outreach efforts to the community

should no longer be acceptable

and are not measurable against an

embedded, well-implemented social

impact strategy, focusing on the dayto-day

contributions towards community

engagement as opposed to the occasional

donation or charitable event.

Scaling up social impact needs to be

a multi-sector process. Effective crosssector

collaboration will enable new

techniques and approaches to be

deployed to achieve better social

outcomes. The combination of public,

private and social sector collaboration

can address complex social challenges



Natasha Mudhar

Natasha Mudhar is an international communicator and

director working on some of the most socially relevant

global campaigns. She is also Global CEO of Sterling

Media, the multi-disciplinary, international business

consultancy with a robust communications backbone,

established in 1995. Representing SMEs, FTSE 100

companies including billion-dollar hedge funds,

as well as disruptors, innovators and high-profile

celebrities, Mudhar’s insight and global understanding

in the realm of business, brand development, market

growth and entry strategies has assisted major players

in aligning their vision with their business strategies.


“Weak outreach

efforts to the


should no longer

be acceptable”

Natasha Mudhar,

CEO, Stirling Group and The World

We Want


by pulling resources from various

players to ensure the improvement of

effectiveness and efficiency of the

services companies can offer to the

public through joint efforts. Too often

public, private and social sectors are

segregated and siloed, with their

resources fragmented, they need to

work together towards common

goals and enable mutually desired

social outcomes.

Who does the responsibility lie with?

It is up to the company’s leadership to

ensure that social impact is at the top

JULY 2019

of the business agenda. They must

ensure that an effective strategy is

embedded into the company’s day-today

workings, prioritizing long-term

value in a way that mutually benefits

both employees and society at large.

CEOs must outline clear objectives

and purpose of the company beyond

financial touchpoints, defining their

values. It is important that these guiding

values permeate every decision-making

process, from environmental footprint

to social impact to investment decisions.

Businesses must consider social

impact as a company wide initiative

and not just a tick in the box. Otherwise,

they risk losing the trust of the public

which can be extremely damaging in

the long term. In this age of heightened

transparency and increased accountability,

companies cannot afford to leave

this issue unaddressed. The consequences

in doing so can be profound.



Business Chief investigates the

third-largest city in the Lone Star

State and looks at three startups

working to change the lives

of its citizens for the better


City Focus


JULY 2019







bustling metropolis in north Texas with

over 1.3mn inhabitants, Dallas is the thirdlargest

city in the state. The city has a rich

and vibrant history: the original home of the global

convenience store chain 7-Eleven, an airport larger

than the island of Manhattan, and iconic football

team the Dallas Cowboys (the teawm that popularized

the modern conception of the cheerleader).

Originally an agricultural and American Indian trading

hub, Dallas soon evolved into one of the world’s

largest inland cotton trading cities in the early 20th

century. In subsequent decades, the discovery of

crude oil reserves in the surrounding area turned

it into a budding boom town and quickly the center

of the nation’s oil market.

Manufacturing infrastructure tied to the production

of cotton-picking equipment and oil drilling led

to the city emerging from World War Two as a

leading communications, engineering and production

town. The communications revolution, and

more recently Industry 4.0, has continued to play

a large part in Dallas’ economy to this day.

Fortune 500 companies Texas

Instruments, AT&T, Exxon Mobil

and Jacobs Engineering are among

the many technology and industrial

leaders that call the city and its

surrounding area home.

JULY 2019



Continuing the successful tradition

of communications, technology and

industrial commerce, while also acting

for the benefit of its citizens, is Dallas’

vibrant startup scene. We examine

three socially conscious Dallas tech

companies harnessing the power of

the digital age to improve the lives

of American citizens.

“We’re teleporting

them from their four

walls of existence into

an unbelievable,



Chris Brickler,



JULY 2019




Founded in 2016 by Chris Brickler and

Shawn Wiora, MyndVR is headquartered

at the northernmost end of Dallas.

Brickler, who served as an executive

with Verizon, British Telecom and AT&T

over the course of his career, has

worked alongside Wiora to create a

virtual reality (VR) application targeted

at the assisted living demographic.

According to an article by D Magazine,

the MyndVR uses 360-degree

cameras to capture and bring to life

comforting and engaging experiences

for assisted living seniors. “We’re

teleporting them from their four walls

of existence into an unbelievable,

fantastic environment,” Brickler told

D Magazine. “They get to hear and see

it, so they resonate with it in a way

that’s so powerful and heartwarming.”

One of the company’s VR experiences

involved using a live band and actors

in 1950’s costume to simulate a Frank

Sinatra concert.

Brickler believes that the Dallas

startup’s solution can and should be

easily applied across the country, and



has the power to effect positive change

in the lives of people suffering from

Alzheimers, Dementia or simply the

isolation of old age.


Founded eight years ago and headquartered

in the city’s Main Street

District, RoboKind specializes in leveraging

advanced social robotics in

order to support autism therapies and

provide instruction to students studying

STEM. With the goal of creating

cost-effective, inclusive education,

RoboKind has worked with the autism

spectrum disorder community to

create its flagship product, Milo.

With life-like facial features and

unwavering patience, Milo uses repetition-based

techniques to deliver a

learning experience to autistic children

that is reportedly almost 80% more

effective than traditional therapy.

RoboKind launched Milo in 2016.

The other main element of

RoboKind’s product offering helps

to address the future STEM leaders

growing up in the city. “Dallas’ workforce

of the near future demands

different skills than its workforce has

JULY 2019

today. STEM skills, such as coding

and programming, will become more

important as the tech industry continues

to grow,” writes Jeff Goodman,

RoboKind’s manager of sales and


Continuing to pursue its mission to

provide inclusive and effective education,

the RoboKind team created

Robots4STEM, a simple drag and drop

programming language designed to

give children an early introduction to

computer science. Children use the

language to enter commands into Jett,

a humanoid robot.

“Dallas’ workforce of the

near future demands

different skills than its

workforce has today.

STEM skills, such as

coding and programming,

will become more important

as the tech industry

continues to grow”

Jeff Goodman,

Manager of Sales and Operations,






Situated on the southwestern side of

Dallas, Track15 is a startup looking to

change the way people change the

world. Co-founded in 2017 by Andrew

Snow and Chris Schultz, the company

provides back end business development

consultancy services to nonprofit

organizations. “The lack of business

acumen that nonprofits have—that’s

what brought us together,” Snow said

“We believe the

relationship between

the donor and the

mission are what’s

important for a sustainable

nonprofit model”

Andrew Snow,

Co-Founder, Track15


JULY 2019

in an interview with D Magazine. “We

believe the relationship between the

donor and the mission are what’s important

for a sustainable nonprofit model.”

Through close collaborative partnerships

and consulting services,

Track15 helps its clients streamline

their organizations and create more

value for the people they work to

help. “We take them from zero to 60

very quickly,” added Snow.

Track15 currently counts nonprofits

like Mercury One, the Farm to Consumer

Legal Defense Fund, the Prison

Entrepreneurship Program and the Dallas

Film Festival among its clients. The

company’s roadmap sees it seeking out

larger clients and expanding beyond the

Dallas city limits, driven by the idea that:

“We want to listen to your story, bond to

your uniqueness and commit to providing

you with exactly what you need.”


TOP 10


JULY 2019

TOP 10


in the US


Business Chief counts down the top 10

manufacturers in the US, according

to Forbes’ Global 2000 ranking of the

world’s largest public companies


TOP 10


10 PepsiCo

Forbes list 86

PepsiCo traces its history back to 1898, when Caleb Bradham first

formulated Pepsi-Cola for sale in his North Carolina pharmacy.

Today, the company is responsible for the production of its eponymous

cola as well as beverage brands such as Mountain Dew and

Gatorade, and food brands like Lay’s and Doritos. 86th on Forbes’

list, the company’s revenue reached $65bn, with profits totalling

some $12.6bn in 2018.

JULY 2019


09 DowDuPont

Forbes list 81

Formed from the 2017 merger of American stalwart chemical

companies Dow Chemical and DuPont, DowDuPont is the world’s

largest manufacturer of chemicals. Historically, the two companies

have pioneered innovative materials such as nylon, in DuPont’s case,

and styrofoam in Dow Chemical’s. With its 2018 revenue at $86bn

and profits of $3.8bn, it came 81st on Forbes’ list.

TOP 10



United Technologies

Forbes list 78

Multinational conglomerate United Technologies is active across

a range of manufacturing areas, from aircraft engines to air conditioners.

Originally a pure aircraft manufacturer, its diversification

was reflected in its 1974 name change away from United Aircraft.

They placed 78th, with revenue totalling $66.5bn and profits

reaching $5.3bn. Subsidiaries include the Otis Elevator Company,

HVAC specialist Carrier and Collins Aerospace.

JULY 2019

“We need to

make the world

more how we

want to see it.”

- Scott Saunders,

CEO & Founder, Happy Money

Happy Money & Alliant Credit Union

proudly celebrate 2 years of partnership,

changing the way people think about

and use money.

TOP 10



Cisco Systems

Forbes list 74

A manufacturer of networking and telecommunications hardware,

Cisco is the youngest company on this list, having been founded in

1984. It counts among its clients service providers, small to medium

businesses, and enterprise customers such as corporations, government

agencies, utilities and educational institutions. A pioneer of

networking technology, the company states that 85% of Internet

traffic travel across its systems. It was 74th on Forbes’ list,

with revenue of $50.8bn and profits totalling $12.9bn.

JULY 2019



General Motors

Forbes list 56

The largest American automotive manufacturer,

General Motors came in at 56th on Forbes’ list.

Responsible for iconic US brands such as Buick, Chevrolet and

Cadillac, the company is headquartered in America’s Motor City,

Detroit, along with its rivals Ford and Chrysler. Possessing by far the

largest revenue of companies on this list at $147bn, they made profits

of $8.1bn in 2018. The company has achieved something of a rebirth

under the leadership of CEO Mary Barra, after its bankruptcy in 2009.

TOP 10


05 Pfizer

Forbes list 54

Pharmaceuticals giant Pfizer is based in New York City, and oversees

the development and production of medicines and vaccines.

Some of their better known drugs include Atorvastatin and Viagra.

With a revenue of $53.6bn and profits of $11.2bn, the company

ranked 54th worldwide. Founded in 1849, in late 2018 the company

announced it was merging its consumer healthcare division with

that of British pharmaceuticals company GlaxoSmithKline.

JULY 2019

TOP 10



Procter & Gamble

Forbes list 53

Consumer goods manufacturer Procter & Gamble specializes in

a broad range of products for the home. From personal care to

cleaning products, its brands include detergents like Tide and Odor

eliminators like Febreze. The company was founded back in 1837

in Cincinnati, where it is still headquartered. It made it to 53rd

on Forbes’ list. In 2018, their revenue and profits reached $66.9bn.

JULY 2019


03 Boeing

Forbes list 49

The Boeing Company is the United States’ largest player in the

aerospace industry. A defense contractor as well as a civilian

manufacturer, the company’s designs range from aircraft to

satellites. Founded in Seattle in 1916 and named after its founder,

William Boeing, the company is now based in Chicago, Illinois.

According to their figures, they employ more than 153,000 people

across 65 countries. They placed in 49th position, with profits

of $10.5bn from a revenue of $101.1bn.

TOP 10


02 Intel

Forbes list 44

Silicon Valley’s Intel is well known for its manufacture

of semiconductors, and the company’s processors can

be found in most personal computers, alongside those

of their rival AMD. Unlike AMD, the company fabricates

its own designs rather than outsourcing to semiconductor

foundries, and also fabricates designs for others.

Founded in 1968, the company’s co-founder Gordon

Moore is well known as the author of Moore’s law

regarding the doubling of transistors on a microchip

every two years. It was ranked in 44th place,

with revenue of $70.8bn and profits of $21.1bn.

JULY 2019


TOP 10


Johnson & Johnson

Forbes list 37


Founded in 1886 in New Brunswick, New Jersey,

Johnson & Johnson is a multinational pharmaceuticals

and medical devices producer. They are also known for

their consumer products such as Neutrogena and the

Johnson’s baby brand. 37th on Forbes’ global list, their

revenue reached $81.6bn in 2018, with profits totalling

$14.7bn. The company remains headquartered in the

city of its founding, and describes itself as employing

more than 130,000 people across the globe.

JULY 2019




Inside the digital


of America’s oldest


drug store brand





JULY 2019



Kari Escobedo, SVP, IT at

Bartell Drugs, shares her

business insights and plans

for the digital transformation

of America’s oldest familyowned

pharmacy brand



igital transformation is change, and

in the world of the enterprise, change

is unrelenting. From a single location

purchased by 21-year-old pharmacist George H

Bartell Sr in 1890, Bartell Drugs has become the

United States’ oldest family-owned drugstore

chain – an iconic brand in the Pacific Northwest.

Achieving constancy and longevity through a great

depression, a great recession, two world wars and

myriad upheavals that mark almost 130 years of

history, the brand is an American success story.

Walking the line between the traditional and

the futuristic, while always delivering the

highest quality of service to its customers,

Bartell’s is making strides towards a bold

digital future. “We want to bring Bartell’s into

the modern digital world and ensure that its

brand and products will still be here serving

our communities a hundred years from now,”

says Kari Escobedo, Senior Vice President (SVP)

of IT at Bartell’s. Escobedo, along with new CEO

Kathi Lentzsch and other Sr Executives are

JULY 2019




“We want to bring

Bartell’s into the

modern world

and ensure that

its brand and

products will still

be here in another

hundred years”

Kari Escobedo,

IT, Bartell Drugs

working to build teams to shape Bartell’s

digital transformation strategy. This

approach will carry the company into

the fourth industrial revolution and,

hopefully, into the 22nd century.

Prior to joining the company in July

2018, Escobedo spent over a decade

working for some of the Pacific

Northwest’s largest, most game-changing

companies. From years of growing

up in a military household to experiences

at Starbucks, Microsoft, T-Mobile,

and Kaiser Permanente of WA, she

shares how the transformation values

of continually driving innovation,

promoting community and diversity, and

championing adaptability are informing

Bartell’s digital transformation.

“I grew up in the Marine Corps,

moving around every couple of years.

I’ve lived all over the country and parts

of the world – that’s what you do as

a military child,” recalls Escobedo.

“Every two to three years, we would

pick up and move to another state.

My siblings and I got dropped into a

whole new school on a regular basis.”

Escobedo credits her frequent

relocations into new cities, cultures

and social dynamics at an early age

for a trait she has found invaluable

JULY 2019



throughout her career: adaptability.

“I got very good at finding my way

and finding things about myself that

integrate well into new situations,”

she explains. In her career, she quickly

found: “You get really good at reading

the organization, the culture, seeing

opportunities and being able to stand

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I lean on a lot is my adaptability coming

into new organizations.”

Adapting to different environments

is a skill that Bartell’s has integrated

into its business model for a long time;

each of the brand’s 68 locations is

uniquely tailored to its neighborhood

and customer base. “Our stores fit into

their neighborhoods architecturally,

but also about 30% of the products we

stock are local to the Pacific Northwest,”

Escobedo explains. “There are some

stores that are partnered with the Post

Office, because that’s something their

neighborhoods were lacking when they

opened.” Other stores have everything

from growler stations and espresso

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workers on lunch breaks. “The makeup

of the product selection is focused

on what customers need versus only

what we want to sell them,” she says.

“It differentiates us from some of our

big box competitors.”

Bartell’s also adapts its instore

experience so all feel welcome. “There

was a conscious decision made

to have shorter fixtures in all stores.

With a lower profile, our stores feel

“I got very good at

finding my way,

and finding things

about myself that

integrate well into

new situations”

Kari Escobedo,

IT, Bartell Drugs


Kari Escobedo, SVP, IT

Kari Escobedo is a business executive with 20+ years of leadership

experience serving global F500 companies in technology,

healthcare, telecoms, and retail. She is a change leader specializing

in company technology transformations, including digital

experience, product dev, and M&A. Kari joined Bartell Drugs in

mid-2018 to help positively impact the company thru technology.

Prior to Bartell Drugs, Kari joined Kaiser Permanente 2015

leading the Ent & Digital Services areas that include UX/CX,

Digital & Mobile for KPWA. Formerly VP, Ent Sys Dev for

T-Mobile, Kari led the technology team responsible

for the development and delivery of solutions for the

Customer Retail & Enterprise Systems that supported

the T-Mobile business transformation. Before joining

T-Mobile, Kari was the Director of Information

Management and CISO for Starbucks as well as teams

that supported ERP, Employee Portal systems.

Before Starbucks, Kari held leadership positions

at Microsoft, running it’s Enterprise Systems teams.





Year founded


Approximate number

of employees




JULY 2019




more open. You can see across the

store and find people; it’s more inviting.”

A feeling of welcome and personalized

experience is key to the way Bartell’s

does business. Escobedo’s priority

is to harness the power of digital

transformation to provide the company

with more ways to reach its customers,

while honoring the traditional heritage

established by the Bartell family. “In

Seattle, we have a pretty tech-savvy

customer base, but we also have a

customer base that really appreciates

and demands personalization,” she

explains. “They need to know you and

you need to know them as a customer.

That’s just part of the relationship-driven

environment that we have in the Northwest.

It’s what Bartell’s is known for.”

Escobedo’s leadership style is

uniquely suited for Bartell’s transformation.

“I love to come in and build

sustainable change,” she enthuses,

recalling her time at telecom giant

T-Mobile and Starbucks. Escobedo

constantly asks herself: “How do we

keep driving innovation? You can find

possibilities everywhere. You don’t have

to be introducing new products that

nobody’s seen before, but you need

to be innovating for your customers.”

JULY 2019




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In terms of e-commerce, Bartell’s has

taken a very customer centric approach,

working in conjunction with

Amazon Prime Now and several other

well-known last-mile shopping delivery

services on same day delivery of

non-pharmacy items. “We’re channel

agnostic right now,” she explains.

“Whichever company you buy our

products through, the strategy we’ve

put together is focused on giving our

customer’s choice and the opportunity

to get our products in the easiest way

for them – we want to be where they

shop versus making them come to us.”

On the pharmacy side, Escobedo and

Bartell’s are working in conjunction

with Californian start-up, NimbleRx,

to provide delivery services for prescriptions

and commonly purchased

OTC products. “It allows us to really

fulfil a strategy built around making it

super easy for customers to buy things

from Bartell’s when and where they

want them,” she explains.

While many things are changing

around them, Escobedo’s team relies

on her ability to build excitement and to

lead by example. “My job is to help my

teams and business partners succeed

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JULY 2019

– because if they are successful, then

we all win,” she says. “It is critical to be

transparent and to clearly define

expectations for myself and my teams.

I hold them accountable and they hold

me accountable. With that comes

mutual trust and a comfortability that

fits well in our organization,” said

Escobedo. This isn’t limited to the

teams she leads. With vast knowledge

and relationships in the technology

world, and the experts in that space,

Escobedo chooses the right partners

and vendors that will champion for

Bartell’s and their goals.

Escobedo is embracing technological

wins of every size. She uses small

changes like augmenting legacy

point-of-sale systems with user-friendly

mobile-driven solutions to promote a

culture that is accepting of and

enthusiastic about more radical

transformations. “Many of our employees

have been at Bartell’s for a long

time and they love this company. That

means, as we move to adopt and

leverage some of these technologies,


“Customers need to

know you and you

need to know them.

That’s just part of the


environment that

we have in the

Northwest, and it’s

what Bartell’s is

known for”

Kari Escobedo,

IT, Bartell Drugs


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JULY 2019

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“It’s interesting to be

able to really change

and move where our

customers expect

us to be, but then

still embrace and

celebrate the long

history and deep

roots of Bartell’s”

Kari Escobedo,

IT, Bartell Drugs

there’s a significant change management

component we have to take into

consideration,” Escobedo explains.

“AI and machine learning. Those are big,

scary words for many traditional

retailers.” Currently, she is pursuing

several proof-of-concept tests of

predictive analytics and automation,

which she hopes will help to demystify

the functionality and experience of

incorporating leading-edge technology

for Bartell’s team.

Looking forward, Escobedo relishes

the chance to continue balancing

JULY 2019


transformation and tradition. “It’s

interesting to be able to really change

and move where our customers expect

us to be, but still embrace and celebrate

the long history and deep roots of

Bartell’s,” she says. “We’ve had some

great accomplishments over the last

six months. I’m super excited about the

shift in thinking and the ideas that are

coming from my technology team.

Through the rest of this year, we are

building a great foundation to continue

to launch a more enhanced and

personalized digital experience for our

customers.” For the first 129 years

of its existence, Bartell Drugs was

shaped by a world that went from

steam to the moon to the internet.

The next 129 years of Bartell Drugs’

history will be shaped by the initiatives

that Escobedo and her team pursue

over the next few years.

Your Safety...Our Commitment


JULY 2019







As the company focuses

on digitally transforming its

operations, Heath Consultants

prioritizes sustainability

across its functions



stablished 86 years ago, Heath Consultants

is now run by the third generation of the

Heath family. The business is the premier

leader in the natural gas leak detection industry,

servicing utility companies “all the way from the

well head to the burner tip”, explains Paul Wehnert,

Senior Vice President of the Sales and Marketing

unit. “Primarily, we’re a leak detection, underground

utility locating service, and products manufacturing

firm,” adds Wehnert.

The company employs around 1,500 people

across 44 states in the US, but has earned an

international presence through the distribution

of its products. A main aspect of the company’s

operations is conducting leak surveys. “A leak

survey primarily consists of a person walking

around documenting on paper where they went

and what they found. However, the industry is

currently going through a transition from paper

documentation to digital documentation,” remarks

Jeff Tuttle, CEO of Heath Consultants. “The way

in which we conduct these surveys is now all in

JULY 2019




“The industry

is currently

going through

a transition

from paper


to digital


Jeff Tuttle,

CEO, Heath Consultants

transition – whether the person is

walking or driving by vehicle, the

instrument readings, position of the

person and detections are all recorded.”

Heath is also expanding its

technological footprint with the launch

of its DP-IR Trainer, software that uses

augmented reality to train workers how

to conduct leak surveys.

Beyond how the information is

acquired and stored, the company is

also expanding its analytics capabilities

through a partnership with

software development company

Silicus. Heath is now able to evaluate

JULY 2019



the leak information, such as methane

readings and pipe quality. “We can ask:

‘Where are the risky sections of pipe?

Where are they located?’ We can then

provide a thesis or data source to that,”

continues Tuttle.

The company has leveraged its core

gas detection technology and connected

it with a cloud analytics

package. This enables oil producers to

then conduct Leak Detection and

Repair (LDAR) work, which often takes

places in remote areas. The industry is

shifting from using portable technologies

that an individual would carry to

technology that is connected to the

internet, such as data logging, GPS

and the cloud. “We still have portable

platforms, but connected portable

platforms. We have mobile platforms

where we have vehicles that drive

around a city network, and we have

aerial platforms like drones and UAVs,”

says Tuttle. The CEO highlights the

introduction of connected methane

sensors placed amongst city grids,

available on a 24/7 basis.

However, the role of analytics has

a much greater presence in the

company’s overall business strategy.

Enabling Enterprises

in the Cloud

Silicus is a cloud transformation services

company, focused on helping

enterprises deploy sustainable cloud

technologies- to support business

innovation, enable technology

modernization, scale technology-driven

differentiation, and manage technology

investments through their lifecycle.



“It’s also important

from a digital


perspective to

collect data on

the performance

of our technicians”

Ken Cowher,

Vice President of Operations for the

Service unit, Heath Consultants

“For us on the operations side, it’s also

important from a digital transformation

perspective to collect data on the

performance of our technicians,”

notes Ken Cowher, Vice President of

Operations for Heath’s Service unit.

“It is important we have a standardized

and automated way of doing that to

ensure we get good quality data we can

run predictive analytics on. This allows us

to proactively manage our crews and

make them as efficient as possible.”

Cowher explains that all service operations

lie within a competitive bid industry,

which in turn means that efficiency is key.



Jeffrey Tuttle, CEO

Jeffrey Tuttle has worked in various capacities within the

utilities sector for over 30 years. Prior to joining Heath he

served as General Manager for Greer Commission of Public

Works where he directed the company’s day-to-day

operations and long-term direction of all utility operations.

He has served on various association’s Board of

Directors including Piedmont Municipal Power Agency

(PMPA), American Public Gas Association (APGA),

Blue Ridge Scouting Council, and Greer Relief.

From 2011 to 2012, he served as the Chairman

of American Public Gas Association (APGA)

and Texas Gas Association.



JULY 2019

The company uses Microsoft’s Azure

cloud to host many of its systems,

including RMLD-Remote Emissions

Monitoring. Heath is piloting the

sensor-based technology that enables

it to monitor for leaks 24/7. The firm is

almost ready to introduce its Leak

Survey Analytic, also based in Azure,

which harbors the data from thousands

of surveys. “Every detail over time is

captured and made available at a click

so we can analyze the quality of the

survey, the completeness of the survey

and provide some of the risk factors

that feed into some of these pipeline

risk models,” Tuttle comments.

Heath has also partnered with Novara

Geosolutions, the asset management

products and services company.

“We’re working with them to develop

a field application for our leak survey

technicians to use. It will integrate with

customer facility mapping and track

breadcrumb indications of the leak

surveyor and the path that they take

over the pipeline. It will include indications

that we find, abnormal operating

conditions – anything that would be a

reportable situation from the survey –

and feed that information back to the

customer whilst connecting with our


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illing system,” explains Tuttle.

As well as addressing technology

transformation within its operations,

Heath Consultants is also becoming

very aware of sustainability issues in

its industry. “The industry is really

going through a major transition with

emission reduction – it grew up doing

the surveys from a safety standpoint,

assessing the potential hazards of gas

leaks in homes and buildings. Heath

grew up with the paramount mission to

find the dangerous leaks, help utilities

and mitigate them by repairing the pipe.

Now with the concerns over climate


Year founded


Approximate number

of employees


Houston, Texas



Ken Cowher, Vice President, Operations

Ken Cowher joined Heath in 1992 as a Field Technician with

a degree in Earth Sciences from Clarion University of

Pennsylvania. Ken managed the Northeast Division for

Heath for nearly twenty years and created a successful

corporate culture that other regions in the company strive

to imitate. After promotion in 2017 to Vice President of

Process Improvement and Service Business Unit Support,

Ken’s clear understanding of Heath’s values, corporate

mission and excellent leadership skills made him the clear

choice for another promotion to his current position.

Ken is responsible for all aspects of our field service

division including safety, training & development,

quality assurance and field operations.



“The industry

is really going

through a major


with emission


Jeff Tuttle,

CEO, Heath Consultants

change, methane is one of the gasses

that is of most concern – this gas can

leak from any point along the chain.

We’re trying to reduce that,” says Tuttle.

Working from the well pad up, the

company goes through various

processes in moving and producing

the gas which emits the most greenhouse

gases. “The well head, the well

and the tank battery which the oil is

stored in are all prone to emitting the

JULY 2019


gasses that come along with the oil.

There’s quite a bit of focus, activity and

research on gas detection and we are

participating in that emerging technology,”

Tuttle says.

With Heath focusing on its digital

transformation journey, the firm sees

itself at the centre of a digital future.

“Our company’s operations will us more

fix sensor technologies and more

autonomous type activities. We’ll be

exploring a lot of that with vehicles and

UAVs, with autonomy providing safety

inspections of these safety grids within

these smart cities,” says Paul.

Your Safety...Our Commitment










JULY 2019



Phillipe Mahler, Chief Procurement

Officer of GEODIS, discusses how

his company is utilising technology

amidst a digital transformation



s businesses across the globe are impacted

by digital transformation, companies in

a diverse range of industries are tasked

with undergoing a technological change in order to

accelerate processes. Phillipe Mahler, Chief Procurement

Officer (CPO) of freight transportation and

logistics firm GEODIS, understands the importance

of embracing technology in a bid to ease operations.

Since first joining GEODIS in January 2010 as

High-Tech Key Accounts Director, Mahler worked in

a variety of different roles, such as Corporate Market

Director and Transformation Director, before moving

into his current position as CPO in early 2013. Split

into five different lines of business, GEODIS’ operations

include Freight Forwarding, Distribution and

Express, Road Transport, Contract Logistics and

Supply Chain Optimisation (SCO) which manages

its customers’ supply chain by offering end-to-end

solutions, enabled by the company’s processes,

systems, infrastructure and personnel. Heading up

the operations and procurement division, Mahler

recognises the value of utilising his experience in

supply chain to help him succeed in his current role.

“My previous experience has allowed me to better

JULY 2019




“Our mission is to

solve and assemble

resources, capabilities

and technologies,

and to better design

the supply chain

on behalf of

our customers”

Phillipe Mahler


understand the key drivers of the supply

chain. After you’ve dealt with several

customers and experienced different

situations, you can take the time to

innovate and begin to understand where

the key areas are. I manage these key

points very carefully because they’re

either the points which are going to

create difficulties in operations or the

points which you can leverage to create

value,” he says. “Our mission is to solve

and assemble resources, capabilities

and technologies, and to better design

the supply chain on behalf of our

JULY 2019



customers. We buy services, resources

and technologies from the market and

from our sister lines of business or from

any other logistics service provider. We

assemble these solutions to create an

end to end network for our customers.”

With the procurement function transforming

on an ongoing basis, Mahler

reflects how GEODIS is changing the

way it conducts its business to coincide

with the latest industry trends. “On an

increasing basis, procurement is

becoming more of a science that is

based on data. It’s based on being

capable of forecasting what’s going to

happen in the next six months to two

years. Forecasting is taking the data

from the past and then leveraging all

the data announcing the trends and

looking at how the world will change,”

he explains. “I believe one of the biggest

challenges is transitioning from human

negotiation into a business which

scientifically predicts where you should

go. It’s a huge challenge; it’s the leveraging

of Big Data.”


With technology enabling GEODIS to

make its processes simpler, Mahler



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reflects on how the procurement

process has been transformed by

digitalisation. “In the past, procurement

was a question of understanding where

the data was and then deciding at what

price it could be bought from the market.

It’s always been a question of simulation

and has all been done manually using

Excel,” he says. “These days, we’re

able to capture much more data because

it’s all in one place and technology has

allowed us to use machines that help

us make decisions. Using the machine,

you can do a ‘what if’ in a machine

scenario which helps decide where

you want to go and how you want to

execute the processes.”

With innovation considered a key

priority at GEODIS, Mahler understands

the importance of ensuring technology

is adopted for a specific purpose that

will benefit the company’s operations

– and is not merely implemented for its

own sake. “When we want to utilise

new technology, the first thing I always

do is to have a discussion with a group

of key users of the current platform

and we conduct an evaluation. We have



JULY 2019

“On an increasing

basis, procurement is

becoming more of

a science that is based

on data. It’s based

on being capable of

forecasting what’s

going to happen in

the next six months

to two years”

Phillipe Mahler,




“When you adapt, you’re

already a follower. We don’t

want to be followers; we

want to be the leaders”

Phillipe Mahler,



to ask ourselves what we can do with

this current machine and how we can

implement new technology that will

enhance what we already have,” explains

Mahler. “We have to establish an

immediate need and ask ourselves that

if we use this technology, will it bring us

value today, tomorrow or in the future?

It’s important to think about where we

want to be in two years’ time and

understand how what we’re doing now

will fit into that. When you have an

immediate value, you have future

potential value and, based on these two

results, we’ll then make a decision whether

we want to adopt this technology.”

GEODIS has been recognised as

a ‘Leader’ by information technology

research and advisory firm Gartner in

its May 2018 Magic Quadrant for Third-

Party Logistics (3PL) worldwide, which

evaluates third-party logistics providers’

ability to be a preferred global provider.

With the company conducting business

in the US, India and Haiti, technology has

enabled each individual team to communicate

immediately and has allowed daily

operations to be sped up significantly.



In order to achieve mutual success,

GEODIS has formed over 500 global

partnerships. In particular, the firm has

established a key relationship with the

Commercial Relocation Network (CRN).

“Our collaboration with CRN has granted

us access to specialists everywhere in

the US. Be it in California, Arkansas,

Seattle, New York or Miami, we have

access to people who really know our

business and know what our specifics

are – it’s very valuable to us,” says Mahler.

“In general, we have lots of partners.

Some are very local, while some are

global and are capable of carrying

goods from Singapore to Mexico. We

really have all sizes of partnership.”

The importance of establishing significant

relationships with other companies

to achieve mutual success is

therefore considered a top priority at

GEODIS. “Due to the way we operate

our procurement activity, we’ve started

to move away from the customer/supplier

relationship. We don’t think ‘I’m your

customer so you go and execute.’ Or ’I’m

your supplier so you pay or I don’t



execute’. Those days are gone,” he says.

“Before beginning a partnership, it’s

important to trust each other. You need

to accept some level of transparency

on the cost and what’s possible, as well

as deciding what can and can’t be

optimised. Once you’re there, you’re in

a relationship which is completely different

from a typical, traditional customer

relationship because you’re together

in the same boat, facing the same challenges

and are both trying to create value

for each company, as well as seeking

the best result for the final customer.”


Looking to the future, Mahler is aiming

to ensure GEODIS continues to lead

the way and set trends in order to stay

ahead of the competition. “We’re

passionate about our business, have

proven experience and possess a truly

global presence. I believe those three

things are what make us different from

our rivals. It’s vital to have the best

people working for us and investing in

people is something we rank very highly

at our company. We’re always on

the lookout for new talent, as well as

retaining what we already have through

JULY 2019


providing our staff with the opportunity

to progress, change position or relocate

to another part of the world. Innovation,

technology and the people are considered

our three key pillars,” he says. “At

SCO we benchmark our solutions,

approach and IT tools, and consistently

look at the external world to understand

what’s coming. Adapting is a word from

the past. When you adapt, you’re already

a follower. We don’t want to be followers;

we want to be the leaders.”


Future proof



security for

the enterprise





JULY 2019




Cory Gould, the first

CISO at Canadian

Western Bank FInancial

Group, discusses using

cutting-edge technology,

relationship building

and user awareness

to combat cyberthreats

and help realize the

company’s bold vision


he world is evolving. The

proliferation of digital devices,

mass migration to the cloud,

and a rising tide of data is changing the

nature of the enterprise. In few verticals

is this truer than the banking and

finance sector. Bank vaults piled high

with paper money are being replaced

by digital vaults, in-person meetings at

a local branch are giving way to 24/7

mobile banking solutions, and major

banking houses are facing serious

competition from a new generation

JULY 2019


of digital-only ‘challenger banks’. Digital

transformation means new opportunities,

greater efficiency and insight into

the business ecosystem, but every

paradigm shift brings new challenges.

According to the Ninth Annual Cost

of Cybercrime Study, released in

March 2019 by Accenture, the methods,

targets and impact of cyber attacks

is evolving at an accelerated pace.

In 2018, the report found, the average

cost of cybercrime to companies rose

by 12% year on year to US$13mn.

“We appreciate that this is the new

world; things are changing and they’re

changing very, very quickly,” says

Cory Gould, Chief Information Security

Officer (CISO) at Canadian Western

Bank (CWB) Financial Group. “20 years

ago, we were concerned with things

like debit skimming - manual, tactical

ways of committing fraud. Now, the

proliferation of digitization and the

sheer accessibility of financial services

remotely and somewhat anonymously

is certainly driving the rise of cybercrime.


We’ve seen a significant rise in the

levels of organization, structure and

sophistication of these threats.”

One of the youngest banks in

Canada, CWB Financial Group is

headquartered in Edmonton, Alberta

and positions itself as the top choice

for Canadian enterprises in search

of expert advice delivered through

a relationship-based approach. “Our

size provides us with a level of agility

that is allowing us to respond to change

in the industry,” says Gould, who

started at CWB Financial Group in 1997,

and became the first CISO in the

bank’s history in December 2018.

“The financial industry has been fairly

static for a century. Over the last 15

years, however, we’ve seen a real shift

in the demands of our clients. Traditional

banking isn’t fitting the bill anymore,”

he explains.” We sat down with him to

explore the approach Gould is taking

towards neutralizing cyber threats to

CWB Financial Group as it continues

to grow at an industry-leading rate


JULY 2019



(recently surpassing the $30bn total

asset milestone for the first time) alongside

the global digital banking revolution.

“We’re on the cusp of something

really special,” enthuses Gould.

“Increasingly, we’re being recognized

for the value that we bring to our

clients.” As the first CISO in CWB’s

history, Gould is part of a bold and

innovative shift in the bank’s own

culture. A crucial success factor, he

explains, is establishing an enterprise

architecture in which security methodology

is embedded at the initial stage.

“It’s a really big win and, I think, critical

“We’ve seen a

significant rise

in the levels of


structure and


of these threats”

Cory Gould,

CISO, Canadian Western Bank



for an organization as they move

forward,” says Gould, admitting that

CWB Financial Group had experienced

challenges maintaining strong relationships

between security and leadership

before, “because we didn’t have a senior

dedicated role for information security.

It’s 2019. Nobody is going to deny the

need for security, but it’s very easy for

security to take a backseat in the wake

of rapid change. Now, we have a senior

security leader out in the organization,

pounding the pavement and building

relationships with key decision makers,

positioning us to be much more

proactive with respect to security.”

This closer, more collaborative

relationship with the enterprise and

technology side of CWB Financial

Group is also driving a shift in the

philosophy of the security side of

the business. The traditional role of

a security division as a deterrent,

Gould explains, simply isn’t the best

way forward in the modern world.

“Gone are the days when security just

pounds its fist on the desk and says

‘No! Come back later.’ That’s not

practical in the digital world we live in.”

The rapid advancement of technology

JULY 2019

is at the center of CWB’s progress,

and Gould’s mantra of “enable not

deter” reflects it. Technology, he

contends, may be creating both

business and cybercriminal opportunity,

but it is also enabling and

empowering security. Stronger

relationships between the security

and business elements of CWB

Financial Group is at the core of this.

“Our ability to sit at the table with the

business, talk through their needs

and challenges, and offer up technology

solutions we know are inherently

secure, brings to them functionality 157


Cory Gould

Chief Information Security Officer

Cory Gould is the Chief Information Security Officer

at CWB Financial Group, a diversified organization

providing specialized business and retail financial

services across Canada. Mr. Gould has over 20 years

experience in Information Technology and Security

primarily within the Financial industry and as the

first CISO at CWB Financial Group, is working

to mature the Information Security practice by

embedding sound security awareness and behaviours

within the culture of the organization.



“Our size provides us

with a level of agility

that is allowing us to

respond to change

in the industry”

Cory Gould,

CISO, Canadian Western Bank

JULY 2019



and capability they’ve never had

before,” Gould explains.

Rapid and ongoing digital transformation

has become the day to day

reality for any enterprise seeking to

stay abreast of the information

revolution. Gould recognizes the power

of employing technology to automate

day to day operations in an institution,

as well as process data to generate the

kind of insights that lead to high-level

decisioning. The key to both applications

is artificial intelligence (AI) and

machine learning. “One of the key

things to enable is machine learning.

We are absolutely neck deep in data

and analytics like everyone else on

the planet. The more dependent we,

as an organization, become on our data

and knowledge, the more it becomes

currency. So, we’re using it within our

information security program to gain

intel and understanding,” Gould explains.

In addition to boosting the detection

and insight gathering capabilities of

CWB’s security department, AI and ML



is set to play a key role in automation.

“Like any other position in IT, there are

the necessary evils of day-to-day

operational activities,” Gould notes.

“With those ongoing, almost mundane

tasks that we have to perform, there is

the risk of human error. Any time that

you can remove that day-to-day work

that just needs to be done from very

capable resources and have them

focus on the big picture, it’s valuable.”

Striving for a near-perfect security

architecture is no mean feat, and Gould

recognizes that CWB Financial Group

cannot stand against the rising tide of

cybercrime alone. “We rely on strong

partners who have a genuine interest

in our success; FireEye is one of those

partners. FireEye sees the world of

Cyber Security through the eyes of

active threat actors. It is this relevant,

real world experience that is assisting

CWB Financial Group in meeting our

Cyber Security objectives,” he explains.

Every year, driven by experience,

artificial intelligence and increasingly

sophisticated software, cybersecurity

solutions reach closer and closer to

infallibility. “With the inception of AI, ML

and all of the things that we’re able to

do with technology today, there’s a lot

JULY 2019



“With the inception

of AI, ML and all of

the things that we’re

able to do with

technology today,

there’s a lot that

can be prevented”

Cory Gould,

CISO, Canadian Western Bank

that can be prevented.” However, as

technology grows more sophisticated,

the most common vulnerability for an

organization grows more obvious: the

human element. According to Accenture’s

report, “Whether by accident or

intent, many employees are often the

root cause of successful cyberattacks.”

While security systems and protocols

can be updated and tweaked on a daily

basis, Gould points out: “You can’t

patch humans. Humans are vulnerable,

passionate and intellectual; they don’t


JULY 2019

think in terms of bits and bytes and

ones and zeros, so people make

mistakes and we recognize that.” In

order to shore up this potential weak

point, Gould is turning to the flagship

skill in his arsenal: relationship building

and management. “It wasn’t until one of

our more recent and most significant

initiatives that we really recognized how

important change management is,” he

recalls. “Now, one of the most critical

tools in our security toolkit is our User

Awareness Program.

We spend a lot of time with the organization

educating, bringing about greater

awareness. We know that we will never

be 100% in that area but will continue

working with the business and our

internal clients to keep security at the

forefront of the way CWB Financial

Group operates.”

The threat of cybercrime is only

expected to rise, and the constant arms

race of technology, training and

relationship building shows no signs

of slowing down. Looking to the future,




JULY 2019

Gould has the responsibility of ensuring

that CWB Financial Group remains agile

and responsive, even as it continues to

scale. With phishing and ransomware

replacing cheque fraud and men with

guns in balaclavas, Gould and his team

are on the front line, protecting CWB

Financial Group as it strives towards

greatness. Reflecting on over 20 years

at the bank, Gould looks ahead filled

with confidence and optimism. “As an

organization, we pride ourselves on

listening intently and asking the right

questions to provide our clients with the

right financial solutions. We are

obsessed with our clients’ success and

our proactive approach to supporting

them, and we are obsessed with

ensuring that the information they

entrust us with remains confidential and

secured,” he says. “It’s a bold vision but

I think it’s achievable. I’ve spent my

career here and I can honestly say that

when this group of great individuals

puts its mind to something, there’s little

that gets in the way.”











JULY 2019



Raymond Wilson, COO of

Cashco Financial, discusses

the company’s five core values

and how they are driving

the digital transformation

of its customer journey



oday, more than 30% of Canadians are

living from paycheque to paycheque.

The number of people in debt is rising too,

with the Bank of Canada reporting in May 2018

that the average Canadian typically owes around

CA$1.70 for every dollar they own. Canadians are

not just struggling financially: according to a report

by NBC, financial pressure and consequential

stress can both directly and indirectly affect mental

and physical health. Millions of underbanked

Canadians are in need of banking and money

management services, of short-term loans to make

it to the next paycheque, and of long-term services

to nurture and support their aspirations.

The idea of Cashco has been rooted in a number

of businesses founded by the company’s CEO,

Tim Latimer. Cashco Financial as it exists today has

been around for a decade delivering alternative

financial services to the citizens of British Columbia,

Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario, both through

brick and mortar and online – providing over

140,000 clients with long and short-term personal

JULY 2019




“We work hard

to make sure

these are living,

breathing values


throughout the


Raymond Wilson,

COO, Cashco Financial

loans, cheque cashing and, as of 2017

in Alberta, banking services. “Over the

course of our history our business

model has continued to evolve, at

a time we were focused solely on

providing access to payday loans,

then added and evolved to installment

products, and now we’re focused

on bringing banking services to our

clients. There isn’t a one size fits all

solution to our clients banking needs

so we work to offer banking-like

products that can offer support to

JULY 2019



people that can’t get help anywhere

else,” says Raymond Wilson, Chief

Operating Officer (COO) at Cashco.

Wilson, who has served in his current

role for three years, is able to bring

a powerful sense of empathy to the

company’s relationship with the numerous

underserved families and individuals

across the country. “I grew up in a

single parent home; my mother raised

myself and my brother, and there were

many times I could see the stress on

her face as she was trying to feed and

clothe the both of us,” he recalls.

“I really feel passionate about the

subprime loans market because I can

connect with the customers. There

were plenty of days growing up when

there was nothing in the fridge. I know

where they’re coming from.”

Cashco serves its clients by working

tirelessly to embody its five core

values: Respect the vision, Embrace

Can I, Live the Golden Rule, Own the

Results and Communicate Honestly.

The core values set the expectations



for staff on how Cashco employees

behave and treat each other. “We work

hard to make sure these are living,

breathing values embodied throughout

the organization,” says Wilson. “The

organization moves quickly, and we

have a big job to do. If we don’t have

clear expectations of ourselves and

the people around us, it’s very hard

to do what we do every day.”

Over the last 5 years Cashco

introduced a decision engine that takes

all the data feed into it and works to

make better predictions on client’s

likelihood of honoring their financial

commitment to them. “At the time, it was

transformational for our business, today

it means we can make better decisions

on affordability and support our clients

need in order to help them maintain a

positive relationship with their money.”

That technology now needs to be

monitored and adjusted continuously

to ensure that, first, clients keep moving

along their credit journey, and second,

that Cashco builds a sustainable

business that can be around for many

years serving the underserved and

underbanked. This technology is heavily

based on artificial intelligence/machine

JULY 2019

learning that speeds up the delivery

and removes friction from the client’s

journey with Cashco.

One of the largest challenges that

Wilson recognizes is the preservation

of the empathetic, personal experience

as Cashco increases its digital offerings.

“We know we can be successful when

the client sits down at the desk and we

have a conversation. But, as we move

into a more digital age, we need to start

looking at other ways to create those

touchpoints and still maintain that

relationship while the client benefits

from the accessibility of digital products,”

he says. The company’s efforts range

from simple steps, like attaching an

employee’s picture to an email to

humanize the interaction for the client,

to the construction of an entirely new

portal to allow for easy access to

account information and Cashco’s new

banking services. Rather than cold

functionality that widens the distance

between Cashco and its customers,

Wilson sees the “exponential growth

of technological applications” as an

enabler for increasingly personalised

and empathetic services. “We’re

utilizing technology to make our



Raymond Wilson

Raymond Wilson has been with Cashco Financial

for 10 years where he started as a VP managing the

branch network. In 2016 he was promoted to Chief

Operating Officer and now oversees all operations.

He has worked in this market for almost thirty

years and is very passionate about what Cashco

stands for and the people they serve.

Wilson has four beautiful children and

has been married to his wife Leslie for

13 years. He is also an avid golfer and

enjoys the outdoors with his family.




Clients served


Year founded


Edmonton, Alberta


JULY 2019

customer journey as painless as

possible,” he explains.

In particular, Cashco is employing

analytics and artificial intelligence (AI)

to both empower the front end of its

business and augment its back-end

decision making. “We use AI for our

loan decisioning, which we’re constantly

tuning to make more efficient, and

twinning with our analytics to create a

higher loan completion and closing rate,”

says Wilson. Cashco has also made

the decision to build its AI in-house.

“Our CEO has the entrepreneurial spirit,”

Wilson explains. “With that comes quick

change; this way we don’t have to wait

to make alterations the way we would

if you bought something off the shelf.

We acknowledge that there’s a cost to

doing things in-house, but it allows us

to be much more agile.”

AI also plays a critical role in Cashco’s

latest project: applying decision making

to the loan recovery process. “We’re

working with another company to bring

AI into our recovery and collections

department,” says Wilson. “If clients

are unable to make a payment, there’s

a reason for that. AI can help us

understand not only how to best

communicate with people, but how


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to help them ensure they can complete

their loans with us.”

To maintain relevancy Cashco has

recently mapped out the strategic

direction for the next three years,

identifying the necessary business

decisions in order to compete in their

space – knowing the space continues

to grow and demand is increasing.

“A digital Cashco is imperative, and

we have it centered around the idea

of digital client-care services,” says

Wilson. “Overall, our digital ecosystem

is focused on leveraging our data, and

“Respect the

Vision, Embrace

Change, Live

the Golden Rule,

Own the Results

and Communicate


Raymond Wilson,

COO, Cashco Financial




advanced analytics platforms are built

together so decision making is driven

by the business, and AI/machine

learning will be the driving factor is

producing sound recommendations

to guide the process.”

The entire enterprise is designed to

accommodate and exceed the needs

and expectations of the underserved.

Cashco provides relief today by

making it easy to get an immediate loan

regardless of current or past credit

history. The company accepts its

“We’re utilizing


to make our

customers’ journey

as painless as


Raymond Wilson,

COO, Cashco Financial

JULY 2019


clients, wherever they are on their

journey. Due to the multiple solutions it

offers, Cashco is the only finance

company that can help move clients

through the entire credit continuum to

achieve a better credit rating and

create hope for tomorrow.

Looking to the future, Cashco

Financial has bold ambitions. “Our big,

hairy, audacious goal is to be recognized

as a new, different kind of bank

by 2025,” Wilson concludes. “We’re

going to build a forward-looking

resilient business with a loan book of

$250mn by 2021, serving underbanked

Canadians with subprime loans, and

continue to offer meaningful banking

delivered through advice-based,

intimate, one-to-one relationships.”





to the

JULY 2019








As the technology industry

evolves, Ingram Micro

continues to enable digital

transformation with the cloud



ngram Micro is an emergent leader in

the global technology sector; dedicated

to enabling its customers and its entire

organization to achieve technological transformation.

“Technology underpins our organization and

the pressure is on to get it right. To achieve a

competitive advantage, companies must align with

the evolving landscape. Ingram Micro is well poised

to meet the demands of this evolution,” says Greg

Onoprijenko, Director of Cloud for the company’s

Canada operations. “We’re continuously innovating

to maintain relevancy for our customers and our

entire organization.”

As the world’s largest technology distributor, the

company provides a wide array of products to its

customers including laptops, smartphones, printers

and IT infrastructure and services to its wide variety

of customers, reaching from retail to telecommunications

to value-added resellers (VARs). In Canada,

Onoprijenko heads the company’s fastest-growing

division: Cloud. “As customers transform their

businesses and start to adopt more cloud services,

their dependence on the IT channel for guidance

JULY 2019





is extremely

important to us,

and there’s a

lot of pressure

to get it right”

Greg Onoprijenko,

Director of Cloud Canada

Ingram Micro

JULY 2019



has become increasingly critical to

their success,” he says. “This increase

in demand has resulted in revenue

growth as we develop more solutions

in the portfolio and add a larger staff to

support the demand. We’re fortunate

to be leading an extremely profitable

and fast-growing business.”

The company’s Cloud operations

are divided into three business units.

The first is the Microsoft team, which

primarily focuses on Office 365 and

the associated licensing models. The

second unit addresses Software-as-a-

Service (SaaS), such as cloud security,

backup and recovery, and communications

and collaboration services.

The third unit is the Infrastructure-as-a-

Service (IaaS) team. “The IaaS team is

completely focused on data centre

transformation and public cloud

infrastructure. The solutions we sell

within that portfolio include Microsoft

Azure, Amazon Web Services, and

IBM Cloud,” explains Onoprijenko.

“One of the competitive advantages

we have in the Cloud division is just the

sheer breadth and depth of the team.

We have over 1,500 dedicated cloud

employees globally, with extensive



industry experience. For our customers

and channel partners who need

guidance and advice, we have the

industry’s best team to lean on,”

comments Onoprijenko. As Ingram

Micro transforms its business model,

change management across the

company has its challenges. To

effectively combat these challenges,

Ingram Micro’s Cloud team is continuously

providing education to ensure

that “the entire company is aligned

with the cloud strategy.”

The company’s platform strategy is

another clear differentiator that

separates it from its competitors.

Ingram Micro offers a fully automated

platform that enables cloud services

transactions with centralized dashboards,

reporting and support.

“The platform covers any need that

a partner may have when delivering

cloud services,” he continues.

“As channel partners become mature

and more successful in the cloud, they

recognize that automation is critical to

scale their businesses and that they

need to have their eCommerce platform

JULY 2019

to transact cloud services. Our global

cloud service offerings make us a

logical option for these companies.”

As customers within the technology

sector shift towards an as-a-service

model, Ingram Micro is adapting its

strategy. “Instead of customers buying

and owning IT products, the evolution

is towards everything-as-a-monthlyfee.

That puts pressure on the IT

channel partners to evolve and change

to meet customer demands. It also

puts pressure on IT distributors to

change how they deliver solutions to

the market. Finally, the onus is on the 189


Greg Onoprijenko,

Director, Cloud Canada

Greg Onoprijenko is Director of Cloud

for Ingram Micro Canada. He provides

overall strategy, guidance and leadership

for Ingram Micro’s cloud services business

unit. He assumes all responsibilities of

the cloud business in the Canadian market

which includes sales, marketing,

vendor management, and new

strategic alliances.



Employee expectations are rising.

60% of employees expect their employers to

provide the latest technology. See how you

can use modern tools to attract and retain the

best talent.

vendors, who are ultimately creating

these products and services to evolve,”

reveals Onoprijenko. To embrace the

change in demand for both hardware

and software products, Ingram Micro

is increasingly introducing new service

options, with Onoprijenko claiming they

are leading the industry.

Onoprijenko cites traditional

software licensing as an example, with

customers purchasing the licenses

and associated maintenance to own

and manage. With the current evolution

underway, firms are moving away from

owning these licenses, instead opting

JULY 2019

for a pay-as-you-go alternative to

access the software, which typically

resides in the cloud. “It’s an evolution.

A lot of the channel partners recognize

this and are proactively transforming

their companies. While some companies

recognize the need to change,

and that they need help with it, others

are unresponsive to change and risk

getting left behind.” With the experience

of the Cloud team, Ingram Micro

can offer its partners guidance and

knowledge through seminars, educational

opportunities and one-on-one

“We recently

moved the entire

company to

Microsoft Office

365 instead

of hosting the

solution ourselves”

Greg Onoprijenko,

Director of Cloud Canada

Ingram Micro




coaching, differentiating the firm from

its competitors. “We can surround our

clients with resources which can guide

them along and motivate them to

change proactively,” he adds.

As well as enabling its customers

to advance their operations, Ingram

Micro is working towards the same

goal of innovating its functions

internally. “We’re changing our business

model and evolving to the cloud.

We previously had large data centres

with IT infrastructure that serviced the

entire company. As an example, we

recently moved the entire company

to Microsoft Office 365 instead of

hosting the solutions ourselves. We

also standardized the entire company

on Microsoft Dynamics CRM, versus

hosting our own.”

With cloud adoption increasing at

such a rapid rate, one of the company’s

biggest challenges is to compete with

other businesses taking advantage of

the advancement. “Everybody understands

the opportunity and is pursuing

it. Ingram Micro envisioned this

opportunity before our competitors

and started delivering cloud services

about 12 years ago. We certainly

JULY 2019






Year founded


Approximate number

of employees




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the opportunity

and is pursuing it.

Ingram Micro saw

this opportunity

before our


Greg Onoprijenko,

Director of Cloud Canada

Ingram Micro

invested early,” Onoprijenko says.

Within such a competitive industry,

the company has the advantage of

its hardworking team with its breadth

of knowledge, as well as its years of

experience in the sector. As the firm

continues to grow, the cloud will be

a foundational part of its strategy.







JULY 2019










roviding one of the largest further education

facilities in Canada, the University

of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) holds the

reputation of a leading organization in the country.

The university is accelerating its prestige with

significant growth over the past few years through

the development of new facilities, and is home to

over 25 buildings with more on the horizon. With

sustainability recognized as a top priority at UTM,

from both an environmental perspective and as a

boost to its reputation as a sustainable organization,

the university has formed key plans to meet the

challenge head-on.

Tasked with enabling the university to achieve

a more sustainable future, Ahmed Azhari, Director of

Utilities, Sustainability & Grounds at UTM, believes

student engagement is key to realizing this

important ambition. “Staff and student engagement

is incredibly important because sustainability isn’t

just one person’s job,” he affirms. “It’s our job

collectively as the UTM community to ensure

everything we do reduces the impact on the

environment and help mitigate climate change.

JULY 2019


© Jiaying Song











Ahmed Azhari,

Director of Utilities, Sustainability

& Grounds at UTM

We’ve conducted lots of student

engagement activities to educate both

students and faculty members, ensuring

they are aware as to how they can use

the buildings in a more efficient manner.”

The university has installed energy

dashboards into a number of the key

buildings on campus to equip students

and staff members with the knowledge

to understand how much energy the

building is using on a real-time basis.

To accelerate this project, the university

has established a ‘Grow Smart,

Grow Green’ strategy which focuses

on key topic areas such as green

JULY 2019

uildings, natural areas, transportation,

water management, energy management,

waste and recycling. “As part

of this scheme, we’ve introduced a ban

on bottled water,” explains Azhari.

“Bottled water isn’t available to buy

anywhere on campus and we’ve

replaced the single-use plastic with

water fountains that allow those on

campus to refill their bottles instead of

purchasing new ones. This is key to our

sustainability strategy moving forward.”

Operating with a clear goal in mind,

the university is engaging with students

to develop waste and recycling plans.

“We’re trying to create an educational

campaign in the community to

encourage our students and staff

to recycle things properly,” remarks

Azhari. “It’s a big engagement project

that will help standardize all the waste

bins we have on campus, as well as

producing new recycling schemes and

educating the faculty and community

on how to dispose of waste properly.”

With many buildings across campus

recognized with a silver standard

minimum in Leadership in Energy and

Environmental Design (LEED), the

university’s buildings – which are made





from recycled and regional materials

– include features such as green

cleaning programs, low-flow fixtures,

energy efficient mechanical and

electrical systems, low-emitting

materials and green roofs. “The

construction policy that we have in

place is that any new buildings must

meet our requirements of being a

minimum of LEED silver,” says Azhari.

“However, we can’t stop there; we’re

always looking to achieve more.” UTM’s

HMALC (Hazel McCallion Academic

Learning Centre), instructional building,

Deerfield Hall and innovation complex

all meet this requirement, as well as the










Ahmed Azhari,

Director of Utilities, Sustainability

& Grounds at UTM

JULY 2019

minimum target of the upcoming

North Building. In addition, the Health

Sciences Complex and David building

third floor renovation have both

achieved LEED gold status, while the

new science building is also anticipated

to achieve this goal. “I have heavily

participated in the design of the New

Science building at UTM, which is set

to house of the majority of the wet and

dry lab research that takes place on

campus,” notes Azhari. “It’s targeted

to be a minimum LEED silver that will

incorporate two major renewable

energy systems; geothermal system

for building heating and cooling as well

as a solar photovoltaic system to offset

some of the building electrical requirements.

We will ensure that it utilizes other

sustainability measures that qualify it to

be certified above the minimum target

under the LEED program.”


Ahmed Azhari

Ahmed Azhari has a diverse range of primary skills such as

Sustainable Design, Facilities Management and Energy

Management. Professionally, Ahmed manages the design of

progressive disciplinary building systems; oversees the

installation, operation and monitoring for the safe, comfortable,

and environmentally friendly operations of modern buildings.

He has delivered designs that play a significant role on the

sustainability and energy demand of buildings while

utilizing renewable energy, sustainability, low carbon

technologies, LEED strategies, and energy management

techniques. Ahmed is currently registered with

Professional Engineers Ontario as a Professional Engineer

(P.Eng.), with Canada Green Building Council as

a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design

Accredited Professional (LEED AP), and with

Association of Energy Engineers as Certified

Energy Manager (CEM).




JULY 2019


Ahmed Azhari,

Director of Utilities, Sustainability

& Grounds at UTM

collaborative partner

for a sustainable future.

EXP has the right blend of expertise and experience to

understand, innovate, partner, and deliver.

let’s explore the possibilities.

exp com


The university formed a key partnership

with EXP, through a competitive

public procurement process, to help

with the design retrofit for two projects

on campus; the Recreational Athletics

and Wellness Centre (RAWC) and the

Kaneff Centre. “EXP designed the

system and helped us put the tender

out for public pricing. They currently

help us on the construction administration

and the project management

to help successfully deliver,” he says.

“The RAWC is an athletics building,

it has a swimming pool and a sauna,

with significant heating demand









Ahmed Azhari,

Director of Utilities, Sustainability

& Grounds at UTM



JULY 2019

equirements. We realized a solar hot

water system would be an ideal installation

in a building like this to help offset

some of the building heating demand

and fulfil our commitments to utilizing

renewable energy sources in efforts

to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

Looking to the future, Azhari has a

clear vision of how UTM can continue

the promising start it has made. “We

haven’t finished – we’re always looking

to grow. We’ve signed up for the

University Climate Change Coalition

Challenge (UC3 Challenge), which aims

to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions

by 37% by 2030, against a 1990

baseline. My vision from a sustainability

perspective is to design and enable all

future buildings to become Carbon

Neutral in order to help remediate our

environmental impact and help mitigate

climate change.”



JULY 2019

How technology and

people have inspired

sustainability and

climate action

in Ontario







Katelyn McFadyen, Manager

of Energy and Environment for

the Town of Caledon, discusses

the push for sustainability

through the use of technology

and empowering the people

behind climate action



aledon, located in southern Ontario and

an hour’s drive from Toronto, is a shining

example of the positive impact that can

be generated through sustainability initiatives at

the municipal level. Katelyn McFadyen, Manager

of Energy and Environment at the Town of Caledon,

and Cristina Guido, the Energy and Environment

Specialist in McFadyen’s team, are enthusiastic and

passionate about the impactful initiatives being

enacted across the municipality. “I think it’s safe to

say that, no matter the size of the municipality, you’re

still able to be creative when addressing climate

change,” says McFadyen. “The Energy and Environment

division is responsible for providing corporate

and community stakeholders with guidance and

tools for addressing climate change, energy

management and sustainable operations practices,”

says McFadyen. “We do a lot of research and facilitation

to build corporate and community capacity,

so that projects that address climate change can

be implemented collaboratively and effectively.”

JULY 2019




in buildings is

our number one

contributor to

corporate GHG


Katelyn McFadyen,

Manager of Energy and Environment



“We were


by the Mayor’s


Challenge for

a 10% reduction

in energy

usage in our

Town Hall”

Cristina Guido,

Energy and Environment Specialist

Recieving the award from Mayor Allan Thompson

The overarching aims of the Town’s

corporate environmental initiatives can

be boiled down to reducing greenhouse

gas (GHG) emissions and

maximizing the efficiency of buildings

and transport networks. “Energy

consumption in buildings is our number

one contributor to corporate GHG

emissions,” says McFadyen. Guido is

currently working on updating the

Town’s corporate five-year energy

management plan, which is set to be

released in 2019. “It’s a requirement of

the provincial government, but we took

this as an opportunity to go beyond

provincial regulations and expand this

to broader corporate GHG emissions,”

says Guido. “We’re assessing strategies

to enhance operations and

maintenance, and get our buildings to

be as efficient as possible.” Through a

collaborative partnership with the

Town’s Corporate Energy Team, a

group made up of the Town’s building

operations specialists, Caledon is

working to minimize emissions

stemming from its buildings. This is

being done through enhanced

operational efficiency and conservation-focused

retrofits. “We’re very

fortunate to have the level of engage-

JULY 2019



ment from our Building Operations

Team that we do,” says McFadyen.

“They’re an incredible group of people

who’ve totally embraced our corporate

strategy and are actively engaged in

– and excited about – efforts to

leverage opportunities and retrofits to

reduce energy consumption.”

At the outset of her time with the

Town of Caledon, Guido was pivotal in

the development of the Town’s building

benchmarking initiative that McFadyen’s

team has since used as a powerful

indicator of building efficiency. The

project is driven by RETScreen Expert,

a software developed by Natural

Resources Canada, a department of

the Canadian Government. It streamlines

the Town’s building benchmarking

initiative as well as visualizing progress

on Caledon’s goals. “RETScreen

allows us to normalize for variables that

drive energy consumption which staff

cannot control, such as weather. This

allows us to isolate factors such as

heating degree days, cooling degree

days, and the number of days arena ice

is operational in facilities. For some

facilities, we also look at recreation

building booking hours and how this



JULY 2019

influences their energy performance,”

says Guido. “We also use RETScreen

to monitor progress towards our

reduction targets. For example, our

current corporate energy management

plan has a target of a 9% reduction in

building energy consumption, and we

use the software to monitor how close

we are to reaching that target,”

explains Guido. Caledon is well on its

way to meeting its current goals, and

McFadyen enthuses that doing so is

just the beginning.

Another major area of focus is

transport, with McFadyen’s team

working not only to reduce the GHG

impact of Caledon’s fleet but also to lay

the groundwork for future vehicular

solutions. “One of our main focuses

with Town-owned vehicles will be

developing a corporate green fleet

strategy and doing some modelling to

see what types of lower-emission fuels

are less harmful to the environment,”

says Guido. Progress has already been

made in this area, with McFadyen



Katelyn McFadyen

Katelyn McFadyen is Manager of the Energy and Environment

Division at the Town of Caledon. Having completed her Master’s

degree in Environmental Sustainability at the University of

Edinburgh, McFadyen has worked at the Town for almost six

years as a key driver of the Town’s environmental portfolio

successes. In her previous role as Energy and Environment

Officer, McFadyen launched the Corporate Energy Team

and established the Town’s Corporate Energy Revolving

Fund, a self-sustaining fund that financially enables

energy retrofits in Town facilities. McFadyen is

currently updating the Town’s community climate

change mitigation and adaptation action plan, driving

the implementation of the Peel Climate Change Strategy,

and leading the Energy and Environment Division.



Annual budget

for 2019





Approximate number

of employees


JULY 2019



by Design


The Town of Caledon Southfields Community Centre Conceptual Rendering

The Savings by Design

program helps builders

improve energy and

environmental performance

in new construction projects.

When a building model

exceeds the Ontario Building

Code’s energy performance

requirements by 15%

(combined gas and electrical

savings), it becomes eligible

for incentive funding.





The Savings by Design program

offers many options to help

customers build resiliency into their

projects, lowering long-term

operational and ongoing energy

costs. A Visioning Session helps

define project requirements and

sustainability priorities by exploring

site, regulatory, and market

conditions. Issues are then identified

and prioritized in the Integrated

Design Process Session (IDP).

At the full-day IDP workshop, a team

of design experts in sustainable

building, lighting, HVAC, storm water

management, and planning explore

possible design improvements to the

building. The team works with the

SBD experts to explore alternative

opportunities to save energy and

meet the goals of the program.

Real-time modelling allows the team

to explore energy savings measures

with immediate feedback on the

energy impacts. After the workshop,

SBC delivers a final energy model

based on the ECMs selected as well

as a report summarizing the

discussions of the day.

The Town of Caledon has a Corporate Green Building Standard that requires

LEED Silver certification for all new facilities over 10,000 square feet. When

planning its new recreation facility at Kennedy Road and Dougall Avenue, the

Town of Caledon turned to Enbridge Gas and Savings by Design.

“The Savings by Design program presented a strong alignment with our

Council-approved building standard,” says Katelyn McFadyen, Manager,

Energy and Environment, Finance and Infrastructure Services.

“It provided an integrated learning opportunity between Town staff and the

project consulting team. All the parties came together to share information

about facility construction best practices and energy efficient technologies.”

The 65,000 square foot Southfields Community Centre contains a pool, fitness

area, library, OPP station, youth and seniors space, and a community hub

containing a Montessori School, Parent Child Centre and other community

partners. A groundbreaking ceremony took place in the fall of 2017.

A significant outcome of the Savings by Design program, according to the

Town of Caledon, was the integrated learning opportunity about construction

best practices, technologies and approaches available to reduce energy

consumption, plus methods to improve the management of stormwater.

The SBD program also had a direct impact on projects beyond Southfields

Community Centre. “We invited staff outside of the project to expand their

knowledge capacity and understand the justification for the construction of

high performing facilities.”


Sponsored by Enbridge and facilitated by Sustainable Buildings Canada (SBC),

Savings by Design provides incentive funding for projects to engage in an

integrated design workshop process with real-time energy modelling.

Enbridge offered the Town of Caledon free access to a team of multidisciplinary

experts to explore high performance building energy targets as well as other

environmental objectives including wellness, low impact design, water

management, and more.

“Although some of the stormwater management technologies and approaches

presented during the SBD workshop were not integrated into the Southfields

Community Centre, these practices were integrated into other facility

construction projects in Caledon,” adds McFadyen.

For more information, visit

“We were recognized

by the Mayor’s

Megawatt Challenge

for a 10% reduction

in energy usage

in our Town Hall”

Cristina Guido,

Energy and Environment Specialist

noting that the Town has developed

a strong foundation for future electric

vehicle (EV) infrastructure. “For a

municipality of 70,000, we’re really

proud that we have 13 publicly available

EV charging stations, and six plug-in

hybrid vehicles in our fleet,” she adds,

noting that these successes are of

particular importance to Caledon with

its geographically large landscape.

Through the Peel Climate Change

Partnership, which involves the

municipal governments of the Region

of Peel, Town of Caledon, Cities of

Mississauga and Brampton, Credit


Cristina Guido


Cristina Guido is the Energy and Environment Specialist with

the Town of Caledon. Guido has her Bachelor’s degree in

Environmental Studies and Master’s degree in Environmental

Studies from York University in Toronto, and has recently

received the Business Energy Professional certification from

the Association of Energy Engineers. Guido has been with

the Town since 2015, beginning in the role of a student and

progressing to her current full-time role. She is driven

by her passion for climate change mitigation and is inspired

to make a change in the community that she grew up in.

Guido continues to lead the Town’s corporate energy

and environmental initiatives.



Valley Conservation Authority, and

the Toronto and Region Conservation

Authority, Caledon is helping to develop

a new regional strategy to accelerate

the adoption of low-emission and

zero-emission vehicles by residents

and businesses in Peel Region. Further

actions earmarked for improvement in

this area include a ramp-up of vehicle

maintenance to maximize efficiency,

as well as optimizing fleet route

selection. “We’ve installed a GPS-based

system into every vehicle in our fleet

which could, for example, optimize

routes for snow removal in the winter,”

says McFadyen.

Automation-based technologies are

also playing a part in the Town’s

sustainability drive, such as the deployment

of smart thermostats through

many of its buildings and an algorithmic

tool that collates utility bill data in the

back end of Caledon’s energy management

software. The benefits of such

upgrades are far reaching: by being able

to remotely control a building’s internal

climate, McFadyen notes that operations

teams no longer have to travel

between locations to make adjustments,

thereby reducing transport-based

emissions. The algorithmic solution

JULY 2019

mitigates the risk of additional costs or

disruptions accruing through mishandled

or misinterpreted data, provides

alert reports with consumption anomalies

and enhances administrative

elements of processing utility bills.

The efficacy of these endeavors has

been reflected in the awards that

McFadyen’s team has received.

“We were recognized by the Mayor’s

Megawatt Challenge for a 10% reduction

in energy usage in our Town Hall,

and received similar recognitions for

two of our recreation complexes,” says

Guido, highlighting a handful of the

many awards received from local

associations and climate action drivers

– but for the team, the satisfaction lies in

the results themselves. “Something we

really value is that once you implement

a project you can see its results,” says

Guido. “We can see these retrofits and

then, on the data side, we can measure

and see that they are saving energy

and reducing emissions. It’s amazing to

see the impact of our work and to know

that we are making a difference.”







as a business







JULY 2019



With a winning procurement

strategy underway, Renée

Laforest, Vice President of

the Finance and Strategic

Procurement Division at SNB,

highlights how the crown

corporation is having a lasting

impact on New Brunswick



hether registering land and property

or receiving healthcare, the citizens of

New Brunswick have definitely crossed

paths with Service New Brunswick (SNB), a crown

corporation that provides almost all direct public

services on behalf of the government. SNB’s

regular clientele includes provincial and federal

government agencies, municipalities, lawyers,

surveyors, appraisers, realtors, financial institutions,

utilities, engineers, consultants and more – this

means the organization’s procurement team

have a massive, yet vital, task on their hands.

Renée Laforest, Vice President of the Finance

and Strategic Procurement division, highlights

how SNB’s procurement function isn’t just about

improving cost efficiency: it’s also about making

meaningful change. “Service New Brunswick does

strategic procurement for most of the government

entities in the entire province including the health

JULY 2019




“We’re starting to have

more conversations

about value-based

procurement, whereby

the results are based

on outcomes”

Renée Laforest,

Vice President, Finance and

Strategic Procurement Division,

Service New Brunswick

sector,” she explains. “Five or six years

ago there was an emphasis on cost,

and the strategic procurement division

was asked to find substantial savings

for the government. Therefore, not

unlike a lot of procurement teams,

we shifted towards a category

management strategy.” In essence,

this involves clustering similar items

that the company wants to buy under

a single cost-effective deal. “We have

achieved a significant amount of

savings through this new strategy,”

Laforest enthuses.

JULY 2019



However, in the most recent chapters

of the firm’s procurement journey,

it has shifted towards value-based

procurement. This can perhaps be

best seen within the healthcare

division, notes Laforest: “We’re starting

to have more conversations about

value-based procurement, whereby

the results are based on outcomes.

For example, when we purchase

insulin pumps for diabetes clients,

we’ll carefully look at the needs of

our clients and ensure we meet their

demands rather than automatically

opting for the cheapest pump.” SNB

has implemented a range of innovative

procurement strategies but it seems,

in a lot of cases, you can’t underestimate

the power of conversation and

understanding the product or service.

“We really consider our clients’ needs

and requirements when procuring

goods and services for them,” Laforest

notes. “It’s important that we have these

in-depth conversations, particularly

when it comes to services. If you’re

buying a service you may have more

complex needs and requirements,

so this dialogue is critical.”

Procurement has proven to be at the



bedrock of SNB’s operations, ensuring

that the organization can deliver the

vital government services needed

to keep the region ticking along.

The function has a lasting impact on

the people who provide government

services, as well as an indirect impact

on those who receive them. Yet,

notably, the reverberations of SNB’s

innovative procurement strategy can

be felt by New Brunswick suppliers too.

“We’re trying to support New Brunswick

suppliers to become prosperous

so they can successfully bid to the

government,” Laforest explains. “We’re

“We are trying to

support New Brunswick

suppliers to become

successful so that they

can successfully bid

to the government”

Renée Laforest,

Vice President, Finance and

Strategic Procurement Division,

Service New Brunswick

JULY 2019

trying to explain to them when we can

give preference to a local supplier

versus having an open tender, and why

we need to do that to support our New

Brunswick companies.” On top of this,

SNB has shown a flair for supplier

relationship management (SRM)

through in-depth conversations,

outreach programs and more. One

such company that has worked closely

with SNB is IMP Solutions, who were

successful in winning a number

of technology supply contracts with

the Government of New Brunswick.

“Currently, they hold four separate

multi-year contracts of supply for

technology goods, including data centre

infrastructure and client computing

equipment,” explains Laforest. “All of

these contracts were awarded through

competitive open tenders and support

SNB service delivery to three main parts

of government: core government

departments, education, healthcare.”


Renée Laforest

Laforest obtained her Bachelor of Business Administration

from the Université de Moncton and is a CPA CGA with 29 years

of experience in the civil service. She began her career as

an internal auditor at the Office of the Comptroller, then

as a treasury officer in accounting services. She then

moved to the Department of Health and held various

roles in financial services, including the Executive Director

role, and also the Assistant Deputy Minister of Health

Corporate Services where she was responsible for financial

services, construction services, health analytics,

procurement, emergency preparedness and business

technology. Laforest joined Service New Brunswick

in June 2017 as Vice President of Strategic

rocurement, and become responsible for

Financial Services in the Fall 2018.




JULY 2019





Year founded


Approximate number

of employees



Pulling back the

curtain of complexity

IMP Solutions is a leading “end to end” IT solutions company

serving all of Atlantic Canada. As such, we work with a broad

range of both public and private sector clients to provision, design,

develop, implement, service and support IT solutions. This is

accomplished through our various lines of business which include:

Hardware/Software Fulfillment

Professional Services

Advanced Solutions (Networking and Cloud)

Technical Services

Managed Services

IMP Solutions is proud to be a strategic procurement partner

for the Province of New Brunswick. Through competitively

secured supply arrangements, IMP Solutions provides both

data center (storage and server) and endpoint device (desktop,

laptop and accessories) technology to meet the Province’s

business needs.

Learn More +

Any business leader will tell you

that the procurement sector has been

a stomping ground for innovation lately

and this hasn’t gone amiss at SNB.

Laforest describes how the organization

is in the midst of implementing

a new enterprise resource planning

(ERP) system. “We are investing in a

new eERP solution for all of government,

so we need to replace the HR

management, financial, and procurement

and supply chain systems,” she

explains. This is further compounded

by the group’s strategic sourcing

platform used for health sector

procurements, Bonfire. “Vendors use

“I want to really

add value for our

clients so that they

don’t see procurement

as a roadblock but

rather see it as a valueadding


Renée Laforest,

Vice President, Finance and

Strategic Procurement Division,

Service New Brunswick

it to submit their proposals and we

do all our evaluations within the tool.

It’s all automated and all our stakeholders

have found it beneficial.”

Looking at the wider procurement

landscape, Laforest has seen an uptake

in innovative procurement practices.

This helps to encourage greater collaboration

with vendors and promotes new

ways of doing things. “I think the days of

listing endless requirements for procurement

processes are in the past,” she

proposes. “In some instances, you may

know that the business needs to buy

a blue chair that’s a particular height,

for example, and that’s easy to do.




JULY 2019

But when you’re not quite certain

what the market has to offer then it’s

important to have a process where

procurement can be more open. For

instance, you may say ‘I need a system

to help me track health inspections’

and outline your requirements so

vendors could bring forward unique

suggestions. It’s fair and transparent

and I think it brings about more

successful outcomes.”

SNB’s procurement success is far

from coincidental. The crown corporation

has put its weight behind a multi-year

procurement integration and it is

already reaping the benefits for both

the government and its citizens. In the

upcoming years, Laforest asserts that

SNB will continue to spearhead leading

procurement practices so that

stakeholders can see the function is

not a hindrance but rather, an enabler.

“I want to really add value for our clients

so that they don’t see procurement

as a roadblock but rather see it as

a value-adding function,” she affirms.



JULY 2019












Arthur Gooch, Director of

Innovation, and Sohail Nazari,

Business Development

Manager of ANDRITZ, discuss

the importance of innovation

amidst a digital transformation

in the mining industry



ith a desire to establish a lead in the

mining sector through innovation amidst

a worldwide digital transformation,

ANDRITZ, which provides industry-specific

products and solutions for sectors including

mining, has a history of setting the bar high.

With the task of embracing the right technology

to drive operations forward vital to growth in all

fields, the mining sector is often considered slower

to adopt new software. However, ANDRITZ remains

determined to enable mining operations all over the

world to bridge the gap between concept and

production, facilitate operational readiness and

stay ahead of the curve. The firm has made

a significant impact in the mining space in recent

years, winning the prestigious #DisruptMining 2019

innovation competition through its disruptive

Digital Twin technology capable of training artificial

intelligence (AI). “It was a very exciting experience

and a little bit surreal to win the competition.

JULY 2019



Year founded


Approximate number

of employees






Sohail Nazari,

Business Development Manager, ANDRITZ


We couldn’t quite believe it,” says

Arthur Gooch, Director of Innovation

at ANDRITZ. “There’s a fair amount

of pressure associated with the event

so it all happened in a bit of a blur.”

The competition, hosted by gold mining

giants Goldcorp and now in its third

year, had approximately 90 submissions

from mining firms to showcase

the technologies they have implemented

to drive innovation in the sector.

“It was amazing when we were on the

stage,” adds Sohail Nazari, Business

Development Manager of ANDRITZ.

“It’s vital that you spend a lot of time

JULY 2019



ensuring that everything on your

application is correct.”

The competition is whittled down

until three finalists remain. “Once we

became a finalist, it’s a Shark Tank

style competition and the final three go

on stage,” explains Nazari. “They pitch

their ideas to the judges with 500

people watching in the audience. It’s

fair to say it’s a high-pressured event,

and the stakes were really high, but

after we were announced as the

winner, we all felt a massive relief and

were incredibly satisfied.”

Having impressed the judges with its

dynamic simulator, IDEAS, the tool is

now enabling operations across the

sector to reduce risk and experience

considerable cost savings. The

software is considered the leading

dynamic simulator for oil sands

operations in the north of Canada

and for hard rock mining operations

worldwide. Gooch explains how

his company is utilising Digital Twin

software. “The first physical model is

like a software wrapper for all of the

engineering equations that we know

define each piece of equipment,” he

says. “For example, if we have a pipe,



JULY 2019

we know that there are correlations

between pipe geometry, surface

roughness, the pressure across the

pipe as well as the pipe’s flow rate.

Those equations, alongside those for

every other piece of equipment, get

embedded into objects in the model in

a graphical format. This allow us to

connect them together, and it means

that when someone wants to figure out

what is going on in the plant, it’s not a

matter of solving a number of equations.

Instead, it’s setting the conditions

and the operating points – like the

positions of valves and the set points

of controllers – enables the simulation

to replicate the behavior of real

running equipment.”

“Engineers make mistakes like

everyone else in life. However, when

you build the simulation model, you

actually go through all these designs

Dr. Sohail Nazari, BDM


Dr. Sohail Nazari has worked in various industries including

automotive and oil and gas. His current focus in ANDRITZ

is to develop the business of applying advanced automation

technologies in mining and mineral processing. He was one

of the instrumental contributors to the ANDRITZ team

that just won first prize in the Goldcorp/Newmont

Disrupt Mining competition with IDEAS Reinforcement

Learning Artificial Intelligence. His areas of expertise

include design and implementation of advanced

process control, intelligent condition monitoring,

Digital Twin and machine learning algorithms. Dr.

Nazari holds a patent on developing a model

predictive control algorithm for power optimization

in data centers. He received his PhD from University

of Alberta, Canada, Department of Electrical

and Computer engineering in 2013.




JULY 2019







Arthur Gooch,

Director of Innovation, ANDRITZ








With ANDRITZ filter press technology and

Metris addIQ control systems, you are

prepared for the challenges of digitalization

and IIoT – all to the degree that

fits your individual needs. Metris addIQ

control systems combine all our extensive

operation, troubleshooting, and start-up

experience in one tailored automation

solution. With the broad portfolio of scalable

automation solutions, applicable for

a wide range of purposes (e.g. predictive

maintenance, process monitoring, troubleshooting,

long-term trending, etc.),

ANDRITZ is your full-service provider for

filter presses.


Arthur Gooch,

Director of Innovation


Arthur is responsible for product development

at ANDRITZ. A mechanical engineer by

training, most of his career has focused on

process automation projects for the mining

and pulp and paper industries. From his

background in control system configuration

and commissioning, he now directs the creation

of artificial intelligence and simulation

technologies for industrial control.



JULY 2019

and it allows you to ensure the design

is going to work. It highlights any

mistakes that are made,” adds Nazari.

“We build the model, validate the design

and ensure that it includes all the

concepts on physics, chemistry,

control systems, metallurgy, or

whatever the plant is for. It’s all there.

Then, we make sure that the design will

work under different scenarios before

we connect the model into the control

system, even before the plant is built.”

Following its success, Gooch affirms

that ANDRITZ continues to take

innovation seriously to avoid complacency

and ensure it differentiates itself

from rivals. “It’s a constant process of

trying to review the technology we

have and look at how we can take new

strides with the things we couldn’t do

yesterday.” Reflecting on his company’s

achievements, Nazari affirms how

teamwork has been key to ANDRITZ’

endeavors. “This success definitely

comes down to teamwork,” says

Nazari. “The things that we are

accomplishing in our division, with

regards to AI at ANDRITZ, are made

possible by the leadership culture in

place to support this and help push for

innovation. We are passionate and we








Sohail Nazari,

Business Development Manager, ANDRITZ

JULY 2019



are one team working together to

innovate – it is so important.”

With sustainability considered a key

pillar at ANDRITZ, Gooch points out

how crucial it is that, despite success,

the company doesn’t take on more

projects than it’s capable of delivering.

“I believe managerial prudence and

caution are certainly key to ensuring

sustainability,” he says. “We’ve

experienced a tremendous flurry

of activity; however, we have had to

be quite deliberate and restrained

regarding how many people we

approach. At some point, we could

potentially run the risk of making

promises that we simply wouldn’t

have the resources to execute in

the agreed timescale.”

Looking to the future, Nazari aspires

for ANDRITZ to become the default

provider of Digital Twin technology in

mineral processing and pulp and paper.

“With our well established process


JULY 2019

simulation technology, ANDRITZ is

becoming a natural frontrunner of this

innovation and is being considered as

a pioneer in the use of real time Digital

Twins for optimizing the process and to

better monitor the conditions from the

process point of view,” explains Nazari.

“The plan for the next few years is to

continue to push innovation through

more showcases, and we’re going

to undergo a large evolution of how

the mineral processing and pulp and

paper is going to work. We’re going

to automate and then optimize as

much as possible. This is what we

at ANDRITZ have at the forefront of

our thoughts.”









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