Last week I spent part of it in a much warmer and sunnier location – Hollywood Florida – attending the GT Nexus show: Bridges 2015. The event format was, no surprise, the usual roster of executives and customer stories paraded out on main stage as well as more intimate break out sessions.
On main stage GT Nexus CEO Sean Feeney kicked off the event with an overview of where GT Nexus is and where it is heading. With over $156b worth of goods passing through the GT Nexus systems and over 100k active users, GT Nexus has a clear foundation for continued success in the supply chain world. Mr. Feeney also highlighted the following areas of focus moving forward:
- GT Nexus transportation management will remain a core offering, one that the company will continue to build on. Good to hear since this is really their bread and butter, and should continue to be their foundation.
- The Internet of Things (IoT) will become an important play for GT Nexus as the data surrounding their clients products and goods only continues to grow, GT Nexus will be working to drive deeper into the insights this information can offer. Clearly with the explosion of sensors and the data they are throwing off, it makes strategic sense for GT Nexus to put together a strategic offering around this space.
- Growing mobility ties into the added data GT Nexus will be looking to leverage, since all the data does not mean much if the insights cannot be gained as well as shared wherever and whenever the business dictates.
- Greater supply chain intelligence. This is GT Nexus’ #1 focus for R&D. Think of this as the platform that will allow clients and partners to move up the ladder to the ultimate goal of becoming more prescriptive rather than simply descriptive.
- AppXpress, GT Nexus offering a PaaS for their customers and partners to develop applications on their backbone. Clients such as Patagonia and Adidas have already been leveraging this for a year. Look for more clients and partners to take advantage of this offering.
These directions for GT Nexus are natural continuations of their existing business initiatives, but what was an interesting undertone for the firm is their continual work around their platform play. An interesting statement from main stage, and one that I would argue is the most important that came from Sean Feeney was around the amount of data that GT Nexus has passing through their solutions. With continual focus and improvement on this data the greater the results that can be derived from these supply chains.
This notion of becoming the platform to empower their customers with greater visibility is key to the future growth for GT Nexus. Companies such as Deckers, Patagonia and Caterpillar all provided varied uses cases for how they are leveraging the GT Nexus platform, visibility first and then the use cases that emerged. Greater efficiency with supplier relationships, streamlining global movement of inventory and being more efficient with the ability to track & trace product were highlighted via customer discussions. Use cases that might not have the “wow” factor, but use cases that lead to real results and measurable ROI.
What do all these use cases have in common? GT Nexus is the platform being leveraged to provide the necessary data and insights for these companies to implement new use cases. Can GT Nexus continue to build on this platform? There is not reason to believe that with a continued focus and commitment that GT Nexus’ platform play will lead to greater opportunities. It could lead to much greener pastures.