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BGSA CEO Benjamin Gordon in Palm Beach

Benesch to Provide a Total $10,000 of Free Legal Services for the Winners of the BG Strategic Advisors Supply Chain “Shark Tank” Competition

Palm Beach – January 2, 2020 – BG Strategic Advisors is pleased to announce that AmLaw200 law firm, Benesch has teamed up with DAT and will provide a total of $10,000 of free legal services to the winners of our BGSA Supply Chain “Shark Tank” during our Conference in Palm Beach January 22-24, 2020. In addition, the winners will receive a total of $5,000 in prizes provided by DAT, this year’s “Shark Tank” sponsor.

The BGSA Holdings Supply Chain Conference is the Transportation & Logistics industry’s only CEO-level conference focused on all segments of the supply chain. The DAT sponsored “Shark Tank” will include six finalists out of a record number of applicants from high caliber companies who will present their Big Idea to our outstanding audience of over 200 supply chain CEOs and leaders. Each finalist will be given a five-minute pitch, followed by five minutes of Q&A with our judges. The winner will receive a prize, live audience recognition, follow-up press coverage, and qualify for a potential investment opportunity from the BGSA Supply Chain Sharks, as well as from Cambridge Capital.

The nationally-recognized law firm, Benesch, will provide $10,000 of legal work, including corporate, transactional and intellectual property legal services, to the winner. For the fourth time, Benesch has been named Law Firm of the Year in Transportation Law by Best Law Firms®/U.S. News & World Report. Only one law firm receives this recognition each year making it a particularly impressive distinction. This is the seventh consecutive year that Benesch has received a national first-tier ranking in Transportation Law by the same ranking. Benesch’s Transportation & Logistics Practice Group guides clients in every facet of the supply chain to maximize growth, enhance profitability, ensure customer satisfaction, and minimize risk. Carriers of all modes of transportation (motor carrier, rail, air, and maritime), third-party intermediaries (transportation brokers, air and ocean freight forwarders, intermodal marketing companies, etc.), warehouse operators, technology providers, and commercial shippers (manufacturers, distributors, and retailers) rely upon Benesch’s leadership and experience from global origin to destination, and every turn in between.

Co-Chair of Benesch’s Transportation & Logistics Practice, Eric L. Zalud said, “We are thrilled to participate in the BGSA “Shark Tank” competition and to help bolster the business of one of these exciting and up and coming supply chain companies.” “Supply chains present unique and complex problems, but they also provide countless opportunities for great innovation,” said Claude Pumilia, CEO of DAT Solutions. “We are always looking for ways to help enterprising supply chain, carrier, and broker companies find their path to growth.”

About DAT Solutions

DAT operates the largest freight marketplace in North America, bringing together the largest network of transportation brokers, carriers, and shippers. News organizations and industry analysts rely on DAT for market trends and data insights derived from 256 million freight matches per year and a database of $68 billion in annual market transactions. As the industry standard for rate pricing, DAT’s freight rate database also provides the settlement prices against which trucking freight futures contracts are traded. Founded in 1978, DAT Solutions LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Roper Technologies (NYSE:ROP), a diversified technology company and constituent of the S&P 500, Fortune 1000, and Russell 1000 indices. DAT.com

About Benesch 

Benesch’s Transportation & Logistics Practice Group guides clients in every facet of the supply chain to maximize growth, enhance profitability, ensure customer satisfaction, and minimize risk. Carriers of all modes of transportation (motor carrier, rail, air, and maritime), third-party intermediaries (transportation brokers, air and ocean freight forwarders, intermodal marketing companies, etc.), warehouse operators, technology providers, and commercial shippers (manufacturers, distributors, and retailers) rely upon Benesch’s leadership and experience from global origin to destination, and every turn in between. Beneschlaw.com

About BG Strategic Advisors

BG Strategic Advisors (BGSA) is the leading M&A advisory firm focused on the logistics and supply chain industry. BGSA specializes in providing supply chain CEOs with the tools to maximize their companies’ value. For more information, please visit BGSA.com.

BGSA CEO Benjamin Gordon in Palm Beach

DAT Solutions Announced as Major Sponsor for BG Strategic Advisors Supply Chain 2020 Conference

Palm Beach – December 30, 2019 – BG Strategic Advisors is pleased to announce that industry-leading transportation platform provider DAT Solutions and AmLaw200 law firm Benesch have teamed up to present “Shark Tank” (a new product pitch session) at the BGSA Conference in Palm Beach, January 22-24, 2020.

The BGSA Holdings Supply Chain Conference is the transportation and logistics industry’’s only CEO-level conference focused on all segments of the supply chain. DAT Solutions will sponsor the “Shark Tank,” where six finalists out of a record number of applicants will present their Big Idea to more than 200 supply chain CEOs and leaders. Each finalist will give a five-minute pitch, followed by five minutes of Q&A with our judges. The winners will receive a total of $5,000 in prizes provided by DAT, and $10,000 in legal services from Benesch. Finalists also receive live audience recognition, follow-up press coverage and qualify for a potential investment opportunity from the BGSA Supply Chain Sharks, as well as from Cambridge Capital.

“Supply chains present unique and complex problems, but they also provide countless opportunities for great innovation,” said Claude Pumilia, CEO of DAT Solutions. “We are always looking for ways to help enterprising supply chain, carrier, and broker companies find their path to growth.”

“We are thrilled to participate in the BGSA “Shark Tank” competition and to help bolster the business of one of these exciting and up and coming supply chain companies,” said Eric L. Zalud, Co-Chair of Benesch’s Transportation & Logistics Practice.

About DAT Solutions

DAT operates the largest freight marketplace in North America, bringing together the largest network of transportation brokers, carriers, and shippers. News organizations and industry analysts rely on DAT for market trends and data insights derived from 256 million freight matches per year and a database of $68 billion in annual market transactions. As the industry standard for rate pricing, DAT’s freight rate database also provides the settlement prices against which trucking freight futures contracts are traded.

Founded in 1978, DAT Solutions LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Roper Technologies (NYSE:ROP), a diversified technology company and constituent of the S&P 500, Fortune 1000, and Russell 1000 indices. DAT.com

About Benesch

Benesch’s Transportation & Logistics Practice Group guides clients in every facet of the supply chain to maximize growth, enhance profitability, ensure customer satisfaction, and minimize risk. Carriers of all modes of transportation (motor carrier, rail, air, and maritime), third-party intermediaries (transportation brokers, air and ocean freight forwarders, intermodal marketing companies, etc.), warehouse operators, technology providers, and commercial shippers (manufacturers, distributors, and retailers) rely upon Benesch’s leadership and experience from global origin to destination, and every turn in between. Beneschlaw.com

About BG Strategic Advisors

BG Strategic Advisors (BGSA) is the leading M&A advisory firm focused on the logistics and supply chain industry. BGSA specializes in providing supply chain CEOs with the tools to maximize their companies’ value. For more information, please visit BGSA.com.

BGSA Supply Chain Conference Takeaways

For supply chain companies, the silver lining is volatility. More uncertainty typically means more margin opportunities for freight forwarding and other asset-light companies.

BGSA 2019 Supply Chain “Shark Tank” Winner Announced

BG Strategic Advisors is pleased to announce and congratulate Sean Devine of XBE LLC, the winner of The BGSA 2019 Supply Chain “Shark Tank,” at the BG Strategic Advisors Supply Chain Conference 2019, which was held at The Breakers in Palm Beach from January 23-25, 2019.

“Sharing the story of XBE and our vision for the future of construction logistics was a privilege,” said Sean Devine, CEO of XBE. “On behalf of the rest of our team, I’d like to thank the judges, attendees, and other contestants for making the event a great success.”

The Supply Chain “Shark Tank” finalists were judged by “Sharks” Herb Shear (former CEO, GENCO), Rob Howard (former CEO, Grand Junction, now a division of Target), and Jack Holmes (former President, UPS Freight).

Ben Gordon, BGSA CEO and “Shark Tank” moderator of said, “While all of the finalists’ presentations were impressive, Sean captivated the judges and attendees with his preparation, knowledge and energy.”

BG Strategic Advisors would also like to thank the other Supply Chain “Shark Tank” participants for outstanding presentations and for helping to make the event a great success, including:

  • Jonah McIntire, Managing Director, TNX Logistics
  • Akmann Van-Mary, CEO, SpotKew Technologies
  • Marc Held, CEO, ODYN
  • Annika Evertse, Co-Founder, SensorTransport
  • David Simmons, CTO & General Manager, Ping Asset Ltd
  • Daniel Powell, Co-Founder and CEO, Optimal Dynamics

About XBE LLC

XBE LLC is a provider of technology-based construction logistics solutions. XBE built its platform from the ground up based on 20 years of experience, and it continues to aggressively expand the breadth and depth of its capabilities. XBE is headquartered in Chicago, IL and operates branches in the Chicago, Kansas City, and Charlotte markets with plans to expand nationwide. For more information, visit www.x-b-e.com.

About BG Strategic Advisors Supply Chain Conference

The BGSA Supply Chain conference is a one-of-a-kind, invitation-only event designed to bring together top industry leaders from all segments of the supply chain, and provides an intimate and candid setting where CEOs and leaders can privately network and explore ideas and opportunities with their peers.

About BG Strategic Advisors
BG Strategic Advisors (“BGSA”) is the leading M&A advisory firm focused on the logistics and supply chain industry. BGSA specializes in providing supply chain CEOs with the tools to maximize their companies’ value. In addition to M&A advisory services, BGSA provides its clients with a broad range of investment banking capabilities, including equity capital, debt capital, board advisory, restructuring, and other capital markets services. For more information, visit www.BGSA.com or call Ben at (561) 932-1601.

BGSA provides investment banking services through BG Strategic Advisors LLC, a registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA and the SIPC.

Palm Beach BGSA Supply Chain Conference Benjamin Gordon Cambridge Capital

BGSA Conference Logistics Lessons from Palm Beach

Highlights from the BGSA Supply Chain Conference


Every January, we have the pleasure of hosting more than 200 CEOs and leaders of transportation, logistics, supply chain and technology companies at the Breakers in Palm Beach. The annual BGSA Supply Chain conference has become a great way to learn about the big trends and opportunities shaping the industry.

So what did we learn in Palm Beach this year? I’ll post the highlights. You can also see additional details at the BGSA 2017 conference site.

In sum, we see three key themes in particular: the Trump Bump, the power of e-commerce, and consolidation.


The Trump Bump

First, let’s start with the data.

At BGSA, we track the BGSA Supply Chain Index, which is a basket of 67 companies across nine segments, including logistics, trucking, rail, supply chain technology, and all other related segments.

The BGSA Supply Chain Index grew 16% in 2016, compared with a symmetrical 16% drop last year.  The BGSA Supply Chain Index also outperformed the S&P 500, which increased by 11% this year.  All in all, it was a strong year for our sector.

Within that market basket, here are some key highlights from 2016:

  • Outperformers:
  • LTL, which increased by 46%, led by SAIA (up 98%)
  • Truckload, which increased by 36%, led by Swift Transportation (up 76%)
  • Energy transportation, which increased by 31%, led by Trimac (up 119%)

Underperformers included healthcare distribution, which dropped by 20%, led by McKesson (down 29%)

What explains this strong year for the supply chain sector?

The first factor is the Trump Bump.  Of the 16% gain in 2016, a whopping 10% came in the month of November.  The market expects a Trump Administration to be bullish for transportation and logistics.  This conclusion is based on several expectations, including (i) an increase in American manufacturing, (ii) the $1 trillion infrastructure spending announcement, and (iii) lower taxes.  The biggest beneficiaries have been trucking companies, whose operating leverage gives them the ability to benefit from a boost in demand.  Fellow conference attendees YRCW and ARCB, for instance, both spiked over 50% in the month of November alone.

The second factor is the alphabet soup of regulatory compliance.  The Electronic Logging Device (ELD) mandate, which is slated to take effect in December 2017, will require all carriers to implement electronic recording of drivers’ Record of Duty Status (RODS), to ensure compliance with Hours of Service (HOS).  Many small fleets and owner-operators lack this technology, and the market expects capacity to shrink.  As a result, pricing is starting to increase.

The third factor is improving fundamentals in transportation and logistics.  Across the board, Q4 2016 data reflects economic strengthening, and increases in both rates and volumes.  In dry van trucking, spot market rates increased 5% year-over-year.  In air freight, spot market rates increased 2%.  In ocean freight, inbound container volumes increased 9%.  Further, shipping rates have strengthened after the bankruptcy of Hanjin, with Transpacific Eastbound rates up 52%.

Going forward, we expect a strong 2017 for the industry as a whole.


The Power of e-Commerce

The second major theme driving change in the supply chain is e-commerce.  2017 may finally be the year in which logistics and e-commerce converge.  Technology-based solutions for the last mile in particular are rapidly evolving.

In 2016, both Amazon and Uber announced they were targeting logistics.  Uber declared an “Uber for Trucking” app, and made a $680 million acquisition of Otto to pursue self-driving trucks.  Amazon also signaled plans for a logistics app and may become its own global freight broker and compete directly for business.  More importantly, Amazon already spends over $15 billion on shipping, and has begun to build an Amazon logistics organization that could rival the Amazon Web Services (AWS) model.

Meanwhile, we are seeing a hothouse of innovation in tech-enabled logistics, including:

  • Drones – with commercial deliveries for Amazon, 7-Eleven, and Maersk already underway
  • Online freight booking – including disruptors like Freightos, 10-4, and uShip
  • eCommerce fulfillment – with $2 trillion of annual sales and 15% annual growth, eCommerce customers are driving demand for faster and faster fulfillment, leading to same-day and even same-hour logistics solutions from companies like Amazon Prime Now, UberRUSH, Grand Junction, Doorman, and Bringg

These innovations are only going to accelerate.  Logistics technology attracted over $5 billion of funding in 2016.  This includes deals like:

  • Chinese logistics: ZTO
  • Tracking technology: Macropoint
  • Distributed warehousing: Flexe
  • TMS: 3Gtms
  • Last-mile logistics: Bringg
  • Visibility: project44
  •  And more

These technological changes pose both threats and opportunities.  On the one hand, truck brokerage stocks like CHRW and ECHO dropped nearly 10% the week Uber and Amazon’s brokerage apps were disclosed.  On the other hand, smart supply chain companies are making investments to ensure they will be ahead of the curve.  For instance, the UPS Strategic Enterprise Fund has invested more than $400 million in disruptive technologies and businesses, ranging from drones to e-commerce fulfillment software.

We expect to see more transportation and logistics companies choose to make a portfolio of strategic investments in 2017.


Consolidation: The Party Continues

The third theme is consolidation.  Amidst all of these positive catalysts, we are continuing to witness record M&A activity across all industry sectors.

Global transportation and logistics M&A volume remained strong, with over $120 billion worth of deals.

Major deals in 2016 included several global giants:

  •  US airlines:  Virgin America Inc.’s $4.2 billion acquisition of Alaska Air Group Inc.
  • Australian ports: Investor Group’s acquisition of Port of Melbourne Corp for $7.3 billion
  • Chinese trucking: Dalian Dayang Trands’ acquisition of YTO Express for $8.8 billion
  • Italian logistics: Cassa Depositi’s $3.3 billion acquisition of Poste Italiane

Meanwhile, middle-market M&A continued to dominate in the US, with a flurry of deals such as Pilot-ATL, Calyx-TransForce, UPS-Marken, Sunteck-TTS, and others.

All of these plot lines will continue to develop over the course of this year.

In summary, we are grateful for the ability to see so many terrific people and companies in one place.

Benjamin Gordon is Cambridge Capital CEO and BGSA Founder. Benjamin is a leading investor, advisor, and founder in technology, transportation, and logistics. For more information, follow Benjamin on Twitter, LinkedIn, Medium, his personal BenGordon PalmBeach blog, and his business BenjaminGordon blog.